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Bardstown Bourbon Company “Collabor&tion – Mistelle Barrel Finish” Cask Strength Bourbon Whiskey at K&L California – American Whiskey News


Bardstown Bourbon Company “Collabor&tion – Mistelle Barrel Finish” Cask Strength Bourbon Whiskey (750ml) ($124.99)

The Collaboration series is the first release of whiskey from Kentucky’s soon-to-be star Bardstown Bourbon Company, a project done in “collaboration” with Louisville brandy specialists Copper & Kings. Using 10 year old stocks of Bourbon distilled at MGP in Indiana, BBCo finished each of the whiskies for an additional 18 months in two different types of casks: American brandy and Muscat Mistelle. Made from 75% corn, 21% rye, and 4% malted barley, the Collabor&tion expression aged in Mistelle barrels has an incredible viscosity and chewiness to its texture from the time spent in the used casks. Mistelle is unfermented grape juice (in this case Muscat) fortified with un-aged brandy (Muscat eau-de-vie) and then aged in bourbon barrels for 18 months. The empty barrels are deeply and highly caramelized with the grape sugars and fruit essences and the Collabor&tion whiskey aged in these barrels is pure joy. It’s a completely novel sensory experience; deeply concentrated, rich whiskey that has a supple, fruity, and absolutely delicious finish. It’s both an incredibly unique and divine tasting experience. Bottled at 47% cask strength ABV. NOTE: Due to the shape of the Collabor&ation bottle it cannot be consolidated with other bottles shipping and must ship in its own individual package.

Jeffrey Jones | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: October 05, 2017

This is a wonderful addition to the bourbon selection. It is both elegant and tasty with elegant and inviting aromas. In the mouth it is both interesting and tasty. This is not a heavy bourbon and there is a very nice spice element. There is a nice complex finish.

Andrew Whiteley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: September 29, 2017

If you’ve ever walked into the store and asked the objectively silly question, “What rare bourbons do you have in stock at a good price?” This is your chance! These are extremely limited, ultra rare bourbons that taste absolutely delicious, unique, and are down right affordable when you consider the other criteria. Mistelle, if you’re unfamiliar, is just fortified grape juice (and super tasty). Due to the mistelle cask finish, this bourbon screams out with sensational fruit, you can tell there is a sweetness and intensity to it from the nose, much like a PX-aged Scotch, but with more floral and stone fruit tones, less rancio. The texture is powerful, round and unctuous. And the bourbon itself…10 year old+ goodness bottled at 47%. That in itself is worth a fortune these days, add the most interesting and tasty cask finish I’ve seen this year and you’ve got a winner for those bold enough to actually ask, “what’s rare and in stock?”

David Driscoll | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: September 29, 2017

I LOVE the Mistelle finish on this and it’s funny because I thought my co-workers and customers would prefer the classic profile of the American brandy expression, but I was wrong. The sweetness and the texture provided by the liqueur finish is simply sensational here and the orange peel notes from the Mistelle really blend well into the baking spices of the bourbon. It’s done with a balanced hand all the way through and the flavor of the whiskey never gets lost in the mix. Don’t miss out on this one.


Ralfy Publishes Ralfy Review #708 – Scotch Whisky News


Ralfy celebrates another year with another dram worth sippin’  with Ralfy Review 708 - Glencadam 15yo @ 46%vol

The Whisky Show Old & Rare “Connoisseurs Choice masterclass now on sale” – Scotch Whisky News


24-25 FEBRUARY 2018, 11.30AM 6.30PM





Gordon & MacPhail is one of the best-known names in the world of independent bottling. Founded in 1895, it is one of the oldest bottlers, with more than 100 years of selecting and bottling great whisky. Among them is the Connoisseurs Choice range, a landmark in the whisky world, now 50 years old. In this tasting we will try whiskies from across the years, finding out what has made the series so successful.

