Archive for November, 2013

BACK TO BLACK “Burn Stewart Unveils New Black Bottle” – Scotch Whisky News

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Burn Stewart Unveils New Black Bottle

Burn Stewart Distillers has unveiled the new Black Bottle Scotch Whisky.

Black Bottle is a premium blended Scotch Whisky which was acquired by Burn Stewart in 2003, and is currently exported to over 30 countries globally.

After 18 months of extensive global consumer research and design development, the new Black Bottle heralds a return to the original Scotch, which the Graham brothers created in Aberdeen at the turn of the 19th Century.

Burn Stewart Master Distiller, Ian MacMillan, was charged with creating a product which would be more in keeping with its original north east recipe. The result is a curiously rich and slightly smoky taste that maintains the distinctiveness of Black Bottle but adds another layer of depth to the liquid.

Ian MacMillan said: “The challenge was to develop a liquid that was more in line with the original character of Black Bottle while maintaining all of the quality for which the brand is renowned. I wanted to reintroduce a richness to balance the smokiness of the blend and in turn allow each component to contribute to the overall flavour.

“This whisky will appeal to the experienced blended drinker who enjoys drinking Scotch neat as well as those exploring whiskies for the first time and who prefer to add a mixer. Restoring the blend to its former glory has been a rewarding and nostalgic experience as it has given me the opportunity to revisit the original identity of Black Bottle.”

Burn Stewart will launch Black Bottle in new packaging, re-introducing the distinctive black glass bottle which was the original inspiration behind the name of the brand. This iconic bottle was used by the Graham brothers up until the outbreak of the First World War when supplies from the German manufacturer ceased and they were forced to revert to a standard green glass bottle which has remained until the present day.

“It was thought that no examples of this once-famous black glass bottle survived,” says Marco Di Ciacca, Senior Brand Manager for Burn Stewart. “However, after months of searching, we managed to find a bottle dating back to 1906, which then became the inspiration for our new design. This new look is in line with the growing global consumer trend for premium spirits with authentic and compelling brand stories.”

Black Bottle has been available to buy in the UK from October 2013 in selected on and off trade outlets. The brand was also launched internationally into selected export markets from October.

Black Bottle
RRP: £17.99 – £18.49
40% ABV

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News From The Wintery World of Highland Park – Scotch Whisky News

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With a touch of snowy weather arriving with a shiver and a shake, it’s time to look forward to the long winter evenings when our beloved single malt really comes into its own; warming up the parts other whiskies simply cannot reach and bringing us ever nearer, one dram at a time to the festive season.

And with all this in mind, our attention is drawn to the wonderful Martin Markvardsen, our Senior Brand Ambassador, who’s Christmas has come a little earlier this year!

The much-loved (and definitely larger-than-life) Martin has recently been recognised as ‘The Best Whisky Ambassador in Norway’ by the organisers of the Oslo Whisky Festival.

The award is presented annually to the person who has made a difference to the whisky industry in Norway and the festival organiser, Chris Malie, felt that Martin had to be recognised for his length of service, his passion for Highland Park and legendary Orkney storytelling, alongside his vast knowledge of single malt whisky and that fact that he has been on more trips to Norway than any other ambassador.

“I am honoured to have been presented with this award, says Martin and I see this as much more of a prize for the team than an individual prize.”

Modest as well as supremely nice, if you happen to bump into Martin at a forthcoming whisky event, or, for that matter in a bar, shake his hand and for your next round he’ll be having a gentleman-sized measure of Highland Park 18 year old please…


Scotch Malt Whisky Society “Christmas Countdown: A Tale of Two Ladies” – Scotch Whisky News

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A vanilla scented woman wearing a silk dress and smoking a cigarette by an oil painting. A florally scented Parisienne eating pain au chocolat. Have you stumbled into a big-budget Christmas ad? Better – these are just some of the images 125.68 ‘A tale of two ladies’ conjured in the Tasting Panel and it’s on sale individually from today! Plus, two more bottlings released today and festive picks to get you in the holiday mood…


Young & spritely

125.68 A tale of two ladies
The very attractive nose inhabited more layers than an archaeological dig in Troy…

BUY £64.40

Sweet, fruity & mellow

35.92 Butterflies in the stomach
Some of us – not all – were immediately transported to a Luau on Hawaii…

BUY £77.20

Sweet, fruity & mellow

9.75 Imperial Leather in a boat Chandlery
The nose seemed rounded and attractive – hay and pepper on mashed banana…

BUY £64.40

Browse all bottlings

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society, The Vaults, 87 Giles Street, Leith EH6 6BZ Contact: or call 0131 555 2929 (Mon-Fri 9am-4.45pm). Visit the Society at for your chance to join and to take advantage of their great offers.

