Glenlossie-Glenlivet 20 Years Old 1993 Authentic Collection ~ 53.3% (Wm Cadenhead)

Glenlossie20yo1993Cadenhead

Glenlossie-Glenlivet 20 Years Old 1993 Authentic Collection

53.3% ABV, £55 for 70cl

Score: 79/100

Glenlossie20yo1993Cadenhead

What they say:

Nose: Toffee caramel, syrup, almonds and a touch of honeycomb, some sweet spice edges liven the nose.
Palate: Lots of vanilla, dried bananas, hints of kiwi fruits and custard powder, creamy caramel with a hint of spiced apple just to add another layer.
Finish: Faint medicinal creamy note but predominantly lemon sherbet give this dram a far more interesting finish than most other malts. Perfect after dinner summer time whisky.

What I say:

Distinctly old and woody this one was a little astringent and acidic in places, even more so after the addition of water. As Mark said “water always tastes better in whisky, but the opposite is not often the case”. Again this one received a mixed reaction, though on the whole an improvement from the Auchentoshan (Auchentoshan 21 Years Old 1992 Authentic Collection ~ 51.8% (Wm Cadenhead)) as a little more body and old wood were to be found in this dram. One of a 212 bottle outturn February 2014.

Colour:

Full gold

Nose:

Alcohol vapours, musty old oak wood, nail varnish acetone, fruity oranges and dunnage warehouses

Taste:

Warming, yeasty beer, fruity oranges, hops with a slight sour and bitterness, reminiscent of an old woody pub smell

Finish:

Medium, a little warm and woody

Sampled at Jolly Toper Tasting 21/02/2014

Auchentoshan 21 Years Old 1992 Authentic Collection ~ 51.8% (Wm Cadenhead)

Auchentoshan21yo1992Cadenheada

Auchentoshan 21 Years Old 1992 Authentic Collection

51.8% ABV, £65 for 70cl

Score: 82/100

Auchentoshan21yo1992Cadenheada

What they say:

Aged 21 Years
Distilled at Auchentoshan Distillery
Distilled: 1992
Bottled: February 2014
Wood Type: Bourbon Barrel
No. of bottles: 162
70 cl. / 51,8%

Nose: Pineapple chunks, brown sugar, white chocolate and mandarin segments.
Palate: Cookie dough, lime leaves, nougat and hints of coffee beans
Finish: Custard powder, fenugreek and demerara sugar

What I say:

This 21 year old, bourbon hogshead matured, triple-distilled Auchentoshan was ethereal and light despite its age. This one received a mixed review from the crowd, with people either really enjoying it or not being too enamoured with it. I think this one is so light that many missed the point. One of a 162 bottle outturn February 2014.

Colour:

Gold

Nose:

Perfumed and sweet esters, lemon citrus with hints of cereals, honey syrup and newish/green wood, wheatgerm soap

Taste:

Silky and sweet, bubblegum (hubba bubba) then prickly phenol and germolene round off into cinnamon and ginger

Finish:

Short and sweet with demerera sugars and new paint vapours

Sampled at Jolly Toper Tasting 21/02/2014

Tamdhu-Glenlivet 22 Years Old 1991 Port Cask Authentic Collection ~57% (Wm Cadenhead)

Tamdhu 22yo port

Tamdhu-Glenlivet 22 Years Old 1991 Port Cask Authentic Collection

57% ABV, £56 for 70cl

Score: 83/100

Tamdhu 22yo port

What they say:

Tamdhu Glenlivet was matured in Port pipes until bottling in February 2014 at cask strength 57% vol. 1 of only 258 bottles.

Nose: A real wintery nose – dried fruits, menthol, eucalyptus and tobacco combine to provide plenty of rich, warm notes.
Palate: As mellow as you would expect from a Speysider of this age.Still pretty rich and full bodied, the tobacco remains present along with a little hickory smoke, caramel and mocha.
Finish: Nutty with gentle spices – think almonds, pecan, cinammon and cloves.

