Archive for January, 2016

Wemyss Malts First Single Cask Release of 2016 – Scotch Whisky News

Wemyss Single Casks Jan 15 Release group 2

Wemyss Malts First Single Cask Release of 2016

Independent bottler, Wemyss Malts, is thrilled to announce its first Single Cask release of 2016. Six casks have been selected to showcase the best of Speyside, Islay and The Highlands and, ranging in age from 13 to 25 years old. There are a number of highlights including cask strength “Coastal Confection” from Islay.

William Wemyss, Founder and Managing Director at Wemyss Malts, commented: “In this most recent release we have selected some fantastic whiskies which exemplify the quality of the casks we source for our single cask bottlings. They offer a unique snapshot of Scotland’s distilleries and I’m sure our customers will be delighted with the selection.”

The full cask list of this release comprises:

“Sizzling Charcoal” 1997 single cask from Bunnahabhain Distillery, Islay,

“Coastal Confection” 1996 single cask from Bowmore Distillery, Islay, Cask Strength

“The Highland Mariner 1997 single cask from Clynelish Distillery, Highlands

“Fallen Apples” 1989 singe cask from Glen Garioch Distillery, Highlands

“Barrista’s Dram” 2002 single cask from Craigellachie Distillery, Speyside

“Toasted Anise” 1996 single cask from Glenrothes Distillery, Speyside

Each cask has been selected and named by the Wemyss tasting panel, under the watchful eye of industry aficionado Charlie Maclean.   There are only a few hundred bottles from each cask and the suggested retail prices range from £55 to £110. These bottlings will be available in selected retailers in the UK, EU and key Asian markets.


  • Edinburgh based Wemyss Malts is owned by the Wemyss family and their family seat is Wemyss Castle in Fife where they’ve lived since the 1300s.
  • Wemyss Malts has an ongoing blended malt whisky range comprising: The Spice King, The Peat Chimney and The Hive; single malt single cask bottlings and blended Scotch range, Lord Elcho.
  • The Wemyss family premium wines and spirits brands also include boutique gin Darnley’s View, together with the premium wine estate of Rimauresq Cru Classé in Cotes de Provence.
  • The family has opened a single malt distillery at Kingsbarns, near St. Andrews in Fife

Scotch Whisky Auctions 58th Auction Preview – Scotch Whisky News

SWA B&W Logo


Welcome to our newsletter for this record breaking, spectacular, simply awesome 58th auction.

Big Peatrie is as excited as he has ever been by this month’s auction and has whittled down his favourites to a carefully selected few and you can catch up with this preview vLog here.

The most straightforward way of guiding you through this auction is by distillery and to avoid favouritism this month we shall begin at the beginning of the alphabet and point out the highlights on the way.

First stop on our wonderful trip is Ardbeg and they bring us a 40 year old, a Sestante bottling of Ardbeg distilled in 1963, a single cask bottled by Signatory distilled in 1967, a wonderful Provenance Third release.

Bass brings us the Bass Prince’s Ale, the holy grail of beer to some, there’s a Black Bruichladdich, a 32 year old bottled for Jack Wiebers. Bowmore is well represented with a 40 year old from 1955, a Bowmore Sherriff’s, and two Bicentenaries.

Cadenhead’s brings us a Glenturret, Caperdonich, Ardbeg in those lovely dumpy bottles. Glen Grant brings us drams that are 38 and 45 years old and some that were distilled in 1948 and 1949. Glenfarclas brings us a 58 year old bottled for Wealth Solutions and a 50 year old decanter.

Glenfiddich chips in with three bottles from the 60s, 1961, 1963 & 1964, as well as a 40 year old and an Ultimate 38 Year Old. Glenlivet brings us drams from 1938, 1940 and 1949 as well as the Glenlivet Vintages collection.

Karuizawa is once again at the forefront of our wishlist with a host of Karuizawa Ghosts Series 2nd Edition, as well as a host of Nohs, Samurais, a Geisha and a vast array of single casks.

Macallan has an embarrassment of riches including 1937 decanter, a bottle distilled in 1946, one from 1951, three 1963s, as well as phalanx of Photographers and a Fine and Rare Mini collection.

Port Ellen heads up our lost distillery section, with notable contributions from Brora, Littlemill, Rosebank, Millburn and Glenury Royal.

