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The Masters


Maxxium UK has announced Glasgow as the next location for The Famous Grouse Masters of the Famous Blend bartender engagement programme, following a successful event in Leeds last year.

The event will take place on Wednesday 8th March at 29 Private Members Club, and brings together the Masters behind The Famous Grouse including Master Blender, Kirsteen Campbell; Master of Wood, Stuart MacPherson; Global Brand Ambassador, Lucy Whitehall; and Master of Mixology David Miles from the Maxxium Mixxit team.

More than 100 bartenders around the UK have attended the Masters of the Famous Blend events since they launched and they have proven to provide bartenders with a unique and fascinating insight into the UK’s best-selling whisky – The Famous Grouse. The Glasgow event will be no different with a special look at how the whisky is crafted as well as an introduction to the family range.

Each of our Masters will focus on their specialist topic, and the schedule will include:

  • Lucy Whitehall (Global Brand Ambassador) introducing the ‘four fundamentals’ of The Famous Grouse brand: foundation; finest; flavour; and fusion, before providing a fascinating overview of the heritage of this famous brand, and the foundation it is built on.
  • Kirsteen Campbell (Master Blender) explains the art of blending (fusion) and the finest ingredients that go into making a blend and hosts a tasting of the full range.
  • Stuart McPherson (Master of Wood) covers flavour talking through the wood policy and the impact that this has on the flavour of the whisky
  • David Miles (Master of Mixology) then talks about how versatile blended whisky is and how to drive rate of sale through mixed drinks, before demonstrating a range of serves from simple through to the more complex.

Chris Anderson, Marketing Controller, The Famous Grouse commented: “The Famous Grouse has achieved its standing as the best-selling whisky in the UK through the impressive skills of our Master Blender and the commitment to quality that is consistently applied to all areas of production. This includes our wood policy which manages the sourcing of materials from tree to cask, and our maturation process.

“The bartender engagement programme has been extremely successful and offers a very unique opportunity for our senior team to share their knowledge with bartenders, who play such an important role in ensuring that our whisky reaches consumers.”

Any bartenders wishing to join the session at 29 Private Members Club in Glasgow on 8th March can email tfgteam@bigpartnership.co.uk to reserve a place. Places are limited so bartenders should register as quickly as possible.


About Maxxium UK

  • Maxxium is the distributor of The Famous Grouse in the UK.
  • The Famous Grouse portfolio includes: The Famous Grouse, The Famous Grouse Smoky Black, The Famous Grouse Mellow Gold, and The Naked Grouse.
  • Maxxium UK Ltd is part of the global sales and distribution alliance between Beam Suntory and Edrington Group.
  • Its UK portfolio of premium brands includes: Blended Scotch (The Famous Grouse, Teacher’s and Cutty Sark), malt whisky (Highland Park, Laphroaig, Bowmore, Auchentoshan, The Macallan, and Ardmore), imported whiskey (Jim Beam, Maker’s Mark, Knob Creek, Canadian Club, Red Stag) Japanese whiskey (Hibiki, Yamazaki, Hakashu), cognac (Courvoisier) vodka (Stolichnaya), rum (Brugal), liqueurs and specialities (Sourz, Midori, Bols liqueurs, Galliano, After Shock)

Turning Japanese – Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival broadens horizons with unexpected tastes and experiences – Whisky News

SOSWF Whisky Galore Small

Turning Japanese – Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival broadens horizons with unexpected tastes and experiences

If you think that Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival simply celebrates amber nectar from the world-famous region that is home to more than half of Scotland’s malt whisky distilleries then think again – visitors will have the opportunity to sample a range of Japanese whiskies too.

While the chance to meet key players in the Speyside whisky industry and join exclusive behind the scenes distillery tours are in high demand, the festival’s reputation as a premier whisky event means that some unexpected drams will be on offer during the experience.