Here’s the incredible line-up:

Ardbeg 1974 bottled 2003

Laphroaig 1969 bottled 1986

Ledaig 1972 bottled 1989

Glenburgie 1968 bottled 1989

Benromach 1965 bottled 1979

Mortlach 1936 36yo (Black Label)



International Scotch Day 2018


LONDON, JANUARY 8 2018: Scotch, the world’s favourite whisky, will be celebrated across the globe on Thursday 8th February with a series of events to mark International Scotch Day.

Now in its second year, the day is a true celebration of Scotland’s greatest gift, cementing Scotch’s status as both the world’s favourite whisky and the perfect drink to be shared with good company, wherever, whenever.

Celebrations will take place in homes, bars, clubs and events across the world, as Scotch aficionados, enthusiasts and fans alike raise a glass to their favourite whisky.

Ronan Beirne, Global Brand Marketing Director at Diageo said: “Last year we launched International Scotch Day and its huge success proved what we at Diageo already knew – the world loves Scotch. This year is going to be even bigger, with celebrations taking place globally, from Scotch Whisky tastings to opening the doors to Diageo’s archive in Scotland, free passes to distillery visitor centres and celebrity events in cities from Manila to Johannesburg”.

International Scotch Day is an opportunity to celebrate the world’s favourite whisky and to shine a spotlight on the entire Scotch Whisky category. The popularity of Scotch has been built through its integrity, quality and authenticity, and no other spirit can offer as diverse a range of tastes, textures and flavours.

Ewan Gunn, Global Scotch Whisky Master from Diageo commented: “Scotch is made all the way across Scotland – from the romantic west coast, through the whisky heartland of Speyside, to the vibrant urban central belt of Scotland, and though it is made here, it belongs to the world and is truly the world’s favourite whisky.  Hosting International Scotch Day for a second year shows how confident we are about the popularity of this truly international drink.”

2018 celebrity ambassadors and global locations will be revealed in February.

Join the celebration and get involved by using #LoveScotch #InternationalScotchDay and #jointhecelebration. For more information visit facebook.com/LoveofScotch

Please drink responsibly.

International Scotch Day 2018 - Caol Ila Distillery


People interested in visiting the Diageo archive on February 8th should email archive.menstrie@diageo.com to secure a ticket.  There is no charge, but places are limited.

Diageo distillery Visitor Centres will be open free of charge on February 8th, 10th and 11th. The Visitor Centres are at Blair Athol, Caol Ila, Cardhu, Clynelish, Cragganmore, Dalwhinnie, Glenkinchie, Glen Ord, Lagavulin, Oban, Royal Lochnagar and Talisker. Places are limited. Details will be announced in due course.

International Scotch Day 2018 - Johnnie Walker Black Label

About #LoveScotch:

LoveScotch is about getting the world talking, thinking and trying the world’s favourite whisky and celebrates all that gives scotch its unique character, flavour and personality. The LoveScotch annual event, International Scotch Day on February 8th, is a day for people everywhere to join in and celebrate during the week of the birthday one of the world’s most influential Master Blenders – Alexander Walker the son of John ‘Johnnie’ Walker. 

About Diageo:  Diageo is a global leader in beverage alcohol with an outstanding collection of brands including Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, JεB, Buchanan’s and Windsor whiskies, Smirnoff, Cîroc and Ketel One vodkas, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Don Julio, Tanqueray and Guinness.  Diageo is listed on both the London Stock Exchange (DGE) and the New York Stock Exchange (DEO) and our products are sold in more than 180 countries around the world. For more information about Diageo, our people, our brands, and performance, visit us at www.diageo.com. Visit Diageo’s global responsible drinking resource, www.DRINKiQ.com, for information, initiatives, and ways to share best practice.

Celebrating life, every day, everywhere.

