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One of the World’s Best Whiskies: The Johnnie Walker Blue Label Blended Scotch Whisky

johnnie walker blue labe blended scotch whisky One of the World’s Best Whiskies: The Johnnie Walker Blue Label Blended Scotch WhiskyThe King George V Whisky

By Chris Meehan, Amy K. Haight & Matt Goldstein

Because of the price tag, about $250, very few get a chance to taste the Johnnie Walker Blue Label Blended Scotch Whisky.  But when confronted with the opportunity, it’s an absolute must!  The Johnnie Walker Blue Label is hand crafted in single barrel batches and is a blend of 9 whiskies.  The Johnnie Walker Master Blender hand selects the premium whiskies used for the blend, and draws from the largest whisky reserves in the world, dating back 200 years.

Johnnie Walker Blue Label Tasting Notes:

The scent is a medium to solid scent of peat smoke.  The whisky is very light and smooth with flavors of grain.  Having a peat mouth feel with notes of sweet honey, this is a complex and excellent whiskey.  The mouth feel was also thick and creamy, and we consider it to be incomparable.  The Blue Label is perhaps the best mouth feel of any whisky in the world.  A flat out stud!  The Johnnie Walker Blue Label is simply one of the best whisky’s you will ever try.

 

johnnie walker red black green gold blue pic One of the World’s Best Whiskies: The Johnnie Walker Blue Label Blended Scotch WhiskyFrom Johnnie Walker!

Johnnie Walker Blue Label is the epitome of blending. Created to reflect the style of whiskies in the early 19th century, it’s created using some of our rarest casks from the Johnnie Walker stocks, the largest in the world.

The casks are hand-selected and set aside for their exceptional quality, character and flavor. The character of Blue Label is truly unique; it is complex, powerful, incredibly smooth and retains the Johnnie Walker signature smokiness.

 

King George V from Blue Label was created to celebrate the Royal Warrant given to the Walker family in 1934 to mark their exceptional quality. This blend includes Port Ellen™, a highly prized malt whose distillery no longer exists.

 

The John Walker is the most recent addition, created as a tribute to our founder. Hand-crafted in single barrel batches of only 330 bottles, it’s an exceptionally rare blend of 9 whiskies, including those from Glen Albyn™ and Cambus™ distilleries. It’s presented in a unique, individually numbered Baccarat crystal decanter – hand blown, polished and engraved by one of only three Master Craftsmen in the world.

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The Knob Creek Manhattan Cocktail

knob creek manhattan cocktail The Knob Creek Manhattan CocktailCheck out this classic cocktail recipe with one of the world’s best bourbons.  Knob Creek small batch Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey by Jim Beam is a classic bourbon.  Made in the traditions of pre-prohibition whiskeys, Knob Creek  is aged for more than 9 years in charred American white oak barrels and bottled at 100 proof.  If you like Knob Creek and are serious about your whiskey, try the Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve, bottled at 120 proof.  It’s an absolute masterpiece. 

 

INGREDIENTS:

2 parts Knob Creek® Bourbon

½ part Sweet Vermouth

½ part Dry Vermouth

1 dash Bitters

Garnish: Maraschino Cherry

 

TO SERVE:

1. Fill a mixing glass with ice.

2. Add Knob Creek, vermouth, and bitters.

3. Stir and pour into a cocktail glass.

4. Garnish with a maraschino cherry.

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The Chivas Regal 12 Year Blended Scotch Whisky

chivas regal 12 year blended scotch whisky 216x300 The Chivas Regal 12 Year Blended Scotch WhiskyThe Prince of Whiskies is a Smooth Beautiful Blend

By Matt Goldstein & Amy K. Haight

With more than two centuries’ of history, Chivas Regal 12 year old is an expression of a unique tradition that has continued unbroken since the Chivas Brothers first introduced the world to the rich, smooth Scotch whisky of Chivas Regal.  “For more than 500 years, Scotland has been perfecting the art of producing Scotch whisky.  Chivas Regal is made from pure, natural, Scottish ingredients.  For more than 500 years, Scotland has distilled their original whisky – malt Scotch whisky.  Malt Scotch whisky is made from only three natural ingredients – quality malted barley, natural spring water and yeast.  A blended Scotch whisky must contain both malt Scotch whisky and grain Scotch whisky.  The art of blending is to harmonize the characters and flavours of selected malt and grain Scotch whiskies to produce a blended Scotch whisky of the highest possible quality.  This requires the master blender to possess an expert ‘nose’ and many years’ experience of Scotch whisky. 

