A Fine Christmas Malt is the annual festive limited edition bottling from leading specialist spirits retailer The Whisky Exchange. Each year the whisky goes in a different direction and the 2020 Edition is a blended malt that features single malts with a heavy influence of ex-sherry cask maturation. There are just 1,918 bottles and these are only available from The Whisky Exchange website or three stores in London. Bottles can also be engraved with a personal message. A Fine Christmas Malt 2020 Edition is released at 44.5% ABV and is both non chill-filtered and of natural colour. The price is £74.95 per bottle.
Tuesday, December 29, 2020
Friday, December 18, 2020
Wednesday, December 16, 2020
The Dartmoor Distillery has released its second batch of single cask single malts. The three whiskies follow an earlier inaugural release in February from some of the very first casks filled and matured by the distillery, including Cask #1. In this second batch there are three single casks that have been selected - an ex-bourbon cask, an ex-red wine cask from Bordeaux and an ex-Oloroso sherry cask. Again, these are some of the first casks to be filled after production began in February 2017. All three are bottled at 46% ABV with the Ex-Bourbon and Ex-Bordeaux costing £59.50 each. The Ex-Oloroso costs £89.50. They are available from the distillery shop or via the Dartmoor Whisky website.
We have two more episodes of our increasingly popular Allotment Dram series for you. The colder weather is calling for a more robust style of whisky so first Matt goes smoky with the brand new Scarabus 10 years old, an Islay single malt from the guys at Hunter Laing & Co. Then on his next visit he takes a look at a big and bold sherry cask classic - the Tamdhu 15 years old from Speyside. Watch to find out his thoughts and tasting notes on these two whiskies.
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Monday, December 14, 2020
This whisky is the latest bottling in the annual Batch Strength series from the Speyside distillery of Tamdhu. The Tamdhu Batch Strength No.005 is a limited edition that has been created using different ages of whisky and only from ex-Oloroso sherry casks. These casks are both first-fill and re-fill, and of differing size - hogshead, puncheon and butt - with some made from American oak and others from European oak. There are just over 20,000 bottles available and these are released at a batch strength of 59.8% ABV. The whisky is non chill-filtered and of natural colour.
Friday, December 11, 2020
Thursday, December 10, 2020
This whisky is a new addition Islay single malt brand of Scarabus, which is bottled by family-owned independent bottlers and distillers Hunter Laing & Co. It is one of two new additions that will sit permanently in its newly created core range. This Scarabus 10 years old, plus the Scarabus Batch Strength, will join the re-named Scarabus Specially Selected that was launched last year. Scarabus translates as 'rocky place' in Nordic and refers to the rugged location on the north eastern coast of Islay where Hunter Laing have built their Ardnahoe distillery. The Scarabus 10 years old has been matured for a minimum of a decade in re-fill ex-bourbon and virgin American oak casks.
Wednesday, December 9, 2020
These two whiskies form part of the latest batch of the highly anticipated annual single cask series from the Highland distillery of Glendronach. The Glendronach Batch 18 consists of 18 single casks, which span a range of ages and vintages, and each was hand-selected by Dr. Rachel Barrie - the Master Blender of Glendronach. The oldest was distilled and filled to cask in 1990, while the youngest is from 2009.
All casks are either ex-Oloroso sherry, ex-Pedro Ximenez sherry or ex-Port in origin and are bottled at their natural cask strengths - these range between 48% and 61.9% ABV. All are also non chill-filtered and of natural colour. The price range is £97/ $129 US to £861/ $1,140 US. Each cask will only be available to purchase in an allocated region. The two reviewed here will only be for Europe and the UK. Full details of each cask are listed in our recent Inbox blog post here.
Friday, December 4, 2020
Wednesday, December 2, 2020
This whisky is the latest in the limited edition Moments range from the Swedish distillery of Mackmyra. The Mackmyra Körsbärsrök, which translates as 'cherry smoke' from Swedish, has been created by Angela D'Orazio - Master Blender at Mackmyra. She used a combination of smoked and classic unsmoked spirits that were distilled in 2010. The smoky spirit is only produced for about one month every year and the malt is smoked using Swedish peat and juniper twigs. The whiskies were matured at Bodås, Mackmyra's warehouse in an old iron ore mine, in two sizes of ex-bourbon cask (100 and 200 litres) and two sizes of ex-cherry wine casks from Germany (100 and 128 litres).
