Archive for January, 2010

Gauntleys Whisky Newsletter No. 13 February 2006 – Scotch Whisky News

Whisky Intelligence has reproduced (with permission) The Gauntleys Whisky Newsletter for February 2006; a small sample of scotch whisky archeology. The author, Chris Goodrum, has some excellent insights of whisky, which makes for excellent reading on a Sunday.  Enjoy!

Dear Whisky Customers
I hope you all had a good Christmas and enjoyed a few choice drams. If the amount of whisky we sold this Christmas was any indication then some of you will have had some very nice stuff indeed.
So what’s in this months newsletter? Well it has been brought to my attention that I haven’t mentioned Bruichladdich/ Murray McDavid for awhile and I know the guys read the newsletter and get upset when I’m um how should I say it……….. critical?  anyway they kindly sent me some samples of their new range of rxm’s that they have recently bottled and ………….. well you’ll just have to read my review.
I do like this time of the year, with shelves looking rather bare it gives me a chance to have a good fiddle with the list, and to that end, my good friends at Duncan Taylor and at Bladnoch have sent me down some samples for me to take a look at, which I have reviewed.
But firstly a bit of fun. Last year I told you of the best selling whiskies of the year and after checking last years list, there is surprisingly no change at the top. Many people thought that the Penderyn sold well last year due to it’s novelty value and that it wouldn’t sustain a high level of sales once that novelty value had worn off. Well they were wrong. Sales have continued because customers liked it, and it goes to show that it has sustained these sales due to the very high quality of the spirit being produced. Springbank 10 year old and Bruichladdich 10 year old are always of a high standard, and are go-to malts in the 30 region. It’s nice to see a couple of Duncan Taylor bottlings in the list, and as they read the newsletter as well, I hope that they will be chuffed. The rise of the Bruichladdich Infinity has probably had an impact on sales of the 17 year old and on sales of the Lagavulin 16 year old. With the release of the second edition 15 year old Bruichladdich it has had an obvious impact on sales of the first edition. In fact if you add sales of both of them together it would have just piped the Infinity to fourth place. There is no surprise to see the Laphroiag Quarter Cask in the top 10 as it is a superb malt and with it being the cheapest malt in the list, will it top the chart next year?
(Last years position in brackets)
1. (1) Penderyn Welsh Whisky
2. (2) Springbank 10 year old
3. (3) Bruichladdich 10 year old
4. (-) Bruichladdich Infinity
5. (-) Duncan Taylor Auld Reekie
6. (-) Duncan Taylor Invergordon 1965
7. (-) John McDougall’s Bladnoch 1988
8. (-) Laphroiag Quarter Cask
9. (-) Balvenie 12 year old
10. (5) Bruichladdich 17 year old
11. (-) Murray McDavid Mortlach 1993
12. (8) Lagavulin 16 year old
13. (6) Bruichladdich 15 year old 1st Edition
14. (-) Edradour 10 year old
15. (-) Macallan 10 year old Fine Oak
New Stuff from Duncan Taylor

The more samples I taste of their range the more impressed I am, Highland park withstanding. This batch of samples included a 31 year old Glen Craig, which was rather thin and had probably spent just too long in the cask, a 29 year old Glen Mhor which was ok, gentle and soft and with a finish that reminded me of vodka. I ummed and contemplated it but at £72.95 I didn’t think it was really worth it.

Next up was a 26 year old Pittyvaich which as a distillery is one of the ‘bad three’ according to Jim Murray. Incidentally while on the subject of Jim Murray, his 2006 whisky bible is now out, and at £9.99 is a cracking read, and we should have some copies available in February. Anyway I quite liked it, although there isn’t a huge amount of fruit the quality of the wood is lovely – one for the oak lovers!

Next up was a 29 year old Dallas Dhu which was a superb, mature malt followed by a 14 year old Glentauchers and a 11 year old Mortlach which were delicious. The Mortlach is just so clean and crisp, a classic Speyside. Tasting notes follow.


Glentauchers 1990 (14 year old) 46% £30.95

Clean and slightly oily aromas of tangerine, vanilla oak, oily spices and dusty orange fruit. Dry and clean on the palate opening with dusty spices and delicate fruit, then, bang, out of nowhere comes the lovely hard, crisp barley, more spices and a hint of juniper. Very long with the gin-like botanicals lasting , along with the spice!

