Archive for April, 2011

The Perfect Mint Julep for Kentucky Derby Day (May 7) – American Whiskey News


The Perfect Mint Julep
Saddle up and get ready for the most exciting two minutes in sports, because before you know it the Kentucky Derby (May 7th) will be here. Kentuckians sure do have a lot of time-honored race day traditions – seersucker suits and straw hats for the guys; over-the-top bonnets and colorful dresses for the ladies, and sipping on Mint Juleps made with Kentucky Bourbon is a must. Maker’s Markis one of Kentucky’s finest premium bourbons, handcrafted at the oldest operating bourbon distillery in the world. It has always been handcrafted by the Samuels Family, and eighth generation distiller and COO Rob Samuels has offered up his family recipe for the perfect Mint Julep to share with your readers.
“The Perfect Mint Julep”
1 liter Maker’s Mark
Lots of fresh spearmint
Distilled water
Granulated sugar
Powdered sugar

To prepare the mint extract, remove about 40 small mint leaves – wash and place in a small mixing bowl.  Cover with 3 ounces of Maker’s Mark.  Allow the leaves to soak for 15 minutes.  Then gather the leaves in a clean, soap-free piece of cotton cloth and vigorously wring the mint bundle over the bowl of whisky.  Dip the bundle again and repeat the process several times.  Then set aside.
To prepare the simple syrup, mix 1 cup of granulated sugar and one cup of water in a cooking pot.  Heat to dissolve the sugar.  Stir constantly so the sugar does not burn.  Set aside to cool.
To prepare the mint julep mixture, pour 3 ½ cups of Maker’s Mark into a large glass bowl or glass pitcher.  (Pour the remaining whisky from the liter bottle into another container and save it for another purpose).  Add 1 cup of the simple syrup to the Maker’s Mark.
Now, begin adding the mint extract a tablespoon at a time to the julep mixture.  Each batch of mint extract is different, so you must taste and smell after each tablespoon is added.  You may have to leave the room a time or two to clear your nose.  The tendency is to use too much mint.  You are looking for a soft mint aroma and taste – generally about 3 tablespoons.
When you think it’s right, pour the whole mixture back into the empty liter bottle and refrigerate it for at least 24 hours to “marry” the flavors.
To serve the mint julep, fill each glass (preferably a silver mint julep cup) half full with shaved ice.  Insert a sprig of mint and then pack in more ice to about an inch over the top of the cup.  Then, insert a straw that has been cut to one inch above the top of the cup so the nose is forced close to the mint when sipping the julep.
When frost forms on the cup, pour the refrigerated julep mixture over the ice and add a sprinkle of powdered sugar to the top of the ice.  Then serve.





Welcome to our limited edition Royal Wedding Newsletter.  The news that the Bells Decanter is traditionally late and the Macallan Wedding edition has eloped means we’re all drinking English Whisky.  We also feature some the brilliant Kilchoman releases and there’s news from Bowmore, Auchentoshan, Balblair and Shackleton too.


Royal Wedding Commemorative Decanter, Limited Edition.

A splendid bottling at 46% abv.



Royal Wedding Decanter

Available soon.  Probably.


Ah Kilchoman!  Our wee hearts beat a little faster when we hear of any new releases and here we have four.  The distillery that champions provenance, tipicité and even terroir are out to prove that where their barley is grown and malted and where their whisky matured and bottled is every bit as important to as where it was distilled.

Kilchoman Spring 2011 Release

This bottling is a vatting of 70% three year old in first fill bourbon barrels and 30% four year old in first fill bourbon barrels.  The four year old has been finished in Oloroso sherry butts for five weeks.

Exclusive Newsletter Offer Price £45

Kilchoman 100% Islay

Made from barley grown, malted, distilled, matured and bottled at the distillery.  A limited release will be available in June at 50% abv

Kilchoman Sherry Cask Matured

A 4.5 year old with full maturation in Oloroso sherry butts.  A limited release will be available in September.

Kilchoman 5 years old

Matured in first and refill bourbon barrels.  A limited release will be available in November.

Prices to follow


Having cut peat, made “barley angels” in the kiln and then worked our way through every Bowmore release available at the local bar we couldn’t be more excited by this very limited offer.

Bowmore 1982, 29 Years Old

Aged in North American Oak, this is an extremely limited edition of only 501 bottles.