Although Speyside distilleries would argue that their produce is the best in the world, Japanese whiskies have been making their mark. Speyside’s The Highlander Inn at Craigellachie is owned by Tatsuya Minagawa from Japan and is home to one of the world’s largest collections of Japanese whiskies outside South East Asia. It is here that Global Brand Ambassador Yumi Yashikawa will discuss ‘Everything about Chichibu Distillery’ with a rare chance to try brand new bottlings and new cask samples of whiskies not yet available in the UK.

Whisky isn’t just served in glasses in Speyside, it can be tasted in an array of foodstuffs, as the Spey Larder in Aberlour will show. This High Street delicatessen is serving samples of whisky-flavoured haggis, smoked salmon, cheeses, pâté, ice cream, cake, tea and coffee, all specially created by Scottish producers.

If you love crafts then a workshop offering the opportunity to create a textile card or brooch based on Scotland’s national flower, the thistle might appeal. Working with a choice of fabric, including Harris Tweed or cloth from Johnstons of Elgin, it is a chance to use simple stitching or gluing techniques to create a small piece of Scotland to take home. Coffee and cake can be enjoyed at this workshop taking place at Dufftown’s Seven Stills on several dates throughout the festival.

Scotland is gathering a growing reputation for its gin production and the home of Caorunn Gin is opening its doors to festival goers. Speyside’s Balmenach Distillery will be offering an insight into Caorunn’s artisanal production process with a tour of the production area followed by tutored, deconstructed nosings and tastings, including neat tastings.

Chocolates will be served with very special drams when drinks writers Joel Harrison and Neil Ridley get together at Aberlour Distillery to go back to the birth of film and use the moving image to highlight the influence of maturation in sherry casks with a silent classic accompanied by live music.

This year’s Festival runs from April 27 to May 1 and the programme comprises almost 500 different events across Speyside, taking place in distilleries old and new, charming village halls, local whisky bars, historic castles, old steadings and the great outdoors.

Festival manager Pery Zakeri says that the festival is continuing to make new partnerships and extending its appeal and interest to whisky fans and other visitors seeking unique activities.

Pery says, “Events like our exclusive behind the scenes tours – and events where people get to meet the key players in the Speyside whisky industry such as master distillers and expert blenders – will always be the most popular.

“But every year we look to add interesting and unusual choices to the Festival listings so there is an incredibly varied programme to choose from.“

Festival chairman James Campbell also underlines the importance of the festival being an unforgettable experience for all visitors, whether they are whisky devotees or curious beginners.

“The Festival is very much the gold standard for whisky connoisseurs, but we ensure there is plenty to attract those who are less knowledgeable about Speyside malts or indeed who have never tasted whisky.”

Based in the heart of Scotland’s malt whisky country, the five day festival has events from Kingussie in the south to Forres in the west and Buckie in the east.

Situated directly between the cities of Aberdeen and Inverness, Speyside is the base for many high-profile international brands.

More information about the event is available at www.spiritofspeyside.com/ and tickets are also available to buy on the website. The Festival is active on social media – facebook.com/WhiskyFestival and @spirit_speyside on Twitter and Instagram. Use the hashtag #dram17.

Caption: There’s whisky galore – and so much more – at the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival.

Notes to Editors

The Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival is committed to promoting responsible drinking. Visitors travelling to and from Festival events can take advantage of a range of transport options. Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival has received funding from Event Scotland and is also financially supported by many other private and public partners.

The Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival is part financed by the European Regional Development Fund Programme 2014 to 2020. The Scottish Government is the managing authority for the European Regional Development Fund Programme.


EventScotland is working to make Scotland the perfect stage for events. By developing an exciting portfolio of sporting and cultural events EventScotland is helping to raise Scotland’s international profile and boost the economy by attracting more visitors. For further information about EventScotland, its funding programmes and latest event news visit www.eventscotland.org/. Follow EventScotland on Twitter @EventScotNews.

EventScotland is a team within VisitScotland’s Events Directorate, the national tourism organisation which markets Scotland as a tourism destination across the world, gives support to the tourism industry and brings sustainable tourism growth to Scotland. For more information about VisitScotland see www.visitscotland.org/ or for consumer information on Scotland as a visitor destination see http://www.visitscotland.com/.