What I say:

The polar opposite to the Glenlossie (previous dram at the tasting), this one really needed water to draw out that Jammy Port Finish. Without water this whisky was a little too strong, woody and sugary. With water it was sublimely beautiful but still feisty and well-matured (oaky). Close to being my favourite of the evening if only it weren’t for the Laphroaig 22 Years Old 1991 Authentic Collection ~ 49.8% (Wm Cadenhead)

Colour:

Rich gold.

Nose:

Fragrant nose with vaporous ‘fines’ alcohol and wine, chloroform, mellow oak woody aroma and leafmould (autumnal decomposing fallen leaves).

Taste:

Warming orange (essential) oil, meaty and chewy tasting with a little salt, a little water revealed jammy woodland fruits and woody sugars with a grapefruit pithy/zesty flavour.

Finish:

Medium sweet and woody undiluted, water revealed juicy grapes/wine in the finish.

Sampled at Jolly Toper Tasting 21/02/2014

Laphroaig 22 Years Old 1991 Authentic Collection ~ 49.8% (Wm Cadenhead)

Laphroaig 22yo 1991 Cadenhead bottle

Laphroaig 22 Years Old 1991 Authentic Collection

49.8% ABV, £90.40 for 70cl

Score: 89/100

Laphroaig 22yo 1991 Cadenhead bottle

What they say:

Distilled in 1991 at Laphroaig distillery on Islay, this has been matured for 22 years in a bourbon hogshead and bottled in February 2014 for a 168 bottle outturn at 49.8%

Laphroaig 22yo 1991 Cadenhead

What I say:

Drool, welcome to whisky heaven, definitely one for those who love peat but there was no harshness of TCP/germolene or smoke for that matter. This was really just an earthy peatiness covered in thick layers of vanilla custard, and everyone loves custard – right? Definitely without a doubt my favourite of the evening.

Colour:

Very refractive gold

Nose:

Earthy peaty peanut, sweet floral violets and roses, pineapple cube sweets, peaches and apricots

Taste:

Bubblegum (cinnamon?), peat smoothly and subtly makes itself noticed whilst creamy vanilla and coconut custard oozes out

Finish:

Delicate and long, further vanilla custard increasing to icing sugar-like sweetness, becomes almost sickly if not for the earthy peaty influence

Sampled at Jolly Toper Tasting 21/02/2014

The Balvenie Tun 1401 Batch 8 ~ 50.2% (William Grant & Sons Ltd.)

The Balvenie Tun 1401 Batch 8

50.2% ABV, £150 for 70cl

Score: 91/100

Balvenie1401-8

What they say:

To craft The Balvenie Tun 1401, Malt Master David Stewart transfers specially selected casks from across the ages to a marrying tun cared for by the distillery’s in-house team of coopers. The contents of these rare casks spent three months ‘getting to know’ one another in marrying tun number 1401, from which this single malt takes its name. The most recent release, Batch 8, is characterised by citrus fruits, vanilla and honey, has recently been bottled at an abv of 50.2% and will be available from June 2013 in Canada, Australia, the UK, France and a number of other European countries.

Floral and fruity on the nose, with hints of lightly toasted spices, brown sugar and ripe vanilla balancing the gentle oak tannins. The rich, fruity taste has a warming spiciness of cinnamon and ginger, underpinned by maple syrup, sweet vanilla and tangy citrus notes. Citrus, vanilla and a gentle oakiness are evident on the finish.

Balvenie Tun1401 Batch 8

What we say:

Simply supreme! Sadly intended to retail at £150/bottle though sold out from The Balvenie almost immediately, spotted at anywhere from £200 to £400 plus in various Edinburgh whisky shops already…makes this way out of my price range to buy a bottle.

Colour:

Red copper

Nose:

Oranges and cinnamon, acetone [nail polish remover], pine needles, green herbs, dunnage [blocks of old used wood, packaging material], leather, reminiscent of oak casks in the warehouse, as you dip your nose deeper into the glass each of these aromas build and shift across your nose.

Taste:

This is a very oily and syrupy dram that fills the mouth with a rich fruit cake flavour, some very herbaceous flavours in this from some of the older cask maturations, suede leather, oak wood and more deep fruits like rum & raisins.

