Archive for July, 2010

Chefs McConachie and Harvey To Do Series of Whisky & Food Articles for Sip Smoke Savor – Scotch Whisky News


Award Winning Cookbook Authors Sheila McConachie and Graham Harvey to ShareWhisky and Food Pairing Knowledge on website.

San Diego, California, July 25, 2010 – The creators of are delighted to announce that Sheila McConachie and Graham Harvey have agreed to guest author a series of articles for their website. These masters of scotch pairing co-wrote “The Whisky Kitchen – 100 ways with Whisky and Food”. This book, a culinary love letter to Scotland and its native spirit, won the prestigious Gourmand World Cookbook Award in 2009 for Best Book in the World for Cooking with Beer, Wine and Spirits.

McConachie and Harvey’s passion for their Scottish heritage, its countryside and dishes “terroir” is also evident in the inspired menu that puts their Craggan Mill Restaurant on the “short list” for best Highland dining experience. Craggan Mill won Eat Scotland’s 2010 Silver Award for excellence in food and service and has been awarded 2 Rosettes from AA Dining Awards for three consecutive years. In 2007, Graham Harvey was named Spirit of Speyside Chef of the Year. In 2009 Graham was admitted as a Master Chef of the Association Culinaire Française and earlier this year Sheila was awarded the title Master Chef of Great Britain. The couple recently was asked to judge the Scottish Heat of The Escoffier Challenge 2010, one of the world’s most prestigious culinary competitions.

Beginning in July these award winning chefs will showcase Scotch whisky as both an accompaniment to a fine meal, as well as an ingredient to add depth and flavor. You will find their series of articles in the “Food Section” of, a website devoted to the pursuit of the perfect single malt pairing.

“The Whisky Kitchen – 100 ways with Whisky and Food” is available online through a link on the website (see section Malts/Bookshelf) or in book stores ISBN 978 0 9554145 7 2.

Graham and Sheila’s Craggan Mill Restaurant is on the web at


Balvenie Distillery Malt Master Experiments – Scotch Whisky News


Malt Master Experiments


I’m pleased to bring you early news of an intriguing new release from The Balvenie Distillery.

Over the last few months, Malt Master, David Stewart, has been working with different combinations of fine, aged stocks of The Balvenie, and has discovered one marriage in particular that has excited him.

Read our Special Feature* on what will be a first for The Balvenie ~ and watch my interview* with David as he marries six casks to create the first ever batch of this new single malt.

Until next time, slainte mhath,
David Mair
The Balvenie Ambassador

*you must be a member of Warehouse 24 and log in to view both

Registered in Scotland. Registered Number SC138003
Balvenie Maltings, Dufftown, Banffshire, Scotland AB55 4BB

Richard Paterson (The Master Blender) Says “Latest Shackleton South Pole Whisky pic is biggest tease yet” – Scotch Whisky News



Latest Shackleton South Pole Whisky pic is biggest tease yet


Just look at that! Hello beautiful!

Of course we’ll have to wait and see what the implications are for the bottle being on the side like that – has the whisky reached the cork and perhaps partially eroded it? Has the ice and water got inside the whisky?

Such mysteries still to find out! for more information.


Visit Whyte & MacKay at

This updated/added on the 30th;

The team over at The Great Whisky Crate Thaw blog sent me over some more pics (some good videos on their site too) of the box taken from the Shackleton site with whisky in it and the crate is starting to give off clues about what whisky is inside…



But it’s this picture that really captured my attention. It was posted it yesterday but it wasn’t until afterwards I was able to take a good look at it:


Let’s close up and look at the top of the bottle:


That’s a seal covering that goes round the cork and top of the bottle. The red marking is a red wax seal that was popular in the day as an eye-catching tactic (even back then marketing types were interfering with the whisky!)

Now the bottle is on the side so there’s a chance that the whisky may have eroded the cork but the seal covering may have prevented leakage. Though I’ll add that the seals are rarely water or airtight. The ones in the old bottles in my tasting suite are very loose.

Now after seeing this picture I went and had a look around the office and my tasting suite. Now I only had a camera phone to hand but based on a few bottles (and I’ll share some pictures in a moment) I think we’re looking at a single malt – not a blend – aged 12 years old.