Milroys of Soho “Kavalan Master Class hosted by Master Blender, Mr Ian Chang” – Taiwan Whisky News




TUESDAY 2nd MAY 2016 ~ 6.30pm

Move over Yamazaki, here comes Kavalan!

Enjoy a once in  a lifetime opportunity to spend an evening tasting Kavalan whisky with world renowned Taiwanese whisky producer Mr Ian Chang!!!

Tickets are limited to 25



One Week Away: WhiskyFest DC is pouring over 300 Whiskies! – Whisky News



Ralfy Review #628 – Scotch Whisky News


Ralfy takes an Indi Glen Elgin challenge with Ralfy Review 628 – Glen Elgin 21yo single cask (Douglas Laing)

Green Spot Single Pure Pot Still Irish Whiskey at K&L California – Irish Whiskey News


Green Spot Single Pure Pot Still Irish Whiskey (750ml)

$49.99 View


The elusive Green Spot Whiskey is finally here. This legendary whiskey is partly responsible for the resurgence in popularity of pure pot still whiskey, the traditional Irish method of whiskey production. Green Spot began as the house brand for a Dublin wine merchant Mitchell & Sons. After consolidation of the Irish Whiskey market, Mitchell & Sons negotiated an agreement to be provided a small quantity of whiskey to support the brand. The current blend consists of 8-9 year old whiskey of which 25% is aged in sherry casks. Fewer than 1,000 cases are produced a year. What was once the most difficult to find Irish Whiskey in the world has no burst back onto the scene and along with Red Breast represents some of the best values available in any category of whiskey today. This old school style Irish contains no column distilled grain whiskey and is 100% pot-stilled. The result is a rich and robust texture with the renowned soft complexity of Irish Whiskey intact. This is all brought together with a multi-year finish in high quality sherry butts. This is whiskey you can give to ANYONE and be sure their mind will be blown.



The Scotch Malt Whisky Society new bottle design 2 copy


The Scotch Malt Whisky Society’s new bottle design highlights its 12 flavour profiles 

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society has unveiled a colourful new design for its bottle, which emphasises its flavour-based approach to whisky – the first change to its bottle in almost a decade.

While the Society’s iconic green bottle and dedication to single cask whisky remains unchanged, the new look introduces 12 colours to the bottle caps, in a strip on the label and in the age statement. Each colour reflects one of the Society’s unique 12 whisky flavour profiles, such as ‘Young & Spritely’ or ‘Old & Dignified’.

The Society introduced its 12 flavour profiles in 2014 to help whisky lovers navigate the hundreds of bottles the Society releases each year, and to encourage people to focus more on the flavours within the whisky rather than on perceptions stemming from traditional regional classifications.

Another change is a larger age statement to reflect the fact the Society bottles its whiskies when it feels they are at their best, rather than following traditional ages such as 10, 12 and 18 years old.

Finally, the new design includes an update of the logo, which emphasises the shape of a whisky bottle in the Society’s spiritual home at the Vaults in Leith. The Society’s evocative and unusual bottle names, which are based on the flavour of the whisky (‘Juicy & Delightful’ remain on the label, again to focus attention on the flavour.

Helen Stewart, Senior Brand Manager for the Society, said: “Our new-look bottle blends our heritage with a colourful new design that reflects our 12 flavour profiles. The colours will help whisky lovers explore our range of flavours and ever-changing selection of whiskies.

“From our unique bottle names and Tasting Notes, to not revealing the distillery where the whisky is from, we’ve been celebrating the flavours of whisky for many years and this is the latest step in that journey.

“At the same time, our famous green bottle remains the same, as does our commitment to seeking out exceptional single cask whisky.”