Finish:

The finish was supremely smooth and reminded me of vanilla butter fudge melting on the tongue leaving a slightly orangey tang at the end

Originally sampled at The Balvenie Whisky Fete Edinburgh

Mackmyra Special:08 Handplockat ~ 46% (Mackmyra)

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Mackmyra Special:08 Handplockat

46% ABV, £76 for 70cl

Score: 90/100

Special08_desktop_ny

What they say:

Mackmyra Special:08 is a delicious, spicy, Swedish malt whisky with a floral and fruity character. This whisky is made from our Elegant recipe that has been matured on a mix of bourbon casks, sherry casks and casks made of new Swedish and American oak and finished on French Sauternes cask.

Mackmyra Special is a drink for special occasions and special people. For you who have found the Swedish malt whisky and wants to experience its nuances. For you who live life less ordinary.

Nose: The nose is slightly spicy and herbal, fruity and floral with notes of honey, ripe pears and raisin together with a soft roasted cask character, notes of butterscotch and nuts with a delicious spicy oakiness.

Taste: The palate is fruity, spicy and soft. The aftertaste is long, fruity and spicy with light notes of soft oak and butterscotch.

Colour: Bright golden yellow. No coloring has been used,

IMG_0982

What I say:

Our 2nd Mackmyra whisky expression is this Special 08 handpicked edition finished in ex-Sauternes wine casks

Colour:

Antique yellow gold, thick/strong tears

Nose:

Pear tart or tarte tatin, peach blossom, cinnamon and winter spices

Taste:

Smooth, oily and buttery with creamy toffee and butterscotch, apricot, peach and pear puree or smoothie with toffee sauce and vanilla cream

Finish:

Drying hints of oak wood and cinnamon and winter mulling spices return for a  medium/long finish

Overall:

Full of creamy toffee with subtle hints of spicy oak wood I find it hard to find anything I didn’t like in this dram. Great molten butter mouthfeel, this one melts in your mouth and gives off subtle fruits. Simply excellent!

Mackmyra First Edition ~ 46.1% (Mackmyra)

MackmyraFirstEdition

Mackmyra First Edition

46.1% ABV, £40 for 70cl

Score: 89/100

Mackmyra1ed

What they say:

We pursued our dreams and created the first Swedish malt Whisky. A Whisky that carries new experiences. Roasted Swedish oak, a hint of vanilla and dried fruit. Small, handmade casks stored with care. It has a spicy aroma and a fruity, elegant flavour with hints of citrus and caramel. The base is our Elegant recipe matured in first fill bourbon casks stored in the Bodås mine, 50 meters down into the ground. Mackmyra Whisky – The First Edition is the new generation of Swedish single malt whisky, crafted our own way, from local ingredients and without additives. A whisky for you who live life less ordinary.

Nose: Fruity with citrus, pear, apple and honey. A light oakiness with sweet, lightly toasted bread notes and fresh butter toffee.

Taste: Fruity and smooth with citrus, caramel and honey. A light oakiness can be discerned at the end. The aftertaste is tuned and balanced with hints of dark chocolate.

Colour: Bright yellow with a hint of amber.

MackmyraFirstEdition

What I say:

Continuing our 2014 virtual world tour of whiskies we finally reach Mackmyra distillery in Sweden. Not the first of their whiskies I have sampled, however this is the first we compiled taste notes and impressions on.

Colour:

Full amber gold with medium/strong tears

Nose:

Juicy fruits burst out of the glass immediately, followed by a sweetness and lots of cereal barley aromas. There is a gentle perfumed floral scent of orange blossom perhaps or daisy, with a sugary sweetness of cotton candy

Taste:

Fruity apple, orange and cranberry punch is joined by a subtle cereal barley and hints of sweet blossom honey and golden syrup, this sweetness is tempered by tart marmalade, some grassy notes and sweet vanilla pods or vanilla custard / crème brulee

Finish:

Medium, fruity with sweet honey hints and oaky wood notes

Overall:

My first impression of this was what a beautiful dram. This was fragrant, delicate and mildly sweetened just enough to balance the oak wood influence. A nice aperitif style whisky, perfect for a summer’s day or dramming in the garden.

