Archive for February, 2019

MACALLAN 26 YEAR OLD PLATINUM OLD & RARE at The Whisky Shop – Scotch Whisky News


Macallan 26 Year Old Platinum Old & Rare

One of only 60 bottles filled from a single sherry butt on 25th May 2018, this Speyside single malt was distilled at the original Macallan distillery in June 1991. Matured for almost three decades, this cask strength release from independent bottler Hunter Laing & Co. is presented at 55.2% abv. Mellow on the nose with dried fruits and a clear sherry influence. The palate is smooth and sweet, with creamy sherried notes before a dry finish with a touch of oak spice.

£1,840.00 – Buy Now

Learn more here

TWS Logo

Vignettes in Whisky Trip to Taiwan – part 2/3 By Mark Dermul, Belgium

Trip to Taiwan – part 2/3

By Mark Dermul, Belgium

Apart from being a whisky blogger and vlogger, Mark Dermul from Belgium also works part time as whisky expert for the auction platform Catawiki. In that capacity he was recently sent – together with two colleagues – to Taiwan on a whisky business trip.

This is his report.

Part 2 of 3.

The Kuva Spirits Collection

Taoyuan, a city south of Taipei, is the home of the five star Hotel Kuva Chateau. It’s claim to fame among whisky aficionados is their spirits collection (which as it happens consists about 95% of whisky bottles). If you’ve ever been to the Whisky Experience in Scotland and witnessed that fine collection of bottles, wait until you see this!


I’m not sure words can do this collection justice, but neither can photos. You have to be there and see it for yourself. I perused this collection for about an hour, taking hundreds of photos, while being discreetly shadowed by a security guard who kept smiling benignly and was very politely making sure I did not try to pry open any of the highly secured glass cabinets.


Every Scottish distillery is represented and every high end bottle showcased. Macallan 40, Talisker 40, Black, White & Gold Bowmore, Auchentoshan 1965, Springbank 50, the list goes on… There were also hundreds of independent releases – even a few released by people I know personally. Funny.

And if you are wondering where all that Japanese whisky with age statement went, look no further. I kid you not, there were no less than 6 shelves filled with Yamazaki 12 and Hakushu 12 and the likes. Amazing display around the faux still in the center of the… shop? Museum?


Our host had announced our arrival and none other than the assistant to the president of the hotel, took it upon himself to invite us to the whisky bar of the hotel. Well, with a whisky menu the size of a telephone book, it was hard to make a selection. Over 2.000 open bottles! After a couple of local Omar Single Casks, he opened up his very last bottle of Yamazaki 12 Year Old Pure Malt (as it was called when bottled in the late 1980s). Liquid history.


For those interested: the Kuva Hotel hosts Taiwan’s largest whisky festival in August.

For a whisky lover, a visit to the Kuva hotel is truly unforgettable.

High End Whisky Shops

It’s no secret that Taiwan has a whisky community that is hardly rivaled anywhere in the world. Taipei, the capital in the north of this beautiful country – has quite a few whisky shops. I could not resist visiting them and what I saw there was often pretty impressive.

In the heart of the city, we visited Whisky112. The shelves were stacked with very high-end limited bottlings. The whole range of Port Ellen, Chichibu, Black Bowmore, … you name it, they most likely have it. And while I was salivating over some bottles, trying to decide whether I should take one of them home, the credit card said no…


On the other side of town, in the suburbs of Taipei, we visited the shop One Whisky World. Again we were dumbfounded with what was on offer. While this shop had many more standard releases, they also had many Taiwan exclusives and special releases. The owner, Mrs Lin, was about to select a cask of GlenDronach and invited us to try the three cask samples she had received. One was a GlenDronach oloroso cask, the other two were Pedro Ximenez. The oloroso was clearly the more complex, the two PX were much more accessible.


I explained to Mrs Lin as follows: ‘The PX I would share with friends, the oloroso I would keep for myself.’ She nodded her understanding, but I secretly hope – and think – that she will bottle all three.

While it was running close to midnight, our host suddenly got a call. A befriended couple was about to open a new whisky shop the very next day and wondered if we might be interested in a sneak peek. Do bears shit in the woods (excuse my French)? Off we went.

