Archive for September, 2011

Whisky Exports Drive Portfolio Success – Scotch Whisky News


Whisky Exports Drive Portfolio Success

Burn Stewart Distillers, producers of Scottish Leader, Black Bottle, Bunnahabhain, Tobermory, Deanston and Ledaig whiskies, have announced its financial results for the year ended 31st December 2010.

The main highlights of the announcement are:

• Strong performance by all brands in their key markets

• Gross profit £18.3m (2009: £17.2m)

• Net profit £3.7m (2009: £1.2m)

The company which employs 250 people across its distilling, blending, bottling, commercial and administration activities in the UK, and sales administration internationally has seen continued growth across its core brands with particularly strong performances in Taiwan, South Africa and the UK.

The key drivers for this success include the 13% growth of flagship brand Scottish Leader, coupled with the growth of Scottish Leader’s market share across all key markets. Overall, cased export revenue is also on the increase – achieving 11% growth on 2009 with notable success in Taiwan, US, and Baltics.

The company continues to invest in capital expenditure, allocating £0.4m in 2010, taking the investment for the last 3 years to £2.4m. The company has also invested in a new leadership staff training programme which has reached over 20% of the company’s workforce. Over the next three years a multi million pound capital investment programme is planned to further enhance the capability of the business. Included in this plan, is the creation of a new visitor centre at Deanston Distillery, opening during Spring 2012, which aims to significantly enhance the retail and consumer experience of the brand.

The entire malt portfolio – Bunnahabhain, Tobermory, Deanston and Ledaig whiskies – enjoyed an extremely successful re-pack in 2010 with new packaging, labelling and bottle design. Furthermore, presenting un-chill filtered malts creates exciting opportunities to position the malt portfolio as niche players in the industry. Future plans for the malt portfolio include further tapping into growing markets in Taiwan, USA and Europe, coupled with a strong investment focus on Russia.

Markets providing the key focus for Scottish Leader will be Taiwan, South Africa and The Baltics. In addition, the flagship brand will also be looking to build upon and strengthen existing distribution partnerships in the Ukraine, Poland and Russia to allow for further penetration into these emerging markets, and providing the backbone for growth.

The company’s portfolio of brands was strengthened in 2010 when a partnership deal with Angostura Holdings Ltd was signed. The deal announced that Burn Stewart Distillers would be responsible for distribution and marketing of the world renowned Aromatic Bitters and premium rum range across EMEA. This addition to the company portfolio compliments future plans for growth within the Scotch market and a growing rum category.

Commenting on the results, Fraser Thornton, Managing Director, said:

“It is very pleasing to note the sustained improvement in the financial performance of the company. Our primary focus is to develop and grow the strong portfolio of brands we have and, in so doing, continue to consolidate the relationships we enjoy with key retail partners, selected overseas bulk customers and our global distributor network. We have enjoyed another year of growth and have opened up new markets as well as continuing to build our brands in existing markets. Our bold move to un-chill filtered malts has excited our consumers and the trade and has allowed us to provide a niche offering to those consumers who want to explore. The investment at Deanston will allow us to develop a new brand experience for consumers and invest in the heritage of the Deanston brand. We believe the future is very positive for the Scotch Whisky Industry and we look forward to continued growth across our entire brand portfolio.’


• Burn Stewart Distillers Limited is a fully integrated Scotch whisky producer and brand owner with three single malt whisky distilleries and a strong portfolio of Scotch whisky brands.

• The company’s head office and bottling hall are based in East Kilbride, with blending and warehousing facilities at Airdrie, both near Glasgow. The three distilleries include, Deanston in Doune, Perthshire; Bunnahabhain on the Isle of Islay and Tobermory based on the Isle of Mull.

• Burn Stewart produces and markets a well balanced range of Scotch Whisky brands to appeal to every type of Scotch consumer and distributes to over 60 markets worldwide.

Balmenach 18yo (46%, Deerstalker, +/-2011) – Scotch Whisky Tasting Note




Brand History
The Deerstalker brand was first owned by a wine & spirit merchant from Edinburgh named J.G.Thomson. He noted the importance of trade marks and realising that these proud, forthright men epitomized the Highland spirit, registered the name and a label with the character of a Deerstalker in 1880, just five years after trade marks came into being.

