Archive for June, 2010

CAOL ILA – NEW, BUT OLDER – Scotch Whisky News


June 2010


A new member of the Caol Ila™ family of single malt Scotch whiskies has been announced by Diageo.

A 25 year old single malt Scotch Whisky is now joining this highly popular and award-winning collection. Caol Ila has been distilled on the eastern shore of Islay since 1846.

Tasters have described the 25-year-old Caol Ila (bottled at 43% ABV) as majestic, sweet, smooth, slow-burning  –  and with an elegant, lightly smoky profile that brings to mind the faint yet resolute outline of the distillery itself, silhouetted in the soft moonlight of a still winter’s night. Yet it is welcome as an authentic example of that Caol Ila character first seen in the early years of Queen Victoria’s reign. Here are all those spicy sea-air aromas and sweet smoky-dry flavours, but with the subtlety of expression that comes only with age.

It will be the most mature member of the dynasty, standing alongside a 12 year old, an 18 year old, a natural cask strength bottling, a Distillers Edition™, and some limited edition younger expressions.

The new bottling is presented in a strengthened version of  the same striking black and grey cartons as the regular series, but with a pull-off  front-facing lid. The distillery looks to the east: the evening darkness falls early here at Caol Ila. So the pack image for the 25 year old hints at the vestiges of daylight fading behind Cnoc Dubh, the Black Hill behind the distillery.



The Caol Ila 25 year old will initially be available in the UK, the Nordic markets, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Netherlands, Japan, Taiwan and in travel retail channels in Europe.

The UK Recommended Retail Price is £135.

Caol Ila, Islay.

Built in 1846, the distillery sits locked away on a small hidden cove near Port Askaig  on the eastern shore of Islay overlooking the fast-moving Straits of Islay and the Paps of Jura beyond. It uses its own supply of water from nearby Loch Nam Ban.

International awards for Caol Ila

Caol Ila 12 year old has been awarded numerous medals at international competitions, including IWSC Gold Medals, 2004, 2005; IWSC Gold – Best in Class 2008; IWSC Silver Medal 2006, San Francisco Double Gold 2006 and 2010, Silver 2007, Gold 2008, 2009; The Scotch Whisky Masters 2010 – Master.

Caol Ila 18 year old has won IWSC Gold Medals 2004, 2005, Silver 2007, Gold – Best in Class 2008; San Francisco Double Gold 2006.

The Caol Ila Cask Strength expressions won IWSC Silver Medal, 2005, 2007, 2008; Silver-Best in Class 2006. San Francisco Double Gold 2006.

Caol Ila Distillers Edition™ (Moscatel Cask Wood Finish) won IWSC Silver – Best in Class 2007, 2008; San Francisco – Gold Medal 2010; The Scotch Whisky Masters 2010 – Gold.

The range grows

It was back in 2002 that the core Caol Ila range (12 year old, 18 year old  and cask strength) was relaunched in the current livery at that year’s Islay Festival. Although Caol Ila was a notable 19th century distillery, its malts, despite their classic provenance and great ancestry, had not been widely available before then.

The Distillers Edition expression joined them in 2006.

There have also been younger and unpeated versions of Caol Ila, issued annually as part of the Classic Malt Selections™ Special Releases series.
In 2004 and 2005, limited editions (6000 bottles) of 25-year-old Caol Ila were released in the same series, but none have been available since then.

The Classic Malts Selection, Caol Ila, and Distillers Edition words and associated logos are trade marks. © 2010


News From Templeton Rye – American Whiskey News




Straight from the still

Dear friends,

Well, we are less than six months from our inventory situation improving with the release of Batch 4. We continue to send product to Iowa and Illinois at the beginning of each month and I plan to keep you all informed on Facebook when the product goes out. Scott also wrote a detailed overview of our allocation plan, which you can see below (Iowa allocation forecast).

In the meantime we are really excited about our 3rd Annual Rock and Rye Celebration with the Templeton Community Betterment Association on Saturday, July 31st. Our friends the Nadas will be headlining and we are excited to have them back in Templeton. We will be hosting free distillery tours for ticket holders from 4-6 pm and local favorite Aged Spirits will be the opening act.

