Archive for September, 2020

Glengoyne Distillery Scoops a Gold Award… – Scotch Whisky News


Today, the distillery celebrates being awarded gold at this year’s inaugural International Spirits Challenge Tourism Awards.

Renowned as the most authoritative and influential spirits competition in the world, the International Spirits Challenge, in its 25th year, introduced the ISC Tourism Awards to recognise innovation and excellence among global distilleries.

Commenting on the gold-winning entry, the ISC judges said:Glengoyne’s rural distillery provides visitors with a magnificent experience set against a truly beautiful backdrop. It is a credit to the region, but it has also refused to rest on its laurels and continues to innovate and improve.”


Johnnie Walker Blue Label Ghost & Rare: Port Ellen at Loch Fyne Whiskies – Scotch Whisky News

Johnnie Walker Blue Label
Ghost & Rare: Port Ellen
Was: £275.00
Now: £199.00

Buy now ›

Scotch Whisky Auctions “Only a Few Days to Go!” – Whisky Auction News

Only 3 days to go until our 112th Auction goes LIVE! We have a fantastic cornucopia of mouth-watering malts for your distinguished palates and everything in between. Lifting you out of any lockdown lows, we hope to bring you a bit of excitement and some tasty tipples.



The Whisky Shop “Just in: Golden Cask Range ✨” – Scotch Whisky News

New on the shelf:
House of MacDuff’s Golden Cask range

Looking for a truly special, one-of-a-kind whisky?

House of MacDuff’s Golden Cask range offers a collection of specially selected whiskies that best represent the region and distillery of their origin. Free from chill-filtration, each bottle is one of a limited number, with no two casks tasting the same.

Add an exceptional new bottle to your collection: shop the range before they’re gone!

Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 340: Royal Brackla 12 Year Old 2006 for Taiwan – Scotch Whisky News

Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 340: Royal Brackla 12 Year Old 2006 for Taiwan

Mark Dermul, Belgian whisky vlogger, tries a Royal Brackla. Close to Cawdor Castle – famous from Shakespeare’s Macbeth – lies the Brackla distillery, founded by Captain William Fraser of Brackla in 1812. Since 1835 she calls herself Royal Brackla after receiving a royal warrant from King William IV. This single cask from 2006 was selected by Mark’s Taiwanese friend Joseph Wang and sports the very lovely WeiWei Fong on the label – if you do not know her, she is a Taiwanese top model and Instagram sensation. Not that this means anything for the quality of the liquid of course.

Virginia Distillery Co. Releases Second Batch of Courage & Conviction, Dedicated to Dr. Jim Swan – American Whiskey News

Virginia Distillery Co. Releases Second Batch of Courage & Conviction, Dedicated to Dr. Jim Swan

Coinciding with the release, the distillery is planning on sending 120,000 (50ml) samples of the second batch of Courage & Conviction across the country to replace off-premise tastings. 

LOVINGSTON, Va. (September 22, 2020) – Virginia Distillery Company recently released the second batch of its American Single Malt whisky in the “Courage & Conviction” product line. The second batch of Courage & Conviction is dedicated to Dr. Jim Swan, who passed away in 2017 following a 40-year career supporting the science of distilling as a chemist, professor, researcher and author.

Dr. Swan consulted for a number of distilleries around the world, including Virginia Distillery Co., and had a special interest in warm climate whiskies. Dr. Swan was the man behind Courage & Conviction: the distillate, the casks and the maturation strategy.

“It is our honor to dedicate the second batch of Courage & Conviction to Dr. Jim Swan,” said Virginia Distillery Company CEO Gareth H. Moore. “The mark he left behind on our distillery and our products is truly immeasurable. Courage & Conviction wouldn’t be what it is without his consulting.”

Coinciding with the launch of the Dr. Jim Swan batch, Virginia Distillery Co. is planning on distributing 120,000 (50ml) bottles of the new batch to markets across the U.S. The mini bottles will be used for sampling at retailers in lieu of off-premise tastings of the new whisky. 3,233 planned tastings that were scheduled to take place across the country between March and December had to be cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 50ml sampling program will vary in each market, with some markets offering a complimentary mini bottle of Courage & Conviction, where legal, and other retailers will attach a “hitchhiker” mini bottle to other Virginia Distillery Company products in the Virginia-Highland Whisky series. The distillery will offer low retail pricing in markets where it is not legal to give a complimentary 50ml sample. Markets launching a 50ml size for Courage & Conviction sampling include Virginia, North Carolina, Alabama, DC, Maryland, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, Kansas, Tennessee, New York, Florida, South Carolina, New Jersey and the military channels. eCommerce partners will also be shipping 50ml samples where legal.

“As the pandemic continues to impact our industry, distilleries, retailers and others are having to adapt and adjust,” added Moore. “We’re excited to be able to offer consumers a taste of our new batch of Courage & Conviction with the mini bottles across Virginia and beyond in a creative and different way. The goal is always to get liquid to lips, and we have conviction that consumers are going to love the samples as much as we do.”

