Press Releases

Isle of Arran Distillery adds a dram of poetry to London Fashion Week – Scotch Whisky News

Robert Burns Cocktail, The Burnito

Isle of Arran Distillery adds a dram of poetry to London Fashion Week

The Robert Burns Single Malt, the only whisky officially endorsed by the World Burns Federation, has given London Fashion Week a taste of ‘Scotland in miniature’.

In partnership with Fentimans Botanically Brewed Beverages, the Isle of Arran Distillery served hundreds of their ‘Burnito’ cocktails during the presentation of the Le Kilt AW17 collection on the 17th February.

Samantha McCoach founded Le Kilt in 2014 with a vision of adding a dash of modernity to her family’s kilt-making heritage. Central to the Le Kilt philosophy is a preservation of traditional techniques, underscored with modernity – an approach that the Isle of Arran Distillery shares.

Jaclyn McKie, sales & marketing manager at the Isle of Arran Distillery, said: “We believe that good whisky never goes out of fashion – but that’s not to say we shy away from a modern twist – our cocktail recipes being the perfect example.

“Samantha’s approach to a very traditional Scottish craft struck a chord with us and her show felt like a great opportunity to introduce a whole new audience to the Arran Malt.

“With the help of Fentimans, we were proud to bring a touch of Arran to London and a dram of poetry to London Fashion Week.”

The last Le Kilt presentation drew over 200 UK and international press attendees including US Vogue, British Vogue, W Magazine, Elle, Harpers Bazaar, The Telegraph, US Elle and Dazed.

The Burnito:

You will need

50ml Burns Malt Whisky

25ml Fresh Lime Juice

15ml Sugar Syrup

6 Mint Leaves

Fentimans Ginger Beer


Shake everything (except ginger beer) over ice and strain into ice filled highball glass.

Top up with ginger beer and garnish with a lime wedge and a mint sprig.

ENDS  For more information, samples and images, please contact Megan King at Inside Media on or 01179 066 526.

Notes to editors: For more information visit * Accolades for Isle of Arran Distillery include Winner for: Best New Exporter (2004), Queen’s Award for International Trade (2005), Scottish Distiller of the Year (2007) and Scottish Drinks Producer of the Year (2007.)

Scottish Field Visitor Experience of the Year 2014 & 2015.

Product awards include: Best Whisky Liqueur (2007), ‘Best Single Malt Scotch 12 Years & Under’ for The Arran Malt Amarone Cask Finish (2008) ‘Best Single Malt Scotch 11-15 Years’ for The Arran Malt Sherry Single Cask 1998 (2010) and ‘Best Single Malt Scotch 11-15 Years’ for the Icons of Arran Peacock (2011.) ‘Double Gold Award’ for Arran’s 14 Year Old Single Malt and ‘Gold Award’ for Arran’s 10 Year Old Single Malt at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition (2012). Double Gold in awards (2012). Double Gold Medal for the 12 year-old Cask Strength in the San Francisco World Spirits Competition (2013). Double Gold for both the 10 year-old and 12 year-old Cask Strength at the China Wine & Spirits Best Value Awards 2014.

About Fentimans Botanically Brewed Beverages:

  • Fentimans Botanically Brewed Beverages is a family owned and run business started in 1905 by Thomas Fentiman.
  • Fentimans is the only brewer in the UK to use the time honoured process of botanical brewing to produce natural, full flavoured beverages.
  • The mixer range comprises seven drinks, and there are nine soft drinks plus a selection of pre mixed alcoholic beverages and the craft beer, Hollows and Fentimans Alcoholic Ginger Beer and Alcoholic Spiced Ginger Beer.
  • Fentimans was named as the UK’s number one soft drinks brand in The Guild of Fine Food’s Best Brands Survey 2016-17.