Something new for this year is charter buses to and from Des Moines. They are air-conditioned motor coaches with restrooms, and folks can bring their own beverages on the trip. The buses will take you to and from the distillery and there will be cabs available in Des Moines when the buses return. So basically there is no excuse not to join us in Templeton for one of the best nights of the summer!

For additional details and to purchase tickets, please visit We look forward to seeing you on July 31st and showing you some Templeton hospitality.

Rye crop update

Last year we planted and harvested our first crop of rye on the distillery property in Templeton. We used a portion of our home-grown rye to make our last batch and are working to increase the quality and size of our crop. This year’s crop is about three feet tall right now and is a beautiful blue/green. We will analyze it after harvest and hopefully use some in upcoming batches.

Kevin Boersma, Distillery Manager, Templeton Rye


Iowa allocation forecast: The light at the end of the tunnel

Dear friends,

Greetings from Templeton. We are a ways into a long winter here in Iowa, but spring is in sight and it is officially 2010, the year when our expanded inventory starts to come on-line.

As many of you know, our product is aged in oak barrels for more than four years so we are only able to sell today what we distilled in 2006. We refused to rush our product or sacrifice quality, which has led to a long game of hurry-up-and-wait.

We started to expand production at the end of 2006 and that product begins to come on-line late this year. The bad news is that inventory will continue to be very lean until then. The good news is that we hope and expect to have a much larger and more stable inventory in place for Iowa and Illinois in time for Christmas and after the first of next year.

Until then, we will continue to ask for your patience. We currently sell about 70% of our product in Iowa and will continue to send product to the State Liquor Warehouse each month. You can see our actual Iowa case allocation for 2010 and early 2011 below. And, yes, we’ll be giving thanks in November that December and beyond looks much better.


Thank you all for your continued support. We are just getting started and are very excited about the future of Templeton Rye.

All the best,
Scott Bush
President, Templeton Rye

Basil Hayden Bourbon – American Whiskey News


About Basil Hayden’s Bourbon

Basil Hayden’s small-batch bourbon impresses with notes of pepper balanced by slight citrus overtones and a spicy, warming finish. The unique flavor is derived from a family recipe that dates back to 1796, which uses twice as much rye as traditional bourbons to create a smooth, balanced blend. Aged eight years, Basil Hayden’s has a relatively mild 80 proof making it equally enjoyable served neat or as the base to a contemporary or traditional cocktail.

Family Secret

Following its eight years in new charred American white oak barrels, Basil Hayden’s is charcoalfiltered and then chill-filtered. This process produces an incredibly approachable, sophisticated and luxurious bourbon.


Basil Hayden’s is part of The Small Batch Bourbon Collection!, a celebrated group that also includes: Booker’s, Baker’s, and Knob Creek.

For more information, visit:

Tasting Notes


Admire the color: Golden amber
Nose the aroma: Spice, tea, hint of peppermint
Savor the taste: Spicy, peppery, honey, light-bodied, gentle bite
Appreciate the finish: Dry, clean, brief

Proof: 80
Age: 8 years
Price: Suggested Retail Price is $36.99 per 750ml bottle.

Basil Hayden’s Manhattan 2.0
1½ parts Basil Hayden’s Bourbon
½ part Sweet Vermouth
½ part Dry Vermouth
½ part Maple Syrup
2 dashes of Bitters

Stir together the Basil Hayden’s Bourbon, sweet vermouth, dry vermouth, maple syrup and bitters over ice in a rocks glass, garnish with a cherry and serve.
Basil Hayden’s Last Stand
1 1/4 part Basil Hayden’s Bourbon
1/4 parts Absinthe
4 dashes of Bitters
1 Lemon Wedge
Splash of Soda Water


In a pint glass, add absinthe to thoroughly coat the glass and drain, pouring off the excess. Add Basil Hayden’s® Bourbon and bitters to the glass. Squeeze and drop in the lemon wedge. Fill the glass 3/4 full with ice and stir contents swiftly for 20 seconds. Top with soda water. 