Finally Yamazaki has three 25 year olds and one 25 year old Limited Edition.


As always there is a plethora of great drinking drams and great examples of liquid history available for you all to peruse at your leisure and bid away to your hearts’ content.

All the best from us here at SWA HQ!

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The Dundee Dell Special Dufftown Scotch Tasting January, 21st – Scotch Whisky News

Dundee Dell

We have a very special Scotch Tasting this month including Convalmore 30 yr and Pittyvaich 26 years. The Convalmore distillery is closed so this scotch is very rare at 30 yrs. This tasting is focused on the scotch from the Dufftown area and will include Glendullan, Mortlach, Glenfiddich, Balvenie, and a 28yr Dufftown Chairman.  This tasting is an amazing value for $50 so bring a friend to share this special occasion with.


Dundee Dell, 5007 Underwood Ave, Omaha, NE 68132

Glenfarclas “2015 Awards Review” – Scotch Whisky News


J. & G. Grant are delighted to have won numerous awards for their whisky over the duration of 2015. Glenfarclas started off the year with a Highly Commended Nomination as an Icon of Whisky in the hugely popular Whisky Magazine. The Glenfarclas range as a whole has shown considerable success across several of its core range products in both spirits competitions and whisky fairs abroad. Most notably the Glenfarclas 30 Years Old achieved a Double Gold Award at Stockholm Beer & Whisky Fair, followed by the 21 Years Old being voted Best Whisky at Oslo Whisky Fair in October. Younger Glenfarclas products have also shared the spotlight with both Glenfarclas 10 Years Old & 12 Years Old winning Silver in the 2015 International Wine & Spirit Competition.


This year, reviews in Jim Murray’s recently released 2016 Whisky Bible include awards for the unique collection of Family Casks. The Family Casks 1957 (cask no. 2110, Release SP15) was nominated Single Cask Whisky of the Year scoring 96.5/100 in which Jim Murray comments “I struck lucky with this, as it ticks every single box that a great malt might, and there is not a single cross to be found.” The Family Casks 1985 (cask no. 2593, Release SP15) also won Best Single Cask Whisky aged between 28-34 Years (again scoring 96.5/100) and was described as “one of the most supremely balanced Glenfarclases of all time”. Similar results were awarded to core range products such as the 12 Years Old & 40 Years Old which both scored 94/100, in addition to the iconic 105 Cask Strength winning 95.5/100 respectively.


Slàinte to a successful year!

Tel: +44 (0) 1807 500257
Fax: +44 (0) 1807 500234
Address: Glenfarclas Distillery, Ballindalloch, Banffshire AB37 9BD, UK


Mark Reynier of Waterford Distillery Interviewed at Malt – Irish Whiskey News

AA Mark

Mark Reynier of Waterford Distillery Interviewed at Malt

Mark Reynier, former CEO of Bruichladdich and now the man in charge of Waterford Distillery, is now interviewed at whisky website Malt. In this in-depth interview he talks about his new venture into Irish whiskey at Waterford, why he’s so focussed on barley, and how he felt when Bruichladdich was sold to Rémy Cointreau.

To read the interview visit

For more information email

(Link to interview: )

Diageo 2015 Special Release Bottles In Stock at Single Malts Direct – Scotch Whisky News


We still have stock of the highly sought-after collectibles from Diageo’s Special Release 2015. These whiskies are highly desirable so it is recommended to buy quickly to avoid disappointment.To view the full range of our collectables follow this link:  Collectors Corner

Single Malts Direct 36 Gordon Street | Huntly | Aberdeenshire | AB54 8EQ | Scotland UK

+44 (0) 845 606 6145 |




The award-winning British Isles blended whisky, The ONE produced by The Lakes Distillery blended with the who’s who of British talent as the official Whisky of the 21st National Television Awards’ VIP After Show Party.

Award winners including Ant & Dec, Billy Connolly, Suranne Jones and Danny Dyer along with the cast of shows including Doctor Foster, This Morning and Strictly Come Dancing celebrated their wins with a dram of The ONE.

“As an award winning newcomer in the artisan craft business The ONE is the perfect pairing as the official Whisky to the worthy winners of the National Television Awards”, said Paul Currie, founder and managing director of The Lakes Distillery.