Tuesday, December 1, 2020
This whisky is a new limited edition single malt from the Speyside distillery of Glen Moray. The Glen Moray Sauternes Cask Matured launches their new Warehouse 1 Collection, which will showcase some of the innovation going on in the distillery's most well-known warehouse. This single malt is constructed of just five casks that had previously held sweet Sauternes dessert wine, which were sourced from France, before being filled with Glen Moray new make spirit in August 2006.
Monday, November 30, 2020
Then on his next visit he takes a look at a new whisky - the Glen Moray Sauternes Cask Matured - on a very chilly November afternoon. Watch as he talks about the limited edition single malt and the new series of releases that it kicks off, before Matt gives his thoughts and tasting notes.
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Friday, November 27, 2020
Thursday, November 26, 2020
This 11 years old Sherry Double Cask Finish is a new limited edition single malt from the Campbeltown distillery of Glen Scotia. The new whisky is created using first-fill ex-bourbon barrels that were filled with Glen Scotia's unpeated spirit in 2008, which were then split between ex-Oloroso and ex-Pedro Ximenez sherry casks for a finishing period. It is unusual as Glen Scotia normally has a small amount of peat. These casks were then married back together in ex-bourbon casks for a short period, before bottling at 11 years of age and at the natural cask strength of 54.1% ABV. The whisky is also non chill-filtered and of natural colour.
Wednesday, November 25, 2020
This whisky sits at the pinnacle of the newly revamped core range from the Speyside distillery of Benriach. This range is designed to showcase their eclectic range of casks from around the world (these come from 20 different origins) and the three different spirit styles that are produced there - classic Speyside, peated Speyside (produced for only 5-6 weeks each year) and triple distilled (produced for just 1-2 weeks each year). The range has been entirely created by Dr. Rachel Barrie, the Master Blender for Benriach. The Thirty uses only peated malts, which are very rare at this age, and features four cask types - ex-bourbon, ex-Port wine, ex-sherry and virgin oak.
Monday, November 23, 2020
The Johnnie Walker Black Label forms part of the core range of best-selling blended whiskies from Scotch whisky giant Diageo. It sits between the Red Label and Gold Label in the range that also includes the Green Label 15 years old, 18 years old and Blue Label as permanent expressions. These are often joined by numerous limited editions and bottlings created for specific markets. All are created by a team of 12 blenders at Diageo, which is headed by the legendary Dr. Jim Beveridge OBE. The brand sells a staggering 18.5 million cases of whisky per annum worldwide - that is just over 220 million single bottles each year.
Friday, November 20, 2020
Wednesday, November 18, 2020
Then on his next visit he talks about the recently released Winter Edition from Jura, the second bottling in the island distillery's Cask Edition series. Watch as he shares his thoughts and tasting notes on both whiskies. We hope that you enjoy.
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Tuesday, November 17, 2020
Monday, November 16, 2020
This whiskey marks the completion of re-establishing the Spot Whiskey range to its former glory by Irish Distillers in collaboration with Mitchell & Son. It joins the other members of its historical family - Green Spot, Yellow Spot 12 years old and Red Spot 15 years old. The new version of Blue Spot is bottled at 7 years of age and is bottled at the natural cask strength of 58.7% ABV - this is similar in strength to the original Blue Spot, which disappeared from market in the mid-20th century. It is a marriage of single pot still whiskeys that have been matured in ex-bourbon, ex-Madeira wine and ex-Oloroso sherry casks, and features whiskeys aged between seven and 20 years of age.
Friday, November 13, 2020
Thursday, November 12, 2020
Then on his next visit he samples and reviews the limited edition small batch Kilchoman 2009 Vintage, which sees him talk about the family-owned farm distillery on Islay. Then find out his thoughts and tasting notes.
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Wednesday, November 11, 2020
These three whiskies are first in a new series of limited edition single malts from the Speyside distillery of Glenallachie that will form The Virgin Oak Finish Series - the Glenallachie Chinquapin Virgin Oak Finish, the French Virgin Oak Finish and the Spanish Virgin Oak Finish. Each whisky has first been matured in American oak ex-bourbon barrels before being transferred for a short period to the three different virgin oak casks. All are released at 12 years of age.