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 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 and tickets are also available to buy on the website. The Festival is active on social media – 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 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 or for consumer information on Scotland as a visitor destination see




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, 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

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

To register to bid in the auction, visit:

Instagram: @lagavulinwhisky

Twitter: @lagavulinwhisky



For more Malts news please visit:


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 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 or call 020 8838 9381


Isle of Arran Distillery break ground on new Lagg site – Scotch Whisky News

Front Perspective (smaller)

Isle of Arran Distillery break ground on new Lagg site

Work has officially started to build the new Isle of Arran Distillery on the south of the island at Lagg. A ground breaking ceremony marked the start of ground works with the construction of 3 vital warehouses.

Situated overlooking the cliffs at Lagg, on the south coast of the island, the new site sits alongside fields of barley that are currently used in distillation at Lochranza. The building will include a Visitor Centre and pot stills for distillation as well as the warehousing, which will allow enough capacity to increase production to 1.2 million litres.

In response the popularity of Machrie Moor, the peated Arran Malt, Master Distiller of the Isle of Arran Distillery, James MacTaggart, plans to dedicate production at Lagg to more heavily peated single malts.

MacTaggart said: “Having been at capacity at Lochranza for some time, the prospect of starting production at Lagg is extremely exciting.

“The Arran Malt continues to grow in popularity – the extra storage alone will enable us to lay down more of the award-winning Arran spirit.

“I’m also very much looking forward to expanding our peated range. By moving production of Machrie Moor and concentrating the distillation of peated malts on the south of the island, I’ll also be freed up to create more of our extremely popular limited editions at Lochranza.”

Euan Mitchell, Managing Director at the Isle of Arran Distillery, added: “The past 21 years has seen the ‘Arran Waters’ flow around the world. We are relatively young compared to some other Scotch whisky distilleries and we have a fresh, dynamic approach coupled with big ambitions to introduce more people to top quality malt whisky.”

Construction at Lagg begins as the popularity of distillery visits reaches an all-time high. The distillery site at Lochranza welcomed record numbers of visitors in 2016 with over 104,000 people making the trip to the distillery. This number is expected to rise to a combined 166,900 by 2018 once the new visitor centre in Lagg has been opened.

Mitchell continues, “Visitors to Lochranza have been growing year-on-year making the Lagg site of even greater importance. By 2018, we hope to be extending the same warm welcome welcome on the south of the island that visitors enjoy at Lochranza.”

The Visitor Centre at Lochranza will soon re-open after the completion of extensive renovations including a complete re-design of the reception area and a tasting bar to help accommodate larger groups of visitors. In the distillery itself, four brand new stills have been installed with a new spirit safe will support the production of 700,000 litres per annum, or 140 casks a week.

James and Euan low res

Notes For more information visit * Accolades for Isle of Arran Distillery include Winner for: Best New Exporter (2004), Queen’s Award for International Trade (2005), Scottish Distiller of the Year (2007) and Scottish Drinks Producer of the Year (2007.)

Scottish Field Visitor Experience of the Year 2014 & 2015.

Product awards include: Best Whisky Liqueur (2007), ‘Best Single Malt Scotch 12 Years & Under’ for The Arran Malt Amarone Cask Finish (2008) ‘Best Single Malt Scotch 11-15 Years’ for The Arran Malt Sherry Single Cask 1998 (2010) and ‘Best Single Malt Scotch 11-15 Years’ for the Icons of Arran Peacock (2011.) ‘Double Gold Award’ for Arran’s 14 Year Old Single Malt and ‘Gold Award’ for Arran’s 10 Year Old Single Malt at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition (2012). Double Gold in awards (2012). Double Gold Medal for the 12 year-old Cask Strength in the San Francisco World Spirits Competition (2013). Double Gold for both the 10 year-old and 12 year-old Cask Strength at the China Wine & Spirits Best Value Awards 2014.

Wemyss Malts 2017 Single Cask Whisky Release – Scotch Whisky News


Wemyss Malts 2017 Single Cask Whisky Release

Independent bottler Wemyss Malts have started 2017 by releasing a selection of new single cask whiskies ranging from 14 to 28 years old. Nosed, tasted and selected by the celebrated whisky writer Charlie Maclean, each bottling has a descriptive name illustrating the whisky’s character and have been bottled non-chill-filtered and in their naturally colour.

