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Glenfiddich Single Malt Celebrates 125 Years with Special Limited Addition Single Malt

Glenfiddich Single Malt Scotch Range Glenfiddich Single Malt Celebrates 125 Years with Special Limited Addition Single MaltThe Number 1 Selling and Most Awarded Single Malt in the World!

By Matt Goldstein

The Glrenfiddich Single Malt Scotch Whisky is celebrating 125 years.  The world’s most awarded single malt and also number one selling single malt was first sipped on Christmas Day in 1887 when William Grants and his sons let the first few drops come out of their copper pot stills.  Gaelic for Valley of the Deer, Glenfiddich is now traveling the United States with a special single malt to celebrate.

Last year, Glenfiddich Brand Ambassador Heather Greene rolled an actual whisky cask around the iconic landmarks in Philadelphia, inviting passersby to inscribe their aspirations and dreams on them.  After traveling across the U.S., the casks were sent to the Glenfiddich distillery in Scotland, where they were used to complete the aging process of a special limited edition bottling—one that will has been made in part by the thousands of Americans who touched and signed our special Dream casks.

Of course, because we are a member of the “media,” we get to tast this beautiful single malt free of charge, among millions of other whiskies, vodka’s, tequila’s rums, beers wines and champagnes that the spirit companies give me.  Life is awesome!

Glenfiddich broke a world record last week with an auction of the first U.S. bottle of the world’s most valuable single malt scotch whisky—selling to a whisky collector for an astronomical $94,000!

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The Top 10 Best Irish Whiskeys: Powers, Jameson, Redbreast, Tullamore Dew and more…

powers 12 year special reserve irish whiskey1111 The Top 10 Best Irish Whiskeys: Powers, Jameson, Redbreast, Tullamore Dew and more...St. Patty’s Day Special: The Best Irish Whiskeys

By Matt Goldstein and Sommelier Tom Pittakas

In honor of this St. Patty’s Day, the Whiskey Goldmine has compiled our list of the best whiskeys from Ireland.  From sipping neat, on the rocks or in a shot, we give you a magnum opus of whiskey classics.  The following whiskeys are an absolute must try! 

 

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powers 12 year special reserve irish whiskey1122 The Top 10 Best Irish Whiskeys: Powers, Jameson, Redbreast, Tullamore Dew and more...1. Powers Special Reserve 12 Years Aged Irish Whiskey

Powers Special Reserve 12 years aged is crafted from the finest Irish Barley and water, triple distilled and matured in American Oak casks.  Powers 12 doesn’t need to any ice; this whiskey should be sipped neat.  Scoring 91 points from Malt Advocate Magazine, Powers 12 is a complex and flawless whiskey. The regular Powers Gold Label is the best selling whiskey in Ireland.  Yes, it crushes Jameson in sales actually.

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2. Redbreast 12 Year Pure Pot Still Irish Whiskey

Redbreast 12 Year is perhaps the smoothest Irish whiskey in the world.  With a scotch like complexity and slight sweetness, Redbreast has a perfect whiskey flavor with a flawless bite.  Redbreast 12 Year is the only aged pure pot still whiskey in the world and is matured in sherry and bourbon casks.  

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Tullamore dew 12year bottle The Top 10 Best Irish Whiskeys: Powers, Jameson, Redbreast, Tullamore Dew and more...3.  Tullamore Dew 12 Year Old Special Reserve

Founded in Tullamore, Offaly County in the heart of Ireland in 1822, this “legendary” Irish Whiskey is famous for it’s copper pot still blend.  Triple distilled and aged in American Oak and Spanish Olorosso Sherry Casks, Tullamore Dew 12 is a sweet and complex Irish Whiskey with notes of malt, nuts and oak.  “Give everyman his Dew!”    

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4.  Jameson 18 Year Old Limited Reserve

The Jameson 18 is a Blended Irish Whiskey is handpicked by the Master Distiller.  Aged in American Oak Bourbon Casks and Olorosso Sherry Casks, the Jameson 18 Year Old is a classic! 

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tyrconnel single malt irish whiskey 300x189 The Top 10 Best Irish Whiskeys: Powers, Jameson, Redbreast, Tullamore Dew and more...5.  Tyrconnell 10 Year Old Single Malt Irish Whiskey

Aged in Madeira casks and scoring a 98 by the beverage tastings institute, the Tyrconnell is a bit pricey but also critically acclaimed.  Tyrconnel 10 Year has pioneered the single malt revolution in Irish Whiskey.  It’s an absolute must try. 