Whisky-Online Auctions December Auction Results 2017 – Scotch Whisky News

1212 Auction Banner 1000

Whisky-Online Auctions December Auction Results 2017

Every auction throws up a few special or fascinating results but there’s always something just a little bit more intriguing about our annual Christmas auction. The fact it runs over the festive period for an extended time and usually features an extensive selection of truly special bottles always ups the excitement.

First up it seems the fever surrounding bonded casks of Macallan is back up to full pitch. The two top lots were a sherry butt of 1996 Macallan at £168,300 and a sherry hogshead of 1990 Macallan for £135,100. It’s interesting to note in the price rations here and how – while the extra size and content of the butt makes it the most expensive – in terms of ratio the older, more mature liquid is the one which wins if you adjust to price per bottle. Another fascinating and bewilderingly impressive result for bonded casks.

If any further proof were needed of the ‘Macallan’ effect, simply look at the prices achieved in the same sale by the bonded casks of 1992 Jura which were also under the hammer. Ranging from £7700 – £11,100. These seems like more realistic market prices for such casks and go some way to revealing just how powerful the name Macallan remains.

 Full casks held in bon 3rd jan 484 x 252

On to the bottles and to my favourite bottle of the sale: the Oban Crown Hotel bottle from around 1900. First of all, what a stunning bottle to still find in this day and age! These kinds of bottles could be found with far more regularity a number of years ago, now, however, it’s exceptionally unusual to still uncover such an old, genuine bottle. What’s nice is that it is from Oban distillery, not a name you’d ever expect to discover such an aged example of. Another good illustration of the nature of today’s market is that the Macallan Lalique 50 year old sold for £45,600 and the Oban finished at £11,600. Both impressive prices but also another indicator of how skewed the perception of value is in whisky today.

Old Oban Whisky 1920s11 copy

Looking over some of the many other impressive top end results it was good to see the Ardbeg 1965 hit the five figure mark at £10,000 – a record for this bottling. The Bowmore 1955 jug is also back on deserving form at £6800 – if you’ve ever tasted this bewilderingly incredible whisky then you can understand why. Same goes for the Bowmore 1957 at £6500. I wonder how long before all these old Bowmores crest the £10k mark?


Talisker 1955 and 1957 CASK by Gordon & MacPhail both finished at £2600, another unsurprising and impressive result for these incredible whiskies. Back to Bowmore again and the Bicentenary bottling continues it’s climb ever higher to £2300, a second bottle also fetched £1950. While the Clynelish 1972 White Label by Cadenhead hit £2150, again: amazing juice is in serious demand.

Amidst all the impressive Macallan results, one of the more notable bottles was the Macallan 15 year old by Gordon & MacPhail from the 1970s. Judging by the colour you always knew it would do well, however £1950 is still an impressive result for a bottle which could be picked up for around the £400 mark a couple of years ago.

A beautiful old bottle of Glenlivet bottled 1949 fetched £1450, which, given the age and rather unique nature of the bottle, feels like something of a bargain. Which goes to show, even at these sorts of price levels, there are still some nice bits and pieces to be found. Another example would possibly be the old Blair Athol 8 year old from the 1940s – another remarkable old single malt that, at £1050, seems like a pretty fair price in today’s market.

 Blair Athol 1940s1

A super rare Glenugie 12 year old fetched £1200 and a Lagavulin 12 White Horse just squeezed past the four figure mark to £1050. I suspect we’ll see these bottles start to do this more and more often quite soon.

Going below the £1000 mark there were plenty other impressive results. The Clynelish 1971 36 year old Murray McDavid at £750 showed that these vintages of Clynelish are always in high demand these days. The litre bottling of 12 year old Macallan at £775 was also impressive, this bottling for some reason seemed to hover at £300-400 for a long time. The Longmorn 25 year old centenary at £700 is also nice to see, the liquid is utterly incredible in this one and for a long time it seemed stuck around the £400-500 mark.