Basil Hayden is a Super-Premium small-batch bourbon with a distinct flavor profile. Basil Hayden features a mild 80 proof and twice the rye of traditional bourbons, making it extremely smooth and approachable. With citrus overtones and a spicy finish, Basil Hayden’s balance of taste and flavor make this spirit a great choice for both bourbon novices and connoisseurs.

Below is a brand new cocktail recipe developed to toast global soccer mania. Combining Basil Hayden’s® Bourbon with Amarula Liqueur, a South African spirit made from the fruit of a Marula tree, makes this drink the perfect cocktail for toasting your favorite country’s team. With this cocktail in hand, your readers will feel like you are right in the action, all while watching the games from the comfort of their home!

Basil Hayden’s Victory Sip
1 part Basil Hayden’s® Bourbon
1 part Amarula Liqueur
½ part Peppermint Liquor


Stir all ingredients over ice in a rocks glass.  Garnish with a cherry and serve.

WhiskyCast Publishes Episode #267 – Scotch Whisky News




Dave Pickerell has been keeping a low profile since leaving Maker’s Mark in April of 2008. Turns out he was doing research into rye and microdistilling, and discovered a 10-year-old rye that just begged to be bottled. Dave and his partners are now selling WhistlePig Rye Whiskey, with plans to build a distillery on a farm in Vermont’s Green Mountains. Dave explains his new whiskey and his research in this week’s episode. In the news, George Washington’s Rye goes on sale this week, results from the Bonhams auction in New York, and more new whiskies.

Visit WhiskyCast at

Scotch Malt Whisky Society July Outturn Previews – Scotch Whisky News


July Outturn Previews:

Save £40 on all six with our Holiday Case Offer

We’ve packed your Summer Holiday Case for you, all you have to do is enjoy the sunshine.  Buy all six previews this July and save a massive £40.

93.39 Master and commander
£42.20 inc. Free P&P
 The full bodied taste had crème caramel, onion chutney, raisin and cake mix; cherry pie, blueberries and prunes came later
121.35 Simple yet complex
Highland Island
£39.20 inc. Free P&P
Surprisingly mellow; reminiscent of Madeira or mulled wine (with spices), then a dried fruit complex (figs, sultanas, raisins, dates)

77.20 Honeysuckle, jasmine and fern
Highland Northern
£65.40 inc. Free P&P
The nose had elements of putty, plasticine and poster paints, then perfumes of honeysuckle, jasmine, fern and sweet

3.159 Tic-tacs and tar-mac
£65.40 inc. Free P&P
PVA glue, waxed paper and soor plooms; then a tsunami of liquorice, tar, burnt heather and the string from Arbroath smokies or kabanos

35.40 Horse lick whisky
Speyside Lossie
£70.40 inc. Free P&P
Scrumptious and lively, offering polished leather, orange oil, molasses, coffee and toffee – with impressively swelling heat

2.78 Kissed up by sweet promises
Speyside Spey
£65.40 inc. Free P&P
Plum blossom, cherry wood shavings, lilac and candied angelica; then lovely sweet promises kissed up – vanilla, honeycomb, Ferrero Rocher

Summer Holiday Case Offer: Buy all six for £308

Enjoy all six July Outturn Previews (and our Summer Holiday Case Offer) at our venues: The Vaults, 28 Queen Street, 19 Greville Street

Dare to be different: Sample four July Previews @
Aberdeen Malmaison, Birmingham & Brighton Hotel du Vin
Enjoy 125.35 & 3.159 along with 39.76 & 7.58 (we’ll say no more).

SMWS Whisky Tasting & Events
Pan-Asian Curry Experience – London, Sat 26 Jun
A night with Richard Paterson – London, Mon 28 Jun
Glenmorangie Tasting – Queen Street, Thu 1 July
World Cup Quarter Final Viewing – Queen Street, Fri 2 July
World Cup Quarter Final Viewing – Queen Street, Sat 3 July
New Outturn Open Tasting – London, Sat 3 July
New Outturn & Sunday Roast Tasting – The Vaults, Sun 4 July
New Outturn Open Tasting – London, Mon 5 July
World Cup Semi Final Viewing – Queen Street, Tue 6 July
World Cup of Drams – Queen Street, Wed 7 July
World Cup Final: Viewing & BBQ – Queen Street, Sun 11 July
World Cup Final Viewing – London, Sun 11 July

Visit to join the Society


Ralfy Posts Episodes #’s 140A & 140B – Scotch Whisky News


Part Interview/chat with Mark Gillespie from covering a few whisky-related topics.