Since that time it has been trade marked in every major country and there are five marks in the UK alone. J.G.Thomson’s offices were in the port for Edinburgh (Leith) and became known as The Vaults. The building remains to this day and is now home to the Scotch Malt Whisky Society.

Exports took place from the Vaults to all corners of the globe. The brand then changed ownership as a result of acquisitions, but in 1994 took on a new chapter in its history when purchased by Aberko Limited.

Stalking and Whisky
The stalking of deer in the Scottish Highlands is as much a tradition as the distilling of whisky itself, and may be traced back to the 1700’s. Most estates employed stalkers, fiercely independent men, who were respected for their knowledge of the ‘mountains’ and their abilities to track the native red deer.

Deerstalkers achieved notoriety in the Mid 1800’s when Queen Victoria and Prince Albert rebuilt Balmoral Castle & settled for much of the year in the Highlands fishing and stalking; characters such as John Brown became known far outside the Highlands. Whisky, already established in Scotland now became ever more popular south of the border partly as a result of the bond between the royal family and the Highlands.

Stalking deer in the Highlands and for that matter the Lowlands and the Western Isles has a long and noble tradition and is today a necessary activity for controlling numbers of red deer and for providing much needed income into Scottish estates. There remain today many professional stalkers who have inherited the skills of their forefathers, and provide a valuable contribution to the economy of the region.

It is appropriate that a whisky should be named after a profession so closely associated with the source of the national drink.


The Distillery
The 18 Year Old Deerstalker Highland Single Malt takes its malt from the Balmenach Distillery. The distillery is located in a beautiful part of Speyside named the Haughs of Cromdale, site of a Jacobite battle in 1690 and of numerous illicit whisky stills prior to the era of licensing. Its ownership passed through the Macgregor family to DCL, United Distillers, and in 1997 to Inver House who have given their kind permission for Aberko to bottle limited quantities and to sell under the Deerstalker name.

It is extremely rare to find any Balmenach at 18 years of age and now unchill filtered at 46% abv and taking its colour entirely from the casks where it has ‘slept’ some 18 years we are delighted to present it alongside the 10, 12 and new 15 Year Old.


Balmenach 18yo (46%, Deerstalker, +/-2011) Whisky Intelligence Tasting Note

The nose is much like opening a tin of hard candies covered in icing sugar while at the same time revealing some excellent fruit in the form of banana and jam (but not berries, perhaps some marmalade?). After some small time in the glass there is some good malt, zest, dried fruit juniper and pine resin. The dusty icing sugar and malt continue throughout. The taste is strong and very solid, the dried fruit and malt are much more intensified than on the nose; very rich with some ground pepper, a little leather and tobacco and a wonderful sweetness that intermingles with the other descriptors so very well. Some dry notes arrive towards the end just prior to the mouthful going down the gullet. The finish is of bananas, the dried fruit and the pepper; all very vibrant and then after a moment a sensational arrival of the icing sugar dusted candies. The finish is very long and active with lots of malt.

What a sensational dram with something to like all along the journey.


Score 87 points

The Athenaeum Hotel Launches ‘Whisky Socials’ Calendar – Scotch Whisky News


The Athenaeum Hotel Launches ‘Whisky Socials’ Calendar

This winter the athenaeum is offering guests and visitors the chance to discover the rich and diverse world of whisky at hosted ‘Whisky Socials’ with leading connoisseurs. Participants will enjoy a truly unique whisky and food pairing experience that aims to welcome those new to the spirit whilst providing greater depth of knowledge for seasoned whisky enthusiasts.

The athenaeum’s ‘Whisky Socials’ will take place at regular intervals throughout the winter and will be co-hosted by the hotel’s dedicated whisky sommelier, who is one of only two in London. Each will be in partnership with a different leading premium whisky brand:

• 6th October 2011 – Aberfeldy & Dewar’s Whisky Social with Roger Mallindine

• 24th November 2011 – Balvenie Whisky Tasting with Dr. Andrew Forrester

• 25th January 2012 (Burn’s Night) – Macallan Whisky Tasting with David Frewin

• March (day TBC) – Dalmore Whisky Tasting with Richard Paterson

Whisky Socials’ at the athenaeum are priced at £39 per person and can be booked via the hotel’s website: or by calling 020 7640 3322

A vegetarian option is available upon request.