The Lakes Distillery’s artisan spirits are produced on-site at the distillery in The Lake District National Park using water collected just 150m from the site, water which has travelled from sprinkling tarn near England’s highest peak to the Derwent River flowing next to the site. The ONE has won a string of awards in the world’s most authoritative, respected and influential spirits competitions.

The ONE, in tandem with Liquor to Lips, the UK’s leading drinks events, entertainment and marketing consultancy, ensured Award winners will be in esteemed company with Blackdown Artisan Spirits, Peter Spanton Drinks, Neat Tasting Glasses and the Whisky Key providing a bespoke offering to our nations most celebrated Television personalities.

The Lakes Distillery opened its doors to the public in December 2014, shortly after it started production of The Lakes Single Malt, The Lakes Gin and The Lakes Vodka. Visitors to the £7m distillery in Cumbria can follow a world class tour of the production facility, taste the spirits created on site in the award winning artisan bar and Bistro at the Distillery, and go away with a souvenir from the shop selling distillery products and locally produced fare.

More information about the Lakes Distillery is available at

More information abbot The Bistro at The Lakes is available at:

Picture caption: The Lakes Distillery’s award- The ONE at the O2 arena for the 21st National Television Awards

Notes to Editors:

The ONE, The Lakes Gin, The Lakes Vodka and both the Connoisseurs’ Club and Founders’ Club are available to buy online at

The Lakes Distillery

  • The Lakes Distillery, England’s newest craft distillery, opened to the public in December 2014. The Lakes Single Malt began production on 16th December 2014 and will be available in 2017. Its blended whisky from the British Isles, called The ONE, the Lakes Gin and the Lakes Vodka are available to buy now.
  • Six miles from Keswick along the A66 or a similar distance from Cockermouth The Lakes Distillery is next to Bassenthwaite Lake, in an area of unimaginable beauty encircled by Cumbrian fells
  • The experienced team behind the Lakes Distillery includes managing director Paul Currie who co-founded the Arran Distillery, Master Distiller Chris Anderson with over 30 years’ experience and Alan Rutherford a former Production Director of Diageo who renovated the historic buildings of an old Victorian Model Farm next to the famous river Derwent and are producing a new world-class blended whisky, single malt, gin and vodka
  • The water from the famous River Derwent, with its source high up in the fells, a team steeped in experience of producing spirits, and perfect conditions for distilling create a very special range of spirits
  • The Bistro at The Distillery is overseen by Michelin star chef Terry Laybourne and won OpenTable Diner’s Choice Award for four months running in Cumbria and Keswick. The Bistro at the distillery employs local staff and offers indoor and outdoor dining options.

The Whisky Exchange “Starward – A New World Whisky” – Australian Whisky News


Starward – a New World Whisky

Australian whisky is on the up. This is far from a new thing, with Sullivans Cove French Oak picking up the World’s Best Whisky award at the World Whiskies Awards in 2014 and more distilleries springing up all the time. Despite the success, it’s still difficult to find Australian drams on the shelves on the UK. However, we have had a new one arrive recently – Starward from the New World Whisky Distillery.

I first heard about the whisky a couple of years ago, and more than anything, the bottle design grabbed me. I’m a sucker for beautiful labels and Starward ticks all the boxes – star maps, a pretty font and a name that’s a single letter away from being Star Wars. Unfortunately, it wasn’t available in the UK so I just lusted after a bottle from afar, keeping an eye on their website for news, and hoping that it also tasted good…

My wait, and yours, is now over, as Starward has made its way to the UK.

Unlike most Australian distillers, New World Whisky is based on the mainland, in Melbourne. It’s about as close to Tasmania – Australia’s distilling heartland – as you can get without falling into the sea, but has a different climate, thanks to being sandwiched between the cool sea and the country’s hot interior.

It’s a very Australian whisky, made with local barley and matured in apera casks. Apera’s a term that most people haven’t heard before – it’s the new name for Australian sherry. There are strict rules in Europe about where sherry can be made (which you can learn more about in my posts on sherry casks) so to be a good global citizen, and to open the door for exporting it to Europe, the Australian lawmakers have decreed that locally produced fortified wine can no longer be called ‘sherry’ and will henceforth be called ‘apera’. Be warned: if you ask for apera in Australia you will almost certainly get a blank look – other than on the labels, the name change doesn’t seem to have got all that far…

Starward’s whisky is exclusively matured in old apera casks – the average age is more than 20 years old – and the casks are recoopered, resized and retoasted before being filled. They also use a variety of different sizes of cask which, along with Melbourne’s changeable climate, gives New World a good range of styles of spirit to play with when creating their whiskies. Outside of the current release of Starward, they’re still experimenting, with other types of cask quietly maturing, including some Australian Shiraz wine casks – the first release has already appeared, and it’s gone down very well. There’s definitely more to come.