Easily found at  ‘whisky reviews’ 140a + 140b. ….. hope you enjoy this humorous Vlog

Highland Park Newsletter – The Best Spirit Ever? – Scotch Whisky News


I always say consistency is a wonderful thing. Especially in whisky; you want to be sure every time you buy a bottle of Highland Park that it was just as delightful as the last one. We go to extreme lengths to make sure that happens; it is one of the reasons we are the world’s most respected single malt. Another reason is that we make single malt as traditionally as possible. Discerning consumers (that’s you) and the drinks press seem to appreciate that.

Take F. Paul Pacult for example, the world respected US-based spirits and wine journalist behind the independent, subscription-only quarterly Spirit Journal. Paul famously published a list of his top spirits in 2005 and Highland Park 18 year old was named Best Spirit in the World. He repeated the exercise in 2009 with the same result.

In the June 2010 issue, rather than publishing a simple list as before, Paul has divided the spirits into sub-categories: the best Scotch whisky was Highland Park 18 year old. For the third time running…
According to Paul: “This classic continues to be a stupendous work of distilling art that, I believe, is one of the greatest beverage alcohol liquids ever produced and is assuredly the finest of the last 20 years. Graceful on the one hand; might and fathomless on the other. Delectably salty/peaty/maritime on the one hand; intensely malty on the other. If I could only select but one Scotch whisky, Highland Park 18 year old would remain that very special singular choice. A masterpiece to savour many times before one dies.”

Paul also published a list of the five spirits he and his partner Sue couldn’t survive without if trapped on a desert island. Number one is Highland Park 18 year old. You see; consistent.

Click on the link below to watch me taste Highland Park 18 year old;

For further information and to subscribe to Spirit Journal visit

For information on The Best Spirit in the World visit

Yours sincerely
Gerry Tosh
Head of Brand Education Whisky Ambassador of the Year


Summer Arrives & Some Special Birthdays at Glenglassaugh Distillery – Scotch Whisky News


Summer Arrives and Some Special Birthdays.

June  2010

Great weather this afternoon after a cloudy start with the temperature still at 22 degrees Celsius when I left around 6pm. Forecast is for a few more days like this and we are hoping that it will extend into the weekend as it is the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival, an annual event held in Portsoy.

Last year at this event we launched “The Spirit Drink that blushes to speak its name” and this year we will be selling pre-launch 200ml bottles of the extended Spirit Drink range including “Peated” and Fledgling XB” as well as “Clearac” and “Blushes” We will also be taking orders for the new book which will be here week commencing the 5th July (after a couple of delays) and which can be ordered through the website.


Unfortunately we also had a production problem this week with our condenser supply water pipe bursting underneath the still-house floor. This will result in a new supply line being installed across the still-house tomorrow and as we have two washbacks fermenting then we need this urgently.

Today is also the first birthday of the first 17 octaves which we sold. These casks were sampled today  and the samples will be sent to the cask owners. As the owner of cask number 1 I can tell you that 12 months maturation has resulted in a very fine drink, light straw in colour; nose of grass, pears and some grapes;  very sweet taste with buttery notes and spices in the after taste. It is good now and will, I am sure, improve even more.


If you have any questions or comments on any of the above or anything else then please let me know.



Visit Glenglassaugh Distillery at





Ballantine’s, the world’s No 2 Scotch whisky, is raising a toast to golfer Graeme McDowell today following his impressive win at the US Open at Pebble Beach this weekend.  McDowell, who also won his fifth European Tour title at Celtic Manor in Wales earlier this month, held off some of the sport’s biggest names including Tiger Woods, Phil Mickleson and Ernie Els.