The Scotch Malt Whisky Society new bottle design 1 copy


About The Scotch Malt Whisky Society

  • The Scotch Malt Whisky Society is an international whisky club which bottles rare single cask, single malt whisky, and a range of other spirits
  • The Society releases a new batch of around 30 single cask single malt whiskies every month
  • The Society was established in Edinburgh in 1983 and now has more than 26,000 members and branches around the world
  • The Society has bottled whisky from more than 132 distilleries in its history
  • The Society offers different levels of membership
    • Membership Pioneer with gift box containing 3 samples, £122
    • Member at £61.50 – without gift box
    • Sample Subscription – free.




21st February 2017: The first bottle – 1/522 – of Lagavulin 1991, the single cask bottling released on 31st December 2016 as the culmination of the distillery’s bicentenary celebrations, will be auctioned to raise money for charity Islay heritage. The auction will run online with whisky and fine spirits specialists Whisky.Auction from Sunday 26th February to Tuesday 7th March 2017.

The release of this most collectible bottle of the Limited Edition follows the success of a ballot (closed on 12th February) run by The Whisky Exchange for the chance to buy one of the other 519 bottles*. This attracted over 7,000 entries from 74 countries. Diageo’s proceeds from these sales (£0.5m) are being donated to seven causes on Islay to promote the island and communities within it.

Distillery Manager Georgie Crawford commented: “It is wonderful to know there is so much affection around the world for Lagavulin Single Malt Scotch Whisky and our Islay home. Our distinctive distillery character shines in Lagavulin 1991, which will now be truly memorable both for the complexity of the whisky and legacy it is creating for the island. The auction will be an amazing opportunity for someone to own bottle 1/522 and boost the impact of the projects we’re supporting.”

The starting price for bottle number 1/522 is £1,494 (the original RRSP for The Whisky Exchange ballot, which pays homage to the first recorded year of distillation of Scotch Whisky). In addition to the highly collectible bottle number, the value of the lot will be increased by a 10cl tasting sample and the winning bidder will be offered the opportunity to have the bottle or box signed by Georgie Crawford and the Lagavulin Distillery team.

Four expert whisky writers – Dave Broom, Ian Buxton, Colin Hampden-White and Charles MacLean – have donated their tasting notes for a one-off, leather-bound notebook to accompany bottle 1/522.

On SCOTCHWHISKY.com, Dave Broom described Lagavulin 1991 as: “A box of many treasures. Quite a way to finish the birthday party.” Following a tasting in January, Ian Buxton, author of 101 Whiskies to Try Before You Die, commented: “This may just be the tastiest Lagavulin Whisky ever.” Whisky Quarterly editor Colin Hampden-White agreed: “Complex and luxuriant, certainly the best Lagavulin I have ever experienced.” Charlie MacLean, a Master of the Quaich, added: ““A cross between a dowager duchess and a salty sea-dog. An outstanding example of the make.”

They will hand write their full notes in the book alongside those from Georgie Crawford on behalf of all at Lagavulin Distillery.

Diageo will donate its full proceeds from the auction of this single bottle to Islay Heritage (OSCR No. SC046938), the principal beneficiary from the initial seven charities, to fund projects on the island that are designed to enhance the knowledge and understanding of the rich and diverse history of Islay. Bidders must register at whisky.auction/Account/Registration.

Isabel Graham-Yooll, Auction & Private Client Director for Whisky.Auction, said: “Following the great response to the ballot with our sister company The Whisky Exchange, we are proud to offer the highly collectible bottle number one of this stunning single cask Lagavulin 1991 in our February auction. There is much excitement already among our private clients and we hope many more will register to bid for this drop of history in support of Islay Heritage. In keeping with the charitable nature of this bottling, whisky.Auction is pleased to donate the buyer’s commission to Islay Heritage.”

Steve Mithen, Trustee of Islay Heritage and Professor of Archaeology expressed thanks on behalf of the charity: “The generous gifts from Lagavulin, Whisky.Auction and the successful bidder will help bring 12,000 years of heritage on Islay alive to tell the story of this remarkable island, from the earliest ice-age hunter-gatherers to step foot on Islay to the 19th century crofting communities. Islay Heritage will provide community-based excavations and surveys, walking trails, and exhibitions to bring the past into the present, and enable people today to encounter past landscapes and communities of Islay.”