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6.  Knappogue 12 Years Aged Single Malt Irish Whiskey

Distilled in copper pots with malted barley and aged in oak casks, Knappogue 12 is made with pure Irish spring water which creates a very light, smooth and easy drinking style.  Well rounded with medium intensity and a clean finish, Knappogue is a uniquely light but complex whiskey that still retains character. 

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bushmills single malt 16 year old irish whiskey The Top 10 Best Irish Whiskeys: Powers, Jameson, Redbreast, Tullamore Dew and more...7.  Bushmills 16 Year Old Irish Whiskey

Bushmills 16 Year Old is triple cask matured in a combination of seasoned American Oak Bourbon Casks and Sherry Olorosso Casks, and finished for a few months in Port Wine Casks.  The triple cask maturation gives this whiskey one of the best finishes in the world. 

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8.  Connemara Peated Single Malt Irish Whiskey

Scoring a 93 by the Beverage Tasting Institute and a 90 by Wine Enthusiast, this little known but critically acclaimed single malt Irish whiskey is very well rounded and one of the most underrated Irish Whiskeys ever made.

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Jameson 12 year old special reserve irish whiskey 1111 The Top 10 Best Irish Whiskeys: Powers, Jameson, Redbreast, Tullamore Dew and more...9.  Jameson 12 Year Old Special Reserve  

The Jameson 12 Year Old Special Reserve Blended Irish Whiskey is a triple distilled, pot still and sherry cask blend.  The 12 year took the gold medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition in 2007 & 2009.  The Jameson 12 is very smooth and dry with a great scent and taste of malts; with notes of oak, wood and spice.  The Jameson 12 is a full bodied Irish whiskey, with a slight sweet, rich and full finish.

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1o.  Tullemore Dew Blended Irish Whiskey

Tullamore Dew is the 2nd best selling Irish Whiskey in the world and is also growing the fastest.  Tullamore Dew has won 22 gold medals in the last 10 years and is simply one of the best whiskey shots in the world.   

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11.  Green Spot

 

Powers Whiskey The Top 10 Best Irish Whiskeys: Powers, Jameson, Redbreast, Tullamore Dew and more...12.  Powers Gold Label

Powers Gold Label is the best selling whiskey in Ireland.  Yes, it crushes Jameson in sales actually.

 

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13.  Bushmills 12 Year Old Irish Whiskey

14.  Michael Collins Single Malt Irish Whiskey

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Drinking Drunken Presidents: FDR, LBJ & Richard Nixon

fdr drinking a martini cocktail 300x225 Drinking Drunken Presidents: FDR, LBJ & Richard NixonGreat Partying Presidents

By Matt Goldstein

With a great tradition of drinking in the United States, our fair share of presidents also have a rich history of the party and cocktail lifestyle.  With George Washington running a very successful whiskey distillery on his plantation, Jefferson brewing his own beer, Jon Adams being a  flat our alcoholic and Ulysses S. Grant leading the troops into battle while being completely lit, our founding fathers knew how to throw down.  Some of our more modern presidents like Barak Obama loves charming political rivals with a few beers hoping that will ease tensions and get some bills passed through the senate.

FDR:

The man who ended prohibition, Franklin Delano Roosevelt was known to mix cocktails in the oval office every single night.  Every single night!  We at Whiskey Goldmine don’t even drink every night, that’s just insane.  Even during the war, FDR mixed his own drinks right at his desk making martinis and old fashions, talking and mixing drinks for others around him.  When Truman actually got the news of FDR’s passing, Harry was said to have been sipping a Bourbon when he got a the phone call; a fine tribute to his predecessor.

LBJ:

The man who is credited for passing the civil rights bill but also demonized for starting the Vietnam War, Lyndon B Johnson, was also a hell of a drinker.  The main cocktail Johnson mixed was a scotch and soda, specifically Cutty Shark.  Johnson used to drive around his ranch with the secret service mixing him drinks in the car behind him.  The routine was done so often that Johnson didn’t even have to stop the car to hand off his empty glass and then receive a new cocktail.  That’s some professional shit right there.