Chivas Regal 12 year is one of the Blended Scotch Whiskies where it’s clear that the master blender skillfully blended the whiskies together for an excellent scotch.  The scent is complex and the whisky has a beautiful amber color.  A thin Scotch whisky, the Chivas Regal 12 year blended scotch whisky has notes of caramel, toffee, chocolate, vanilla with a smooth, sweet and great flavor.  We love this scotch and will drink it again and again.  Greatly recommended. 

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Glenmorangie Named 2011 Distiller of the Year by Wine Enthusiast Magazine

Glemorangie distiller of the year wine enthusiast 250x300 Glenmorangie Named 2011 Distiller of the Year by Wine Enthusiast MagazineNew York — Glenmorangie has won the top honor in this year’s Wine Enthusiast Wine Star Awards in the Distiller of the Year category, beating out an impressive list of nominees.  “We are extremely honored to be recognized by Wine Enthusiast for the great yet unseen lengths that we go to in crafting our whisky,” said Brian Cox, Vice President of Glenmorangie.  According to Wine Enthusiast Magazine, Glenmorangie’s nomination resulted from its impressive innovation “ranging from polished classics and elegant cask-finished whiskies to its 2011 release of the luxurious Glenmorangie Pride 1981 bottling.”

Glenmorangie pioneered the now widely used techniques of extra maturation, best illustrated in its 12 years old Extra Matured Range: Lasanta (Sherry Finish), Quinta Ruban (Port Finish) and Nectar d’Or (Sauternes Finish). After spending 10 years in American white oak bourbon casks, each expression is extra-matured in superior quality wine casks for two more years. The original smoothness of Glenmorangie is enhanced by the rich layers of flavors and wine characteristics that each cask brings.

Glenmorangie Pride 1981 is the culmination of 28 years of passion, patience and artistry. Pride 1981 is the longest extra maturation Glenmorangie has ever offered. The whisky is matured in the finest oak casks for 18 years before being aged exclusively in Chateau d’Yquem Sauternes casks for another ten years. Presented in a Baccarat crystal decanter, it is an extremely rare, limited edition of only 1,000 bottles worldwide.

The distinguished Wine Enthusiast Wine Star Award comes in addition to more than eighteen ‘Gold Best in Class’ medals from the International Wine and Spirit Competition that the Company has received over the past five years, cementing its reputation for creating an ‘Unnecessarily Well Made’ portfolio of single malt Scotch whiskies.

Glenmorangie will be showcased with other winners in the December 15th issue of Wine Enthusiast Magazine and will be honored at the Wine Star Awards black-tie gala dinner in New York City on January 30, 2012.

About Glenmorangie
The Glenmorangie distillery was founded in 1843 in the Highlands of Scotland and is renowned as a pioneer in its field for uniting tradition with innovation. Glenmorangie is distilled in the tallest malt whisky stills, expertly matured in the finest oak casks, and perfected by the 16 Men of Tain. It has been Scotland’s favorite single malt for over 50 years and is famous worldwide for producing the most complex and perfectly balanced Single Malts in the world.

About The Glenmorangie Company
The Company is one of the most renowned and innovative distillers of Scotch whisky brands worldwide and is part of Moet Hennessy, the wine and spirits division of Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH). Headquartered in Edinburgh, Scotland, the company produces two main single malt brands – Glenmorangie Single Highland Malt Scotch Whisky and Ardbeg Single Islay Malt Whisky.