Mortlach 1993 (11 year old) 46% £26.95

Clean, crisp aromas of earthy malt, orange and apricot fruit, with grassy, barley sugar notes – lovely depth and crispness. Dry and crisp on the palate with apricot, malt, earthy spices and a soft natural character. Medium bodied, faultlessly clean, great delicacy and a touch of spice on the middle with white fruit and salt notes to finish. This is an absolute bargain!


Inchgower 1968 (36 year old) 46.3% £99.95

Wow, great nose. Mature with light malt and alcohol laced orange marmalade (I can see Jim Murray having this on toast for breakfast!). It takes awhile to really get going, but it is worth the wait. Lovely mature, oily mouth feel, restrained sweetness of old natural honey, lots of malt and a touch of spice. Great intensity with a mouth watering finish with the mature fruit flavours shooting off everywhere. Very long with Cognac-esque (or old Grain) dried fruit notes in the finish. A big wow factor.


Dallas Dhu 1975 (29 year old) 47.1% £75.95

Lovely nose. Clean, honeyed orange fruit and soft spices rise from the glass. This has a superb depth of mature fruit, earth and vanilla. Delicate, soft, succulent and mature. Full of honeyed malt fruit and a hint of wood tannins. Lovely mouthfeel, delicately oily with gentle spice and a lively finish.

 Pittyvaich 1979 (26 year old) 45.9% £51.95

Clean, soft aromas of deliciously creamy oak and mature oily fruit. The oak is so soft and sweet its just lovely. On the palate the oak is not so dominating allowing the quite salty, soft, mature white fruit to come through. Delicate and long with vanilla oil and Alsace-esque slightly spiced and smoky white pear and peach.


Raymond at Bladnoch has produced two new bottlings. The first is a Bladnoch 15 year old Rum Cask Finish and the second is a special bottling of a couple of casks of 12 year old Craggenmore which Raymond has selected, along with these samples they kindly sent me a sneak preview of the peated Bladnoch which is currently 5 years old, and I imagine won’t be available for at least another 3 to 5 years.

Bladnoch Rum Cask Finish 15 year old 57.4% £45.95

Clean, aromatic, light and grassy with citrus fruit, vanilla oak and a very slight sweetness from the rum cask, maybe there is a hint of Demerara sugar. The finish is so subtle it’s almost unnoticeable. Dry on the palate with oily golden apricot fruit followed by delicate spicy malt and grass/ hay. Superb mouthfeel, rounded and sweet with the vaguest hint of rum/ dried fruits on the finish. The rum cask has certainly given it quite a full body and added a subtle sweetness. Superb length with the oak flavours holding on. Water emphasises the clean oak on the nose along with the mellow apricot and slight tropical spiciness. On the palate it brings forward the rum/ dried fruit flavours. It shows up its superb balance and creates waves of spice, oak and citrus fruit, along with garden flowers and juniper notes. This is soft and divine and floods the mouth with flavours. This could be the best finish I’ve tasted, maybe even better than the Mission series port finished Macallan.

Raymond’s Craggenmore 12 year old 62% £TBC

Stunning, absolutely storming. Breakfast cereal with crushed bananas sprinkled with delicate sweet spice, a touch of orange fruit and lashings of the cleanest oak this side of the Mission Series – Jim McEwan would have loved to get his hands on this. Awesomely deep, it blows the distillery bottling out of the water and I haven’t tasted it yet! Wow, lovely soft entry with oily malt and serious banana, tropical fruit and dusty spices. Wow, it gets better. Very intense and tangy middle leaves the tongue tingling, great length with a touch of botanicals and clean oak. A drop of water brings out the citrus orange and tangerine, but on the palate is where it really does it for me. Softens and sweetens, this is stunning stuff, dripping with honey glazed cereals and fruits, the oak is glorious too, soft, creamy and to die for. Hats off to Raymond, this is stunning, and if Jim Murray doesn’t give it a 95+ I’ll eat my hat!

Peated Bladnoch, currently 5 years old

Quite obviously it has that ‘off the still’ note, but is beginning to mature. The light, medicinal peat aromas greet the nose first and underneath lurks the citrus bladnoch character. On the palate is again displays its youth and has not quite melded together. The peat is delicate and trying to merge with the oily fruit and malt. it has a lovely sweetness and there is not much in the way of oak influence at present. As an experiment I tasted it against the 4 year old bottling of Inchmoan, the peated malt from the Loch Lowmond distillery, and on the nose the Inchmoan is as hard as nails with more coal smoke and positively revels in its rawness, where as the Bladnoch is soft and subtle and more beguiling with a lot more of a fruity character. In the mouth the Inchmoan is more tart and full of coal dust and again hard as nails, raw, edgy, forceful and complete, it was certainly able to be bottled at four years of age whereas the Bladnoch is going to need a bit more time, and although it is a bit of fun to occasionally drink and be assaulted by the Inchmoan I would choose the Bladnoch, even in its current state.