The full single cask list of the initial 2017 release comprises:

“The Ship’s Decanter” a (24YO) single cask from Bunnahabhain distillery, bottled cask strength at 45.6%

“Scallop Divers Dram” a (28YO) single cask from Bunnahabhain distillery, bottled at 46%

“Peppered Biltong” a (20YO) single cask from Clynelish distillery, bottled at 46%

“Mango Anise Sorbet” a (21YO) single cask from Braeval distillery, bottled at 46.0%

“Spiced Apple Strudel” a (14YO) single cask from Craigellachie distillery, 70cl bottled at 46.0%

“Apple Syllabub” a (26YO) single cask from Bladnoch distillery, bottled at 46%

“Tiramisu Layers” a (19YO) single cask from Invergordon grain distillery, bottled at 46%

“Hedgerow Berries” a (20YO) single cask from Glenrothes distillery bottles at 46.0%

William Wemyss, Founder and Managing Director at Wemyss Malts, commented: “Following the successes of our multiple single cask releases and the launch of our first Batch Strength blended malts in 2016, Wemyss Malts has entered 2017 in a very strong position which is reflected in our newest release of single cask whisky. Hand-picked from our cask stocks, our first 2017 release reflects the scope and variety of our maturing single cask whisky, from the fruity and oily “Spiced Apple Strudel” to the pair of Bunnahabhain casks “The Ship’s Decanter” and “Scallop Divers Dram” which really demonstrate how diverse single cask whisky can be. ”.

Each cask is limited to only a few hundred bottles with suggested retail prices ranging from £70 to £270. These bottlings will be available in selected retailers in the UK, EU and key Asian markets.


  • Edinburgh based Wemyss Malts is owned by the Wemyss family and their family seat is Wemyss Castle in Fife where they’ve lived since the 1300s.
  • Wemyss Malts has a blended malt whisky range comprising: The Spice King, The Peat Chimney, The Hive, Kiln Embers – 2015’s heavily peated release; single malt single cask bottlings and blended Scotch range, Lord Elcho.
  • The Wemyss family premium wines and spirits brands also include boutique gin Darnley’s View, together with the premium wine estate of Rimauresq Cru Classé in Cotes de Provence.
  • The family distillery Kingsbarns, near St. Andrews, Fife has recently released two exclusive single casks whiskies for the visitor centre available at

AA Wemyss


AA Jameson


Jameson, the world’s favourite Irish whiskey, has unveiled its sixth limited edition bottle ahead of its annual St. Patrick’s Day festivities. The most recent in a series of collaborations with Irish artists, this year’s bottle has been designed by Dublin-based designer and illustrator, Steve McCarthy.

McCarthy’s creative starting point came from the Jameson family motto Sine Metu – or without fear – which has been at the heart of the company since it was founded in 1780 and lives on today. He also took inspiration from a commonly used Irish saying that goes hand in hand with Sine Metu, ‘to chance your arm’.

Legend has it that in 1492, ‘Black James’ Butler and his men found themselves barricaded behind the door to St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin. On the other side was Gearóid Fitzgerald who, tired of the constant fighting between the clans, decided it was time to make peace. Fitzgerald ordered his men to cut a hole in the door before extending his hand through the gap as a token of friendship. Rather than cut his arm off with a sword, Butler shook it and the long standing feud came to an end, giving Dublin one of its most famous sayings: to chance your arm.

Over 500 years later, Dublin is still a place where social barriers break easily and friendships come about in the most unexpected of ways and this has been brought to life on the label through two outstretched hands exchanging a handshake, framed by the St. Patrick’s Cathedral door of Reconciliation. The Sine Metu motto has been tattooed on to the knuckles of each hand as a reminder that when we fear a bit less, we live a bit more.