About Wine Enthusiast
Wine Enthusiast Companies is the world’s number one source for wine accessories, storage, information, education, events and travel, and is a driving force in the marketplace. As part of the Wine Enthusiast family, Wine Enthusiast Magazine hosts events for consumers and the trade, such as the Toast of the Town walk-around food and wine event (New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Washington D.C. and Atlanta) and The Annual Wine Star Awards dinner, during which awards are given to recipients in ten major industry categories.

Responsible Drinking
The Glenmorangie Company advocates responsible drinking and suggests that drinkers savor Glenmorangie whiskies in moderation and in line with recommended daily guidelines for alcohol consumption.

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The Basil Hayden’s Halloween Cocktail: A Bloody Sunday Bourbon

basil haydens bourbon halloween cocktail recipe bloody sunday 96x300 The Basil Hayden’s Halloween Cocktail: A Bloody Sunday BourbonRecipe by Daniel Hyatt

This Halloween, Basil Hayden’s cocktail mixologist Daniel Hyatt has created a masterful bourbon cocktail, the Bloody Sunday.  Perfectly evil and wonderfully tasty, the Bloody Sunday Cocktail is perfect for all Halloween parties.  Mix it up, shake it and serve to enjoy.  Happy Halloween!

 

Bloody Sunday

1 ½ parts Basil Hayden’s® Bourbon

½ part Orange Juice

½ part Grenadine

1 dash Peychaud’s® Bitters

1 barspoon of Crème de Violette

½ Vanilla Bean

 

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  1. Shake bourbon, orange juice and bitters with ice.
  2. Strain into cordial glass.
  3. Sink the Crème de Violette and slowly drizzle grenadine over the top.
  4. Place on half of a split of vanilla bean in glass and stir.

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Pappy Van Winkle Bourbons To Hit the Shelves!

van winkle bourbon Pappy Van Winkle Bourbons To Hit the Shelves!FRANKFORT, Franklin County, Ky  – At long last, the iconic Van Winkle bourbons will be back on shelves soon! The popularity of Van Winkle whiskeys remains unmatched and in short supply. Known for their smoother and sweeter flavor, Van Winkle bourbons are aged years longer than most others and garner an impeccable reputation among connoisseurs. The collection consists of Old Rip Van Winkle Handmade Bourbon aged 10 years, available in 90 proof and 107 proof; Van Winkle Special Reserve Bourbon, aged 12 years; Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve Bourbons, aged 15 years, 20 years and 23 years; and Van Winkle Family Reserve Rye Whiskey, aged 13 years.

The Van Winkle line of whiskeys has won a bevy of awards through the years, including 2010 “Spirit of the Year” from Wine and Spirits Magazine for Pappy Van Winkle 23 Year Old; “Best of Show” and “Best Whiskey” at the 2010 Los Angeles Wine and Spirits Competition; a double gold medal at the 2011 San Francisco World Spirits Competition; and gold medals at both the 2011 International Wine and Spirits Competition and the 2011 Los Angeles Wine and Spirits Competition.

The fall release of Van Winkle bottles will be available in select stores toward the end of November.

About Van Winkle Bourbon

The Old Rip Van Winkle Distillery has a four generation history. The Van Winkle
family’s involvement in the bourbon industry began in the late 1800s with Julian P. “Pappy” Van Winkle, Sr. He was a traveling salesman for the W.L. Weller and Sons wholesale house in Louisville. Pappy and a friend, Alex Farnsley, eventually bought the wholesale house and also partnered with Mr. A. Ph. Stitzel on the purchase of Mr. Sitzel’s distillery.  The three of them merged the two companies and became the Stitzel-Weller Distillery.
In May of 1935 at the age of 61, Pappy opened the newly completed Stitzel-Weller Distillery in South Louisville. Its prominent brands were W.L. Weller, Old Fitzgerald, Rebel Yell, and Cabin Still.  Pappy had a heavy influence on the operations there until his death at the age of 91. His son, Julian, Jr. took over operations until he was forced by stockholders to sell the distillery in 1972. The rights to all of their brands were sold to Norton Simon, Inc. Later, United Distillers, who eventually ended up with the Stitzel-Weller Distillery, sold off all of the original labels around 1999.