Aged a minimum of three years, Courage & Conviction is distilled on-site using 100% North American malted barley and mountain spring-fed water. The Dr. Jim Swan batch is matured in old world sherry casks, traditional bourbon barrels and re-coopered cuvée wine casks which adds intensity and complexity to the spirit. A 750 ml bottle of Courage & Conviction retails for $74.99.

A total of 115 casks (65 Bourbon, 32 Cuvée, 18 Sherry) were used for the Dr. Jim Swan batch, accounting for a total of 11,500 liters, or 3,038 gallons of whisky. The second batch of Courage & Conviction features notes of caramel and butterscotch and evolves on the palate with hints of bright red fruit, raspberry, cocoa, barrel spice and vanilla. Additional nuances of the Dr. Jim Swan batch include aromas of honeyed apricots, blood orange, milk chocolate, vanilla custard and red berries that mingle with butterscotch and toasted pecans. The finish builds into cinnamon and mouthwatering orange zest. For more information about the distillate and cask data for the second batch of Courage & Conviction, as well as bottling and process information for consumers, visit

The first batch of Courage & Conviction, dedicated to Dr. George G. Moore, released earlier this year. Additional releases in the Courage & Conviction line will feature solo bottlings of each cask type, slated for Spring 2021.

Earlier this year, Virginia Distillery Company also launched a complete guide to American Single Malt whisky.

About Virginia Distillery Company

Staffed by a local Virginia team mentored by Scottish consultants with decades of experience, Virginia Distillery Company is the largest dedicated American Single Malt whisky distillery in the U.S. The distillery has a current annual production volume of 80,000 4.5L cases and growing. At full capacity, the distillery can produce over 8,000 casks yielding 350,000 4.5L cases annually. The distillery produces Courage & Conviction American Single Malt on-site using malted barley from North America and water from Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. In addition, the distillery offers the award-winning Virginia-Highland Whisky series, made with 100% malted barley. Showcasing both Old and New World whisky-making, the award-winning line marries whisky made on-site in Virginia with whisky from Scotland.

Whisky Hammer September 2020 Auction Ends Soon! – Auction Whisky News

Our September auction ends soon!

Place your bids until Sunday 27th September.

Every month, we present an incredible selection of whiskies and other fine spirits to our members right across the globe. You will find everything here from limited edition releases and vintage bottles to whole casks of rare whisky. There is certainly something for everyone – whether you are looking to collect, invest or enjoy!

Macallan – 50 Year Old (1928)

Mortlach – 75 Year Old 

Brora – 40 Year Old 

Talisker 24 Year Old (1953) & Talisker 21 Year Old (1951) 

Selling whisky? Why not arrange the pick-up of your bottles using our global courier service? If you’re based in Scotland, you might want to arrange the personal collection of your bottles. Wherever you’re based in the world, we will make getting your bottles into our monthly auction as simple as possible. Get in touch with the Whisky Hammer team now by dropping them a message at



Two Bourbons Win Gold Medals and One Awarded Silver 

FREDERICKSBURG, VA (Sept. 22, 2020) – Three A. Smith Bowman bourbons received medals at the 2020 North American Bourbon & Whiskey Competition (NABWC). John J. Bowman Single Barrel and Bowman Brothers Small Batch each received Gold medals, and Isaac Bowman Port Finish received a Silver medal.

“We are thrilled to accept these awards,” Master Distiller Brian Prewitt said. “These medals are a testament to our team’s commitment to producing quality spirits, and we are honored for that dedication to be recognized.”

The NABWC promotes excellence in bourbon, whiskey, and moonshine through a double-blind competition and is based on a 100-point scale. The spirits are judged by styles and price categories, and this year’s competition was judged virtually in light of COVID-19.

For more information about the 2020 NABWC, visit For more information about A. Smith Bowman brands, visit

About A. Smith Bowman

  1. Smith Bowman’s distilling roots date back to the years before Prohibition when the Bowman family had a granary and dairy farm in Sunset Hills, Virginia. They used excess grain from the family estate to distill spirits. In 1934, after the Repeal of Prohibition, Abram Smith Bowman and his sons continued the family tradition and built a more modern distillery in Fairfax County, Virginia called Sunset Hills Farm.  The Distillery was moved in 1988 and is now nestled in Spotsylvania County near the city of Fredericksburg, 60 miles away from the original location.

As a small and privately owned company, A. Smith Bowman Distillery continues the time-honored traditions on which it was founded. Considered a micro-distillery by today’s standards, A. Smith Bowman produces an assortment of hand-crafted spirits distilled from only the finest natural ingredients and using the latest technology. This micro-distillery focuses on the production of premium spirits honoring the legacy of Virginia’s first settlers. As Virginia’s oldest and most award-winning distillery, its various brands have earned numerous prestigious awards over the years, including John J. Bowman Single Barrel, which received a gold medal at the 2019 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. For more information on A. Smith Bowman, please visit

K&L California “A Rare, Single Cask Exclusive at an Unbeatable Price” – Scotch Whisky News

A Excellent Speyside Malt at an Unbelievable Price
1995 Tormore 22 Year Old “Munros” K&L Exclusive Cask Strength Unchillfiltered Island Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) ($109.99)
“A fun, unique whisky that should not be overlooked.” — David Othenin-Girard, K&L SoCal Spirits Buyer

NOTE: Our walk-in retail locations are currently closed. We have curbside pickup and low cost (often free) delivery options available in ZIP codes where we can ship lawfully, including anywhere in California. We can also include any new or existing will call orders in your delivery batch. Choose local delivery at checkout to learn if you qualify.