Looking over the rest of the auction it seems that almost all aged single malts – closed or still active – from the 1960s and 1970s are sitting somewhere in the £300-600 price range these days. Gone are the times where you could pick up these sorts of bottlings occasionally sub £200. Almost anything that’s good or old now seems to carry a minimum £300-400 price tag. With many or most of the good or interesting ones sailing closer to £500+. People wonder about how long this will continue but, for these kinds of older or well aged single malt bottlings, I don’t see how the prices will ever really come down. Barring some broader economic collapse, these sorts of whiskies aren’t being made anymore and they will always be hugely desirable to drinkers and collectors alike. Basic supply and demand will rule the roost with these bottlings forevermore I suspect. A shame as it means many of us might be priced out of owning them. But if you still have these kinds of whiskies tucked away at home it’s pretty much a dream market in which to sell nowadays.


Elsewhere in the sale pretty much everything here was hitting it’s true or high market value. Even below the £100 mark there weren’t too many bargains to be found. Seems a trend that’s set to continue into 2018. Although, my result of the sale would have to be a bottle of Bailey’s Irish Whisky for £320. Must have been the Christmas effect! Happy new year to all our clients and customers and to everyone that bids with us. We wish you all the best for 2018. Hopefully you were able to celebrate with something suitably delicious. Until next time…


The Macallan “A New Year, an Extraordinary Journey” – Scotch Whisky News


An extraordinary Quest; four defining single malts

There are few truly extraordinary journeys in life. But when we experience them, they shape our lives deeply; staying with us forever.

The Macallan takes its own extraordinary journey in the quest for the world’s finest oak to craft our exceptional casks in which we mature our spirit. Taking us across continents, cultures and terrains, we source only the very best oak which is fundamental to the quality and flavour of our single malts.

This is the absolute inspiration for a new range of single malts, The Macallan Quest Collection. Created exclusively for Global Travel Retail, this quartet of whiskies tells the story of our pursuit for the most extraordinary sherry-seasoned oak casks.

Created not only to celebrate our own journey, each release also embodies the spirit of adventure, the desire to make new discoveries and to seek out unique experiences.


The Macallan Quest Collection is available exclusively at Duty Free Singapore Changi now, with availability in further airport outlets worldwide from February 2018.


Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 192: Lagavulin Jazz 2017 – Scotch Whisky News


Mark’s Whisky Ramblings 192: Lagavulin Jazz 2017

Mark Dermul, Belgian whisky blogger, tries a special release from Lagavulin.  Apart from the famous Feis Ile, there is another whisky and music festival on Islay: Islay Jazz. Lagavulin is one of the sponsors of Islay Jazz, so every year they also have a special release for this event. This is the Lagavulin Islay Jazz Festival 2017 bottling, only available at the distillery.


Milroys of Soho Burns Night 2018 – Scotch Whisky News


Burns Night: A celebration of the best Scotland has to offer…


‘Bring me a pint o’ wine’

- Robert Burns


This year Milroys will be joining forces with Douglas Laing to celebrate Burn’s night. There will be whisky, there will be haggis, there may be bagpipes. Come and join us for some tipsy singing, fantastic, rare whiskies and frivolities.

Buy Tickets Now

 Milroy’s of Soho
3 Greek Street
London, England W1D 4NX
United Kingdom

A Master Distiller’s guide to Burns Night – Scotch Whisky News

Arran Logo Brown

A Master Distiller’s guide to Burns Night 

With Christmas a distant memory and spring a long way off, the end of January isn’t a traditionally cheerful time unless you follow Scottish tradition and throw a party to rival Hogmanay on the 25th. Burns Night is a celebration of the great Robert Burns, national hero and Scotland’s most beloved poet, and a great excuse to shake off the winter blues.

James McTaggart, Master Distiller at Isle of Arran Distillers who produce the world’s only official Robert Burns Malt, is well versed in how to throw a brilliant Burns Night celebration. Here he shares his top choice of whiskies to accompany the festivities.