After selling the distillery, Julian Jr. resurrected a pre-prohibition label, the only one to which the Van Winkles kept the rights, called Old Rip Van Winkle. He used whiskey stocks from the old distillery to supply his brand. Julian Jr.’s son, Julian, III took over in 1981 when Julian, Jr. passed away. Julian III has continued with the Van Winkle tradition of producing high-quality wheated bourbon. His son, Preston, joined the company in 2001 and the Van Winkles look to continue that tradition for generations to come.

In 2002 the Van Winkles entered into a joint venture with Buffalo Trace Distillery in Franklin County, Frankfort, Ky. All of the Van Winkle’s whiskey production now takes place at Buffalo Trace Distillery under the same strict guidelines the family has always followed.

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The George Washington Straight Rye Whiskey

george washington straight rye whiskey forsyth vernon 293 300x225 The George Washington Straight Rye WhiskeyFeatured on Weekend Edition by NPR

By Matt Goldstein

Last year we did a story on “How Whiskey Made America” and discussed George Washington and his very successful whiskey distillery.  Washington’s distillery was one of the first and most profitable in the country as well, his plantation was one of the most profitable in the country.  Washington made whiskey and liquor out of the grains on his farm and the liquor was the most profitable piece of his business empire.  Washington couldn’t actually make enough whiskey to supply the demand.  Now, there is a limited edition rye whiskey made to the exact specifications to the recipe of George Washington, 60% rye, 35% corn, and 5% malt and barley.  The George Washington Straight Rye is being made on George Washington’s plantation and there is only 300 bottles available $185 a piece.  The 2 year old Rye Whiskey is sharp, delicious, sweet and drinkable.  Editors note: Washington did use slaves to make the whiskey, so the history isn’t as charming as one would think.  Washington was a “man of his times.”  You can listen to the NPR segment on the George Washington Rye Whiskey here.   

Source and Pictures: NPR    

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The Balvenie Single Malt Scotch Range: Doublewood 12 year, Rumwood 14 year, Single Barrel 15 year, Islay Cask 17 year, Portwood 21 year & 30 year

balvenie single malt scotch range 300x190 The Balvenie Single Malt Scotch Range: Doublewood 12 year, Rumwood 14 year, Single Barrel 15 year, Islay Cask 17 year, Portwood 21 year & 30 yearThe Balvenie Road Show: Traveling with the Best Range in Scotch

By Tim Rodgers & Matt Goldstein

When called to give the readers of Whiskey Goldmine the vital information that they seek, I answer that calling.  Putting family, children, and obligations aside, I make the necessary sacrifice to go to The Palm Restaurant on Broad Street to attend The Balvenie Single Malt range private tasting.  After fueling up with the Filet Mignon, Prawns, and Crab washed down with a Hendricks Gin Martini and a Stoli Martini (slightly dirty and light on the vermouth of course) we were ready to taste some Scotch.  Was it too much to ask for WhiskeyGoldmine CEO Matt Goldstein to put on a tie for the occasion?  Yes it was.  Yes it was.  After a nice meet and greet, cocktail hour, and some food, it was time to get down to business.

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Balvenie Doublewood 237x300 The Balvenie Single Malt Scotch Range: Doublewood 12 year, Rumwood 14 year, Single Barrel 15 year, Islay Cask 17 year, Portwood 21 year & 30 yearThe Balvenie Doublewood Aged 12 years

This is the perfect Scotch for the novice scotch drinker or for those that haven’t quite found an appreciation for scotch.  It has a nice vanilla aroma with a subtle sweetness in the finish.  If you like whiskey but haven’t made that leap to scotch, this might be your brand.  Furthermore, as far as complexity and value for your dollar, there might be a scotch that gives you the bang for your buck on the market today.

The Balvenie DoubleWood is a 12 year old single malt which gains its distinctive character from being matured in two woods.  Over the period of maturation, the whisky is transferred from a traditional oak cask to a first fill European oak sherry cask.  Each stage lends different qualities to the resulting single malt.   The traditional casks soften and add character, while the sherry wood brings depth and fullness of flavor.

