Welcome to WhiskyIntelligence.com where we'll be gathering information on the whisky industry and scotch whisky news in the form of press releases, newsletters, events, tasting notes and comments.

Please submit your press releases, newsletters, events, tasting notes or comments.

Scotch Malt Whisky Society Late July Outturn – Scotch Whisky News


July 2014 Outturn Offerings

Cask No. 53.194                                $145

A Calmac ferry dram


The nose gave us fruit salad chews, sherbet lemons, blackberries, lime and oysters, but mainly it was smoke, melting tar, brine, Germolene, coal-tar soap, seaweed, cigar ash, rubber tyres and exhaust fumes (like a Calmac ferry). The palate delivered loads of ash, soot and sweet smoke – chilli-roasted nuts and a charcoal barbeque with smoked mackerel and charred prawns. The reduced nose offered first aid boxes, canvas, burnt mackerel skin and something earthy (terracotta plant pots, grow-bags). The taste was sweeter – peanut M&Ms and sugar-coated fennel seeds – a fine sweet-salty balance with lots of heat, from the biggest distillery on Islay.

Drinking tip: Chill out with this, sitting on the harbour wall watching the boats

Colour: Moonlight Chardonnay
Cask: Refill butt
Age: 17 years
Date distilled: August 1995
Alcohol: 60.1%
USA allocation: 150 bottles

Cask No. 1.176                                $140

Zesty Ginger-Lime Cooler

Speyside, Spey

The initial nose neat has the freshness of green saplings and cut grass soon followed by fruity notes of apricots and peaches. With time deeper aromas of old fashioned rose water perfume are taking centre stage. The taste starts off similar to the nose; green and grassy, slightly cereal (Weetabix) and then fruity (now apple slices). The medium length finish is refreshing like a ‘Zesty Ginger-Lime Cooler’. With water we are preparing a fruit punch with strawberries, pineapple, peaches and cherries. The taste is now clean and fresh like minty grapefruit sorbet and Jasmine iced tea – a well-balanced sample from the distillery established in 1836 on the Recherlich Farm at Ballindalloch.

Drinking tip: Looking at a blue sky and the shapes of white clouds weaving imaginary stories

Colour: Citrine gold
Cask: Refill hogshead
Age: 16 years
Date distilled: March 1997
Alcohol: 55.4%
USA allocation: 84 bottles

Cask No. 2.85                                        $95

Vibrant and tongue-dancing

Speyside, Spey

From the nose flowed fountains of fruit (green apple, mandarin, lime sorbet, pink grapefruit, lemon puffs, pineapple); we also found bubble gum, pickled ginger, toffee, honey, oiled wood and Formica – vibrant and complex. The palate had treacle toffee, butterscotch, peanut brittle and vanilla sweetness, with chilli and eucalyptus heat and some citric bitterness – lively and tongue- dancing. The reduced nose still majored on light, effervescent apple, but deepened by eucalyptus. The palate gave us fresh apple and pear, Mr Kiplings apple pies and fizzy lemon rock –further interest coming from mint, hops and Radox. Distillery founded by a pistol-totin’ mountain man.

Drinking tip: So much apple – one a day might keep the doctor away!

Colour: Winter sunrise
Cask: Refill barrel
Age: 9 years
Date distilled: November 2003
Alcohol: 61.4%
USA allocation: 102 bottles

Cask No. 30.80                                $180

A wicker basket full of dark pleasures

Speyside, Spey

The basket opened and the picnic began with cheesecake of Mirabelle plum and marmalade. But underneath lay deeper notes of dark cherries, chocolate brazils, manuka honey and ripe dates. As the panel delved in they were reminded of leather school bags with crushed tobacco – an errant youthful experience. Brambles, raisins and cranberry were dominant, with a whiff of licorish and mint. A careful hand with water is recommended but coaxed out some softer flavours. The panel found the bottom of the basket lined in hessian scented with eucalyptus. Toasted brioche with Nutella and salted caramel to finish.