Tuesday, November 10, 2020
This is a permanent addition to the core range of the famous Ballantine's blended Scotch whisky range, released in September 2020. The Ballantine's 7 years old Bourbon Finish has been created by Sandy Hyslop, the Master Blender for Ballantine's. He blended single malts and single grain whiskies for a traditional Ballantine's expression with a minimum age of seven years, before then finishing them in ex-bourbon casks sourced from Kentucky. The new whisky is inspired by founder George Ballantine, who started selling his own 7 years old aged whisky in the 1870s. It was also a time when Ballantine's were one of the first companies to be importing ex-bourbon casks from America.
Monday, November 9, 2020
This whisky sees Compass Box, the innovative whisky blenders, continuing their 20th anniversary celebrations with the release of a limited edition version of their popular Peat Monster blended malt. Peat Monster Arcana is a cask strength version of the original Peat Monster recipe that has then seen a further two years maturation in French oak casks. This was then blended further with aged single malts from the Ardbeg, Miltonduff and Talisker distilleries. It is released at 46% ABV and is both non chill-filtered and of natural colour. There are 8,328 bottles and these will be available via specialist whisky retailers globally. Price - £75/ $95 US.
Friday, November 6, 2020
Thursday, November 5, 2020
The Cotswold distillery has released its latest English single malt to its award-winning range - the Cotswolds Sherry Cask. This new whisky features spirit matured in both American oak and European oak casks that have been seasoned with either dry Oloroso or sweet Pedro Ximenez sherry. The casks are a mix of hogsheads and butts, and this is the first of what is planned to be an annual release. The Cotswolds Sherry Cask is bottled at the natural cask strength of 57.4% ABV and is non chill-filtered and of natural colour. It is available to purchase via the distillery shop, selected specialist retailers or via their website www.cotswoldsdistillery.com. A bottle will cost £64.95.
Wednesday, November 4, 2020
This whisky is a new and exceptionally rare single malt from the Highland distillery of Glen Ord, which is released under The Singleton label. The Singleton of Glen Ord 38 years old has been created using just eight cask by Maureen Robinson, the Master Blender for The Singleton brand since it was first released in 2004. The whisky has been in these casks for the final 26 years of its life after being earmarked for greatness when only 12 years of age. This is the longest secondary maturation in The Singleton history. These casks are ex-bourbon, ex-Pedro Ximenez sherry and virgin American oak, which have then been married back together to create this 38 years old.
Tuesday, November 3, 2020
This whisky forms part of the newly revamped core range from the Speyside distillery of Benriach, which is designed to showcase their eclectic range of casks from around the world (these come from 20 different origins) and the three different spirit styles that are produced there - classic Speyside, peated Speyside (produced for only 5-6 weeks each year) and triple distilled (produced for just 1-2 weeks each year). The range has been entirely created by Dr. Rachel Barrie, the Master Blender for Benriach. The Twenty Five combines both classic and peated malts together and features four cask types - ex-bourbon, ex-Madeira wine, ex-sherry and virgin oak.
Monday, November 2, 2020
Friday, October 30, 2020
Thursday, October 29, 2020
These two whiskies form part of a larger set of 10 single casks from Glenglassaugh under the new Coastal Cask banner. All are either 10 or 11 years of age and have been distilled since the distillery re-opened after a 22 year period of closure in 2008. Each cask in the collection was hand selected from maturing stocks by Dr. Rachel Barrie, the Master Blender for Glenglassaugh.
Wednesday, October 28, 2020
The Bicentennial Blend is one of three special bottlings by Johnnie Walker, the world's best selling Scotch whisky, that have been created to celebrate its 200th anniversary. The other two new whiskies are the Celebratory Blend and the Blue Label Legendary Eight. There is also a special commemorative pack for the regular Blue Label bottling. The three new whiskies are all limited editions and have been created by Jim Beveridge OBE, the Master Blender for Johnnie Walker, and his team at Diageo. John Walker opened his grocery shop in King Street, Kilmarnock in 1820 and began blending his own whiskies in the cellar.
Tuesday, October 27, 2020
Sunday, October 25, 2020
Friday, October 23, 2020
Thursday, October 22, 2020
Wednesday, October 21, 2020
This AD/09.20:01 is the first ever single malt to be released from the west Highland distillery of Ardnamurchan. It follows limited releases of new make and part-aged spirits under the AD label. The whisky is a marriage of unpeated and peated styles, with the ratio being 50:50. The peated spirit is produced with a phenol level of 30-35ppm. Both styles have been matured in a combination of ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks for this release. The distillery has been built to be self sustainable due to its remote location, and is one of the greenest and most eco-friendly in Scotland. The name of the whisky refers to AD (Ardnamurchan Distillery), 09.20 (September 2020), 01 (Batch No.1).