Upon arrival, we noticed that the shop did not yet have a billboard with the shop’s name on the store front. And the people inside were still very busy with filling up the shelves. Wait? What?! The bottles there were putting on the shelves were flabbergasting. The shop will specialize (or by the time you read this: specializes) in Macallan, Karuizawa, Yamazki and Chichibu. I tried (and failed miserably) not to drool.


The next whisky shop we visited was in Taichung, a 45-minute ride on the high speed rail train. It was right next to a lobster restaurant where we were treated to a meal that was beyond delicious. Truth be told, every meal that I had in Taiwan was outstanding. Take out Chinese in my neck of the woods will never taste good again, I fear.

This whisky shop was rather ‘normal’ if you know what I mean. Mostly the standard releases that you find in Europe as well, but upholstered with many Taiwan exclusives, especially from Johnnie Walker and Glenlivet.

The whisky shop we visited after lunch – which was also the last whisky shop we visited – however, was again one that offered bottlings that would make your eyes pop out. The funny thing is, that the Spirits Salon’s storefront was so non-descript that you’d be forgiven for driving by without a second glance. How weird, considering what is on their shelves.


Recent bottlings? Hardly any. Old and rare bottlings galore! Almost all Rare Malts, lots of black labeled dumpy bottlings from Cadenhead, a whole range of old Connoisseurs Choice releases by Gordon & Macphail with those old and ugly brown labels. And what about that Karuizawa 28 Year Old 1984 for ANA Intercontinental? I doubled checked my insurance before handling the bottle, for the price tag was 6.000 euros. Boy, oh, boy… if it were not for another appointment with a Catawiki seller, we’d probably still be there.

The 1st part was published on February 17th and the final part 3 will be published on March 3rd.


6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar on Indiegogo – Scotch Whisky News


Announcement – 6th Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar on Indiegogo

This is the most important announcement we’ve ever made.

It’s been 5 years since Cindy and I created the first ever Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar.

To say that our journey has been a challenge would be understating it. Every step of the way we have had to push through

  • Regulatory challenges
  • Traditional retail industry apathy
  • Hundreds of moving parts/logistics that make production always a hyper-stressful, last-minute affair

By the time everyone in the process gets their piece of the pie, we use the last Oliver-Twist-sized slice of cash to start the journey all over again.

We’re now at a point where we will NOT be able to make our 6th Edition Scotch Advent Calendar without help, so we are launching an Indiegogo campaign for 6th Edition orders (and other cool stuff too).

Every penny will help. If you want to join the Secret Spirits adventure in 2019, this will be the ONLY way to order the 6th Edition, and you will have ONLY 43 days to do so. We must receive enough orders to ensure we can actually get the Scotch and make the 6th Edition, and if we do, THEN we will only make as many as were ordered. So the 6th Edition will be sold out before it even gets made! And YOU will be part of a mighty exclusive club…

The 43 day campaign begins on March the 1st.

Even though we’ve always called our annual box of Scotch an “advent calendar”, presenting 25 days of Scotch from December 1st through Christmas Day, it is even more accurate to say simply each box has 25 doors.

As you know, our unique “packaging gamification” of rarer whiskies in larger bottles offers far more than just whiskies you’ve never tasted before and won’t taste again: they take you on an imaginative adventure.

The journey begins whenever you’re ready, and can last as long as you like. It’s the ultimate birthday, Christmas, anniversary and retirement gift for anyone who loves whisky.

We pack five years-worth of whisky tasting experience into every box, and every 50ml bottle has enough whisky in it for a few people to share the experience (or to just keep all for yourself).

Over the last 5 years, we have slowly built a community of people like YOU who have helped us continue to forge this brand new category in our industry. Through sheer passion for what we do and because of the happiness it brings people all over the world, Cindy and I have put everything on the line to continue to dream big and create magic.

We humbly ask for your help so we can continue that dream.

Jonathan and Cindy

Secret Spirits

*We will keep you in-the-loop when the campaign goes LIVE.
Mark March 1st on your calendar!

“Malt Assembly”, a Whisky Lovers’ Social Networking Mobile App – Whisky News


“Malt Assembly”, a Whisky Lovers’ Social Networking Mobile App

February 7, 2019

“Malt Assembly” was officially launched on February 7, 2019, it is a new social networking mobile application developed by a group of whisky lovers. It shall connect you with other whisky lovers around the world effortlessly at your fingertips.