The distillery has just released its bottling schedule for this year, and in April they will be releasing a 25 year old Springbank. In September they will be releasing a 9 year old Marsala Finished Springbank along with a second release of the famous (or infamous) 8 year old Hazelburn, which according to the distillery will be in a completely different packaging to the first edition. It will this time be bottled in a regular Springbank style bottle and will only have one label featuring a silhouette of three stills. As you will be aware these are limited in number, so if you would like to put your name down for any of them please let me know as soon as possible.

Springbank 25 year old 46%  £161.95

Springbank 9 year old Marsala Finish 46% £38.95

Hazelburn 8 year old 46%£33.95

Clean, quite honeyed aromas of wheaty, earthy citrus, orange cream, vanilla oils and toasty malt. This really is quite delightful, smooth and rounded. Dry on the palate, initially a touch floral with orange flavours and delicate honey and sweet spices. Youthful and gloriously tangy with a long oily, spicy finish. I tasted this against a similarly aged Longrow recently and if you take the peat smoke away there is a very obvious similarity to them. Forget the hype of the first edition, with its collector labels and by a bottle as it is a rather easy going, pleasant dram.


Bruichladdich 15 year old Second Edition 46% £39.95

Ex Bourbon cask, which has spent a further 25 weeks finishing in ex Chateau Yquem casks. Lovely maturing aromas of floral, earthy, apricot, apple, creme brulee,

at this point the newsletter abruptly ends ………WI

Visit Gauntleys at

Tullibardine 2010 Cask Offer & Filling Dates – Scotch Whisky News


From Cristina Wilkie Tullibardine Distillery

I am delighted to confirm that we will be continuing with the cask offer this year and again plan to fill casks twice – June and December.  Orders will be accepted on a first come, first served basis and are secured by a deposit, as mentioned, in the attached literature.
The closing date for orders for the June filling will be Friday 21st May at 5pm, then the order book will be opened for the December filling until Friday 19th November 2010 @ 5pm.  This allows us time to order in and receive the casks, have them stencilled before filling.  We then photograph it for the certificate, which is handwritten prior to framing and despatch.  The balance of payment is taken when the cask has been filled.
I hope that the information is of interest to you and I look forward to receiving your order.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any queries.
Cristina Wilkie
Sales & Marketing
Tullibardine Distillery
Perthshire PH4 1QG
T: +44 (0)1764 682252
F: +44 (0)1764 682330


Thank you for your enquiry about our cask offer. In addition to being a purchase which is many whisky drinkrer’s dream, this is above all an offer which will provide much discussion, interest and fun whilst also giving you the chance to buy a little piece of history and access some top quality and extremely quaffable single malt whisky at a very attractive price, Be it for your own consumption, as a gift for a relative or friend, to commemorete an event ten or more years hence, or to share it with a consortium of other like-minded whisky lovers, you can be sure that it will give immenense pleasure.

Tullibardine is a very smooth and mellow malt which will suit most palates. It is not a heavily peated malt and has a very pleasant roundness which makes it, in the words of one of the key whisky writers, “eminently quafable”. We strongly recommnend that Tullibardine is not bottled until it is at least 10 years old, and it will clearly continue to improve thereafter so you can decide at a later date at what age and strength you would like it bottled. Naturally our master distiller will advise you of his view as to what age and strength combination he would recommend nearer the time.

This offer was set up in 2003 in celebration of the recommissioning of the distillery. The first new spirit was distilled in November 2003 by the hugely experienced and respected master distillerJohn Black. He will also personally select the best possible casks to ensure optimum maturation conditions for the spirit. Casks are filled twice a year, in June and Dccember and your order is secured with a £250.00 non refundable deposit. The balance of payment will be taken when the cask is filled.

‘Springbank 18yo (2010 Release)’ at Loch Fyne Whiskies – Scotch Whisky News


Loch Fyne Whiskies News has stocked a new item, ‘Springbank 18yo (2010 Release)’

 Springbank 18yo (2010 Release)
 46% abv
 £61.90 inc vat
 £52.68 ex vat

Best regards,
Loch Fyne Whiskies


Ralfy Completes His 5th Annual Victoria Whisky Festival Program – Scotch Whisky News


The most ambitious whiskyreviews series ever at with a 12 part commentary at the recent and excellent Victoria Whisky Festival in BC Canada. Each Vlog has been designed to record a different angle on the Event with an emphasis on Canadian Whiskies in their increasing range of shapes and forms. This is an exciting time for Canadian Whisky as the seeds of a renaisssance are being sown inside the copper pots of small artisan stills ….