Yamazaki 12 Years Old ~ 43% (Suntory)

Yamazaki12YO

Yamazaki 12 Years Old

43% ABV, £50 for 70cl

Score: 84/100

Yamazaki12YO

What they say:

Yamazaki is Suntory’s flagship single malt, multi-layered with fruit and Mizunara aroma.

From Yamazaki was born the surprising, delicate yet profound experience of a Japanese single malt. Spiritual and deep, its signature multi-layered taste is highly praised by whisky connoisseurs all over the world. Today, Yamazaki is not only the No.1 single malt whisky in Japan, but is enjoyed in more than thirty-five countries.

Succulent with soft fruit.

Color: pure gold
Nose: peach, pineapple, grapefruit,clove, candied orange, vanilla, Mizunara (Japanese oak)
Palate: coconut, cranberry, butter
Finish: sweet ginger, cinnamon, long finish

What I say:

The Yamazaki 12 Years Old expression from Suntory is their youngest age statement single malt from the Yamazaki Distillery. Constructed from whisky matured in Bourbon and sherry barrels and Mizunara (Japanese Oak) Puncheons

Colour:

Copper and rose gold with light tears

Nose:

Fragrant and perfumed cherry blossom, sweet and fruity peaches, orange, cherry, strawberry, hints of creamy vanilla and Mizunara and cherry wine

Taste:

Strawberries and cream initially on the palate this reveals more sweet fruity flavours but with that cherry blossom and Mizunara behind that gives fragrant sandalwood, some vanilla and coconut and traces of orange and perhaps dried cherries or cherry sherbet (orange & cherry double dip sweeties)

Finish:

Long, fragrant and refreshing, slightly over sweet and cleansing

Overall:

A well constructed whisky that delivers an array of flavours and aromas with hints of the exotic. I imagine myself caressed by a breeze carrying the scents of the stunning Japanese cherry blossom whilst drinking this whisky. The Mizunara gives an almost Umami quality – something you can’t quite describe the taste of exactly but it is somehow familiar yet distinctly foreign (Japanese) at the same time. Delicious and creamy fruits are wrapped in cherry blossom and sandalwood. The zen whisky drinkers whisky drink.

Glenlossie 10 Years Old Flora & Fauna ~ 43% (Diageo)

Glenlossie10FF

Glenlossie 10 Years Old Flora & Fauna

43% ABV, £40 for 70cl

Score: 82/100

Glenlossie10FF

What they say:

Whisky from Glenlossie is highly sought after by blenders and is consequently not widely available as a single malt. There is an official distillery bottling as part of UDV’s Flora & Fauna series, however, it is mostly found in independent bottlings. The distillery, established in 1876, is located in the heart of Speyside, adjacent to the Mannochmore distillery. Up until 2007 Glenlossie shared its staff with Mannochmore, each distillery producing alternately for approximately 6 months at a time. Once a major part of Haig’s blend.

What I say:

The ‘standard’ expression from Glenlossie distillery in Speyside has been this 10 year old Flora and Fauna bottling. With the discontinuation of this range we await with baited breath to see if a stable of Glenlossie expressions will be released of if it’s malt will be destined for blending and independent bottlings only moving forward. With the current expansion within Diageo’s Classic Malt expressions, perhaps these once forgotten distilleries will be re-forgotten again…

Colour:

Full amber gold with heavy/oily tears

Nose:

Sweet golden syrup, zesty lemon citrus / peel, gentle woody oak hints, barley cereal malt, orange oil

Taste:

Sweet orange blossom honey, golden syrup, gristy, slight lemon and orange zest and pith, full-bodied, madeira cake, candied peel, hints of brandy and some Christmas spices

Finish:

Sweet and slightly citric sour, brandy butter, pink and red grapefruits and bitter to almost dark coffee/cocoa levels

Overall:

An interesting dram, plenty of fruit and barley and some zest and spiciness. Full-bodied it carries the flavour well – presumably some of the characteristics that make this a good blending malt. Not particularly challenging though it does have an overall balance of flavours suggestive of a session dram, the bitterness at the end tickled my fancy indicating it may sherry-well if the distillers so desired?