Distillery notes “on the nose – detect barley sugar and gentle peat smoke coupled with delicious Peach Melba ice-cream and vanilla pods. Anticipate fresh lemon pepper on the palate followed by warm, earthy smokiness.  The sweet, fruity finish lingers on perfectly.” 47.3% abv

Exclusive Newsletter Offer Price £280, pre-order now


Only 499 bottles at cask strength (46.9% abv) so order soon to avoid disappointment.

Auchentoshan 1975, 35 Years Old

Distillery notes “The aroma is butterscotch with a hint of rum and raisin toffee…There are hints of wood spice on the tongue, cutting through the sweetness…The finish leaves a gentle, lingering maltiness”

RRP £350

Exclusive Newsletter Offer Price £325, pre-order now


Balblair 1987 Cask No. 786

Distillery notes “Golden amber in appearance.  A complex and well balanced malt with sweet aromas of honey, toffee and butterscotch.  In typical Balblair style there is an abundance of fresh fruit on the nose – green apples, oranges and lemons, with hints of vanilla and leather.  The taste is spicy and sweet with toffee, vanilla, citrus fruits and a long and warming finish” 51.4%abv

Exclusive Newsletter Offer Price £120


In 2007 three cases of whisky and two cases of brandy found on the Antarctic.  These century old bottles were buried under the Antarctic ice by famous explorer Ernest Shackleton. One case was removed from the ice and was painstakingly thawed out under laboratory conditions to preserve the bottles and spirit in the best possible way.  That one case was found to have only 11 bottles instead of the usual 12, leading to much speculation about what happened to the missing bottle.

In recreating the whisky, master blender Richard Paterson has created an exact replica of the 100-year-old Mackinlay’s liquid.  The Shackleton whisky is light, fresh, delicate and with a hint of smoke “it’s a gorgeous whisky…the sweetness, fragrance and spice, and the subtle smoke, are all there in the replica. I’m blown away.” Dave Broom

“It was a real privilege getting to handle, nose and taste such a rare and beautiful bottle of whisky. The quality, purity and taste of this 100-year-old spirit was amazing. The biggest surprise was the light flavour and the clear, almost vibrant colour of the liquid. I hope I have done our forefathers and Ernest Shackleton proud with the replica.” Richard Paterson

The whole replication process has been documented exclusively for National Geographic Channel for a documentary due to air at the end of this year.

£100 per bottle

Until next month, cheers!

Best regards,

Lee Tomlinson
Assistant Manager
Milroy’s of Soho
3 Greek Street
London, W1D 4NX

Tickets For The Whisky Exchange WHISKY SHOW Are On Sale Now! – Scotch Whisky News


Tickets for The Whisky Exchange WHISKY SHOW are on sale now!

The Whisky Exchange WHISKY SHOW is taking place at Vinopolis near London Bridge on 7th-8th October 2011, and we’ll be bringing you one of the finest tasting line-ups ever assembled.

Click here for more details and to buy your tickets for the Show.

There is no voucher system at TWE Whisky Show – exhibitors will be bringing their finest whiskies for visitors to taste, and all exhibited samples are included in the ticket price. Here’s a summary of what you get for your entry fee:


•  Entry to the event.
•  All samples of any exhibited whisky.
•  Two course buffet meal in the Show Brasserie.
•  All food-matching samples and whiskies.
•  Free tasting glass.
•  Two tokens which can be redeemed for the Dream Dram(s) of your choice

For more details, please visit the show website

Advance interest has been very high for TWE Whisky Show, so don’t delay – grab your tickets for the UK’s No.1 premium whisky tasting experience now.

Corporate tickets:

For corporate groups of ten or more people, please contact the Show organisers on  office {a}

We’ll also be hosting some fabulous Masterclasses at the Show. Details for these classes will be announced as the Show date approaches. Masterclass tickets are sold separately in advance and may only be attended by Show ticketholders.

TWE Whisky Show Team | Tel: +44 (0)20 8838 9448

Scotch Malt Whisky Society May Outturn Previews: Fire your Desire – Scotch Whisky News


May Outturn Previews: Fire your Desire
In celebration of the pending nuptials tomorrow, we’re releasing a royal selection of previews from the May Outturn – FIVE objects of desire (May’s Outturn doesn’t go on sale until Fri 6 May).

