Friday, June 3, 2011

Inbox > June 3, 2011

whisky for everyone inbox logoInbox is our weekly round up of whisky news and PR type material that has found its way in to our email inbox. Sadly, we cannot write full articles or do justice to every piece that we receive, so Inbox was born! It features items from around the world of whisky and is published by us each Friday. Within Inbox we will write a few lines detailing each press release/piece of news/PR event that we have received and provide links, where possible, for you to find out further information if you want to. Here's the news that caught our attention this week ...
Ardbeg > Alligator is released
ardbeg alligatorThe cult distillery on the famous whisky island of Islay have released their latest Ardbeg Committee bottling – the Alligator. It is so called as it has been matured in heavily charred American oak casks and the heavy charring/burning makes the inside of the cask look like blackened alligator skin (this is actually called an ‘alligator char’). The whisky is currently only available to Ardbeg Committee members (this is free to join via their website) and will get a limited general release in Europe, the UK, USA and selected Asian markets in September. The Committee version is bottled at 51.2% ABV and has a retail price of £55 plus postage. We have added a short clip from Ardbeg below, called ‘The Islay-gator’s Tale’ (get it?) …

Balvenie > Masters of Craft winners announced
balvenie masters of craft logoThe famous Speyside distillery of Balvenie, owned by William Grant & Sons, have announced the winners of their inaugural Masters of Craft competition. The Masters of Craft is an initiative that celebrates the often-forgotten crafts and trades that many people pursue. Balvenie decided to do this as the distillery itself is unique – it has been called the ‘complete distillery’ as they grow some of their own barley, maintain their floor maltings and still employ craftsmen such as coopers and a coppersmith, which almost no other distillery in Scotland do. Craftsmanship is deep rooted in everything that Balvenie does and they believe that this aids the quality of their whiskies.

The awards were given across a range of skills and materials and we have listed the winners below. The judging panel was made up of Balvenie’s legendary Malt Master Dave Stewart, TV presenter and designer Kevin McCloud, photographer Nick Hand, Robin Wood, the chairman of the Heritage Crafts Association and Anne Cuthbertson, the editor of the Sunday Telegraph Life magazine.

And the winners are ...
Wood > Christoph Gotting - violin maker
Glass & Ceramics > Stewart Hearn - glass blower
Textiles > Iain Finlay Macleod - weaver
Metal > Wayne Victor Meeton - precious metal worker
Stone > Jacqueline Cullen - jeweller
Leather > Deborah Carre - shoe maker
Young Master of Craft > Ruth Emily Davey - shoe maker
The Balvenie Master of Craft 2011 > Christoph Gotting

We were delighted to be invited to the awards ceremony at the posh Connaught Hotel in central London this week and would like to thank everyone at Balvenie for a wonderful evening.

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