Here’s some pictures from one of the bottles I was looking at to show the similarities (there were others, but I was time pushed). Now the fact that the seal is intact is promising, so when the bottle is finally removed, it bodes well for the whisky inside. And for those wondering, yes, each bottle was packed in straw and the dark matter around them is caused by volcanic ash (or so I was told).




Of course I could be completely wrong as I’m going on looks of the top of a bottle and what I know from historical information, so we’ll have to stay tuned to find out…

Dundee Dell Omaha August Events – Scotch Whisky News


August Events:

August 1st 4:00 PM – Mega Scotch Tasting
August 5th 7:00 PM – Mega Scotch Tasting
August 19th 7:00 PM- Scotch Tasting feat. Master of Whisky Martin Duffy of Diageo

Dundee Dell 5007 Underwood Ave. Omaha NE 402.553.9501

Email Pat ( or Monique ( anytime.

A Salute to Whisky Clubs; A Profile of The Bureau of Malt Sippers (BUMS)


A Salute to Whisky Clubs

The phenomenon of Whisky Tasting Clubs is burgeoning hobby group throughout the Midwest and other areas of the US.  One such group, the Bureau of Malt Sippers (BUMS) was recently featured in a local St. Louis news article; 

regarding the club and a recent trip to Maker’s Mark Distillery taken by BUMS representative, Mark Friedman, to taste a new release, Maker’s 46. Friedman was one of 15 whisky journalists who were flown down to Loretto, Kentucky at the invitation of Kevin Smith, Master Distiller, and Bill Samuels, Jr., President of Makers Mark, to tour the distillery and taste the new whisky with the Maker’s 46 team.

As part of a viral marketing campaign he was contacted through the effort of Maker’s Mark’s marketing agency Evins Communications in New York.  In viral marketing, part of the campaign to spread the good word about a product is done through non-conventional channels in lieu of TV and Print advertising.  Instead, part of the effort to get out the marketing message is to contact “influentials” in your target market who may be able to influence public opinion in favor of your product.

Friedman and others received a VIP tour and access to the folks responsible for creating the new whisky. If all went well and the whisky and treatment at the distillery favorably impressed the writers, they wrote about their impressions in their magazines, blogs and elsewhere.  In Friedman’s case, in addition to blogging about the experience on the BUMS website, he also shot and posted a video on that same site.

Another aspect of contacting Friedman, who is primarily a single malt whisky writer, was to get out the world to Scotch drinkers about a new Bourbon profile in hopes that it might appeal to their palates.  Friedman did give a favorable review, rating the Maker’s 46 in this way, “This new expression is a cousin to the standard expression with the same wonderful roundness of flavor but with a nose that has cinnamon and nutmeg upfront with the vanilla and berry components subordinate. On the palate is caramel, cinnamon, vanilla and a slight but pleasant woodiness. The finish is a gentle decline to a low level of spiciness. I give this an 85-90 but tending towards the high end.”

John Hansel, of Malt Advocate, rated this same whisky a 90.

Whisky Clubs all over are increasingly sophisticated which is reflected in some of their sites such as the outstanding, L.A. Whisk(e)y Society,


which can be contrasted by the grass roots effort of clubs such as The Old Snots (Old Scotch Nosing or Tasting Society) a group in rural Illinois with a basic but fun site at

Whatever their level of sophistication, this phenomenon only supports the efforts of all those who toil away to make their tastings and their websites a destination for fun, camaraderie, information and drams to delight the senses. A salute to them all. Slainte!


Article provided by





Sales growth drives addition of 1.75 liter and 750ml “Carry-Pack” sizes

BARDSTOWN, KY—Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc., the country’s largest independent family-owned and operated spirits producer and marketer, announces the release of two new sizes of Evan Williams Honey Reserve Kentucky Liqueur, a product launched last Fall that marries extra-aged Evan Williams Bourbon with natural honey.  Bottled at 70 proof, and previously available in only a 750ml and 50ml size, Evan Williams Honey Reserve will now be available in a 1.75 liter and a 750ml Carry-Pack bottle.

The remarkable sales success of Evan Williams Honey Reserve, has led to consumer and trade demand for an economical 1.75 liter and a convenient, shatter-proof 750 ml Carry-Pack, both of which carry the same clear label, black cap and black and gold honeybee graphics as the existing sizes.  The 1.75 liter and 750ml Carry-Pack are also packaged in the same physical bottle as the Evan Williams Black Label 1.75 liter and 750ml Carry-Pack, further leveraging the remarkable sales success of the country’s second-leading selling Kentucky Straight Bourbon.