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balvenie 15 year old single malt scotch whisky 225x300 The Balvenie Single Malt Scotch Range: Doublewood 12 year, Rumwood 14 year, Single Barrel 15 year, Islay Cask 17 year, Portwood 21 year & 30 yearThe Balvenie Single Barrel, Aged 15 Years

The Balvenie Single Barrel is a 15 year old single malt which is drawn from a single traditional oak whiskey cask of a single distillation.  Each cask is subtly different, as The Balvenie Malt Master selects only those casks which have the essential characteristics of The Balvenie Single Barrel. particularly honey, vanilla and oaky notes.  Each bottling forms a limited edition of no more than 350 hand-numbered bottles – so each bottle is unique and unrepeatable.

There was definitely a nice delicate balance of sweet notes that complimented the oak notes.  Spot on.  The Balvenie 15 year Single Malt Scotch won the first ever double blind taste in the history of Whiskey Goldmine.  Balvenie beat out Oban 14, Laphroiag 18, Macallan 10, Highland Park 12, The Glenlivet 12, and the Glenmorangie Lasanta 12.  The Balvenie 15 year is simply one of the best single malts on the market today.

 

The Balvenie Morgan Car Matt Goldstein Whiskey Goldmine 300x225 The Balvenie Single Malt Scotch Range: Doublewood 12 year, Rumwood 14 year, Single Barrel 15 year, Islay Cask 17 year, Portwood 21 year & 30 yearThe Balvenie PortWood, Aged 21 Years

You can really taste the complexity in the Portwood.  The aging process really adds layers upon layers of interesting notes in this Balvenie.   To create The Balvenie PortWood Aged 21 Years, a marriage of rare Balvenie is transferred to port casks, which have held fine port wines.   The Balvenie Malt Master samples this whisky regularly to ensure that just the right amount of character is created by the port casks.  Again, here is another excellent and unique Single Malt by Balvenie.  In the picture on the left is Matt Goldstein, CEO and publisher of Whiskey Goldmine, sitting in the Balvenie Roadshow Morgan car just minutes before he tore it up Broad St in downtown Philly and smashed it into 4 parked cars and a couple of pedestrians.  Oops!  We would like to apologize to Balvenie for destroying their beautiful car and for the ensuing law suit.  Thanks for the scotch though…

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balvenie single malt scotch barrells 300x264 The Balvenie Single Malt Scotch Range: Doublewood 12 year, Rumwood 14 year, Single Barrel 15 year, Islay Cask 17 year, Portwood 21 year & 30 yearThe Balvenie Thirty, Aged 30 Years

The Balvenie Thirty is a rare and especially fine single malt for which David Stewart selects only exceptional casks that were laid down over thirty years ago.  By marrying The Balvenie slowly aged in traditional oak whiskey casks with that aged in European oak sherry casks, David creates a rich, mellow Scotch whisky with unusual depth and complexity.  ‘Thirty’ is bottled at 47.3% abv to capture all the signature characteristics of The Balvenie.  We had the unique pleasure of sampling this little nugget for free.  (with free refills) *wink.  Flat out one of the best single malts we’ve ever had.  There is no doubt that the extended aging process ads a priceless complexity and depth.  The Balvenie 30 year is a masterpiece in single malt scotch.

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The Balvenie RumWood, Aged 14 Years

A limited edition bottling in 2006, The Balvenie RumWood spent its final 18 months of maturation in 14 casks which had previous held rum from Guyana and Venezuela.   The Balvenie RumWood was non chill filtered and was bottled at a strength of 47.1% abv.

They actually use wood from the United States and import the rum from the Carribean, while all of the actual aging is done in Scotland.  What do they do with the rum after they age the barrells you ask? …they sell it back into the market.  (Where can I get some of that?)  Hey Balvenie, when is the rum tasting?  You have my email so just let a brother know.