Drinking tip: A reward after a hard days gardening

Colour: Golden syrup pudding
Cask: Refill hogshead
Age: 23 years
Date distilled: September 1990
Alcohol: 54.9%
USA allocation: 114 bottles

Cask No. 77.33                                $110

Orange Grove at spring time

Highland, Northern

A very clean and slightly spirity nose to start with but give it some time and you will be rewarded with aromas of lemon sherbet, orange zest, pink grapefruit juice and stewed plums. The taste neat to begin with is again very clean and citric (Bitter Lemon), but at the same time nippy like chilli flavoured peanuts. Herbal notes of aniseed and fennel and lemon curd cheesecake arrive after the initial wave of heat. Water turns the aroma into a fizzy sweetness, pineapple cubes and lemon sherbet but also the intoxicating smell of an orange grove in spring time. The taste leaves you with a fresh mouth-feel of a lemon and mint sorbet.

Drinking tip: A palate cleanser in between courses

Colour: Freshly squeezed lemon juice
Cask: Refill barrel
Age: 11 years
Date distilled: April 2002
Alcohol: 58.0%
USA allocation: 108 bottles

Cask No. G8.3                        $180

Surprise Me…


Even at this age the spirit is still spirited; the aroma is of golden syrup and toffee popcorn, with juicy green apples and pears behind; very slightly woody and dusty: ‘a cupboard shelf covered in Fablon’. The taste is sweet and sour – kiwi fruits, lime cordial, Seville orange, sour cherry, stewed tea – with a short finish. Reduced, the aroma initially becomes more oaky (a musty sea chest, a brush shop), then sweeter – lemon puffs, lemon meringue pie. A soft mouthfeel; a sweetish start (‘white jelly babies’), then bitter lemon, with a very short finish. This large grain distillery near Alloa, built 1806, closed in 1993.

Drinking tip: Frozen, as an aperitif

Colour: Harvest wheat
Cask: Refill hogshead
Age: 23 years
Date distilled: June 1989
Alcohol: 59.0%
USA allocation: 36 bottles

The Glenlivet Gallow Hill at The Whisky Shop – Scotch Whisky News


The Glenlivet Gallow Hill

The Whisky Shop Exclusive

Nose: Bursting with concentrated fruit flavours. Sweet clementine orange and fruity pear complemented perfectly with a sensation of toasted almonds and moist gingerbread. Palate: Coats the mouth with wonderful sweet orange flavours intermingled with rich milk chocolate and a hint of sweet treacle toffee. Finish: Long and refreshing. Bottled at a natural cask strength of 51.8% volume.

Click here to buy £235

Scotch Whisky Auctions “40th Auction” – Scotch Whisky News

SWA Logo

We are now live, folks. Enjoy.

The 40th Auction

Kind Regards from Glasgow

The SWA Team

Paul Chats to Malcolm Rennie of Annandale Distillery – Scotch Whisky News

 AA Annandale

Paul was chatting to Malcolm Rennie of Annandale Distilleryhttp://www.annandaledistillery.com/ 

annandale dist

Hello Malcolm, nice to meet you. Can you tell me how you became involved in the whisky industry?

A; Hi Paul. My father was a cooper to trade and took us from Stirling to Islay in 1974 when I was 11 yrs old, to Bunnahabhain Distillery in fact. I worked at Bunnahabhain for a short while after leaving school before going to the Merchant Navy for 2 ½ yrs. When I returned we had moved to Bruichladdich, my dad as head warehouse man where he stayed for 25yrs. After a hiatus I started at Bruichladdich as a Mashman in 1987 until the Distillery closed in 1995. I then managed to get into the newly taken over by Glenmorangie, Ardbeg in 1997. In 2003 I was seconded to Glen Moray in Elgin as Assistant Manager. In 2005 I became Distillery Manager of Kilchoman Distillery. Starting a Distillery from scratch was quite a challenge but was well worth the effort considering how well the spirit has been received. In 2010 I decided on a new challenge here at Annandale. 

Paul; And how did you come to be at one of Scotland’s newest distilleries?

A; While at Kilchoman I used to run an Academy type course where people could come and learn a more hands on and in depth experience. My very first ‘pupil’ so to speak was David Thomson who some months later bought the Annandale Distillery site. The rest, as they say is history. 

