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Category: Single Malt News

I needed to share these videos with the other Keepers. Isle of Jura has spun off an interesting little marketing theme. Whatever your view on mixing single malts, you might find these interesting.

First the challenge:

Then to the Ilse of Jura for the results:

Sorry for link, I think I crashed the site, and can’t find the direct link to the video but this should be the page)

Keep in mind that it is what it is (how’s that for a Tao statement) but they have some interesting ideas. I won’t repeat the content, go to the site and check it out.


Some bad news came out of Sam’s Fat Tuesday Spirits Night event actually. Straight from the mouth of the memorable and charming Burn Stewart sales rep came the news that the Tobermory distillery has hit a 6-year wide production gap 🙁 in Ledaig 15. There isn’t any to be found world wide until 2012. Ugh. This is equivalent, in my mind, to the production gap (I just hate those 2 words together like that) in Springbank 21. That one, as far as I can tell, was/is 7 years wide; 2002 – 2009.

So, if you have any Ledaig 15 please share some with me!

In the mean time if you want to stock up Binny’s has some left but Sam’s does not. Funny…Binny’s shopping cart says it’s “widely available”. Just goes to show you – never believe a data base.

Ledaig now comes in a port wood and sherry finish, retail approx $30 each. I was unable to find an age expression on either. I was unable to find out much more on the web about this release. The Burn Stewart Distillery home page hasn’t been updated in a while with fresh news.

I haven’t been to Sam’s lately (although they are building a Sam’s in Highland Park in an old Dominick’s building now–just dangerously too close for me), but I did find that you can obtain Laphroaig Quarter Cask bottles from Binnys for a cool $47. Laphroaig has even dedicated a section of their website to the spirit:

Highland Park 18Wonderful honor for a the Scotch whisky industry, the amazing distiller Highland Park, and my favorite spirit – Highland Park 18. The following is an article that my RSS feed gave me today with [editorial comments from Bop].

A WHISKY produced at a distillery in Orkney has been named the best spirit in the world by a leading drinks magazine in the United States.

The Highland Park 18-year-old single malt topped a list of the world’s 100 best distilled spirits, published in the American Spirit Journal.

The list was compiled by the American drinks specialist Paul Pacult, who judged thousands of whiskies, rums, gins, vodkas, tequilas and other distilled spirits for the list [prodigious list…I’m personally glad to see it beat the tequila].

He said: “Out of the hundreds of whiskies from Scotland, Canada, the US, Japan, India and Ireland, Highland Park 18-year-old is the finest of them all and right now is my favourite distilled spirit.

He added: “After 25 years’ experience, it fits my profile of what makes a perfect whisky, which is to say it’s totally in harmony, there are no rough edges and everything is melded together brilliantly.” [I love how they all attempt, throughout this article, to describe it’s perfection…]

The announcement was welcomed by Highland Park, which is based in Kirkwall, Orkney. Ken Grier, the director of malts for the distillery, said: “It’s not only a huge accolade for Highland Park, it’s a major achievement for Scottish whisky.

“It’s fantastic for the industry as a whole and it underpins the care, craft and attention we put into our brands.”

Yesterday, an independent whisky expert said the award would not come as a surprise to lovers of Scottish whisky as the Highland Park 18-year old is a “single malt that really sings to you” [Great description…couldn’t have said it better myself].

Jim Murray, the author of the international bestseller Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible, said the whisky was very nearly flawless [yet another attempt to describe perfection].

“It’s the kind of whisky that if you are entertaining a young lady who doesn’t like whisky and you pour a Highland Park 18, you will convert her. [Now that would be a noble experiment – find out if this standard does indeed measure perfection in a spirit. I, humbly, volunteer for this dangerous assignment]

“It is a massively beautiful whisky. On the nose, it’s like an empty honey jar that once held peaty embers. It possesses a soft sweetness that is never over the top. [Empty honey jar that once held peaty embers….does anyone else picture Winnie the Pooh with Scottish dirt on his snout?]

Murray added that his favourite whisky is not Highland Park 18 [heretic!], but George T Stagg, a bourbon [gasp!] produced at the Buffalo Trace Distillery in America. “There’s no doubt that [the Highland Park] is one of the best, however,” he added.

Highland Park was established in 1798 and is Scotland’s northernmost distillery.

The brand, which has already won awards from Whisky Magazine and the Chicago Beverage Testing Institute [perhaps they mean the KOTQ-Chicago Chapter…if not we need to check it out], launched the 18-year-old single malt in 1997 [interesting – I did not know that did you?!?]. It is priced at £58 a bottle [a steal].

Other Scotch whiskies in the list’s top ten included Ardbeg Uigeadail Islay Single Malt which came fourth, Bowmore Darkest Sherry Single Malt (ninth) and The Macallan Fine Oak 15-Year-Old Speyside Single Malt (tenth). [Viceroy and hosts take note – Looks like a lineup idea for a future tasting here!!!]