A global brand ambassador for Ballantine’s 17, 21 and 30 year old whiskies, McDowell left an impression on the golfing world by becoming Europe’s first US Open champion for 40 years.  He will now be celebrating his success in style by opening a very rare bottle of Ballantine’s Championship Blend, which he co-created with Ballantine’s Master Blender Sandy Hyslop.

Reacting to his win McDowell said, “Ballantine’s has always been a lucky charm for me and since my 2008 Ballantine’s Championship win in Korea I’ve played some of the best golf of my life.  I said I would open my very special bottle of The Ballantine’s Championship Blend either on the birth of my first child, or my first major win – Pebble Beach came first!”

Peter Moore, Global Brand Director for Ballantine’s said, “On behalf of everyone at Ballantine’s I’d like to express our warmest congratulations to Graeme and look forward to celebrating with him over a glass of Ballantine’s.  Graeme is an extremely talented player who we are proud to support and he thoroughly deserves all of his success.”

While McDowell wears the Ballantine’s logo on his left sleeve, he has also represented Ballantine’s at numerous events since winning The Ballantine’s Championship title in Korea in 2008.  These include becoming the first person ever to collaborate with a Ballantine’s Master Blender on the creation of the 2009 Championship Blend and the launch of the 2010 Championship Blend, which celebrated 50 years since Ballantine’s was first involved with international golf.

McDowell won the US Open by one shot from France’s Gregory Havret with Ernie Els two behind in third and Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods tied fourth.  He is now almost certain to secure a Ryder Cup place this October.


The Ballantine’s Championship

The Ballantine’s Championship is Asia’s fourth biggest golf tournament and the largest sporting event in Korea. It is now an established platform which drives Ballantine’s long-term relationship with the iconic sport.  The 2010 Ballantine’s Championship was won by Australia’s Marcus Fraser.

The Ballantine’s Championship Blend 2010

The creation of an exclusive, limited edition blend has become an annual tradition of the Ballantine’s Championship.  The 2010 Championship Blend is a limited edition Scotch whisky combining extremely rare grains and malts taken from the time of the first Ballantine’s golf tournament fifty years ago. The inaugural tournament, held at Wentworth Club in 1960, introduced the ‘big ball’ to the game and attracted some of the most well respected players of the day.

The Ballantine’s Championship Blend 2009

This unique 35 Year Old Scotch represented the first time in history that anyone outside the company’s expert team collaborated with a Master Blender. Only 15 limited edition bottles were been made due to the scarcity of the whiskies within the blend and following tradition, one precious bottle was presented to the winner of the tournament.

About Ballantine’s:

Ballantine’s is the world’s No 2 range of blended Scotch whisky and has won over 60 trophies and medals at international competitions in the past 10 years for quality as a result of its unique richness of character and perfect balance. The range, from Ballantine’s Finest to the iconic 30 Year Old, is the most extensive in the world of Scotch and is maintained by the latest in a tradition of master blenders that dates back to 1827.

• Ballantine’s has been title sponsor of the Ballantine’s Championship since 2008 and has committed to the event until 2013

• Ballantine’s is an official sponsor of the Barclay’s Scottish Open, held every July at the exclusive Loch Lomond Golf Club

• Ballantine’s was also sponsor of The Omega Mission Hills World Cup, held in China in 2009

• The first Ballantine’s sponsored golf tournament was played in 1960 at Wentworth Golf Club, England

About Chivas Brothers:

Chivas Brothers is the Scotch whisky and premium gin business of Pernod Ricard – the world’s co-leader in wine and spirits.  Chivas Brothers is the global leader in luxury Scotch whisky and premium gin. Its portfolio includes Chivas Regal, Ballantine’s, Beefeater Gin, The Glenlivet, Royal Salute, Aberlour, Plymouth Gin, Longmorn, Scapa, 100 Pipers, Clan Campbell, Something Special and Passport.


Maltstock Newsletter 4 – Free Tastings Online Now – Scotch Whisky News


Maltstock – Newsletter 4

Book your free tastings now

Fellow whisky enthusiasts, 

At Maltstock we will be offering several free tastings again.  Due to the limited availability of each tasting (max. 30 persons) is it advised to book in advance. The tastings are bookable online now at www.maltstockcom.