Spot the SMWS bottles in this amusing You Tube video

Canadian Whisky Awards Banquet Thursday, January 16, 2014 Victoria, BC – Canadian Whisky News


Canadian Whisky News by Davin de Kergommeaux

Canadian Whisky Awards Banquet

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Join a who’s who of Canadian Whisky Royalty in Victoria on Thursday, January 16, 2014 to celebrate the very best Canadian whiskies in the world.

The gala celebration will be held at Victoria’s Grand Pacific Hotel beginning at 6:30 to name the winners and present medals and awards of honour.

Tickets, which include hot and cold buffet, may be purchased from James Burrough at the Hotel Grand Pacific (250) 380-4455 for $60.00.


GlenDronach Single Casks Batch 9 at Abbey Whisky – Scotch Whisky News

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GlenDronach Single Casks Batch 9

GlenDronach Single Casks Batch 9 have been bottled, labelled and boxed! 9 vintages in total, ranging from 1972-1995…

Available now for pre-order.

Glendronach 1995 / 18 Year Old / Single Cask #3302

The youngest whisky from batch 9 is single cask #3302. This GlenDronach malt was distilled in 1995 and aged for 18 years in a Pedro Ximenez sherry puncheon before being bottled in 2013 at 53.7% vol.

“An initial sweet chocolate and vanilla fullness moves to a delicate, lasting zest and herb note. All backed by a fantastically long rum-soaked raisin and sweet barley finish.”
(£69.38 ex vat)

Click here to buy GlenDronach Single Cask 3302 Batch 9

Glendronach 1994 / 19 Year Old / Single Cask #3385

GlenDronach single cask #3385, distilled in 1994 and left to slumber in a Pedro Ximenez sherry puncheon for 19 years. Bottled at 53.4% vol in 2013 as part of GlenDronach’s 9th batch of single casks bottlings.

“A fantastic combination of rich orange bitters with spiced, stewed damsons. All balanced by a drizzle of golden syrup, hints of ginger and vanilla pod in the full bodied finish.”
(£73.54 ex vat)

Click here to buy GlenDronach Single Cask 3385 Batch 9

Glendronach 1993 / 20 Year Old / Single Cask #5

The third and final Oloroso sherry matured whisky from Batch 9, is this vintage 1993 GlenDronach. Aged for 20 years is cask #5, 645 bottles survived the angels’ share.

“A classic, fine sherry character. Sultanas, raisins and sweet plum syrup combine with complementing waves of freshly cut herbs and sweet oak spices.”
(£78.75 ex vat)

Click here to buy GlenDronach Single Cask 5 Batch 9

Glendronach 1992 / 21 Year Old / Single Cask #195

Single cask #195, distilled in 1992 and aged for 21 years in an Oloroso sherry butt. Bottled in 2013 as part of GlenDronach’s special single cask bottlings (Batch 9).

“Floods of crisp orange peel and gentle clove fill the rich stewed prunes which are slightly sweetened by hints of dark chocolate.”
(£84.38 ex vat)

Click here to buy GlenDronach Single Cask 195 Batch 9

Glendronach 1991 / 21 Year Old / Single Cask #5405

Up next in batch 9 of special release bottlings from GlenDronach distillery, is single cask #5405. Distilled in 1991 and left to mature for 21 years in a Pedro Ximenez Sherry Puncheon, this special bottling has been filled at 49.9% vol with an out-turn of 702 bottles.

