Friday, November 22, 2013

Inbox - November 22, 2013

Welcome to this week's Inbox.  For those that have recently discovered us, Inbox is our weekly round up of whisky news and PR material that has found its way in to our email inbox. It was created as we cannot write full articles or do justice to every piece received. It features items from around the world of whisky and is published by us each Friday.

Within Inbox we aim to 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.  Here is the news that has attracted our attention this week ...


Ballantine's - Presentation for Xmas
The hugely popular Ballantine's blended whisky brand has announced special packaging for two of its expressions in the run up to Christmas.  Both have been designed to be contemporary and stand out on store shelves.  The first (pictured, left) is a zip pack and this will be used for the best selling Finest expression in key markets, including Brazil, China, Poland, Russia and Spain.

The second limited edition pack (pictured, right) is for the 12 years old expression.  It is a tin that represents four hardback books on a book shelf, all in variants of the famous Ballantine's blue livery.  This will be available in 28 selected markets across the world, including Chile, Portugal, sub-Sahara Africa and Thailand. This packaging will be backed up by local advertisement and social media campaigns.

Peter Moore, the Global Brand Director for Ballantine's commented: “We have created two contemporary designs that we believe will appeal to modern Ballantine’s drinkers and that truly reflect the personality of the brand. Our aim is always to stay true to Ballantine’s heritage, whilst simultaneously reflecting its contemporary relevance, and we feel the new gift packs do exactly that. We’re confident that these innovative designs will reinforce our positioning, resonate with our existing customers, while also attracting new and younger consumers to the brand.” 

Bowmore - Raise bat to half century
The Bowmore distillery, which is the oldest one still operating on the famous whisky island of Islay, have announced one of their oldest and most premium single malt releases - the 1961 50 years old.  The whisky was filled to two ex-bourbon hogshead casks in December 1961 and has remained in them ever since.  After 50 years there are just 200 bottles of liquid remaining, only five of which are destined for the UK market.

Each bottle carries a price tag of £16,000 that reflects the quality of the liquid and the brand have used some of Scotland's finest craftsmen with the packaging.  This includes the bottles, which are individually handblown by glass sculpture studio Glasstorm, and neck and stopper decoration by Fattorini Silversmiths.  All comes housed in a bespoke handmade cabinet crafted from Scottish Elm by Peter Toaig.

Famous Grouse - Make someone's Xmas
The Famous Grouse brand have launched a new initiative that enables customers to make a free personalised label for friends and family this Christmas.  Everyone who buys a 70cl bottle in the run up to the big day will have the chance to create their own individual label via the website  The process involves scanning the barcode, entering the required details and redeeming the special label. Have fun.

Old Pulteney - Vintage released
The North Highland single malt brand of Old Pulteney have announced their latest limited edition release - the 1990 Vintage.  The whisky was distilled in 1990 and has been maturing in the wind swept warehouses next to the distillery in seaside fishing port of Wick.  The release concludes a successful year of releases for the distillery.

In a new twist for the brand, the release has been matured in casks that have previously held heavily peaty malt.  These are a combination of ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks, and adds another dimension to Old Pulteney's well-known 'maritime' character. The 1990 Vintage has been bottled at a strength of 46% ABV and is un chill-filtered and of natural colour.  There are just 5,400 bottles that will be available in selected markets worldwide from the end of November.  The recommended retail price is £120.

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