McCarthy has included some of the Irish capital’s most recognisable monuments in his bold and colourful design, such as the Ha’penny Bridge and Smithfield tower, and has also peppered the label with additional details that are reflective of his own knowledge of the city and sense of humour.

He comments: “I wanted it to feel like there was a deeper meaning to what you see. For me, the Jameson motto is very emotive and I hope that with my design I am able to speak to others around the world who have also been inspired by Sine Metu, or those who might still with this release, to fear a bit less to live a bit more.”

The release of the sixth limited edition bottle kicks off Jameson’s global St. Patrick’s Day celebrations for 2017 and will be available in markets including the USA, Ireland and Russia from February 2017, with a recommended retail price of €30 (or local equivalent).

Daniel Lundberg, Jameson Global Brand Director adds: “Our limited edition Jameson bottle for 2017 keeps the spirit of John Jameson alive and celebrates a very Irish saying that dates back to the 15th century but is as relevant as ever today. As Jameson found when he established the Bow Street distillery in 1780, fearing less can help you reap rewards you never thought possible and we still proudly live by this ethos.

“Steve’s design perfectly balances the rich heritage of Dublin with the modern design and Irish wit of Jameson, and we hope that Irish whiskey fans will be inspired by the bottle in their own St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.”

Photo: Eoin Holland -


About Irish Distillers

Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard is Ireland’s leading supplier of spirits and wines and producer of the world’s most well-known and successful Irish whiskeys. Led by Jameson, our brands are driving the global renaissance of Irish whiskey. Jameson is the world’s fastest-growing Irish whiskey, experiencing 26 years of consecutive growth and hitting sales of 5m cases in 2015. Our brands are exported to 130+ markets, with over 50 of those experiencing double- or triple-digit growth.

Irish Distillers was formed in 1966, when a merger took place between John Powers & Son, John Jameson & Son and Cork Distilleries Company. In 1988 Irish Distillers joined Pernod Ricard, gaining access to unprecedented levels of investment and an extensive global distribution network. In 2015, we completed a €220m investment which doubled our production and bottling capacity to meet global demand for our products.

We employ over 600 people across our operations in Cork and Dublin.

More information at   

About Pernod Ricard

Pernod Ricard is the world’s n°2 in wines and spirits with consolidated Sales of € 8,682 million in FY16. Created in 1975 by the merger of Ricard and Pernod, the Group has undergone sustained development, based on both organic growth and acquisitions: Seagram (2001), Allied Domecq (2005) and Vin&Sprit (2008). Pernod Ricard holds one of the most prestigious brand portfolios in the sector: Absolut Vodka, Ricard pastis, Ballantine’s, Chivas Regal, Royal Salute and The Glenlivet Scotch whiskies, Jameson Irish whiskey, Martell cognac, Havana Club rum, Beefeater gin, Kahlúa and Malibu liqueurs, Mumm and Perrier‐ Jouët champagnes, as well Jacob’s Creek, Brancott Estate, Campo Viejo, Graffigna and Kenwood wines. Pernod Ricard employs a workforce of approximately 18,000 people and operates through a decentralised organisation, with 6 “Brand Companies” and 85 “Market Companies” established in each key market. Pernod Ricard is strongly committed to a sustainable development policy and encourages responsible consumption. Pernod Ricard’s strategy and ambition are based on 3 key values that guide its expansion: entrepreneurial spirit, mutual trust and a strong sense of ethics. Pernod Ricard is listed on Euronext (Ticker: RI; ISIN code: FR0000120693) and is part of the CAC 40 index.

Record Year for Rare Whisky as Profitable Passions Gain Favour – Scotch Whisky News

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Record Year for Rare Whisky as Profitable Passions Gain Favour

The booming UK rare whisky auction market has become ‘increasingly liquid’ in an exceptional year for rare Scotch, according to a new report published today by whisky analyst, broker and investment experts Rare Whisky 101.