AA Starward


Nose: Sweet shop notes leap out of the glass – tins of travel sweets and candy necklaces – accompanied by candied flowers, spiced sponge cake with butter icing and jam filling, sugar-dusted puff pastry, sultanas and a touch of gooey caramel.

Palate: Thick and sweet, with golden-syrup sandwiches (on brown bread), malt loaf, ginger cake, speculaas and lebkuchen biscuits, and a background hint of black liquorice. As that calms down, the liquorice slowly becomes more minty and menthol, with a touch of milk chocolate and cherry jam sneaking in around the sides.

Finish: Fresh and leafy to start, with mint slowly fading to a sweet and chocolatey end.

Comment: While the spiciness on the palate suggests that this whisky is youthful, it has definitely picked up a lot of flavour in its time in wood and combines freshness with complexity. There’s a marked contrast between nose, palate and finish, but each element works well. In short – I’m a fan. It was worth the wait.

Reasonably priced at about £50, it’s now firmly on my list of world whiskies to recommend – tasty, pretty and not too dear.

It seems I am not their only fan, with Diageo’s Distill Ventures recently investing in the company. With some new cash behind them, as well as some rather canny early-days management of both money and casks, I’m hoping to see lots more from Starward and New World Whisky. Hopefully their next release won’t take quite as long to get to the UK.

Scotch Malt Whisky Society “JANUARY UPDATE: 5 UNDER £50” – Scotch Whisky News

AA SMWS Summer Day Dreaming


The darkest, coldest and leanest month of the year is coming to a close but, even with belts tightened after the holidays, gorgeous whisky doesn’t need to be out of reach. These modestly priced but meticulously crafted drams will brighten and warm the bleakest day – only a handful left…

Spicy & sweet

85.33 Poolside posing in Beverly Hills
Bathing beauties on shiny waxed wooden decks and freshly cut lawns. Glossy apples, cherries, ginger…
Age: 9 years
Cask: First fill ex-bourbon barrel
Price: £45.10

Young & spritely

70.12 Heady, Zingy and Fizzy
A strong exhilarating aroma greeted the Panel and got us all very excited. It was an array of heady aromas…
Age: 9 years
Cask: Refill ex-bourbon barrel
Price: £47.50

39.119 Strictly whisky
A polished, real wood, oak parquet dance floor with tropical, fruity and perfumed aromas surrounding the dancers let us drift off as we carried on daydreaming…
Age: 10 years
Cask: Refill ex-bourbon hogshead
Price: £47.00

Light & delicate

58.18 Toffee and sunny, runny honey.

The nose conveys camomile, lemon and laundry freshness and abundant fruity sweetness (jam tarts, Danish pastries, vanilla slices…
Age: 9 years
Cask: First fill ex-bourbon barrel
Price: £47.90

Juicy, oak & vanilla

39.115 Straight up-and-down.
Grass cuttings and dustiness of a village green cricket ground with aromas of linseed oil and leather…
Age: 10 years
Cask: Refill ex-bourbon hogshead
Price: £47.00 

Browse Current Outturn >
Browse All Bottlings >

Contact: or call 0131 555 2929 (Mon-Fri 9am-4.45pm).

Visit the Society here for membership information

This is your chance to join and to take advantage of their great offers!

Spot the SMWS bottles in this amusing You Tube video

Lochside 52yo at The Whisky Shop – Scotch Whisky News

AA Lochside

Lochside 52 year old

Distilled in Lochside Distillery – which was completely demolished in 2005 – and aged in a refill hogshead for 52 years. Bottled at cask a strength of 48.1% volume, non chill-filtered with its natural colour. One of only 83 bottles.

Official Tasting Notes

The nose is complex with notes of dark fruits, candle wax and furniture polish. The palate has more in the way of rich forest fruits, with additional hints of green moss and wood-fire smokiness. The finish is long and warm, with lingering oak notes.

£960 Click to buy

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