Paul; Can you describe a typical day at the moment?

A; A typical day at the moment is really project managing and tying things up with our building contractor regarding the restoration and new build. Also co-ordinating all the other aspects of starting up a Distillery like HMRC approvals, plant installation, negotiating process material and cask supply contracts etc. 

Paul; If you can, tell me of the distillery plans…

A; Obviously we firstly want to produce fantastic spirit. We also think it’s very important to bring whisky distillation back to this part of Scotland, along with all the economic benefits that should bring to the region. So we want to make Annandale Distillery a ‘must go to’ destination in southern Scotland. Our Visitor Centre will include a Coffee Shop and retail area. We will also offer various different tour experiences including special Managers tours by myself. 

Paul; Now to the whisky, what type of whisky will you produce? Peat, non peat, both???

A; Annandale will produce both peated and non peated spirit. The Distillery has been designed from the outset to be able to do this easily and efficiently with separate malt storage bins and 2 separate Low Wines and Feints Receivers. The Distillery plant has been designed to give us a nice clean fruity character but also with a balance of body and complexity. We are using 2 smaller Spirit stills rather than 1 large still to increase copper contact. 

Paul; what will be the annual production?

A; Initial annual production will be around 260, 000 LPA with one shift working which will be 6 mashes per week. This will double when we go to 2 shifts in the future. 

Paul; With so much news and marketing for whisky these days, PR and marketing is very important, how did you decide on bottle shape, logo and labels?

A; Our ‘A’ logo was inspired by the shape of a billowing sail of one of the tea clippers which were built in Annan. We are going to build a relationship with two very well known Scots for our 2 styles of spirit. Robert Bruce for our peated and Robert Burns for our unpeated. Our bottles and labels etc are all in their final design stage. 

Paul; can you give me any techno details on equipment and plant?

A; Porteus Mill ex Caperdonich along with destoner and assorted conveyors. All other equipment new,  4 x 15 T Malt storage bins.  2.5 T semi lauter Mash Tun. 6 x 12000 ltrs Douglas Fir Washbacks.

12000 ltr Wash Still,  2 x 4000 ltr Spirit Stills.  2 x 8000 ltr LW&FR’s (one for peated and one for unpeated)  1 x 2000 ltr ISR and 1 x 12000 ltr SRWV.    Boiler is 4000 kg/hr  Cochran ‘Wee Chieftain’ 

Paul; what is your favourite part of the day?

A: The end, because I’m a day closer to starting to make spirit. 

Paul; and – the least favourite?

A; The start, because I know I’m not any closer to starting to make spirit 

Paul; do you intend taking any risks? new ideas? any innovations?

A; Not particularly. I would let a really carefully made high quality spirit speak for itself. 

Paul; what would you say the best age would be to bottle whisky? minimum and maximum?

A; That’s all very subjective. Young whisky does’nt mean an inferior whisky nowadays. A well made spirit in a quality cask can mature surprisingly quickly. An average spirit in an old cask could well be of inferior quality to the younger spirit even though it had spent more time in the cask. 3 yr old bottlings are necessary for new distilleries for all sorts of reasons but obviously lack maturity, so I would say something like 6 yrs old minimum to let the wood give more complexity and maturity. Maximum would have to depend on spirit character and cask type so I’m  going to leave that one. Although too long and the lower strength alcohol starts to extract more water soluble components giving the characteristic ‘woody’ effect. 

Paul; what are your views re adding water, coke, ice etc?

A; To experience whisky at it’s best I would recommend only water. But you can add whatever you like if it makes you drink whisky, whatever floats your boat. 

Paul; does winning a whisky award/medal really make any difference to sales?

A; I’m not sure really, but it’s nice recognition for the effort you’ve put into your product. 

Paul; how will you select casks?

A; Very carefully. We don’t want an overtly bourbon character to our spirit so we will use a bigger proportion of good refills  over fresh bourbons along with some sherry. 