We’ve been thrilled with the gems coming from Glasgow Whisky Company. Not only does this firm have a knack for picking out extra-special drams, but they offer them at highly competitive prices. The 1995 Tormore 22 Year Old “Munros” highlighted here is a perfect example of this team’s undeniable prowess. In a nutshell, this is Speyside malt at its very best. Pure and focused, it is adorned with a heavenly array of dried fruits, roasted cereal, wildflower honey, and cream. These elements are wonderfully framed by the unmistakable, but never overpowering, woodsy influence of the American oak hogsheads. No water or color has been added, meaning you are getting an unadulterated spirit that wonderfully captures the very essence of Speyside. We rarely see Tormore here in the States, making this an excellent opportunity to experience one of Scotland’s best hidden gems. You’ll find this 22 Year Old elsewhere priced north of $200, but because we are bringing it in exclusively to the California market, we are able to offer it for a fraction of that price. Its user-friendly approach means it is the perfect Scotch for almost any occasion. Based on its razor-sharp price and limited availability, we expect our allocation to be gone in a flash, so don’t waste any time in securing your bottles of this noteworthy dram.

1995 Tormore 22 Year Old “Munros” K&L Exclusive Cask Strength Unchillfiltered Island Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) ($109.99)

The lovely small batch bottlings in the “Munros” line up are selected by the small Glasgow Whisky Company and represent some of the best values in single malt Scotch today. This small outfit has become an increasingly important player in the sale and bottling of small scale lots of high-quality Scotch. The Munros line is a reference to Scotland’s 282 mountains over 3000 feet. Explorers across the UK had long considered climbing each peak a rite of passage and likewise the great malts represent the heights of achievement in the eyes of whisky lovers across the world. This exceptional expression of the famous Speyside distillery, Glen Grant, was distilled entirely on July 26th, 1995. Filled into refill American oak ex-bourbon barrels, it’s been allowed more than 22 years to mature in the cool climate of northern Scotland. Bottled on the 30th of October, 2017 without chill filtration, there is addition of water or color whatsoever. The resulting whisky is one of the most honest and quintessential expressions of the classic Speyside style available. A cornucopia of dried fruit, sweet cereal, orchard fruit and creamy texture makes this the perfect whisky for any occasion. Thanks to incredible work securing these stocks at unbelievable prices, we’re able to offer the Munros line-up significantly below market value. While this is an exclusive in California for K&L, you might see the same bottle in other markets fetching upwards of $200.

David Othenin-Girard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: August 31, 2020

The odd and delicious spirit coming off the stills at Tormore is not something we see very often stateside. It is one of the most beautiful new distilleries in Scotland, having been built in only 1960, and the gorgeous tall white walls are contrasted by the stunning varnished green of its copper roofs. And like the odd dichotomy of the distillery itself, this whisky is another idiosyncratic and understated example of what is produced there. This whisky was aged for 22 years in American oak hogsheads. Let’s see how it tastes. The color is old gold. The nose is packed full of deep red fruit, with a curious orange peel component. Surrounding that is a roasted cereal quality that touches ever so slightly on nutty aromas. Tiny hints of wood glue are actually weirdly inviting. On the palate, the lower-than-typical proof is not at all to its detriment in terms of texture—instead we have a round rich body and which adds some wild honey and subtle floral flavors to the bouquet on the nose. The finish is medium long and satisfying with some almond extract and vanilla bean showing up. A fun, unique whisky that should not be overlooked because of its low proof or unusual provenance.

Scotch Malt Whisky Society “HOW BAZAAR!” – Scotch Whisky News

This week we’ve transformed our Members’ Rooms into bustling Sensory Bazaars where our members can share an intriguing evening of delicious food and exclusive whisky.

But as always, we want to share this experience with as many members as possible, so we’re bringing you some extra special whiskies to create your own sensory experience at home.

There’s something for every palate in this spectacular selection, including some rarely seen distilleries but beware – these special gems won’t be about for long so don’t delay.


*Please be aware, our queue system will be in place for the sale of these bottles. Members on the bottle pages or the Latest Outturn page of the website will be randomly placed in a queue five minutes before the sale starts at 1.55pm.

We’re continuing to test this new queue system as we explore alternative measures that help prevent our website crashing during busy times. The move comes from our recent member survey, if you’d like to offer feedback on the queue system and basket timer please email us here

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 here for membership information

This is your chance to join and to take advantage of their great offers!

Spot the SMWS bottles in this amusing You Tube video


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