Buy 77.22 & 39.79 together for £88.50 (save £20.10)
77.22 Plentiful sweet delights
Highland Northern
£44.10 inc. free p&p
Meadowsweet, elderflower, laurel, lily – with sweet delights – vanilla, marmalade on toast and strawberry jam on scones (with clotted cream)

39.79 A lush chameleon
Speyside Lossie
£64.50 inc. free p&p
Brittle toffee, white paint (oil then poster-paint, then Play-Doh and crayons), wine gums, eiswein, ripe peaches and pomegranate

Buy 4.152, 44.49 & 53.150 together for £132.50 (save £27.00)
4.152 Hay bales in a limestone cave
Speyside Spey
£55.30 inc free p&p
Raspberry and strawberry sweets (Jolly Ranchers) candied orange, hay bales, cereals, cardboard tubes of Smarties and slight smoke

44.49 Lamb chops, mint sauce and blueberries
Speyside Spey
£44.10 inc free p&p
Some found lamb chops with boiled potatoes and mint sauce while the rest of us found cherry pie, white pepper, dried fruit and pot pourri

53.150 Beachcombers’ convention dram
£60.10 inc free p&p
Seaweed, sea-scrubbed nylon ropes, tar and brine; but then another bunch of beachcombers approached – some smoking roll-ups, some cooking bacon on bonfires

SMWS Tastings & Events 

Music with Andy Johnstone – The Vaults, Sun 1 May (FREE EVENT)
New Outturn Tasting – The Vaults, Sun 8 May
Champagne Cocktail Masterclass – Queen Street, Thu 12 May
Stewart’s Beer Tasting – The Vaults, Fri 13 May
New Members Tasting – London, Mon 16 May
Champagne Dinner – Queen Street, Sat 21 May
A Crash Course in single malts – The Vaults, Tue 24 May
Dunfermline Preview Tasting – Garvock House Hotel
Guildford Preview Tasting – Manor House Hotel, Thu 26 May
York Preview Tasting – Bedern Hall, Fri 27 May
Liverpool Preview Tasting – Malmaison, Fri 27 May
Cardiff Preview Tasting – Novotel, Fri 27 May
Champions League Final – Queen Street, Fri 27 May


Society Whisky Tastings
Whatever and wherever our tasting or event, the main focus is to give members an informal, enjoyable and relaxed night out..with a taste of the single cask good stuff!

Events range from step by step instruction in how to get the most from tasting single cask, single malt whisky to more adventurous couplings of whisky with food.

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society,
The Vaults, 87 Giles Street, Leith EH6 6BZ
Contact: or call 0131 555 2929 (Mon-Fri 9am-4.45pm).

Visit the Society at for your chance to join and to take advantage of their great offers. 

American Distilling Institute Hands-on Whiskey Distilling Workshop, June 5 – 10, 2011 – American Whisky News


ADI’s Hands-on Whiskey Distilling Workshop June 5 – 10 at Stillwater Spirits (611 2nd St.) Petaluma, CA

$3,500 covers instruction, Bay Area distillery tours, presentations and tastings by ADI staff & guests, plus room and board. Class size limited to 12 students.

Send a $3500 check to: ADI Box 577 Hayward, CA 94543 or go to  and use PayPal 



Whisky ‘old blood’ Releases New Dram From A. Dewar Rattray – Scotch Whisky News


Whisky ‘old blood’ releases new dram

A D Rattray Limited has released a new bottling of Blended Malt Scotch Whisky in specific response to demand from the USA. Rattray’s Selection Batch No 1 contains whisky from 4 Single Sherry Butts personally selected by Tim Morrison, Chairman of the company.

Tim, a member of the Morrison family which has been so influential in the Scotch Whisky industry for decades, chose an Auchentoshan 1991, a Balblair 1990, a Benriach 1989 and a Bowmore 1981.

Designed by Craig Mackinlay of Breeze Creative, this boxed limited edition of  1854 bottles is to be sold for $90 in specialists retailers in the USA but also in Europe and the UK (approx RRP £58).

10th Annual Whisky Fringe Tickets Go On Sale Wednesday 18th May – Scotch Whisky News


From the Whisky Fringe people;

Tickets for our 10th annual Whisky Fringe will go on sale at 10:00am on Wednesday 18th May.

– No tickets can be reserved in advance.

– 4 tickets maximum per customer.

– Tickets only available to purchase online through our website (not in our shops).

– Please ensure you are registered beforehand, tickets sell out fast.

*Click here to check your log in details or to register*

(Please note that Friday 5th is aimed more towards trade customers, but a limited number of tickets are available for general sale). 