The story of scotch – a brief history of blending

The story of scotch – a brief history of blending

The history of the scotch whisky industry is a long and chequered tale, however much of the scotch whisky industry today owes its success to blended scotch whisky. Blended scotch or blends account for the majority of whisky sold worldwide (80,000 litres per year compared to around 8,000 litres of single malt scotch in 2013). Whisky connoisseurs and single malt fans often look down upon blends as inferior products or a waste of good single malt. Without them we wouldn’t have the breadth of variety of single malts, or the sheer number of distilleries, or the massive output that we enjoy today. So how and where did this all begin?

Ardbeg stills

In the beginning there was single malt…

Single malt whisky, made from 100% malted barley and distilled in traditional copper pot stills, has been around for quite some time. The only problem with single malt whisky, from a production aspect, is the requirement for batch production. This is relatively inefficient as the still must be filled (charged) and heated for distillation, after each batch is processed the residual waste products (pot ale) must be removed and the still cleaned for the next batch. Innovative technological advancements made in the first three decades of the 1800’s resulted in the operation of continuous or column distillation.

thegirvan-patent-still-multi-pressure

And then there was grain…

With continuous distillation, vast amounts of neutral spirit (around 94% alcohol by volume) can be distilled non-stop from any type of grain source. In the beginning this ‘Grain’ whisky was likely to be lighter and more drinkable than the often more-complex but harsher single malt whiskies that were available. At this time cask-maturation of whisky most likely occurred as a fortuitous side-effect of shipping distilled spirit in oak barrels to vendors. In 1915 law was passed that whisky must spend at least two years in an oak barrel, later extended to three years. Prior to this time distilled whisky was shipped and sold as soon as possible, or as soon as it was palatable. Vendors quickly realised that blending light grain whisky with complex malt whisky could produce something much more palatable to customers than either alone. Hence the principle of blending – to create something greater than the sum of its parts – began. In 1853 the vatting of whisky, i.e. mixing of whisky of differing ages from the same distillery, was permitted before duty was paid upon the whisky and in 1860 the Spirits Act permitted blending under bond – allowing larger scale blending of scotch whisky to occur in bonded warehouses.

Usher & Co., Edinburgh

vat69

The first recorded expert blender of whisky was one Andrew Usher, of Usher & Co. Edinburgh. Taking his fathers experimentation in the 1840’s of whisky blending a step further and perfecting it around the late 1840’s. The introduction of Ushers OVG (Old Vatted Glenlivet) led to an increase in the popularity of scotch (blended) whisky in England. Andrew Usher entered into a triumvirate to setup the North British grain distillery in Edinburgh along with John Crabbie (of Crabbie’s Green Ginger fame) and William Sanderson. William Sanderson was born in Leith in 1839 and by 13 had started an apprenticeship with a wine and spirits producer. Establishing his own business by 1863, Sanderson, encouraged by his son Mark William to begin blending whisky, famously went on to produce 100 blends which he had judged by a panel of experts. The winning blend came from the vatting/bottling number 69, lending the name to his subsequent blend ‘Vat69′. Sanderson purchased the Glengarioch distillery in 1884, and later became director of the Royal Lochnagar distillery after the death of its owner John Begg.

Chivas Brothers

chivas12

The Chivas Brother grocery store dates back to its inception in Aberdeen in 1801. With a wealth of success to their name, including obtaining a royal warrant to provide goods to Queen Victoria in 1843, the Chivas Brothers set out to provide superior blended whisky for their clientele’s palates. They launched the Royal Glen Dee blend in the 1850’s and he Royal Strathythan in the 1860’s. The name Chivas Regal was coined around the 1900’s when their whisky became increasingly popular in America. The Chivas Brothers company purchased the Strathisla distillery in 1950. Chivas Brothers is now owned by Pernod Ricard who operate; Aberlour, Glenallachie, Glenburgie, Glenlivet, Glentauchers, Miltonduff, Scapa, Strathisla and Tormore.

