Friday, April 13, 2018

Inbox - The Week's Whisky News (April 13, 2018)

Welcome to Inbox.  For those new to WFE, 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.  This is the news that has grabbed our attention this week.


Famous Grouse 
The Famous Grouse have announced a new series of premium blended whiskies to their range and the first release in that series. The Bourbon Cask launches the Famous Grouse Cask Series has been created by Kirsteen Campbell, the Master Blender for the brand. The whiskies used have been matured in American oak and first-fill ex-bourbon casks. It is initially exclusive to the Tesco supermarket chain in the UK and is available now from their 600+ stores. The price will be £19 for a 70cl bottle.

"For The Famous Grouse, we place such a lot of importance on the quality of our wood that we wanted to develop a range to really highlight and celebrate all that this adds to our whisky. The Cask Series is designed to showcase how different types of oak cask can influence flavours."
Kirsteen Campbell.

The Islay based distillery of Kilchoman have announced details of two of their popular batched single malts - the Loch Gorm and Port Cask Matured. The Loch Gorm (left) is the only global release of Kilchoman to be matured entirely in ex-sherry casks and has featured annually since 2012. The 2018 Edition combines nineteen ex-Oloroso sherry butts filled in 2007, 2008 and 2011. This includes some of the oldest sherry matured stock to date and the butts have yielded 15,000 bottles.

The Port Cask Matured has only been released once previously and that was in 2014. The 2018 Edition combines 30 ex-Ruby Port hogheads, which were filled in 2014, and these have yielded 10,000 bottles. This will be bottled at 50% ABV. Details of the prices for each were not revealed in the press release. Both will be released on April 23 and will be available via selected specialist whisky retailers worldwide.

“Historically our Port and sherry matured releases have received a very positive response. I think the 2018 editions are probably the best versions of these expressions we’ve released to date so I’m excited to see the how they are received”
Andrew Wills - Founder of Kilchoman.

Old Pulteney
Leading specialist retailer The Whisky Exchange have revealed their latest exclusive single cask offering, which is from the north Highland distillery of Old Pulteney. The single first-fill ex-sherry butt (Cask #128) was filled in 2004 and bottled in 2018. It has yielded 612 bottles and each is individually numbered. The Old Pulteney 2004 is released at the natural cask strength of 62.1% ABV and is of natural colour and non chill-filtered. Each bottle will cost £99.95 and they are exclusively available from


Ian Macleod Distillers, the owners of the Smokehead single malt brand, have announced two pieces of news this week - a packaging revamp and a permanent new whisky, which joins the Original expression. The new packaging features a redesign of the Islay single malt brand's skull logo, which features a whisp of smoke across it.

Smokehead High Voltage is a new cask strength version of the 43% ABV Original. It is bottled at 58% ABV and is non chill-filtered and of natural colour. It is designed to offer a 'louder, bolder and more intense version of Smokehead'. The new packaging and High Voltage will be available through selected specialist retailers and will cost £55 a bottle.

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