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balvenie 17 year peated cask single malt The Balvenie Single Malt Scotch Range: Doublewood 12 year, Rumwood 14 year, Single Barrel 15 year, Islay Cask 17 year, Portwood 21 year & 30 yearThe Balvenie Islay Cask, Aged 17 Years

One of our favorites, this was perhaps the most interesting of all the scotches.  Smoky, but not peated, this single malt is briefly aged in casks formerly aging peated scotch.  The smokiness from the cask creates one of the most unique single malts in the world.  For many scotch drinkers, the smoky charcoal flavors in numerous brands of Scotch can be overbearing.  When tasting the IslayCask, you get sweet honey notes, but the smoke finish in the aftertaste that is not overbearing but rather exceptionally complimentary.  It really is something and an absolute must try for all scotch drinkers, novice and pro alike.

In the making of The Balvenie IslayCask, David Stewart selected Balvenie single malt which had matured in traditional oak casks for at least 17 years and transferred it into 94 casks which had previously held Islay single malt.  After six months he felt the casks had imparted the desired delicate amount of peaty notes, typical of Islay.

The Balvenie Single Malt Scotch Range:

The Balvenie range is the most diverse in single malt scotch.  Not only is it diverse, but it is simply the best.  Each cask type and maturation and whisky are carefully selected to create a different single malt experience for each scotch in the range.  From the Doublewood, Rumwood, Single Barrel, Islay Cask and Portwood, each has a style, flavor, mouthfeel and finish that can be appreciated by any scotch connoisseur can appreciate, be it a single malt fan or a blended Scotch whisky enthusiast.  Don’t believe us?  Try it for yourself.

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The Mitcher’s US1 Single Barrel Straight Rye Whiskey

mitchers us1 rye whiskey 124x300 The Mitcher’s US1 Single Barrel Straight Rye WhiskeyBy Matt Goldstein & Amy K. Haight

Rye was America’s first whiskey and Mitcher’s, founded in 1753, is known for their classic rye style and being a the pioneer of American whiskey.  Made with hand selected sheared rye, Mitcher’s US1 Rye enables more saturation of the grain during fermentation.  Aged in a heated warehouse in a single barrel, the Mitcher’s US1 Straight Rye Whiskey is then bottled at 84.4 proof.

Mitcher’s US1 Rye Tasting Notes:

The US1 rye is smooth, sweet and complex.  It’s a lovely whiskey with a syrupy mouth feel complex finish, this is an exceptionally smooth beautiful god damn whiskey.  Recommended for all rye whiskey lovers.

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The History of Mitcher’s Whiskey

The rich history surrounding Michter’s harkens back to America’s first distilling company established in the 1700′s by John Shenk, a Swiss Mennonite farmer who settled his family in Pennsylvania’s Blue Mountain Valley. With his farm producing an abundance of rye, in 1753 Shenk decided to build a small distillery to convert his excess rye to whiskey. In time, this little distillery with its hand-hammered stills would come to produce what would someday be known as the famous Michter’s whiskey.

mitchers whiskey barrels 300x82 The Mitcher’s US1 Single Barrel Straight Rye WhiskeyThis particular rye whiskey was so valued that when the Revolutionary War broke out, General George Washington purchased it to fortify his men as they hunkered down in their camp through the long, brutal winter at Valley Forge. Michter’s, as the saying goes, was “the whiskey that warmed the American Revolution,” and it continues to warm today’s resurgent American whiskey revolution.

The passage of Prohibition in 1919 forced Michter’s and every other American distillery to shut its doors to the public. Although the distillery did reopen after the 21st Amendment repealed Prohibition, Michter’s changed hands many times over the next few decades and languished to the point where it eventually declared bankruptcy. With primary distilling operations shut, there remained two small pot still systems made in the mid 1970′s by still maker Vendome which were reportedly used in part to instruct tourists about distillation and to make whiskey to be sold in the gift shop.  After the bankruptcy one of these two still systems was purchased by David Beam, and the rest of the movable equipment was stripped and sold off from the former Pennsylvania distillery, parts of which eventually collapsed.  The remaining whiskey stocks were sold off as well.

Dick Newman

Teaming up with Michter’s President Joseph J. Magliocco in the 1990′s, Richard “Dick” Newman undertook to resurrect the brand in Kentucky. An American hero who served as a U.S. Marine during the Korean War, Newman lost one of his legs in a battle and was awarded a Purple Heart. After leaving the military, Newman began an illustrious career in the spirits business where he eventually ran Old Grandad, Old Crow, and Old Taylor for National Distillers before becoming President and CEO of Austin Nichols, the distiller of Wild Turkey.