Johnnie Walker

Johnnie_Walker_red_1013_300

John ‘Johnnie’ Walker started selling whisky from his grocery store in Ayrshire, established in 1824. However, it was after his death in 1857 that his son and grandson both named Alexander Walker turned whisky into the main income of the business following the spread of its popularity. Walkers introduced their famous square bottle in 1870, allowing more bottles to be packed per case than when using traditional round bottles. Reducing shipping costs to their growing overseas market. Johnnie Walker is now owned by the international conglomerate Diageo, the largest whisky producer in Scotland who operate 28 active whisky distilleries, including Auchroisk, Benrinnes, Blair Athol, Cardhu, Clynelish, Caol lla, Cragganmore, Dailuaine, Dalwhinnie, Dufftown, Glen Elgin, Glen Ord, Glen Spey, Glenkinchie, Glendullan, Glenlossie, Inchgower, Lagavulin, Linkwood, Mannochmore, Mortlach, Oban, Strathmill, Talisker and Teaninich.

Ballantine

ballantines-12YO

George Ballantine, a farmer’s son, setup his small grocery store in Edinburgh in 1827. In 1865 George focussed on his wine and spirits trade by setting up a dedicated store in Glasgow, leaving his son to look after their Edinburgh store. Whilst in Glasgow George started experimenting with his own blended whiskies and setup his own bonded warehouse. With increased business, George resorted to employing his  son and generating George Ballantine & Son Ltd. Acquired by the Canadian distillers Gooderham & Worts in 1937, Ballantines purchased both Miltonduff distillery and Glenburgie distillery and built Dumbarton grain distillery. Ballantines is now owned by Pernod Ricard.

Dewar

Dewars_12

John Dewar Sr established his wine and spirits merchants on Perth High Street in 1846. Unusually John Dewar took the decision to endorse his own blended whisky by adding his own name to the bottle. His sons John Alexander Dewar carried on this family business after joining in 1871 and Thomas ‘Tommy’ Dewar famously travelled the globe and introduced the world to their famous blended scotch whisky. Dewars opened the Aberfeldy distillery in 1896. Dewar’s currently operate Aberfeldy, Aultmore, Craigellachie, Macduff and Royal Brackla distilleries

Bell

Bells12yo

Arthur Bell began blending (at first single malts) to produce a more consistent whisky product around 1851. Arthur was a grocer by trade and learned his skills blending tea leaves produced by the various colonies around the British Empire. Arthur applied his flavour-led blending skills to whisky to appeal to varying palates and occasions. Credited as the first whisky manufacturer to post a London agent around 1863. Arthurs tow sons joined the company as a partnership in 1895, with Arthur Kinmond managing the domestic trade and Robert managing overseas trade. Arthur Bell passed away in 1900 and in 1921 the partnership became a private company after Robert retired. Arthur Bell & Sons acquired both Blair Athol distillery and Dufftown distillery in 1933 and Inchgower distillery in 1936. Bells is now a subsidiary of Diageo.

Gloag

FamouseGrouse12yo

Matthew Gloag was another Perth-based grocer and wine merchant. In 1842 Gloag was invited to supply wine for Queen Victoria’s visit to Perth. His son William Gloag took over the company in 1860 and started blending and selling whiskies. His son Matthew Gloag Jr went on to produce The Grouse Blend in 1896, later renamed in 1905 as The Famous Grouse. Now part of the Edrington group.

Robertson & Baxter

CuttySark

William Alexander Robertson was born in Fife, Scotland, in 1833. He moved to Glasgow in his late teens, taking up work with Daniel Lade & Co , wine and spirit merchants. Daniel Lade amalgamated with Bulloch & Co, owners of Camlachie Distillery in the east end of Glasgow, to form the partnership of Bulloch Lade & Con in 1856, at which time Robertson decided to go into business for himself. He set up a partnership with Robert Thomson as Robertson & Thomson, at 162 Hope Street, Glasgow, as a commission agent in 1857. As wine and spirit wholesalers they accepted the agency for the Greenock Distillery Co, Greenock, Inverclyde, Scotland, and in 1858 they moved from Hope Street to Virginia Street, Glasgow.