There is no any unique, handy social platform or mobile App to get whisky lovers connected in the past. “Malt Assembly” is a social networking mobile application, which connects and encourages communications between whisky lovers, collectors and investors on an unique platform.

With “Malt Assembly”, you can exchange thoughts and share your precious moments of enjoying great whiskies with other whisky lovers. It assembles whisky lovers to join their preferred tasting events, create and update their tasting notes.

“Malt Assembly” shall also connect malt masters, brand ambassadors, whisky bar owners, bartenders, and spirits merchants with the whisky lovers around the globe.

Features of “Malt Assembly”:


Whisky Tasting Event Creation

You may create your own private whisky tasting events and invite your preferred invitees to join. Public tasting events can be created and featured to all users with “Malt Assembly”.


Whisky Bar Search & Create Your Favourite Whisky Bars List

You may search for whisky bars by your current locations or by selecting the city of which you are going to visit. Visited whisky bars shall be saved in your personalized whisky bars list.


Whisky Database and Personalized Tasting Notes

You may search the whisky database to create your own whisky collections. Upload photos of the whisky, create and maintain your personal tasting notes.


Whisky News

You may read the latest news articles published to stay abreast of the whisky news around the world.

Discover more about “Malt Assembly”, download it and get connected.


Inchgower 25 Year Old at The Whisky Barrel – Scotch Whisky News

twb inchgower-25-year-old-1989-old-_-rare

Inchgower 25 Year Old

1989 vintage single cask Hogshead bottled by Hunter Laing & Co. for the Platinum series. 266 bottles. Inchgower 25 Year Old 1989 vintage Speyside single malt Scotch whisky. Single cask refill hogshead bottled October 2014 by Hunter Laing & Co. for the Old & Rare Platinum Selection series. 266 bottles.

Alexander Wilson established Inchgower Distillery in 1871 as a replacement for his Tochineal Distillery. Inchgower is situated just to the south of Buckie in Speyside and near the site of the former Inchgower coaching inn. Right on the mill lead which led water from the Burn of Buckie down to the Mill of Buckie thereby supplying the distillery with soft spring water. It was also conveniently sited by the road which ran to Buckie harbour and railway station. Inchgower’s still were increased from two to four in 1966 and most of its production is destined for blending.

Shop £151.78

TWB 337


New Arrivals and Back in Stock at K&L California – Scotch Whisky News


Glenmorangie “Allta” Private Edition Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) $99.99 View

Balblair 21 Year “The Macphail’s Collection” Gordon & Macphail Single Malt Scotch (750ml) (Elsewhere $160) $109.99 View

Linkwood 21 Year Old Gordon & Macphail Speyside Whisky (750ml) (Elsewhere $170) $109.99 View

Old Pulteney 21 Year Old “The Macphail’s Collection” Gordon & MacPhail Single Malt Whisky (750ml) (Elsewhere $170) $109.99 View

Phone: (877) KL-WINES (Toll Free 877.559.4637)
K&L Wine Merchants 3005 El Camino Real Redwood City, CA 94061 USA
San Francisco, Redwood City, Hollywood CA


Scotch Malt Whisky Society “A sweet seduction” – Scotch Whisky News

SMWS Feb19b

Can we tempt you with this sweet selection of preview whiskies from next month’s bottling list? All under an attractive £60, these charming characters tantalise with juicy summer fruits, pink marshmallows, dark chocolate brownies and sweet bacon jam. Only a limited number of bottles are available now, with the full March Outturn coming your way on Friday, 1 March at 9am. Order these exclusive previews before they’re gone.


SMWS Feb19a

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 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






  • The latest batch of Jameson Bow Street 18 Years Cask Strength has been unveiled
  • The pinnacle of the Jameson family finishes its maturation in Dublin’s only live Maturation House at Bow Street

Jameson Irish Whiskey, which is produced by Irish Distillers in Midleton Distillery, has announced that a second batch of Jameson Bow Street 18 Years Cask Strength will be available from August 2019. The only cask strength Jameson to be available globally, the expression finishes its maturation in Dublin’s only live Maturation House in the Jameson Distillery Bow Street – celebrating Jameson’s Dublin heritage by returning a part of the production process to its original home in Smithfield.

Distilled and matured at the Midleton Distillery, Co. Cork, Jameson Bow Street 18 Years Cask Strength is the head of the Jameson family. After spending 18 years in a collection of bourbon and sherry casks, the blend of pot still and grain Irish whiskeys has been married together and re-casked in first-fill ex-bourbon American oak barrels for a final six to 12 months in the Maturation House at the Jameson Distillery Bow Street.

