Simon Wittenberg takes a look at some of the latest releases and launches making the headlines in the world of whisky.
Benriach Malting Season Third Edition
Benriach has launched the Third Edition of its Malting Season whisky (48.3% ABV). Sporting a natural golden barley hue, this creamy, single malt has been crafted using concerto barley from the distillery’s historic floor maltings, personally chosen by Master Blender Dr Rachel Barrie.
Those who sample this exceptional whisky will enjoy wild bergamot, pear and meadowsweet honey on the nose, a burst of clementine, floral honey and gentle barley spice on the palate, before finishing with apricot, malted almond, and traces of wild honey.
Benriach Malting Season Third Edition carries an RRP of £110 and is available in selected global markets.
For more information, visit www.benriachdistillery.com.
Gordon & MacPhail’s 2023 Recollection Series
Whisky creator Gordon & MacPhail has unveiled this year’s Recollection Series, a yearly collection that features 18 single malts from closed or silent distilleries.
The 2023 portfolio counts a 1981 Port Ellen whisky (RRP of £10,000) – the oldest ever to be sold by the company and a total of 15 distilleries.
Also in this year’s series is the Gordon & MacPhail 1973 from Glen Mhor Distillery (RRP of £6,000), and the Gordon & MacPhail 1976 from Banff Distillery (RRP of £4,300), which are all available worldwide, with other releases in the series available in select international markets.
To celebrate the launch, Gordon & MacPhail has partnered with acclaimed French illustrator Tom Haugomat to explore and revive the character of Port Ellen, Banff and Glen Mhor distilleries through a series of digital artworks and animations.
To capture each whisky’s taste and history, Tom’s artwork has been inspired by nature, the outdoors, and the backstory of each distillery, using light as a specific tool to pick out details.
Rosebank Chapter One of The Revival Series
Rosebank Distillery, a re-launched producer of Lowland single malt whiskies located between Glasgow and Edinburgh, has unveiled a 30-year-old single malt whisky, with 300 bottles created exclusively for the Taiwanese market, priced at 86,000 New Taiwan Dollars (NTD) each (around £2,100).
The first expression released following the distillery’s restoration, hence the name “Chapter One”, the 30-year Lowland single malt (49% ABV) is a beautiful combination of the feathery floral aroma from the classic triple distillation and the richness from the traditional worm tub condensers, creating a classic and unparalleled tribute to Rosebank.
This whisky features a golden shade, and a nose reminiscent of blooming flowers. This is followed by the sweetness of melted cream and the subtle hints of nutmeg, interlaced with French fudge and refreshing mint.
Until 15 October 2023, Rosebank has also teamed up with the Kimpton Taiwan Hotel for the “Rosebank Luxury Tasting Journey”. In addition to the in-room bouquets designed by Rosebank’s exclusive florists, guests can enjoy a glass of Rosebank’s Chapter One of the Revival Series.
For further information, visit www.rosebank.com.
Tamdhu Batch Strength 008
Tamdhu, the Speyside distillery owned by Ian Macleod distillers, has unveiled the latest edition in its multi-award-winning “Batch Strength” series. Non-chill filtered and bottled at 55.8% ABV, the limited release, priced at £87 per bottle, has been matured in the finest Oloroso sherry seasoned casks from the bodegas of Jerez in Spain.
The eighth addition to this series pushes the boundaries of perfection, with each cask meticulously hand-selected, including a high proportion of first-fill sherry casks to create an exceptional Speyside whisky.
For more information, visit www.tamdhu.com.
The Glenlivet Distillery Reserve Collection: 9-Year-Old Beer Cask Finish Edition
The Glenlivet distillery in Speyside has unveiled a new limited edition whisky, named The Glenlivet Distillery Reserve Collection: 9-Year-Old Beer Cask Finish Edition.
Crafted in partnership with Scottish brewer Innis & Gunn, this new expression has been finished in a cask previously used to mature Innis & Gunn’s limited edition “Vanishing Point Imperial Stout”, an 11% ABV silky dark brew.
Priced at £95, the new addition delivers aromatic notes of golden syrup biscuits, dark cherry tart, and hints of subtle treacle that give way to honeycomb, nougat and tropical fruits. On the palate, spicy ginger and freshly ground nutmeg come through, followed by subtle fruity flavour notes from hops, thereby resulting in a long-lasting creamy and sweet malty finish.
For more information, visit www.theglenlivet.com.
The Macallan Litha
Speyside distillery, The Macallan, has unveiled a new expression, initially for the Chinese market. Named The Macallan Litha, after the solstice known by the ancient Celts as “Litha”, and carrying a recommended retail price of $200, this whisky has been bottled at 40% ABV.
Sporting a natural colour, The Macallan Litha has been matured in first-fill sherry seasoned oak casks, which gives the whisky an intense, complex and smooth flavour profile.
This exceptional single malt offers gentle scents of vanilla and butterscotch, and as the flavour develops, smooth vanilla ice cream topped with a berry compote graces the palate, before a lingering hint of sweet oak.
The Macallan Litha sits in a vibrant presentation box featuring a stunning illustration by the award-winning and USA-based Chinese illustrator Sija Hong.
For more information, visit www.themacallan.com.
Turntable Core Range Whiskies
Turntable, the small-batch whisky blender founded by Glasgow brothers, Gordon and Ally Stevenson, has launched its new core range of whiskies. Three expressions are found in this new portfolio, namely Paradise Funk, Smokin’ Riff, and Bittersweet Symphony.
Available in the UK, France, Germany, The Netherlands, and Taiwan for an RRP of £53 per bottle, Paradise Funk has been created from blends matured in virgin oak casks and a Blair Athol Bourbon barrel, producing exotic flavours. Smokin’ Riff has been created with blends, including a whisky from a Caol Ila ex-red wine cask and offering a campfire smoke character, whereas Bittersweet Symphony delivers a fiery sweetness and bold malt experience.
For further details, visit www.turntablespirits.com.
Read more of Simon’s whisky industry round-ups here.