This years tatsings are:

New make tasting – Ap Dijksterhuis
A chance to compare about 15 different new makes. Ap Dijksterhuis wrote an article for a Dutch whisky magazine (Whisky Passion) about a new make tasting in which we compared 40 different new makes. Very interesting to do.

Four Roses – white dog and…? – Hans Offringa
This will be a very unique tasting. At Four Roses they produce ten different white dog (new make). No other distillery in the world does this. We have all ten available. And something extra (which we will announce as soon as it is confirmed). Believe me, it will be something special. Never done before in the world.
Hans Offringa is a very active whisky writer. Internationally known for (amongst others) “the Legend of Laphroaig” and “Whisky and Jazz”. His new book “Bourbon and Blues” will be coming out later this year. Hans spends a lot of time in the US and knows a lot about Bourbon.

BenRiach – Stewart Buchannan
The operational manager, Stewart Buchannan, will be at Maltstock to tell you all about BenRiach. He will bring some interesting samples for you to taste. BenRiach distillery is well known for its great many and many great bottlings.

Amrut – Ashok Chokalingam
Amrut distillery from India has been a very pleasant surprise to many whisky enthusiasts over the last few years. They do know how to make quality whisky in India, which can compete with the great Scottish whiskies. Ashok Chokalingam, the European sales and marketing manager will prove it to you.

Glenglassaugh – Stuart Nickerson
Last year he had to cancel at the very last minute, but this year he will definitely be at Maltstock, the managing director of Glenglassaugh himself, Stuart Nickerson. Who better to tell you all about the resurrection of this great distillery of which we dare without blushing to speak it’s name: Glenglassaugh

Tomatin – Douglas Campbell
We are honored that Douglas Campbell, the managing director of Tomatin distillery is coming over himself. He has been with Tomatin for 49 years. So no one can tell you more about Tomatin than Douglas.

Balvenie – Tony van Rooijen
Brand ambassador Tony van Rooijen will take you through the excellent range of Balvenie distillery.

Blending with Whisky Passion
During the day Saturday everybody will have an opportunity to create their own blend. Whisky Passion will have a competition to see which whisky club is best at blending whisky. Come and try yourself, and find out how difficult it is. An independent jury will judge the blends. There will be a nice price for the best blend.

Maltstock program

The full Maltstock program is also online. We have some great independent bottlers present, like Adelphi, Berry Brothers, Dewar Rattray, Daily Dram, David Stirk’s excellent exclusive Malts, Douglas Laing, Single Malts of Scotland and more. Almost all the whisky will be available without extra charge. Except for the collection of old and rare whisky from the Dutch Whisky collectors “Full Proof”. Another highlight is the big campfire, as well as the BBQ, the whisky quiz and much more. There’s the bottle share table where all the guests can put the bottle they brought to share with the other guests. We also will be having a raffle this year. Your chance to win some great prizes.

Maltstock starts Friday afternoon and ends Sunday afternoon. We eat, drink, sleep (small dorms with bunk beds) and have a great time on the same location. So unlike the many whisky fairs, at Maltstock there is plenty of time to enjoy a great whisky in a very relaxed setting with great company.


Maltstock costs just 150,- euro’s for a whole weekend. A lot of money, but not expensive, because almost everything is included. Two nights accommodation, BBQ, whisky quiz, free tastings, plenty of whisky, campfire en a real Scottish breakfast. We are very proud the people from the Highlander Inn in Craigellachie will travel from Scotland to Maltstock to prepare a real Scottish breakfast for us. What better way to start the day.
Maltstock is 3 to 5 September just south of Nijmegen in Overasselt, the Netherlands. There’s a bus stop right in front of Maltstock. For directions, please check our website.

We can tell you so much more about Maltstock. But who better to hear from than the people who were there last year? On our website you can read their comments and reviews. We also have a lot of pictures online.

We hope to meet a lot of you at Maltstock. If there are any questions at all, please don’t hesitate to contact the organisation through:

Hope to see you at Maltstock!

Arthur, Bob, Eline,Rogier and Teun
The relaxed whisky weekend

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