“A perfect progression of sweet chocolate and toffee rounded with toasted oak spices. Dates and stewed pear appear then mellow to soft barley and vanilla.”
(£84.38 ex vat)

Click here to buy GlenDronach Single Cask 5405 Batch 9

Glendronach 1990 / 23 Year Old / Single Cask #1243

GlenDronach single cask #1243, distilled in 1990 and aged in a Pedro Ximenez sherry puncheon for 23 years. Bottled in 2013 as part of this years special single cask bottlings from GlenDronach distillery (Batch 9).

“Dark chocolate fondant and rich Seville orange marmalade are warmed by a gentle white pepper spice which leads to the gentle sweet finish of rum raisin fudge.”
(£96.88 ex vat)

Click here to buy GlenDronach Single Cask 1243 Batch 9

Glendronach 1989 / 23 Year Old / Single Cask #5470

GlenDronach single cask #5470, distilled in 1989 and bottled in 2013 as part of GlenDronach’s batch 9 of single cask bottlings. Aged in a Pedro Ximenez sherry puncheon for 23 years, bottled at cask strength, 49.2% vol.

“Vibrant oak spices and roasted chestnut infuse in the Demerara caramelised orchard fruits. The citrus bite of mixed peel combines with a distant clove to give a fantastic, clean full finish.”

(£96.88 ex vat)

Click here to buy GlenDronach Single Cask 5470 Batch 9

Glendronach 1985 / 27 Year Old / Single Cask #1035

As far as I can recall this is the first 1985 vintage to be released as part of the official single cask, batch releases from GlenDronach distillery. Single cask #1035 has been aged for 27 years in a Pedro Ximenez sherry puncheon before being bottled at 53.7% in 2013. Only 290 bottles filled from a puncheon barrel? Split cask ? Or has the angels share been rather to greedy? Glendroanoraks know the answer to this puzzle, for sure…

“Demerara and ground coffee beans flow over the stewed dark fruits. Hints of spicy cigar box, mixed peel and soft clove add a great complexity through the long rich finish.”
(£126.88 ex vat)

Click here to buy GlenDronach Single Cask 1035 Batch 9

Glendronach 1972 / 41 Year Old / Single Cask #702

The oldest release from GlenDronach’s batch 9 of single cask bottlings is this 1972 vintage. Aged for 41 years in oloroso sherry butt #702, this single cask release has been bottled at 51.7% vol with a final out-turn of 448 bottles.

“A beautifully elegant vintage sherry style bursting with a combination of dark espresso, molasses, lively herbs and oak spices. Dried fruits and soft waves of walnut add a subtle balance to this classic expression.”
(£486.88 ex vat)

Click here to buy GlenDronach Single Cask 702 Batch 9



OP 1990


Old Pulteney Single Malt Scotch Whisky proudly presents the latest limited addition to its awardwinning range – the 1990 vintage. The new whisky from the Northern Highland distillery follows a string of recent highly successful releases, including Old Pulteney 40 Year Old and the travel-retailexclusive Lighthouse Collection.

Old Pulteney 1990 Vintage

Old Pulteney 1990 Vintage is a mature and full-flavoured addition to the portfolio. It’s bursting with the coastal maritime character, the depth and the complexity found in other expressions, while offering an interesting twist which is sure to excite and delight single malt drinkers around the world. The 1990 Vintage was matured in both American ex-bourbon casks and Spanish exsherry casks which were previously used for ageing heavily peated malt. This residual peatiness has
added an unexpected dimension and allowed the whisky to develop an exquisitely rich and exciting taste profile.

Old Pulteney 1990 Vintage is bottled at 46% ABV. The whisky has not been chill-filtered and is presented at its beautiful natural colour. It’s a strictly limited offering, only 900 cases of this unique spirit will be made available world-wide from November 2013. The recommended retail price in the UK is £120.

The Maritime Malt

Old Pulteney 1990 Vintage was matured for around 23 years, from the 1990 to 2013, in Pulteney Distillery’s warehouses in the town of Wick, right on the windswept Caithness coast. The northern, coastal location of the distillery and its bonded warehouses plays a vital role in developing Old Pulteney’s unmistakable character.

The town of Wick where Pulteney Distillery was established in 1826, was once a busy herring fishing port with as many as 1,000 vessels in its harbour at peak times. In-keeping with Old Pulteney’s maritime heritage, the 1990 Vintage is presented in a tube featuring a ship decking effect, a porthole stamp and Old Pulteney’s classic herring drifter.