‘Marrying’ is a traditional method of re-casking batches of vatted whiskey and re-warehousing it to ensure infusion before bottling. The second batch is presented at 55.1% ABV without the use of chill filtration and will be available in 20 markets from August 2019 at the RRP of €240.

To support the launch, Jameson has partnered with craft Dublin cheesemonger, Loose Canon, to inspire discerning whiskey drinkers to embark on a journey of flavour discovery through whiskey and cheese matching with the Jameson 18 family this St. Patrick’s Day. Each born from a traditional craft production method using careful maturation and offering complex and powerful flavour profiles, Jameson has created a suite of whiskey and cheese pairings and matching principles to encourage Jameson drinkers to get creative this March.

Billy Leighton, Master Blender at Midleton Distillery, commented: “I’ve long had the unique luxury of being able to taste Jameson straight from the barrel at cask strength. With Jameson Bow Street 18 Years Cask Strength, I’m thrilled that Irish whiskey fans around the world can experience the full intensity of our whiskey or add a few drops of water to enjoy it at their own preferred strength.

“As a tribute to the Jameson distilling legacy in Smithfield, we’ve introduced some methods that would have been employed in days past. The final maturation period in Bow Street is our nod to the traditional “marrying” method. We’ve put our own Jameson stamp on it by using first-fill bourbon barrels, whereas the traditional approach would be to use casks multiple times. I like to think of the whiskey getting engaged in Midleton and then “married” in Dublin!”

Simon Fay, International Marketing Director at Irish Distillers, added: “While Jameson’s approachability has been key to its success, we had an opportunity with the launch of Jameson Bow Street 18 Years Cask Strength last year to reinforce the more serious whiskey side of the brand’s heritage. Consumers are looking for increased choice in style and quality in Irish whiskey and Jameson, as the category leader, is committed to satisfying this appetite.

“On top of that, our research shows that consumers are increasingly looking for brand experiences and the reaction that we have had from consumers that have been able to experience the sounds, aroma and aura of a functioning maturation room in the heart of Dublin has been phenomenal. Our doors are open and we look forward to welcoming even more whiskey fans to taste a piece of whiskey history.”

Jameson Bow Street 18 Years Cask Strength is presented in a premium bottle design that truly reflects the quality and rarity of the liquid within. The bottle features 18 facets, one for each year of maturation, and the wooden presentation box celebrates the traditional pot stills used during the production process. In addition, a unique copper coin located underneath Jameson Bow Street 18 Years Cask Strength bottles provides Jameson fans with access to an exclusive online portal where they can delve deeper into the story of the whiskey which bears the Bow Street name.


Notes : 

Tasting notes by Billy Leighton, Master Blender at the Midleton Distillery:

Nose: Rich wood-driven influence with deep toffee notes and spice.

Taste: Toffee and oak remain consistent with hints of leather and vanilla along with a subtle sherry nuttiness creating depth and complexity.

Finish: Long and full with the sweet toffee notes slowly fading while the toasted oak and spice linger throughout until the very end

About Jameson 18 Years

Jameson 18 Years, presented at 40% ABV and first released 15 years ago, has become one of the world’s most respected and awarded Irish whiskeys and will remain in the Jameson family, available in key markets globally. Jameson Bow Street 18 Years Cask Strength Batch One was launched in April 2018, with Batch Two launching in February 2019.

 About Irish Distillers

Irish Distillers is Ireland’s leading supplier of spirits and wines and producer of the world’s most well-known and successful Irish whiskeys. Led by Jameson, our brands are driving the global renaissance of Irish whiskey. Jameson is the world’s fastest-growing Irish whiskey, experiencing 29 years of consecutive growth and hitting sales of 7.3m cases in 2018. Our brands are exported to 130+ markets, with over 80 of those experiencing double- or triple-digit growth.

 rish Distillers was formed in 1966, when a merger took place between John Power & Son, John Jameson & Son and Cork Distilleries Company. In 1988 Irish Distillers joined Pernod Ricard, gaining access to unprecedented levels of investment and an extensive global distribution network. Since 2012, we have invested over €250m to double our production and bottling capacity to meet global demand for our products. We employ over 600 people across our operations in Cork and Dublin.


