Posts Tagged ‘whisky’

Just for Sweden

April 2, 2009

Our Swedish neighbours have a wee affinity for the Scottish tipple and often get special bottlings. Two very different distilleries are offering their wares purely to the Swedes this Spring.

The first one out is a very special Glengoyne expression – Glengoyne Swedish Oak Finish 16 Years (46.2% abv).

This is (I think) a dual cask bottling comprising of 660 bottles only available through the Swedish monopoly stores – Systembolaget. The price is to be 679 SEK (532 NOK/£58/€61) when it hits the stores in May. The plans for this edition started when Glengoyne in 2007 bought two casks made from Swedish oak from the Thorslundkagge Cooperage in Dyltabruk (Central Sweden, some 120 miles west of Stockholm).

The other is a limited edition whisky bottled at Cask Strength – Bowmore Laimrig (50,3%). Laimrig is gaelic for pier (or wharf, jetty, quay or landing according to Wiktionary). A total of 4.500 bottles have been made and are awaiting release, this also in May.The price for this one is 559 SEK (437 NOK/£47/€51). The whisky itself is 15 years old and has matured for 10 years in ex-bourbon casks before being transferred to ex-Oloroso casks for a period of 5 years.

Tasting notes: Dark amber colour, the nose brings a sweet aroma of Oloroso Sherry, figs and cocoa with a finely tuned smokiness and a hint of saltiness. On the palate it’s dark chocolate, sherry and dried fruits (rasins) with a lovely, long and lingering finish with smoky notes.

Whisky and men

March 8, 2009

Men are simple creatures. We have simple needs. We live by simple principles.

1) Do not insult a man’s work. A man’s work is his personal footprint in history; his achievement in life. It puts a roof over his head and provides for his family.

2) Do not mess with a man’s woman. She’s his love, his life, the mother of his children and the person he takes orders from.

3) Do not take away a man’s whisky. Because after putting up with the work and the wife day in and day out, a man, any man, if there’s any justice in this world, on any given day, deserves a drink … or 10.

Nicked (and sort of taken out of context) from the Bangkok Post.

Whisky sales in Norway, 2008

January 29, 2009

Whisky has never really been “in” in Norway, that honour has been reserved for the French brandy, Cognac. But slowly it’s been building a following that drinks no matter what. This has been proven the last year, and specially after the infamous “Credit Crunch” started. According to the 2008-figures, sales of whisky increased by 1.5% while Cognac was down 5.5%. The sales of malts are up 2.8% to 91,722 liters in total, giving a malt share of 6.7% (up from 6.6% in 2007).

Of the top 250-brands of spirits sold in Norway in 2008, whereof 28 are whiskies and a mere 7 are malts. These 7 malts account for 47.5% of the total sales of malts in Norway. Not surprisingly the winner is Glenfiddich 12yo, with Glen Moray 8yo and The Glenlivet 12yo trailing.

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Whisky in Riga

January 21, 2009

Just got back from a wee trip to the Latvian capitol, Riga – and thought I’d post a snippet about it. Not much of a destination for whisky-lovers as the local seem to have picked Cognac as their foreign-luxury drink of choice. For every day it seems like beer and vodka are the preferred drinks.

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Laphroaig Cask Strength to change

January 4, 2009

Finally got around to see the Laphroaig Christmas Card (this year it was a video with distillery manager John Campbell). One of the main items of news for the new year was that they will change the way the bottle the 10yo Cask Strength-expression. Until now they’ve tried to keep thestrength and flavour more or less consistent, something that is hard to say the least.

This policy has now been given the boot, and Laphroaig will start bottling the 10yo CS in two annual batches, with the batch number clearly stated on the label (like the Aberlour a’Bunadh). So flavour and strength will vary from batch to batch, something that will make the avid drinkers try to sample the all. I know I probably will.