Old Pulteney Senior Brand Manager, Margaret Mary Clarke commented:

“After a very exciting year for the brand, which included a global partnership with Clipper Round the World Race, it’s great to finish off 2013 by adding a very special expression to our award-winning portfolio. With its eye catching maritime
design and rich intense taste, we are confident that the 1990 Vintage will be a hit with global whisky connoisseurs.”


Old Pulteney’s core range includes Old Pulteney 12 Year Old, Old Pulteney 17 Year Old and Old Pulteney 21 Year Old. Old Pulteney 30 Year Old and a super premium 40 Year Old are also available. Old Pulteney 21 Year Old was named by Jim Murray as the World Whisky of the Year in the 2012 edition of his popular Whisky Bible. Pulteney Distillery was established by James Henderson in 1826, at the peak of the local herring fishing boom. The distillery uses one pair of stills, the wash still featuring a very large boil bulb, and condenses spirit with the use of traditional worm tubs.

DECEMBER FIRST FRIDAY TASTING – Scotch Malt Whisky Society Tasting – Scotch Whisky News


Here are the details for the event:

Date: Tuesday December 3rd, 2013.

Time: 6:30pm to 8:00pm

Location: The Strath Ale Wine & Spirit Merchants, 919 Douglas Street, Victoria.

Price: $35 each for Members & Partners, $45 for Non-Members/Guests.     



  1. Space is limited so you must register.
  2. To secure your place you need to pre-pay. Please email, drop into the store or phone with credit card details. Email: Phone: 250-370-9463 
  3. Once your seat(s) are paid for you will receive an email confirmation from me.

This is your virtual Ticket.

The Tasting will take place in the Maple Room – enter at the Sticky Wicket Pub, corner of Douglas and Courtenay. Doors will open at 6:20pm and the tasting will start PROMPTLY at 6:30pm.


Please remember these are cask strength whiskies, so you should not be driving home after the tasting.



Colin Southcombe

General Manager

The Strath Ale Wine & Spirit Merchants

919 Douglas Street, Victoria BC, V8W 2C2

Tel: 250-370-9463


Whisky Scavenger Hunt and Twitter Tasting – Canadian Whisky News

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Whisky Scavenger Hunt and Twitter Tasting 

For the next four Sundays #WhiskyFabric from around the world will come together on Twitter for #DavinTT2. We will be tasting 4 Mystery Canadian whiskies, having a Q&A discussion with the author Davin de Kergommeaux and holding Twitter’s first whisky scavenger hunt competition

Questions and clues for the scavenger hunt will be revealed over the first three Sundays.  ALL the answers are found in Davin’s book Canadian Whisky: The Portable Expert.  

On the last Sunday – December 22nd, the mystery whiskies will be revealed as will the grand prize winner of the Canadian Goody Basket (10 lovely Canadian whisky samples and an assortment of clichéd Canadiana). 

You are cordially invited to follow hashtag #DavinTT2 and join us on Twitter at 3:00 PM (EST) on Sundays December 1, 8, 15, & 22, 2013. Join us!

The Holiday Season Is Shorter Than Usual, Be Ready For It Now at D&M California! – Whisky News

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Having bottles on hand for upcoming celebrations, unexpected guests and last minute party invitations is key to stress-free holidays. These bottles make it easy – for under $40.00 each!

Michter’s Small Batch American Whiskey

James E. Pepper 1776 Straight Rye Whiskey

Glenfiddich 12 Year Old Distillery Bottling
Single Malt Scotch Whisky

Jura Whisky Is Searching For The World’s Greatest Storyteller! – Scotch Whisky News


We’re searching for the world’s greatest storyteller!

If you’ve got a legendary tale to share with the world, then we’re dying to hear it! Submit your story to our new #WinningWords competition and you could win a luxury trip for two to the Isle of Jura. The prize includes three nights accommondation at the eccentric Jura Lodge, entry to our whisky festival and a VIP tour of the island.

So curl up in front of the fire, pour yourself a dram and put pen to paper; it’s time to write an unforgettable tale.


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