Paul; do you have any thoughts on finishing? (sherry, port etc)

A; Yes, we will definitely do some finishing in sherry especially for our younger expressions as it gives a nice ‘roundness’. I’m sure we will dabble with the odd port or wine casks also. 

Paul; we have many club members asking “do you offer cask sales”? can you tell me if this is something you will offer?

A; All of our 2014 production will be kept by ourselves, but casks will be available to purchase from early 2015. Pricing TBC. Please contact m.hanratty@annandaledistillery.com to add your name to our list.  

Many thanks Malcolm for your time, I look forward to sampling new make and the first whisky from the distillery. 

Paul McLean



AA Liz and Paul

Liz and Paul






Buffalo Trace Distillery held its 13 th annual July 4th 5K Race with record breaking results. A record number of runners, 811, participated, and both the men and women’s first place winners broke previous record time holders for fastest finishes. A total of 23 different states in the U.S. were represented at the 5K.

Simon Ndirangu of New York was the first place men’s winner, finishing in a record breaking time for Buffalo Trace’s 5K course of 13 minutes, 41 seconds. The previous time for this course in the men’s division was 13 minutes, 49 seconds.

Susan Jerotich of North Carolina was the first place women’s winner, finishing in a record breaking time for this course of 15 minutes, 52 seconds. The previous women’s fastest time for Buffalo Trace’s course was 16 minutes, 34 seconds.

Both Mr. Ndirangu and Ms. Jerotich took home $4,000 in winnings – $3,000 for first place plus an extra $1,000 bonus to the male and female who broke the previous fastest time records.

Second place men’s winner was Cleophas Ngetich with a time of 13 minutes, 48 seconds, followed by third place men’s winner Diribra Degefa with a time of 13 minutes, 50 seconds.

Second place women’s winner was Lilian Mariita with a time of 16 minutes, 9 seconds, followed by third place women’s winner Adriana Nelson with a time of 16 minutes, 18 seconds.

The second and third place winners for both sexes won $2,500 and $2,000 respectively. The entire 5K Race winds though Buffalo Trace’s scenic grounds and includes running by centuries-old barrel aging warehouses on this National Historic Landmark site.

One hundred percent of Buffalo Trace’s Great Buffalo Chase 5K proceeds go to the Frankfort area VFW, post 4075, which they in turn use towards putting on the fireworks show for the city of Frankfort. This year it is expected Buffalo Trace will donate somewhere around $12,500 to the local VFW.

Complete 5K race results can be viewed at http://buffalotracedistillery.com/content/great-buffalo-chase-5k-race-results

About Buffalo Trace Distillery

Buffalo Trace Distillery is an American family-owned company based in Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky. The Distillery’s rich tradition dates back to 1786 and includes such legends as E.H. Taylor, Jr., George T. Stagg, Albert B. Blanton, Orville Schupp, and Elmer T. Lee. Buffalo Trace Distillery is a fully operational Distillery producing bourbon, rye and vodka on site and is a National Historic Landmark as well as is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The

Distillery has won seven distillery titles since 2000 from such notable publications as Whisky Magazine, Whisky Advocate Magazine and Wine Enthusiast Magazine. It was named Whisky Magazine 2010 World Icons of Whisky “Whisky Visitor

Attraction of the Year.” Buffalo Trace Distillery has also garnered more than 200 awards for its wide range of premium whiskies. To learn more about Buffalo Trace Distillery visit www.buffalotracedistillery.com.

HIDDEN SPIRITS UNVEILS “ARRAN 17yo “whiskynews.it selection” – Scotch Whisky News

Arran 17yo Hisp webmail retail

HIDDEN SPIRITS UNVEILS “ARRAN 17yo “whiskynews.it selection”

Hidden Spirits, Italian Independent Label, is proud to announce its New Release;

ARRAN 17 YEARS OLD (1996 – 2014)

Independent Bottling of


 distilled at

 ARRAN distillery

“whiskynews.it selection” 

Independent Label: Hidden Spirits;

Bottling: Independent (Hidden Spirits);

 Single Malt Whisky Region: Island;

Distillery: Arran;

Aged: 17 yo (1996- 2014);

Matured: Ex-bourbon hogshead;

Cask number: 1482;


Available from August 2014 

Something more HERE



GlenDronach 10yo & Other Single Malts at Single Malts Direct – Scotch Whisky News

Arkwrights Whisky and Wine Logo

Literally just arrived are the latest GlenDronach Single Casks and I’m having a hard job keeping my hands off them! These single cask bottlings are always popular so be quick as they are sure to fly off the shelves.

