Friday, September 25, 2015

Inbox - The Week's Whisky News (September 25, 2015)

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 what has caught our attention this week ...


Ballantine's - Artistic license given
Chivas Brothers, the owners of the popular Ballantine's blended Scotch brand, have announced an exciting collaboration to kick off a new series. The Artist Series will see the brand working with three different creative talents and will feature bespoke Ballantine's packaging.  The first is with Leif Podhajsky, the renowned album cover designer, who took inspiration from the whisky making process for the project.  The special bottles will be available for the Finest and 12 years old expressions.  They will be available worldwide from the end of October.

Benromach -Anyone for wine?
The Benromach Distillery Company Ltd have announced the latest two releases in their Wood Finish series.  Following two successful expressions last year, come the Benromach Hermitage and Sassicaia.  The Hermitage was matured in first fill ex-bourbon casks before being transferred to oak casks from the Haut-Médoc in the northern Rhône Valley of France.

The second expression is again matured in first fill ex-bourbon casks, before being transferred to ex-wine casks from Bolgheri in Tuscany, Italy for a further 18 months.  Both have been bottled at 45% ABV and will be available shortly in specialist whisky retailers in selected markets worldwide.  The recommended price is £39.49 a bottle.  For further information, please visit

Keith Cruickshank, Distillery Manager at Benromach, said: "Whisky lovers will enjoy the chance to experience Benromach in a different way. The maturation in wine casks from such distinguished regions creates a distinct flavour in the whisky and allows a truly unique character to develop."

Compass Box- This contains no info
The multi award winning and independent whisky making company of Compass Box have announced two new releases.  The first is called This Is Not A Luxury Whisky and plays on the idea that the liquid, rather than packaging, that defines quality.  The name pays homage to 1929 painting by Magritte called The Treachery of Images.  The whisky contains a blend of single grain and malt whiskies aged between 19 and 40 years.  It is bottled at a natural cask strength of 53.1% ABV and there are just 4,992 bottles.  The whisky will be available in Europe in mid-October and the also in the USA from mid-November.  The price will be £150/$225.

Compass Box have also released the fifth edition of their popular Flaming Heart expression.  This has been done to celebrate the company's 15th anniversary and remains true to the construction of the original 2006 expression of Flaming Heart, but using older whiskies.  This is a marriage of Highland and Islay malts ranging from 14 to 30 years in age, plus a 7 years old blended malt featuring three Highland distilleries that has been matured in French oak casks for a minimum of two years.  Flaming Heart is bottled at 48.9% ABV and there will be 12, 060 bottles available on the same markets and timescale as above.  The price will be £100/$150.

John Glaser, founder of Compass Box, commented: "In celebrating our 15th anniversary we wanted to re-visit a classic Compass Box style without simply replaying it. The whiskies used for Flaming Heart hold true to the original concept of but are significantly older than any we’ve used for this whisky before. Age does not mean everything, but in this case, given the whiskies we’ve sourced, it adds depth, complexity, and richness."

Jameson - Whiskey & stout
The world's largest Irish whiskey brand has announced the full introduction of an innovative collaboration, following a successful trial in Ireland last year.  The Jameson Caskmates sees the famous Midleton distillery working in conjunction with craft brewery Franciscan Well, both of which are based in Co. Cork.  The partnership sees Franciscan Well age a stout in Jameson casks for three months before returning them to Midleton.  Then they are refilled with Jameson and finished for six months.  The bottling will be available in eight markets including Ireland, South Africa, the UK and the USA.  The price will be $30/€39.  Below is the cool brand video.  Enjoy ...

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