Find out more at (whisky reviews 104 A – L)

Jefferson’s Presidential Select 17 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey at D&M California – Whiskey News

Jefferson’s Presidential Select 17 Year Old  Ketucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey




“A wheated bourbon from the old Stitzel-Weller distillery. A gentle, richly-textured whisky, loaded with fruit and spice. Black raspberry jam, caramel apple and papaya, along with warming cinnamon and subtle teaberry, on nutty toffee, nougat and creamy vanilla. Spicy, polished oak finish. Superbly balanced, sophisticated and very drinkable. An outstanding whiskey!”
Score: 96 Points John Hansell, Malt Advocate Magazine 
Join Our American Whiskey Club

We seek out unique expressions of American whiskeys that we find to be particularly delectable and buy an allotment. The whiskey you receive in our club is meticulously taste-selected by our devoted staff. It is unique to D&M as well as your personal collection!

By joining our club, you will receive a bottle every 3 months of the best that American Whiskey has to offer – shipped right to your home or office along with background material on the producer and our staff’s tasting notes on the product.

The cost tops out at $100 but usually much lower.


Visit D&M at

SIGNATORY WHISKY SEMINAR at Binny’s Chicago – Scotch Whisky News


Wednesday, February 10, 6:30-8:30pm

Signatory National Brand Ambassador Ed Kohl is back in town, and will be introducing a lucky group of whisky enthusiasts to a wide range of malts from the independant bottler Signatory, including offerings from Aultmore, Blair Athol, Glen Elgin, Caol Ila, Mannochmore, as well as Edradour distillery. Ed will also be introducing Smokehead Single Malt to Chicagoland. $10 W/Binny’s Card / $15 non-members.

Call 847-438-1437 or email for reservations.
Lake Zurich
975 S. Rand Road | Lake Zurich | 847-438-1437

Visit Binny’s at


Whyte & MacKay Teams Up with Oxfam to Help Haiti – Scotch Whisky News

Announcing Whyte & Mackay Whisky Auction Fundraisers for Haiti

(This from Richard Paterson);

Everyone has been touched by what’s happened in Haiti and here at Whyte & Mackay we’d like to do our bit to try and help. To that end, we’ve teamed up with Oxfam to offer a couple of auctions that you can access via ebay.

The first is for a full week’s stay on the Jura Lodge on the isle of Jura, where up to eight people can stay for a week, enjoying the scenery and sounds of the beautiful island. They will also receive gift bottles of whisky and a tour of the distillery, learning more about the various Jura expressions including Superstition and Prophecy.

On top of the stay, Whyte & Mackay whisky will provide the transport (or the costs of) for the eight people to get to Jura.


Click this link for the auction for the Jura Lodge.

The second is for a chance to win me – not for keeping – but for me to come to an event you are putting on – or your home – and put on a whisky presentation, letting you try various expressions, learn more about whisky and generally have a good time. Again, there will be no cost to you. Whyte & Mackay will pick up all the travel and associated costs for me. Your only cost is the auction.


Click this link for the auction for the master blender tasting session.

Both of these are available to anyone who stays in the UK. That doesn’t stop people from outwith the UK bidding, it just means that in the case of the Jura auction, you have to get to the UK before we transport you to Jura and in the second auction that you have to have a UK venue or location we can meet at.

Let’s hope we can raise a lot of funds here for something which has devastated a lot of lives. As you would expect we’ll be using our social media connections – my twitter feed, Jura’s twitter feed, the Whyte & Mackay twitter feed, the Jura Pictures page, The Diurachs Facebook page and other sites – to promote this.

The auctions will be running for 10 days. Please spread details of these far and wide so we can raise as much as possible.

The 16th Annual Malt Advocate Whisky Awards – Scotch Whisky News


The 16th annual Malt Advocate Whisky Awards will be presented in the Spring 2010 issue of  magazine, due out March 1st. However, for the first time ever, we will be announcing the award winners on the Malt Advocate blog, “What Does John Know?” beginning February 1st.

The award will then automatically be published on Malt Advocate Publisher John Hansell’s Facebook and Twitter (@JohnHansell) accounts.
The advantage of publishing the awards on the Malt Advocate blog is two-fold:

The awards can be announced quicker on social media than in print media and will reach a larger audience.