According to the full year results for 2016 published today, both the volume and value of rare Scotch whisky sold at auction increased by record amounts. The £ value of collectable bottles of Single Malt Scotch whisky sold at auction in the UK rose by 48.64% to a record £14.21m (2015 £9.56m). The number of bottles of Single Malt Scotch whisky sold at auction in the UK increased by 35.21% to 58,758 (2015 43,458).

The most expensive bottle to sell at auction in the UK was a bottle of 50 year old Yamazaki for £62,600.

According to the report, there are a number of factors behind this increased liquidity, created by the impact of volatile market conditions. A favourable forex rate (for those buying outside the UK), low interest rates, and the uncertainty of geopolitical change have all served to fuel demand for passion investments such as whisky, wine and art as a viable component of a balanced investment portfolio.

The past year has also seen the continued growth of the whisky auction market with more players coming to market, making the process of buying and selling more accessible to investors and collectors. In turn, the trading costs associated with selling rare whisky are reducing as some auctioneers compete for the opportunity to attract the most sought after bottles by reducing commission rates.

However, while Rare Whisky 101 sees further room for growth in 2017, they also predict a stabilisation in the market with certain brands predicted to re-trace to more affordable levels.

Whisky investment analyst and co-founder of Rare Whisky 101, Andy Simpson commented: “2016 has been another exceptional year for rare Scotch and we’re beginning to see signs of maturity within the market. The continued growth in both volume and value has added further liquidity, making rare whisky a more popular and more accessible ‘passion investment’. At the same time, the dynamic evolution of the online rare whisky auction market has made it much easier to buy and sell.

“We have no doubt that the current low interest rate environment and wider uncertainty within the market has fuelled demand for rare whisky, as investors have looked to alternative ‘passion’ investments which can offer a diversified approach to balance their portfolios and deliver positive financial returns. While it’s difficult to see the market continuing to expand at such levels over the next few years, primarily due to a finite availability of rare whisky, we do believe that there is further room for growth. As increasing numbers of investors participate in the market and demand continues to increase, it will be fascinating to see how prices move.”

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Scotch achieves recognition as passion investment

In another booming year for rare whisky, the leading index for Scotch whisky, the Rare Whisky Apex 1000 Index closed 2016 up 38% for the year, outperforming strong years for Wine (Liv-Ex 24.79%), Gold (8.46%) and the FTSE 100 (12%).

As a clear sign of rare whisky’s growing popularity among passion investors, Lloyds Private Banking recently listed whisky as one of the UK’s favourite passion investments. According to Lloyds’ research, one in six UK investors holds alternative investments in their portfolios, with 3% investing in whisky. On average, £27,700 is spent on whisky as a single “passion” investment.

The auction market is changing the retail dynamic of the whisky industry

In line with the steep increases in both volume and value, 2016 also witnessed the evolution of the secondary (auction) market as a route to market for distilleries. For the first time, traditional retail routes were overlooked in favour of auction for primary market releases.

One such example is Strathearn Distillery which sold its first 100 bottles of Scotch through Perth-based Whisky Auctioneer, earning them between £315 and £4,150 per 50cl bottle of 3 year old Scotch.

The Macallan still The Number 1

Macallan maintained its dominance as the number one traded distillery on a volume and value basis, accounting for nearly 10% of the market for all bottles sold and 22% of the total value. The next closest distillery from a volume and value perspective is Ardbeg, with an 8% share of both volume and value. For the Macallan’s market defining 18 year old vintage collection 1965 – 1990, prices shot up from £19,000 at end 2015 to £46,000 at end 2016. Demand for old, rare, vintage and peerless quality single malt whisky has never been greater.

For more information or to download the full report visit:


Images: Rare Whisky 101 co-founders Andy Simpson and David Robertson

(high res images available on request)

About Rare Whisky 101 Andy Simpson and David Robertson launched Rare Whisky 101 in 2014 with the aim of offering a whisky valuation service, brokerage and consultancy for whisky connoisseurs, collectors and investors. Having tracked every bottle sold at UK auctions over the past 12 years, the business now offers the world’s first, only and most comprehensive online single malt Scotch & Japanese whisky dataset covering over 200,000 price records across 27,000 different bottle types. In the last 12 months, RW101 have brokered around 20,000 rare whisky bottles around the globe in addition to trading in aged casks from iconic distilleries such as The Macallan, Ardbeg, Bowmore, Springbank, Mortlach, Talisker, Caol Ila, Lagavulin and Highland Park.