Universal Whisky Experience Las Vegas “GOLF with the MASTERS!!!!!” – Thursday 01 March 2012 – Scotch Whisky News


GOLF with the MASTERS!!!!! – Thursday 01 March 2012

Why not play golf with the Masters at one of Las Vegas’s premium golf courses? When the Opportunity comes with the thrill of sharing the course with a selection of Master Distillers and Blenders here for the Second Annual Nth Whisky Experience weekend it becomes a once in a lifetime event. Can you drive further than Richard Patterson, 3rd Generation Master Blender? Can you read a putt better than Ian Miller? There is only one real way to find the answer. Bring your “A-Game” and have fun at the

Sun Mountain Paiute Golf course designed by Pete Dye and owned by Las Vegas Paiute Indian Tribe. The course was named “Best Place to Play” by ‘Golf Digest 2010/2011 and “The Best of Las Vegas 2011? by The Las Vegas Review Journal. The second in the trio is considered the tamest of the courses. Hailed as the gentler Dye, some also call it their favorite for its indigenous intertwining landscaping, surprising slope changes, and majestic mountain backdrop. Try your skill on Holes 11, 12, and 13, Paiute’s version of Amen Corner. And, hole 4 is truly “the Par 3 to play.”

Nth 2012 Golf Package

The morning begins with a Champagne breakfast toast to the Nth 2012. From there golfers will spread across the 18 holes for a shotgun start of ‘Golf with the Masters’. You will finish off with a leisurely Whisky lunch back at the clubhouse.

Our golf package is crafted to blend excitement on the course with many perks before, during and after a round of play. Our package includes:

Green fees/Golf Carts.
Unlimited use of the Practice range with range balls.
Use of Callaway clubs and custom Nth golf balls.
Hospitality – at the club house includes hot breakfast, lunch and special drams.
Three (3) beverage tokens to be used while playing on the golf course, for any premium pour.
Transportation – There’s no reason to worry about ground transportation. A roundtrip is available from the Wynn resort.
Cigar sample.
‘Cutter & Buck’ Polo shirt and cap.
This promises to be an extraordinary start to ‘The Nth 2012’ whisky weekend

For ticket information please click the link below

University of Aberdeen Malt Whisky Society £2 for 4 Drams!!! – Scotch Whisky News


Hope you are getting excited…
Come along to our first tasting tomorrow!!
We’ll have a fine selection of fantastic drams on the go:)

£2 for 4 drams!!!

Location: BookEnds (top floor), Butchart Centre, University Road, Old Aberdeen
(click here for map)
Time and Date: 7pm – Wednesday 28th September 2011
What to Bring: £2 for entry + Membership Card + money for raffle

and don’t forget to…
join our Facebook group!
follow us on twitter!
check in at our events on FourSquare!
and bring your friends!


Attention Previous Members:
I’m afraid you have to join again!

That means bring along £2 to rejoin
and get a shiny new membership card:)

University of Aberdeen Malt Whisky Society
The Butchart Centre
University Road
Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire AB24 3UT

Ralfy Publishes Whisky Review #219 – Scotch Whisky News


Ralfy shows you how to have endless joy with a miniture of Whisky at  Whisky Review 219 – Whisky Miniatures.

Visit Ralfy at





Only 195 bottles of the world exclusive Glen Garioch 1988 available for Edinburgh airport travellers

Glen Garioch and Edinburgh Airport’s World Duty Free have teamed up to launch an exclusive single malt whisky for Edinburgh travellers.

The Glen Garioch 1988 Vintage Single Cask was specially selected by staff from the airport’s World Duty Free team after they won a competition to sell more bottles of Glen Garioch malt whisky than any other World Duty Free airport retailer in the UK.

The winning team from Edinburgh Airport visited Scotland’s most easterly distillery at Old Meldrum, Aberdeenshire last year to hand select its own exclusive Glen Garioch cask.

Just 195 bottles of the £200 23-year-old malt are available to purchase at Edinburgh Airport’s World Duty Free store, making it a sure fire collector’s item in years to come.