The 1.75 liter, with a suggested retail price of $28.99, and the 750ml “Carry-Pack”, at a $14.99 suggested price, are both bottled at 35% alcohol/volume or 70 proof.  Evan Williams Honey Reserve is now available in nearly every national market, and is quickly gaining a large following of loyal consumers.  In addition to its remarkable sales success, it has won critical acclaim as well, winning a Silver Medal in the prestigious 2010 San Francisco World Spirits Competition.

“The launch success of Evan Williams Honey Reserve has necessitated that we look at additional sizes, and the 1.75 liter and 750ml Carry-Pack were the most logical extensions,” stated Susan Wahl, Brand Manager for Evan Williams at Heaven Hill.  “Aside from giving the consumer more convenient options at the shelf, the additional sizes help create more facings and improve our display power.”

Evan Williams Honey Reserves takes advantage of established trends in the distilled spirits industry in general and the American straight whiskey category in particular.  First is the ongoing success of flavored spirits, whose growth is more than double that of unflavored spirits; and second is the continued popularity of Bourbon, especially Evan Williams, which according to A.C. Nielsen Scantrack 2010 data is the fastest growing top volume Domestic Whiskey.

Founded in 1934, Bardstown, KY-based Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc. ( is the nation’s largest independent, family-owned and operated spirits producer and marketer and the world’s second-largest holder of Kentucky Bourbon. Heaven Hill’s diversified portfolio of brands includes The Christian Brothers Brandies; Evan Williams and Elijah Craig Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskeys; Burnett’s Vodkas and Gin; Hpnotiq Liqueur; PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur; Lunazul and Two Fingers Tequilas, and Dubonnet Aperitif.

Heaven Hill reminds you to “Think Wisely. Drink Wisely.”



Scotch Malt Whisky Society August Outturn Preview – Scotch Whisky News


August Outturn Previews: 33.90 & 76.71 (save £5)

It’s almost that time again which can only mean one thing, a sneaky sample of our new Outturn.  And it’s an ample sample…

33.90 Cocktails in a chimney
£57.30 inc. Free P&P
Coconut, elderflower and lime aromas suggested exotic cocktails, but the Malt-meister was in a malt kiln; certainly there was peat smoke, chimneys, coal-dust, charcoal, tar and liquorice

76.71 Tasty pastry and mellow morello
Speyside Spey
£62.30 inc. P&P
What a tasty nose – we found treacle toffee, choux pastry, apple pie, strawberries dipped in dark chocolate, morello cherries, maple syrup pancakes, desiccated coconut and egg custard

Buy 33.90 & 76.71 together and save £5
Available Via Online & Telephone
Offer ends: Thu 6 Aug

August Outturn available: Fri 6 Aug

We’ve also found the last drops of some cracking bottles…..

4.131 An artists’ retreat
25.49 Laundry and fizzy chews (Closed distillery)
26.64 Drinking with Lara Croft
27.64 One for a walk
29.84 Mouth-coating, tongue-roasting, tooth-stripping, palate-punching
53.111 Smoke and soot with liquorice root

To name but a few, visit our online shop for more gems…   Browse all bottlings  (76 bottles online) at 

Preview Drams at Malmaison & Hotel Du Vin

We’ve also sneaked a few August Outturn samples over to Aberdeen Malmaison and Birmingham and Brighton Hotel du Vin. Try four new drams (19.47, 36.47, 76.71 & 3.163) from Mon 2 August.

Don’t forget your Festival ticket this August

To celebrate the Edinburgh Festival, we are holding a series of Tutored Tastings at The Vaults and 28 Queen Street.  There are a range of dates available if you’re planning on doing something during the Festival.

The Vaults: Wed 11, Fri 13, Wed 18, Fri 20, Wed 25, Fri 27 August
Queen Street: Thu 12, Sat 14, Thu 19, Sat 21, Thu 26, Sat 28 August

SMWS Whisky Tasting & Events
Summer Whisky Tasting – The Vaults, Mon 26 Jul
Stirling Preview Tasting – Golden Lion Hotel, Fri 30 Jul
Newcastle Preview Tasting – Northern Counties Club – Fri 30 Jul
Pan-Asian Curry Experience – London, Sat 31 July
Cigar and Whisky Tasting – London, Thu 5 Aug
York Preview Tasting – Bedern Hall, Fri 6 Aug
Greenock Preview Tasting – Tontine Hotel, Fri 6 Aug
New Outturn Open Tasting – London, Sat 7 Aug
New Outturn & Sunday Roast Tasting – The Vaults, Sun 8 Aug
New Outturn Open Tasting – London, Mon 9 Aug

Visit the Scotch Malt Whisky Society at for your chance to join.