Exclusive New Loch Lomond Whiskies Takes Off at World Duty Free Glasgow Airport – Scotch Whisky News

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Exclusive new Loch Lomond Whiskies takes off at

World Duty Free Glasgow Airport 

A world first has landed at Glasgow Airport, with the launch of the inaugural global travel retail (GTR) range from award-winning independent distiller, Loch Lomond Group.

Four expressions that showcase the innovation and craft championed at Loch Lomond distillery in Alexandria are now available at World Duty Free’s Glasgow Airport store.

The new collection, priced from £25 to £75, features two single malt Scotch Whiskies: the Loch Lomond 12-year-old single malt, which contains spirit from two types of stills; and Loch Lomond Inchmurrin Madeira Cask Single malt, which is produced exclusively from the distiller’s unique pot stills with rectifying heads.

The new collection also features the Loch Lomond Single Grain, which is exclusively distilled with 100% malted barley through a Coffey (continuous) still, and the Loch Lomond Signature, a premium blend which is matured via the distiller’s 100 cask solera process.

The launch is in response to growing demand for Loch Lomond award-winning Scotch Whiskies, which are now available in 90 markets internationally. It incorporates distinctive new one litre bottles and newly designed packaging. The inspiration for the premium packaging came from the magnificent Loch Lomond distillery. Designers worked to reflect the Group’s commitment to whisky craftsmanship; from the distinctive stills, to the working cooperage, aiming to tell the story of the unique parts that come together to create the innovative liquid inside.

World Duty Free’s Glasgow Airport store is the first stop in an ambitious worldwide roll-out of the bespoke GTR range, which will launch in Nordic markets later this month. Canada and the US are also set to offer the range.

As the local airport, Glasgow was chosen for the launch to emphasise the provenance of the range, which incorporates four expressions each with their own unique flavour and character revealing the innovative techniques used at the distillery.

André de Almeida, managing director of Global Travel Retail at Loch Lomond Group, said: “We’ve been keen to introduce a global travel retail range for some time now following increased demand for our Loch Lomond whiskies overseas. It means a great deal to us to offer the new range at World Duty Free in Glasgow Airport, less than 15 miles from our spiritual home in the heart of Loch Lomond – one of Scotland’s most beautiful and popular visitor destinations.”

“We’re confident that we are offering something new and unique and a sense of discovery for whisky drinkers around the world.”

A tasting table will be available at Glasgow Airport during February and March, enabling World Duty Free’s shoppers to sample the new range and encouraging travellers to take a little piece of Loch Lomond home with them.

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About the Group:

  • Loch Lomond Group is an independent distiller based in Alexandria and is home to a number of award-winning spirit brands that are sold in more than 100 countries worldwide.
  • Loch Lomond distillery has been producing the finest single malt whisky since 1814.
  • Images and interviews with key staff from the Group are available upon request.

Brands and variants in the GTR range

Loch Lomond Single Grain Scotch whisky 1lt

Loch Lomond Signature Blended Scotch whisky 1lt

Loch Lomond 12 year old Single malt Scotch whisky 1lt

Loch Lomond Inchmurrin Madeira Cask Finish Single malt Scotch whisky 1lt

Glen Scotia Campbeltown 1832 Single malt Scotch whisky 1lt (GTR exclusive)

Glen Scotia 16 year old Single malt Scotch whisky 1lt (GTR exclusive)

Glen Scotia Victoriana Single malt Scotch whisky 70cl 

About the brands:

Loch Lomond Group’s eponymous brand is the Loch Lomond range.