*519 bottles were available in the ballot, the remaining three were allocated as follows: one to remain in Diageo’s Lagavulin archive, one for The Whisky Exchange as partner in the project, and 001/522 purchased by Diageo for auction.

To learn more about the charities set to deliver these legacy projects, and for more detail of bottling please visit www.malts.com

To register to bid in the auction, visit: https://whisky.auction/Account/Registration

Instagram: @lagavulinwhisky

Twitter: @lagavulinwhisky


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Lagavulin

For more Malts news please visit: www.malts.com


Lagavulin 1991 Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky (52.7% ABV) Tasting Notes:

Appearance: Lovely, deep olive-hued chestnut becoming clear orange-hued amber in sunlight. Fresh and lightly oily with water.

Nose: Instant and insistent, yet light, clean and detailed throughout. Charred oak and rich, mature fruits are backed by subtle milk chocolate and vanilla. Agitation reveals a recollection of new make and the characteristic Lagavulin note of fresh newsprint, developing burnt caramel, subtle spent match and a slightly sapid note of moist earth. Later, ripe red apple and a fine hint of smoked fish sprinkled with olive oil. Water changes all this, yielding fresh, sweet notes of candied peel, marzipan and sugar icing, of subtle maple smoked foods, and finally of honey and dark chocolate.

Body: Medium to rich; smooth. Softly fluid with water. Palate: Hot and sweet. A moment of woody dryness; then calmer, with soothing, sweetly minty chocolate notes and comforting honey laced with a subtle chilli-like heat. A bitter-sweet, charred astringency rises in the mid-palate, carrying notes of cocoa and espresso toward the finish. Water brings succulent, sweet-spicy warmth and a balancing ripe fruit acidity. Then drying cocoa, crystallised ginger and peppermint lead smoothly to late, silky tannins.

Finish: Gentle, well balanced and fresh throughout. Quietly persistent with tart, red berry notes, a little cedar and a spicy, smoky-gingery warmth that makes for a pleasing aftertaste.

Lagavulin Legacy Charity information

The proceeds received by Diageo from the ballot sales of the Lagavulin 1991 bottling will be donated to the following registered charities in the following proportions, to fund projects on Islay which are designed to enhance the understanding of the rich and diverse history of Islay and enhance the life of the local community.

The origins of Lagavulin

Local records suggest that Lagavulin was already a centre of whisky production in the early 18th century. There had almost certainly been many other illicit stills before John Johnston founded the first legal distillery at Lagavulin Bay in 1816. As with all Scottish distilleries, it passed through the hands of different owners, including the celebrated Sir Peter Mackie, whose company became White Horse Distillers, forever associated with Lagavulin. White Horse joined The Distillers Company Ltd. (eventually Diageo) in 1927. In 1989, Lagavulin, now normally bottled at 16 years rather than the original 12, became one of the six Classic Malts of Scotland.

About Diageo:

Diageo is the world’s leading premium drinks business with an outstanding collection of beverage alcohol brands across spirits, beer and wine. These brands include Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, JεB, Buchanan’s and Windsor whiskies, Smirnoff, Cîroc and Ketel One vodkas, Baileys, Captain Morgan, Tanqueray and Guinness.

Diageo is a global company, with its products sold in more than 180 countries around the world. The company is listed on both the New York Stock Exchange (DEO) and the London Stock Exchange (DGE). For more information about Diageo, its people, brands, and performance, visit us at Diageo.com. For our global resource that promotes responsible

Islay Heritage (OSCR No. SC046938)

A wide ranging scope to include: research at Dunyvaig Castle, the creation of an Islay Heritage trail to help more people understand its rich history, conservation work focusing on Kildalton chapel and education. FUNDING AMOUNT: £310,000

McTaggart Cyber Café (OSCR No. SC028306)

Some upgrade works to the fabric of the building including heating, new doors & windows and improvements to the Bistro Café area to allow for more activities for a wider range of people. FUNDING AMOUNT: £60,000