Other recent arrivals include several from the always top quality Gordon & Macphail Rare Old Range, a couple of whiskies from 1984 that would make ideal 30th birthday presents, this year’s release of the Longrow 18 year old, the very desirable wine cask matured Glen Garioch 1998 and some interesting collectables.

Some of our new arrivals are featured below but for the full run down browse our New Scotch Whisky and New Products categories.

Plus don’t forget, we are now shipping to the USA again and at very competitive rates. Check out our Delivery page for more information.

Well, I’m off now to go and drool over those GlenDronachs…

Fran and Ken
Arkwrights Whisky and Wines



Batch 10 of these luscious, rich, sherried drams from GlenDronach has whiskies ranging in age from 12 years to 24 years. All single cask and excellent value for money with prices starting at £59.99 and going up to £137.99.

Buy Online: £ From 59.99 to 137.99


A Chivas Brothers bottling of the little seen Inverleven from the lowland malt distillery of that name that was situated within the now closed and demolished Dumbarton grain distillery.

Buy Online: £ 325.00


Got a friend with a 30th birthday this year? Then what better gift could there be than this 1984 Mortlach (and they might even share with you if you’re lucky…)

Buy Online: £ 169.99

Tomatin 1981 Single Cask #001 Available at Abbey Whisky – Scotch Whisky News

Very Limited Stock!

Tomatin 1981 Single Cask #001

Oloroso Sherry Butt

Distilled on 21st April 1981, this stunning looking malt has been maturing at the Tomatin distillery in single Oloroso sherry butt #001 for over 32 years. Bottled in it’s natural form at 42.3% vol, non chill filtered.

Single Cask #001 Official Tasting Notes

Aroma: Warm, rich, nutty, raisins with hints of furniture polish and old leather. Coffee topped with a splash of chocolate liqueur, hints of liquorice and citrus coming through. 

Palate: Light and soft with an immediate burst of citrus. Then deeper flavours arrive; raisins, liquorice and toffee with some herby notes coming towards the end.

Finish: Slightly spicy but with a nice sweetness.


AA Suntory


Suntory Liquors Limited Wins Fourth “Distiller of the Year” Award at the same time


Tokyo, Japan, and Deerfield, Illinois, July, 2014 – Japanese blended whisky Hibiki 21 Years Old and Knob Creek® Single Barrel Reserve, from the whisky portfolio of Beam Suntory Inc., each won a “Trophy” award, the top prize in the whisky categories at the International Spirits Challenge (ISC) Awards Dinner 2014 held in London, England on Monday, July 14. These honors are in addition to the 18 Gold Medals earned by Beam Suntory whiskies announced last month by the ISC, one of the world’s leading tasting competitions. Meanwhile Japanese rice vodka Ao won a “Trophy” prize in the vodka category.

In addition to those “Trophy” prizes, Suntory Liquors Limited also won the “Distiller of the Year” award, a prestigious honor bestowed upon one distiller that has produced a number of high-quality spirits. This is the third year in a row and the fourth time overall that Suntory Liquors Limited has received the “Distiller of the Year” award.

“These prestigious recognitions for Hibiki and Knob Creek are a reflection of the heritage, quality and expertise of the two great companies that are coming together to create Beam Suntory, which has a bright future as a whisky powerhouse in our industry,” said Matt Shattock, chairman and chief executive officer of Beam Suntory.

This recognition of brand quality comes just 11 weeks after the acquisition of Beam Inc. by Suntory Holdings, creating Beam Suntory, the world”s #3 premium spirits company. As previously announced, Beam Suntory intends to integrate the Spirits business of Suntory before the end of this year.