During 1859, Robertson & Thomson became agents for the Fettercairn Distillery in Angus, Scotland. In June 1860, Robert Thomson opened his own business in Howard Street, Glasgow, and William Robertson took John W Baxter, his clerk, into partnership, forming the firm of Robertson & Baxter. he business continued to expand with the addition of further agencies, and by 1864 their imports had reached a total of over 27,000 gallons, and included ports, sherries and wines.

In 1866,the firm began expanding their trade in whisky, and it is suggested that they may have entered the whisky blending business, as evidenced in a change of description of the firm from ‘merchants and commission agents’ to ‘wine and spirit brokers’. Over the next few years Robertson & Baxter traded at a very low level while W A Robertson considered his position. Their blending laboratory in Glasgow became a college of blending for many major figures in the whisky industry.

In 1881, he began to give further thought to building his distillery, with the support of William Ford & Sons of Leith, Edinburgh. The Bunnahabhain Distillery, at Bunnahabhain, Islay, Argyll & Bute, took three years to build, and was to be operated by a new limited liability company, the Islay Distillery Co. In 1885 the company took a share in the North British Distillery Company.

Trade continued to flourish and Robertson joined a syndicate to build the Tamdhu-Glenlivet Distillery at Knockando, Moray, to keep apace of demand. This proved to be one of the last ventures undertaken before his sudden death on 30th August 1897, at the age of just 64.

The Robertson Trust was setup to ensure the success of W.A. Robertson’s three grandaughters who inherited the Scotch whisky interests of the company. In 1961 they formed the Edrington Group which oversees both Famous Grouse and Cutty Sark brands as well as numerous Single Malt Whisky brands. The Edrington Group owns five distilleries: Glenrothes, Glenturret, Highland Park, Macallan and Tamdhu.

Teacher

Teachers

In 1830 William Teacher was selling whisky under the new ‘Excise Act’. From 1832 he was selling out of his wife’s grocery store in Glasgow and in 1856 he was granted his own ‘consumption’ (licence) to open his own dram shop with help from his sons. Teachers Highland Cream blend was registered in 1884, 8 years after William’s death. Teacher’s opened Ardmore distillery in 1898

Whyte & Mackay

WMSpecial

Jame’s Whyte and Charles Mackay founded their business in the docks of Glasgow in 1844. Setting up their own bonded warehouse by the 1870’s to store more and more wine and spirits  for their customers who were unable to obtain Brandy due to the impact of phylloxera on French grapevines. They created the W&M special blended whisky which achieved great success in the UK and around the world.

Plus many more…

Including James Buchanan’s 1890’s blend ‘Black & White’

black_&_white

London spirits merchants Justerini and Brookes who produced their house blend ‘J&B’ blended by Charles H. Julian, commissioned after he created the Cutty Sark blend for the US market.

J&B

John Logan Mackie’s 1861 Edinburgh blend White Horse

WhiteHorse

The Haig’s family blends including the 1890’s Dimple

HaigBlendDimple

Pattison’s – at one time the largest blender of Scotch whisky – rescued from bankruptcy by one William Grant who went on to launch Grant’s Whisky. Now owners and operators of Glenfiddich, Kininvie and The Balvenie as well as the Girvan Grain distillery

Full_Range_Grant's_Whisky

The Empire strikes back.

So the global success of blended scotch owes much to the British Empire, centred upon Glasgow the second biggest city in the Empire. A huge amount of scotch whisky has been blended and shipped directly from Glasgow, hence the city’s tradition of blending houses and experts. Fitting then that Compass Box, one of the few blending houses to have been established in the modern whisky era, have recently released their Glasgow Edition of the Great King Street Blend.

compass-box-great-king-street-glasgow-blend-whisky

 

 

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