“I still wouldn’t miss it for the world!! (Shame it’s my wedding anniversary on the 16th…still, she’ll understand!!!)”

Mark Appleton 2009 (frequent Whisky Fringe goer and still happily married) 

The WhiskyCast Calendar of Events for May 2011 – Whisky News


Whisky Events Around the World

Here are some of the events going on over the next few weeks. There’s a full calendar at the WhiskyCast web site, and it’s brought to you by Laphroaig!

May 7: Trollhattan Whisky Festival, Trollhattan, Sweden

May 8: Single Malts Tasting, WhiskyCafe L&B, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

May 11: Auction of Rare Whiskies, McTear’s, Glasgow, Scotland

May 12: SMWS US Chapter Single Malt Extravaganza, Denver, Colorado

May 13-17: Manhattan Cocktail Classic, New York City

May 14: Whisky Live, Dublin, Ireland

May 14: Spirit of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

May 14-15: Limburg Whisky Fair, Limburg, Germany

May 16: Whisky Live, Singapore

May 18: The Whisky Classic Cruise, Boston, Massachusetts

May 19: Springbank Distillery Open Day, Campbeltown, Scotland

May 21-28: Islay Festival of Malt & Music, Islay, Scotland

May 25-26: Jura Whisky Festival, Isle of Jura, Scotland

May 26: Whisky Live, Madrid, Spain

May 29: Arran Distillery Open Day, Lochranza, Scotland

Chichibu & Karuizawa Distilleries Unaffected by Fukushima Situation – Japanese Whisky News

Chichibu and Karuizawa distilleries unaffected by Fukushima situation reposts Number One Drinks Company

From Chris Bunting at Nonjatta; “Further to the couple of posts I have put up trying to address concerns about the affect of the situation at the Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power (1,2) on Japanese Whisky, No. 1 drinks has done voluntary testing to clear up some facts about the whisky they are importing. In summary, there was no trace of radioactive material in whiskies stored at Chichibu or Karuizawa. I have posted No. 1’s press release below. It offers exactly what we need now: facts.”



The ongoing situation at the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear facility in north-eastern Japan has resulted in confusion regarding the status of Japanese products destined for export to overseas markets. Some countries have temporarily introduced partial bans on the importation of Japanese products, whilst others (including the EU) have brought in the need for testing and certification prior to export.

The situation in Japan remains unclear with the prefectural authorities tasked to issue the required certification not yet fully briefed by central government. To provide reassurance to customers as swiftly as possible, Number One Drinks Company has therefore elected voluntarily to submit samples to a Government-approved testing centre in Japan. Whisky has been taken from each warehouse at every distillery for which Number One Drinks holds exclusive export rights.

Samples were drawn at the beginning of April 2011 and tested over the following few days. The results shown below indicate conclusively that these products have been unaffected by the three radio-nuclides concerned (Iodine 131, Caesium 134 & Caesium 137):

[Distillery – Sample Location – results of tests]

Chichibu – Cask #26 distilled 2008 Chichibu – No radio-nuclides detected (see above)
Hanyu – Cask #1305 2000 Chichibu – No radio-nuclides detected
Karuizawa – Cask #5173 2000 Karuizawa w/house 1 – No radio-nuclides detected
Karuizawa – Cask #7914 1984 Karuizawa w/house 4 – No radio-nuclides detected
Karuizawa – Cask #3653 1984 Karuizawa w/house 8 – No radio-nuclides detected
Kawasaki – Cask #G7451 1982 Chichibu – No radio-nuclides detected

Both Karuizawa and Chichibu distilleries (where stocks of Hanyu and Kawasaki are also stored) are located more than 250 kilometres from the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear facility.

David Croll, Tokyo-based Managing Director of Number One Drinks Company (Japan), states: “I hope these test results will go some way to clarifying the situation. We continue to monitor the situation carefully and will work together with the Japanese authorities to facilitate export of these whiskies as the necessary documentation becomes available.”

Visit Nonjatta at for further updates and more current informaion on Japanese distilleries


Grant’s Scotch Whisky Around The World – Scotch Whisky News


Grant’s around the world

Good afternoon,

It seems everyone is talking about Grant’s at the moment.

A dram per day is a new Scottish whisky blog, which Iain started on January 1st as he committed to tasting a different whisky every day (some people choose to climb Everest but who I am to judge one’s challenge). He has already reviewed the……(please click on the link below to read the rest of the post)… and a mention of Whisky Intelligence!!!

Kind regards,

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