About the International Spirits Challenge

The International Spirits Challenge is an annual spirits tasting competition held in the UK, the home of Scotch whisky. Categories include whiskies, liqueurs and more. In addition to the Gold Medals, Silver Medals and Bronze Medals awarded in each category, excellent products among the Gold Medal winners are given the Trophy, the top prize in the category. The Distiller of the Year award, one of the Special awards that recognize the very best in the blind tasting challenge, is only conferred on one distiller that has produced a number of high-quality products.

In the whisky categories, a panel of 11 judges, including blenders from whisky distilleries around the world, conducts a blind tasting of more than 400 whiskies submitted from around the world to determine the award winners. The results attract global attention from the spirits industry.

> Award Name

International Spirits Challenge 2014

> Award Name, Winners

Trophy in Whisky Categories:     Suntory whisky Hibiki 21 Years Old, Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve
Distiller of the Year:     Suntory Liquors Limited

> Awards Ceremony

From 7 p.m. on Monday, July 14, 2014 *Local time
At the Honourable Artillery Company in London, England

About the Award-Winning Whiskies

> Suntory Whisky Hibiki 21 Years Old

Hibiki 21 Years Old is a meticulously blended combination of carefully selected ripe grain malts and malt whisky aged for a lengthy period of at least 21 years. It is distinguished by a mature aroma, incredibly fruity and reminiscent of sweet flowers, and a smooth, light flavor. This blend allows you to enjoy the strong body, mellow richness and profound, long finish only found in a whisky aged for 21 years.

> Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve

Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve is carefully hand selected, barrel-by-barrel, to bring you a robust, mature flavor. Aged 9 years, this expression possesses the darkest and deepest amber and henna color offering vanilla and caramel notes and a slightly smoky finish – perfect for easy-going sipping.

For more information on the brands

Suntory Whisky Website: www.suntory.com/whisky

Beam Suntory Website: http://beamsuntory.com

About Beam Suntory Inc.

As the world’s third largest premium spirits company, Beam Suntory is Crafting the Spirits that Stir the World. Consumers from all corners of the globe call for the company’s brands, including the flagship Jim Beam bourbon and Yamazaki Japanese whisky, as well as world renowned premium brands including Maker’s Mark and Knob Creek bourbons, Hakushu and Hibiki Japanese whiskies, Teacher’s, Laphroaig, and Bowmore Scotch whiskies, Canadian Club whisky, Courvoisier cognac, Sauza tequila, Pinnacle vodka, and Midori liqueur. The company generates annual worldwide sales of approximately $4.6 billion excluding excise taxes.

Beam Suntory was created in 2014 by combining the world leader in bourbon and the pioneer in Japanese whisky to form a new company with a deep heritage, passion for quality, innovative spirit and entrepreneurial culture. Headquartered in Deerfield, Illinois, Beam Suntory is a subsidiary of Suntory Holdings Limited of Japan. For more information on Beam Suntory, its brands, and its commitment to social responsibility, please visit www.beamsuntory.com and www.drinksmart.com.

The Famous Grouse Experience – Scotch Whisky News

ExperimentFamous Grouse

The Famous Grouse is proud sponsor of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. It’s a golden opportunity.

As official Whisky Provider to the Games, we’ve got several golden opportunities for you to get in on the fun of the Games and celebrate the athletes’ achievements with us at The Famous Grouse Experience

Daily Tours from Glasgow

To ensure everyone gets into the spirit of the Games, we’ve partnered with Rabbie’s Tours to offer daily visits to Glenturret Distillery, Scotland’s Oldest Working Distillery, during the Commonwealth Games.

Leaving daily right from the centre of Glasgow, and returning in the afternoon, there are general tours and VIP experiences to choose from that will add a golden flavour to your Games experience.

A Ceremonial Dram

As the official whisky provider to the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, The Famous Grouse has released a limited-edition single malt to mark its sponsorship of this momentous sporting event.

This special bottling will see the release of just 1,800 bottles of Glenturret 1986 Cask Strength single malt whisky, making this a true collector’s edit

Powered by WordPress