The Edinburgh airport team chose the cask for its deep, sweet Seville orange notes that fuse with a hint of fragrant highland heather, leaving a long, sophisticated finish.

John Mullen, Glen Garioch brand manager said, “We’re delighted to partner with Edinburgh Airport’s World Duty Free. The team sampled many casks on a particularly bracing Highland morning and got behind the flavours to personally select their own vintage.

“The 23-year-old is an elegant and truly memorable dram with a wonderful combination of floral and sweet notes.

”The team were so passionate about the whisky they chose. It’s already flying off the shelves and is set to be sold out by Christmas”

The Glen Garioch 1988 Vintage Single Cask comes in a specially crafted oak wood box, lined with hessian. Each bottle is individually numbered and marked as Edinburgh Airport’s World Duty Free special edition. It is exclusively available at Edinburgh Airport, retailing around £200.


· Glen Garioch, pronounced Glen Geery, founded in 1797 is one of the oldest remaining distilleries in Scotland

· The distillery lies on rising ground at the picturesque town of Oldmeldrum, just 17 miles north-west of Aberdeen

Glen Garioch was relaunched in October 2010 with a core range of two single malt whiskies – the Glen Garioch 1797 Founder’s Reserve, a non chill-filtered single malt bottled at 48% ABV and the Glen Garioch 12 Year Old, non chill-filtered single malt bottled at 48% ABV after maturing in bourbon and sherry casks.

Glen Garioch is owned by the Morrison Bowmore Distillers Limited who also produce Bowmore and Auchentoshan.

Glen Garioch is distributed by Cellar Trends in the UK, tel: 01283 217 703.

Wild Game Night at The City Club of San Francisco – Whisky News


Wild Game Night at The City Club of San Francisco

Please join The City Club, D&M Fine Wines and Spirits and Anchor Distillery President David King on Wednesday, Oct 5th for our first-ever Wild Game Night at The City Club of San Francisco. Mr. King will be pouring the whiskey selections of the evening, in addition to providing his valuable expertise on the art of distilling and what fine whiskey is all about.

When: Wednesday October 5,011
Where: The City Club of San Francisco, 155 Sansome Street
Cost: $75 inclusive (Dinner + Whiskey Pairings)

We will be featuring a menu of exotic wild game, and will also be providing a specialized whiskey selection to be paired with this unique menu.

APPETIZER: Cornbread and Chorizo stuffed Sonoma quail – paired with BenRiach Sauternes Finish 16 year old
ENTRÉE: Slow roasted porchetta wild boar, Logan turnpike white corn grits, Roasted market root vegetables – paired with Glendronach 15 year old
DESSERT: Valrhona Chocolate-Cherry bread pudding, Tahitian Vanilla Gelato, Toasted hazel nuts – paired with Duncan Taylor ~ BlackBull 12 year old
End of Evening/COFFEE: paired with Kilkerran Single Malt Whisky

Register Now!

*If you are a member of our Single Malt Connoisseurs’ Club or Single Malt Aficionados Club, please register using code DMSCOTCHCLUBMEMBERS

For more details on this event or immediate assistance, please contact Genevieve Mullins at 415.362.2480 ext. 200.


anCnoc 14yo 1993/2007 (43%, OB) – Scotch Whisky Tasting Note


anCnoc 14yo 1993/2007 (43%, OB)

Pronounced ‘a-nock’. Unchill-filtered which is very decent of them not to do so; what strip out flavour? The nose is big syrupy fruit; like tinned peaches in syrup with some good malt hanging around in the back ground. There’s also a good bit of varnish or tobacco (a good bit not a bad bit). All very clean and pleasing. The taste is much like the nose; lots of syrupy fruit and tobacco (cured but not lit, like smelling a cigarette before it’s lit or a pouch full of tobacco). However the two are reversed, now the tobacco, oak and malt are first and the syrupy fruit is lagging behind. A big taste for sure and still very pleasant. The finish is warming, very active and long and once again the afore mentioned descriptors are very much in evidence. After a minute or two some very nice malt arrives to tie everything together quite nicely.

A dram that show just what anCnoc is capable of.

£35 +/- however now sold out sadly.

Score 88 points

Visit excellent anCnoc website at

Epicurean Scotch Tasting Indulgence by Universal Whisky Experience – Scotch Whisky News


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