A Yale College and Harvard Law School graduate, who in the 1980′s decided to pursue his passion for spirits as President of Chatham Imports and later on as President of Michter’s American Whiskey Co., Magliocco says, “When we set up our whiskey program for Michter’s, Dick and I wanted to get back to the ‘cost be damned’ roots and produce the finest whiskey possible. Our goal was to show that whiskey made in the United States could be the equal of great whiskey made anywhere in the world. At the start, when we would sit with industry executives and tell them that great rye whiskey would be an area of concentration for us, they would sit there dumbfounded and stare at us like we each had three heads. Fortunately, whiskey drinkers started to rediscover rye, and we were more right than wrong.

Michter’s Master Distiller Willie Pratt is a respected whiskey industry veteran with over forty years of distilling experience. He best explains the philosophy that has guided our product to such high critical acclaim since its move to Kentucky in the 1990’s. “The owners give me a free hand. I produce our product at a much higher cost because I barrel at lower proofs, and heat cycle our barrels with a much larger amount of whiskey lost than the typical “Angel’s Share.” But the whiskey comes out richer and smoother than if I made it the standard way. If a barrel is not at the exact right point of maturation and will benefit from more time, I won’t release it even if the sales guys and the distributors are screaming for more goods. That’s why they tease me and call me ‘Dr. No.’ ”

Michter’s production includes single barrel ryes, very small batch bourbons, single barrel bourbon, and unblended American whiskey.

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Johnnie Walker Double Black Label Blended Scotch Whisky

johnnie walker double black 300x79 Johnnie Walker Double Black Label Blended Scotch WhiskyA Black Label Blended Scotch Whisky Barreled in Deep Charred Oak Cask

By Joon Lee, Amy K. Haight and Matt Goldstein

Johnnie Walker distilleries took their classic Johnnie Walker Black Blended Scotch whisky and re-blended the whisky recipe to create Johnnie Walker Double Black.  “After hand-selecting a number of whiskies defined by hints of smoldering charcoal, crisp ash and burnt timber, we barreled our blend to mature in deep-charred old oak casks.”  Double Black is very smooth with a good peat and smoke balance.  Johnnie Walker Double Black is complex, crisp, lighter and sweeter than regular black with slightly less peat.  This is a solid Scotch and we will be drinking it again without question.

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johnnie walker scotch logo Johnnie Walker Double Black Label Blended Scotch WhiskyFrom Johnnie Walker   

Taking cues from the unparalleled flavors of Johnnie Walker Black Label, Master Blender Jim Beveridge struck out to craft a blend that would take the intensity of Black to unexplored territory. He started on Scotland’s vast shores, rediscovering the powerful west coast and subtle east coast scotches integral to today’s world-renowned Black Label.

After hand-selecting a number of whiskies defined by hints of smoldering charcoal, crisp ash and burnt timber, we barreled our blend to mature in deep-charred old oak casks. The result is an unquestionably smokier, more intense experience, but with deep, dark roots in a rich blend that changed the world: Johnnie Walker Black Label. Simply put, it is Black, amplified.

Blended to break the rules, Double Black boasts an edgy confidence in flavor that separates it from its balanced relative, Johnnie Walker Black Label. It is not simply a darker version of Black Label, for it cannot be defined by color alone. Nevertheless, the two blends are intrinsically linked. As any discriminating drinker can see, they share DNA – in their smoky nose, unmistakable spice and slight tones of dried fruit.

But the similarities end there. Double Black is un-aged and different to Black Label in the way it’s been blended. With this newest blend, taste trumps all. And since its recent release, accolades have solidified Double Black’s place within the world’s most popular scotch portfolio.

While its finish will undoubtedly linger, Double Black itself will not. Its stunningly small run is characteristic of a blend best suited to the most ambitious and adventurous Johnnie Walker enthusiasts, eager to explore another side of Black.

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