Tuesday, October 20, 2020
This whisky forms part of the newly revamped core range of single malts from the Speyside distillery of Benriach, which is designed to showcase Benriach's eclectic range of casks from around the world (these come from 20 different origins) and the three different spirit styles that are produced there - classic Speyside, peated Speyside (produced for only 5-6 weeks each year) and triple distilled (produced for just 1-2 weeks each year). The range has been entirely created by Dr. Rachel Barrie, the Master Blender for Benriach. The Twenty One combines both classic and peated malts together and features four cask types - ex-bourbon, ex-red wine, ex-sherry and virgin oak.
Monday, October 19, 2020
Friday, October 16, 2020
Wednesday, October 14, 2020
This whiskey is the latest in the long line of releases by the Irish brand of Midleton. The Very Rare 2020 Edition is the 37th edition with the whiskey released annually since 1984. It is also the final one to be created by former Master Distiller Brian Nation. This year's edition features single pot still and single grain whiskeys that range in age from 13 to 35 years and all have been matured exclusively in lightly charred American oak ex-bourbon casks. These were then married together by Nation who picked them from a small pocket of rare stock that is being matured only for use as Very Rare. The 2020 Edition sees a higher pot still whiskey content than many previous years and an increased use of re-fill casks.
Tuesday, October 13, 2020
Sunday, October 11, 2020
Friday, October 9, 2020
Wednesday, October 7, 2020
This whisky is a new release from the east Highland distillery of Knockdhu. The AnCnoc Peatheart Batch 2 is a limited edition and forms part of the brand's ever increasing range of smoky whiskies. These are made for a short period each year, a process which started 15 years ago, and use Highland peat cut locally during the malting process. It follows on from the inaugural batch of Peatheart from 2017, which was exclusive to Sweden, and has a phenol measurement of 40ppm (phenol parts per million). The Peatheart Batch 2 has been matured in American oak ex-bourbon barrels. There are just over 10,000 bottles available.
Tuesday, October 6, 2020
Monday, October 5, 2020
The Winter Edition is a new single malt that is the second release in the Cask Editions Series from Jura. The series highlights the role of different casks on a whisky during maturation and this bottling follows on from the Red Wine Cask release from earlier in the year. The Winter Edition has been matured in American white oak ex-bourbon barrels before being finished in Spanish ex-sherry casks. It has been created by Gregg Glass and the team of whisky makers at parent company Whyte & Mackay. The Jura Winter Edition is bottled at 40% ABV and will be available in the UK, exclusively at supermarket Tesco to begin with. A one litre bottle will cost £44.
Friday, October 2, 2020
Thursday, October 1, 2020
Monday, September 28, 2020
This whisky is the latest in the annual series from Lagavulin released as part of their sponsorship of the Islay Jazz Festival. This year's limited edition bottling is 22 years old, an age chosen to celebrate the 22 years that the annual festival has been held on the famous whisky island of Islay. The 2020 festival will be the first ever to be broadcast online due to the global Covid-19 pandemic and will be streamed live via the Lagavulin and Friends of the Classic Malts Facebook pages on October 3. The Jazz Festival Edition 2020 has been matured in both re-fill American and European oak casks, before some of the whisky has undergone a further finishing period in ex-red wine casks.
Friday, September 25, 2020
Wednesday, September 23, 2020
Tuesday, September 22, 2020
Monday, September 21, 2020
Friday, September 18, 2020
Tuesday, September 15, 2020
Monday, September 14, 2020
This is the latest single malt in the seasonal limited edition series from Swedish distillery Mackmyra. Bottlings in the series are released each Spring and Autumn and this Autumn's whisky is named Jaktlycka, meaning 'hunting luck'. The whisky is inspired by the ancient forests that surround the distillery and come to life with fruit and berries each Autumn, and are popular hunting grounds for Swedes. Jaktlycka has been matured in American oak and Swedish oak casks that have previously held blueberry and lingonberry wines from the Grythyttan winery in Sweden.