About Pernod Ricard

Pernod Ricard is the world’s n°2 in wines and spirits with consolidated Sales of €8,987 million in FY18. Created in 1975 by the merger of Ricard and Pernod, the Group has undergone sustained development, based on both organic growth and acquisitions: Seagram (2001), Allied Domecq (2005) and Vin&Sprit (2008). Pernod Ricard holds one of the most prestigious brand portfolios in the sector: Absolut Vodka, Ricard pastis, Ballantine’s, Chivas Regal, Royal Salute and The Glenlivet Scotch whiskies, Jameson Irish whiskey, Martell cognac, Havana Club rum, Beefeater gin, Malibu liqueur, Mumm and Perrier-Jouët champagnes, as well Jacob’s Creek, Brancott Estate, Campo Viejo and Kenwood wines. Pernod Ricard employs a workforce of approximately 18,900 people and operates through a decentralised organisation, with 6 “Brand Companies” and 86 “Market Companies” established in each key market. Pernod Ricard is strongly committed to a sustainable development policy and encourages responsible consumption. Pernod Ricard’s strategy and ambition are based on 3 key values that guide its expansion: entrepreneurial spirit, mutual trust and a strong sense of ethics.

Pernod Ricard is listed on Euronext (Ticker: RI; ISIN code: FR0000120693) and is part of the CAC 40 index.

The Macallan 18 Triple Cask Matured at Milroys of Soho – Scotch Whisky News


The Macallan 18 Triple Cask, 43% £199.95


The Macallan 18 Year Old Triple Cask, 2018 release.

The Macallan is a distillery that needs no introduction, the iconic whisky is enjoyed throughout the world. This 18 Year Old expression is a marriage of whisky matured in European and American sherry seasoned oak casks, and ex-bourbon American oak casks matured for an impressive 18 years.

Nose: floral and orange citrus aromas

Palate: baking spices, vanilla, nutmeg

Limited Stocks!

Exclusive price of £199.95 + shipping.
For international orders please call the shop on +44 (0) 207 734 2277



The Whisky Exchange “Ardbeg 25 Director’s Special – Whisky Show: Old & Rare bottling” – Scotch Whisky News


Ardbeg 25 Director’s Special – Whisky Show: Old & Rare bottling

This weekend sees the return of Whisky Show: Old & Rare to the Grand Central Hotel in Glasgow. As usual, there’ll be stacks of excellent whiskies to try, from interesting old blends to ancient American whiskies and some of the finest single malts ever bottled.


See the 2019 dram list >

The latest addition to the ranks – which already includes a 1930s bottling of non-peaty Laphroaig, Black Bowmore, our 10th-anniversary 1967-vintage Karuizawa (it’s our 20th birthday this year…), and an Old Orkney from Stromness bottled around 1910 – is the show bottling: The Whisky Show:Old & Rare 2019 Ardbeg 25 Year Old Director’s Special.

Ardbeg’s history has a number of stops and starts. Before the modern era, its last burst of whisky making was between 1989 and 1996. The Ardbeg that we mostly drink today was made since the distillery’s rebirth in 1997, but this release was distilled in that final flurry of activity before current owner LVMH took the reins.

It was a golden era, currently being mined the Ardbeg Twenty-Something releases, and we are particularly pleased to have this bottle to celebrate our 2019 show.


Ardbeg 25 Years Old Single Malts of Scotland Director’s Special

Nose: Brine and bonfires – farmyard straw smouldering on the beach. Cracked stone and rock pools lead to sweeter notes of apples, pears and dried apricots. Sherbet lemons build, with more minerality and gentle minty notes behind.

Palate: Fresh and zesty to start, with candied lemons quickly overrun by burning peat and straw. Liquorice root and cooling menthol are balanced against stewed apple and a touch of blackcurrant. Pepper notes build along with olive oil and brine.

Finish: Liquorice, green grass and tingling spice face to leave coal ash and mint fondant.

Comment: Not as gentle as some twenty-something Ardbegs, but with all the elegance you’d expect. Powerful, characterful, and very tasty.

The whisky will be on sale at the show and any remaining bottles will be available from The Whisky Exchange website when they have made their way down from Scotland. You can sign up for an alert when the whisky is live on our Ardbeg 25 Years Old Single Malts of Scotland Director’s Special page.

Powered by WordPress