Islay & Jura Community Enterprises Limited McTaggart Leisure Centre (OSCR No. SC015815)

Some fundamental works are required for the swimming baths to upgrade equipment and improve energy efficient. FUNDING AMOUNT: £60,000

Finlaggan Trust (OSCR No. SC000821)

Refurbishment and modernisation of the existing visitor centre and development of the Finlaggan Bridge. FUNDING AMOUNT: £60,000

Islay Arts (OSCR No. SC000272)

Funding will enable Islay Arts to increase the scope of events it funds. FUNDING AMOUNT: £20,000

Islay Festival Association (OSCR No. SC004390)

Funding will help support the organisation to develop its events programme. FUNDING AMOUNT: £10,000

Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (OSCR No. SC037654)

(Charity Commission No. 207076)

RSPB is actively engaged in peat restoration on its estates on Islay at The Oa and Loch Gruinart. The funding will be used to fund peat restoration and conservation on the island.  FUNDING AMOUNT: £60,000

AA Whisky Auction


Whisky.Auction is an auction website offering a monthly online auction of the finest and rarest whiskies from the most sought-after distilleries around the world, as well as fine spirits, miniatures and memorabilia. It was set up by a collection of the industry’s leading whisky experts, including the world-renowned Sukhinder Singh from The Whisky Exchange, in April 2015.

Whisky.Auction is run by a knowledgeable and passionate team led by Director Isabel Graham-Yooll who bring together buyers and sellers from across the globe and offer a range of services including valuations of private collections. Whisky.Auction has sold over 10,000 lots of whiskies and fine spirits at the auction since it launched, and in a short time has become recognised as one of the most trusted and authoritative online whisky auctions in the world. For more information, email info@whisky.auction or call 020 8838 9381


John Walker & Sons Private Collection 2017 at The Whisky Shop – Scotch Whisky News

AA tws-logo



John Walker & Sons Private Collection 2017 Edition

The 2017 Edition of the John Walker & Sons Private Collection is the fourth annual release in the series of limited edition releases showcasing the innovative spirit and craft of blenders. With complete creative freedom, Master Blender Dr Jim Beveridge celebrates the richness that cask character brings to Johnnie Walker whiskies.

Beveridge brings together three main styles of oak to complement the character of the spirit. First fill ex-bourbon American oak and refill American and European oak casks come together with highly active American oak from Beveridge’s stock of experimental casks to create a rich, balanced whisky of great depth. Only 5,588 individually numbered decanters have been produced worldwide.

The nose offers toffee and vanilla, with aromas of ripe orchard fruits. The palate brings rich, creamy toffee and gentle spice from the American oak, while the mature Highland and Speyside whiskies provide blackcurrants and berries, soft peach and stewed apples. A touch of leather emerges before a silky finish with intense, deepening vanilla.

£550 Buy Now

Orders will be dispatched w/c 27th February



Springbank 11 Year Old, Local Barley, 2017 release – LIMITED STOCK at Milroys of Soho – Scotch Whisky News







There are a few Scottish distilleries that still malt their own barley but Springbank is the only Distillery which malts a 100% of its own barley, using the traditional floor maltings. The whole production process: malting, milling, mashing, fermentation, distillation, maturation & bottlling, happens on the one site in Campbeltown. This is unique in Scotland.

Tasting notes from the Distillery  Nose What an incredible nose, to start with marmalade and honey, then mineral notes from the Kintyre peninsula. As it opens up, freshly baked bread with sweet notes of sun dried bananas to contrast with salted caramel topping. Palate The promise given in the nose continues, a lovely creaminess and sweetness of grapes, custard, honeycomb and marshmallow. This is balanced with salted popcorn and liquorice, and an ever present, hint of peat. Finish There’s a nutty quality about this, almonds,hazelnuts and walnuts as well as an air of indulgence, rich and buttery with an elegant finish that keeps on giving.

Our mailing address is:
Milroy’s of Soho
Milroy’s of Soho
3 Greek Street
London, England W1D 4NX
United Kingdom

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