If you haven’t seen it: Laphroaig 2008 Christmas Card (Video)

Norwegian News: January

January 3, 2009

A new year has dawned and the state run monopoly gives everybody a week’s respite before releasing the new products for sale. The official start date is Saturday 10th January. Not much to brag about in whisky terms this time, but then again January tends to be quiet time as everybody has spent all their money shopping for the Christmas hollidays. A total of seven items are marked as NEW, but one is an upgrade and one is a “down-grade”. I’ve used £1=10,4NOK as a rate of exchange for the price conversions.

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Campbeltown releases in 2009

December 31, 2008

J&A Mitchell (Springbank, Kilkerran/Glengyle, Longrow, Hazelburn, Campbeltown Loch etc) has released a small list of their planned official releases for the new year. Most exiting, and surely an item for touts, collectors, hoarders and generally all who don’t really drink the stuff, is a official release from the newly rebuildt Glengyle Distillery (Kilkerra Single Malt).

The releases are as follows:

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Scapa comes of age – again.

December 28, 2008

For the second time in under five years Scapa Distillery willbe changing the age of their standard malt. In 2004 (when the distillery was refurbished) the age went from 12 to 14 years old. Now a 16 year old is making it’s way onto the market, replacing the 14 year old.

The age changes have all been accompanied by a design change as well:

scapa12wv1scapa14wv2scapa16wv2

The new edition is being made available as I write this, and some stores already have it in stock. It’s still unpeated, ex-bourbon matured and bottled at 40%. In additon a price hike is added to the change this time, a £20 price hike none the less (Arkwrights Whisky and Wines has the 14yo at £31.20 and the 16yo at £52.99). Scapa’s getting pushed into the premium segemnt now, maybe not the bt thing to do – but if stocks are running low it might be better to be on the market than disappear completely.

Hopefully a more reasonably priced expression will come in a few years time, maybe a 8 year old again?

Whisky Pub of the Year

October 14, 2008

The Good Pub Guide 2009 hit the street a forthnight ago and comes complete with a range of “Pub of the Year”-awards.

In the category Whisky Pub of the Year this years winner is the Port Charlotte Hotel, in Port Charlotte on Islay (website). I tip my hat to you.

Other 2009-winners include:
Beer Pub of the Year: Tom Cobley, Spreyton, Devon
Own Brew Pub of the Year: Brewery Tap, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire
Wine Pub of the Year: Woods, Dulverton, Somerset
Dining Pub of the Year: Lord Poulett Arms, Hinton St George, Somerset
Bargain Pub of the Year: Six Bells, Chiddingly, East Sussex
Unspoilt Pub of the Year: Square & Compass, Worth Matravers, Dorset
Country Pub of the Year: Royal Oak, Fritham, Hampshire
Town Pub of the Year: Jerusalem Tavern, London EC1
Hotel Bar of the Year: George of Stamford, Stamford, Lincolnshire
New Pub of the Year: Tally Ho, Barkway, Hertfordshire
Inn of the Year: Groes, Ty’n-y-groes, Wales
Licensees of the Year: Mark and Sue Watts of the Rising Sun, Swanmore, Hampshire
Pub of the Year: Golden Heart, Brimpsfield, Gloucestershire

For more information on who the runner-ups where and why the winners came out on top, pick up a copy of the Good Pub Guide 2009 or surf on over to the new GPB-Website and check out pages 11 to 16

It’s coming home

October 9, 2008

What is belived to be the world’s greates whisky collection is coming “home” to Scotland.

Brazilian Claive Vidiz has spent 36 years collection whisky, and has amassed a total of 3,384 bottles. But as he got older (now 73) he decided the collection had to go to someone who could take care of it, without splitting it up.

After spending 8 years deliberating on the matter the result was that Diageo was to be on the receiving end of this massive collection. What Diageo has to fork over for the collection is undisclosed, but it’s belived it didn’t come cheap. Neither did the transportation back to Scotland, as fine arts experts traveled to Brazil to pack the collection for transport.

A “vault” is now built at Edinburghs Scotch Whisky Experience (previously known as The Scotch Whisky Heritage Centre) to house the collection.

Online telly-channel DeadlinenewsTV was there for the presentation:


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