“Burns Night wouldn’t be complete without whisky and no table is set without a good selection of drams.

“Burns Night is traditionally a very structured affair. There are set times for welcome addresses, toasts, food and entertainment. This gives hosts the opportunity to choose a different whisky to complement each part of the evening.

“I don’t doubt that there are distilleries across the world making great whisky, but I firmly believe that Scotch whisky is the best. And while I am incredibly proud of what we do here at Arran, I’m not too proud to recognise a good dram when I taste it! Whisky is very much a community within Scotland and there are a few distilleries that I am very fond of.”

A toast to the Bard

The traditional toast to friends, food and family, the Selkirk Grace is a cornerstone of Burns Night. The man himself was born just across the water from Arran, near Ayr on the West coast of Scotland so a dram from a Glasgow distillery, Scotland’s biggest west coast city would be most fitting. Why not Auchentoshan which lies on the outskirts of the city?


The Auchentoshan 3 Wood (£47.55) is matured initially in bourbon casks before being finished in Oloroso then Pedro Ximénez casks for an extra layer of rich, sweet fruitiness. Notes of raisin, orange and blackberry will certainly whet the appetite.

Pipe in the Haggis

There’s no escaping haggis as the centre piece of a Burns Night Feast. Rich with spices and the warming flavours of onions, stock and meat, it takes a whisky with a bold palate to pair with a haggis.


I spent the first 30 years of my whisky career at Bowmore, so I can confidently suggest their 15 Year Old Single Malt (£58.55). Delicious dark chocolate, sun-dried fruits and a tell-tale wisp of Islay smoke give way to cedar wood and rich treacle toffee. With a robust and complex finish, it’s the perfect accompaniment for a Burns Night supper.

A Toast to the Lassies and Reply to the Toast to the Lassies

One of the most popular parts of the evening is probably the famous Toast to the Lassies and Reply to the Toast to the Lassies. Usually incorporating quotes from Burns, these are comical monologues, light hearted and positive (with the odd sharp observation).


Kilchoman Distillery’s Machir Bay (£45.95) is a vatting of whisky matured in first-fill bourbon casks for around six years, married and then finished in oloroso sherry butts before bottling. This Single Malt is full of character and will match well with the tone of this part of the evening!

And to finish…

Arran 2012 Robert Burns Malt

No Burns Night is complete without a rousing rendition of Auld Land Syne in a final salute to the Bard. At Arran, we produce the only whisky endorsed by the World Robert Burns Federation – The Robert Burns Single Malt (£31.99) and it’s the perfect choice for raising a birthday toast to Scotland’s most beloved poet. This is a sweet and creamy malt with flavours of honey and toffee-glazed pecans. Easy to drink, full of fresh citrus notes, its mellow character makes it ideal for cocktails, enjoyed by itself over ice or with a drop of water.

Isle of Arran Distillers produce the world’s only official Robert Burns Malt, it is available from specialist whisky retailers and online at www.arranwhisky.com for £31.99 RRP or as part of a promotional gift pack with Arran tasting glass from selected retailers. (RRP also £31.99).

Notes to editors: For more information visit http://www.arranwhisky.com/ * 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

Drinks Business Best Contribution to Wine and Spirits Tourism (2017)

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 FiftyBest.com 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.

Yamazakuru Blended Whisky at Abbey Whisky – Japanese Whisky News


Yamazakura Blended Whisky

 ex VAT £37.42

Japanese Blended Whisky

Sasanokawa Shuzo

Yamazakura is a blended whisky from Japan, created from a combination of four malt & grain whiskies. Yamazakura takes its name from two Japanese symbols, ‘Yama’, meaning mountain and ‘Sakura’ which refers to cherry trees, symbol of ‘ephemeral beauty’.

Distillery:  Yamazakuru

Bottler:  Sasanokawa Shuzo

Bottle Size:  70cl

ABV (Strength):  40

Style:  Japanese Blended Whisky


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