  • Loch Lomond Single Grain Scotch whisky
  • Loch Lomond Signature Blended Scotch whisky
  • Loch Lomond Reserve Blended Scotch whisky
  • Loch Lomond Original Single Malt Scotch whisky
  • Loch Lomond 12 year old Single malt Scotch whisky
  • Loch Lomond 18 year old Single malt Scotch whisky

It also produces the popular Island Collection Range:

  • Loch Lomond Inchmurrin Madeira Cask Finish Single Malt Scotch whisky
  • Loch Lomond Inchmurrin 12 year old Single malt Scotch whisky
  • Loch Lomond Inchmurrin 18 year old Single malt Scotch whisky


Other brands:

  • Glen Scotia Single Malt Scotch whisky ( Twitter: @GlenScotiaMalts)
  • Littlemill Single Malt Scotch whisky (Twitter: @LittlemillMalt)
  • Glengarry Single Malt Scotch whisky
  • High Commissioner Blended Scotch whisky
  • Glen’s Vodka
  • Glen’s Platinum Vodka

R&B Distillers Second Release of Raasay While We Wait – Scotch Whisky News

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R&B Distillers second release of Raasay While We Wait

This February, R&B Distillers are delighted to announce the release of the second batch of their lightly peated single malt whisky – Raasay While We Wait. This limited edition second iteration has spent 18 months finishing in Tuscan red wine casks, imbuing the spirit with a rounder and fruitier flavour.

After a successful first year of production, R&B Distillers have now sold out of the first release of their multi-award winning single malt, now only available at some of their stockists. R&B Distillers are in the process of building the first (legal) distillery on the remote Isle of Raasay, off the east coast of Skye, and they have chosen to create a limited second batch of 1,974 bottles to honour a renowned figure in Raasay history. In 1974, Raasay resident Calum Macleod completed a mammoth ten-year endeavour: to build a hand-constructed road across Raasay, from Brochel Castle to Arnish. R&B’s latest batch plays homage this immense and patient feat.

Masters of patience themselves, R&B Distillers began working with another Highland distillery to create whisky while obtaining planning permission to build their first distillery on the island. In November 2015, R&B launched the aptly named Raasay While We Wait a handcrafted whisky that offers a clever prediction of the taste and character of the whisky which will run from the stills on Raasay this Summer.

The inaugural release was created by combining heavily peated single malt with an unpeated single malt from one Highland distiller. This created a lightly peated single malt whisky reflecting the high minerality of Raasay water, which filters naturally through the volcanic rock of Dùn Caan. The pot stills, now on site at the new distillery, have been sourced from Tuscany and R&B decided to strengthen this Italian connection by finishing Raasay While We Wait in Super Tuscan red wine casks. Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc casks lend juicy and fruity notes to the whisky which carefully balances the 15ppm peating.

While the first batch has spent 8 weeks in the red wine casks, the second batch has been developing in complexity over the past 18 months finishing in the casks. This new iteration contains the same level of peat, but the extra finishing furnishes the whisky with a bigger, more rounded flavour and is less spicy and smoky than the original incarnation. Similarly, the whisky’s distinctive heather hue has subtly but evidently darkened.

Brand ambassador Chris Hoban comments “The second release of Raasay While We Wait has quite a bit of the smoke and earthy notes from the first release but these have been enriched with fruity, juicy, full bodied red wine notes. Where the wine notes were more prominent on the nose in the first release, with just small amounts on the palate, the second release is enveloped with plum and raisin notes, mixed in with burning peat and dark chocolate.”

In 2016, the first release of Raasay While We Wait was awarded several accolades including a Silver at the International Wine and Spirits Competition, and Bronze medals at the International Spirits Challenge and Hong Kong International Wine and Spirits Competition.

Alasdair Day, co-founder of R&B Distillers hopes that the second release will match this success: “We’re very excited to launch the second release of our Raasay While We Wait single malt. Given the batch nature of these whiskies we’re looking forward to hearing feedback from our customers on the difference between the first and second releases.”



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