Announcing the awards in a blog platform allows for further discussion and interaction between whisky enthusiasts, press, and trade.

“We are always trying to be as progressive as possible,” notes Hansell. “We look forward to using social media more in the future to provide Malt Advocate readers with the best whisky experience possible — one that is complementary to Malt Advocate magazine.”

The dates the category winners will be announced are:

February 1st:  Best Buy Whisk(e)y of the Year

February 2nd:  Artisan Whiskey of the Year

February 3rd:  American Whiskey of the Year

February 4th:  Canadian Whisky of the Year

February 5th:  Irish Whiskey of the Year

February 6th:  Scotch Whisky Blend of the Year

February 7th:  Scotch Whisky Single Malt of the Year

February 8th:  Pioneer of the Year

February 9th:  Industry Leader of the Year

February 10th:  Distillery of the Year

February 11th:  Lifetime Achievement Award

On February 11th, we will also be announcing our “Top Ten New Whiskies for 2009.”

Be sure to tune in to What Does John Know? beginning February 1st.

Jolly Toper Tasting – Upcoming Events – Scotch Whisky News


All whisky tastings take place on Thursday nights from 7:30pm until approximately 10pm at the Tollbooth Tavern, 167 Canongate, Royal Mile, Edinburgh, Scotchland

February 4th Thursday: Mortlach £27/24*- Sold Out

Cadenheads 1992-March 2009 16yo Bourbon hogshead 57.2% 263 bottles

Golden Cask 1994 55.1%

Signatory 5.8.91-10.3.9 17yo sherry butt 46%

Flora & Fauna 16yo 43%

Gordon & MacPhail 1954-2008 40%

February 11th Thursday: Rum £18/15*-

February 18th Thursday: Springbank £18 ALL PROCEEDS TO WATERAID (No member’e discount)-
Springbank 18yo 46%

Springbank 12yo Claret wood expression cask strength

Springbank CV 46%

Springbank 12yo cask strength


March 4th Thursday: old/sherried/peaty/rare/unusual/mystery £20/17*-

Springbank private bottling 1996-2009 13yo frsh sherry hogshead 56%

Birnie Moss ‘intensely peated’ from Benriach distillery 48%

Dewars 12yo 43%

Caol Ila unpeated 10yo bottled 2009 65.8%

Ardmore 25yo 51.4%

+ a mystery dram

March 18th Thursday: 5 anonymous Islay/peaty malts at 40% No.2 £16/13*-

Glenkeir Treasures (2 malts vatted The Whisky Shop)

Pride of Islay 12yo 40% Gordon & MacPhail

Islay Storm single malt

The Ileach single malt

special guest Brora 1982-2008 43% refill sherry butts Gordon & MacPhail

April 1st Thursday: old/sherried/peaty/rare/unusual/mystery £20/17

April 15th Thursday: World Whiskies £tbc-

India- Amrut Fusion single malt 50%

Japan- Super Nikka blend 43%

Australia- Lark single malt 43%

Canada- Lot No. 40 40%

USA- tbc

Europe- tbc

Future dates:-

29th April, 13th May Highland Park, 27th May, 10th June Anonymous Islay malts 43% The Ileach 12yo single malt, The Pibroch 12yo single malt, Smokehead single malt, Six Isles plus a special guest (Brora or Port Ellen), 24th June and 8th & 22nd August

Future tastings:-

Peaty blends 40% : date,drams & price tbc

Islay Mist
Islay Hallmark 8yo
Black Bottle 10yo
Black Grouse
Black Bottle
plus a special guest (Brora or Port Ellen)

(Maybe it’s time to move to Edinburgh! – WI)

Visit the Jolly Toper at

Aberdeen University Malt Whisky Society Upcoming Events – Scotch Whisky News


Glencadam Tasting – 3rd February

Tickets (£3) on sale now!
Location: Chalpaincy, High Street, Old Aberdeen
Time and Date: Wednesday 3rd February 2010
What to Bring: Membership Card + money for raffle

Glenlivet Tasting – 10th February

Tickets on (£3) sale the following Wednesday
Location: Chalpaincy, High Street, Old Aberdeen
Time and Date: Wednesday 10th February 2010
What to Bring: Membership Card + money for raffle


Coming soon….


It is defintely going to be a very good year….!


Please Note:
Unfortunately due to exams we have decided not to have a Burns night event.

University of Aberdeen Malt Whisky Society
The Chaplaincy
High Street
Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire AB24 3TT

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