Penderyn Masterclass With Gillian Howell, Distiller – Welsh Whisky News


For the whisky enthusiast a Penderyn Masterclass is a must! You don’t need to be a whisky connoisseur to enjoy the experience. Each Masterclass is conducted by one of our expert guides or Gillian Howell, our Distiller.

Held in small groups to ensure that each person gets the maximum benefit from the learning experience, a Penderyn Masterclass begins with a short “getting to know you” session, during which everyone can relax and enjoy some refreshments.
Then it’s time to start.  Your guide first takes you through the Malt Whisky Production Process, explaining each step from malting through to bottling.  The depth of the session depends on you.  You have the opportunity to sit back and listen or to ask as many questions as you wish – it’s your time with our experts!

At this stage we also cover the various still designs and distillation processes used by Scottish, Irish and Welsh distillers, and you’ll begin to learn that Penderyn is unique.  You will learn about the different types of whisky from single malt through to bourbon and Tennessee whiskies.

Next for the fun and games, in which you take part.  We won’t reveal here what we ask you to do, but you’ll enjoy it!

It’s soon time to visit the Penderyn Distillery shop floor and to venture into our still room, where everything should now fall into place.  Then you’re off to the bottling hall to see the final product (we won’t make you wait 5 years for the spirit to mature!).  You see our bourbon and Madeira barrels and your guide is there to answer your questions throughout.

Back in the Boardroom, you now experience nosing and tasting sessions where you are given various expressions of Penderyn – see if you can identify them all.

Your Penderyn Masterclass ends with a gift (included in the price) and a Masterclass booklet. Your guide then takes you to the exhibition area and tasting room so that you can browse at your leisure and sample more of our products if you wish. All in all, an experience not to be missed!

Classes are held by appointment at least twice a month and cost £45.00 per person (to include a gift). Parties of four or more receive a reduction. Why not buy a Penderyn Masterclass as a gift.

Masterclass Schedule

July 2010
Saturday 3rd July 10:30 – full
Friday 9th July 10:30
Saturday 17th July 10:30 – full
Friday 23rd July 10:30
Saturday 31st July 10:30

August 2010
Thursday 5th August 10:30
Saturday 14th August 10:30


Kentucky Cooperage Tours – American Whiskey News


Kentucky Cooperage Tours

Mon.-Fri. ♥ 9:30 a.m. & 1 p.m.

712 E. Main St.

Tel. 270.692.4674 for further details.

Kentucky Cooperage makes the charred oak barrels critical for the production of bourbon. See how “charring” is done, how staves are shaped, how hoops are put in place and how barrels are made leak proof without manmade sealers.


Whiskies of the World Upcoming Whisky Dinner With Ed Kohl – Scotch Whisky News


Upcoming Whisky Dinner

(From Sam at Impex) We are going to launch Chieftain’s at the San Francisco City Club on August 12th.  It will be a four course dinner featuring the following:



“Since 1936, Ian Macleod Distillers, through its dedication to tradition and quality, has amassed an unrivaled cask stock from Scotland’s many distilleries. This enviable collection includes extremely rare malts, some from closed or mothballed distilleries.”

ALLT A BHAINNE 31 year old (Speyside)

GLEN MORAY 18 year old (Speyside)

PORT ELLEN 25 year old ( Islay )

LINKWOOD 16 year old (Speyside)

GLENROTHES 14 year old Burgundy Finish (Speyside)

DALMORE 11 year old Madeira Finish ( Highland )

The above will be paired with food prepared by the San Francisco City Club’s talented Chef Michael Munoz .

For more information go to: 

Impex Beverages

The Whisky Shop (Tel 415-989-1030)


August 12th / 6:00pm – 8:30pm. Whiskies of the World Whisky Dinner with Ed Kohl  @ The San Francisco City Club, 155 Sansome, 10th floor, San Francisco, CA 94104. Reservations Required – $70.00. Featuring Seven of Chieftains Rare Single Malt Scotch Whiskies and Isle of Skye.

Powered by WordPress