Richard Nixon drinking martinis Leonid Brezhnev 300x215 Drinking Drunken Presidents: FDR, LBJ & Richard NixonRichard Nixon:

The man who went down in flames over the infamous Watergate scandal, Richard Nixon was a flat out drunk.  The Nixon administration  invented cocktail parties for the press but for Nixon this wasn’t a good idea as he didn’t talk to anyone and just got hammered.  His only conversation was asking people if they wanted another drink while he was sitting at the bar.  Hey, that aint the worst thing to say to a journalist, shit, I encourage people to ask me that very question.  It’s been documented that at times Nixon couldn’t take phone calls from some foreign world leaders because he was completely intoxicated.  Well, Nixon’s drunkenness didn’t lead to any wars right?  I guess we can hope so.

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The Glenmorangie Nectar D’Or 12 Years Aged Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky

glenmorangie nectar dor single malt scotch whisky 225x300 The Glenmorangie Nectar D’Or 12 Years Aged Highland Single Malt Scotch WhiskyThis Highland Malt is Perhaps a Bit Overpriced and Pedestrian

By Matt Goldstein & Amy K. Haight

After recently being named Distiller of the year by Wine Enthusiast Magazine, we tasted the Glenmorangie 18 Years aged Single Malt and we can understand the enthusiasm behind this great distillery.  On the other hand, we also tasted the Glenmorangie Nectar D’Or at Philadelphia’s Union Trust Streakhouse.  First, the Union Trust overcharged for about $22 per glass.  Maybe the bartender made a mistake considering the Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon was only $15.  Any who, not to hold that against Glenmorangie, but the Nectar D’Or seemed to under perform.  Perhaps a bit pedestrian, and perhaps a bit overpriced, the Glenmorangie Nectar D’Or was solid, but nothing special.  Non chill filtered, the Nectar D’Or is aged in French Oak which is rare for a single malt scotch.  We respect and appreciate Glenmorangie’s willingness to be different but we’re not sure if they created anything special here by branching out.  The Casks are hand selected wine barriques from Sauternes, a famous and ancient sweet wine growing region of France and the whisky is casked for a minium of 10 years.

The Glenmorangie Nectar D’Or is thin with an average scent.  Having good flavor but thin overall and thin on the finish, this is a solid single malt scotch, but nothing great when compared in its class.  The Glenmorangie Nectar D’Or won a few silver medals in 2008 and 2009.

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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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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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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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Dalmore 62 Year Single Malt Scotch Sets New World Record: One Bottle Sells for $200,000

the dalmore 64 year single malt scotch 225x300 Dalmore 62 Year Single Malt Scotch Sets New World Record: One Bottle Sells for $200,000 Worlds Most Expensive Whiskey: Dalmore Single Malt Scotch Breaks Own Record

The most expensive bottle of whisky ever sold in retail has been revealed by Whyte & Mackay at the Tax Free World Association Show in Cannes.  The last bottle of The Dalmore 62, released from the personal collection of master distiller Richard Paterson, was sold at Changi Airport in Singapore for £125,000 just two weeks ago.

This breaks the previous retail record set by the same brand after the final bottle of Dalmore 64 was sold in Harrods for £120,000 three months ago.  Whyte & Mackay has also revealed that Jura is the fastest growing malt whisky in the world with a sales increase of 38%, while The Dalmore is the third fastest growing malt with a rise of 34%.

This success is emulated in travel retail where Jura has grown by 48% and The Dalmore by 55% in the last 12 months.  When The Dalmore 62 was first released in 2002 it went down in history as being the most expensive bottle of whisky ever bought and consumed in one sitting. An anonymous business man paid £32,000 for the bottle at the Penny Hill Park hotel in Surrey. After sharing it with friends, the buyer left a tip for the waiter in the form of the last drop of whisky in the bottle estimated to be worth £1000.

The Dalmore creator Richard Paterson kept one of the original 12 bottles back and gave it exclusively to DFS in Singapore. The rare whisky, with spirit dating as far back as 1868, was decanted in to a bespoke hand blown crystal decanter and adorned with the brand’s iconic 12 pointer royal stag’s head – hand crafted in platinum. All this sits in a specially made bespoke wooden presentation case which took over 100 man hours to create.

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Dalmore 62 Year Tasting Notes

The Dalmore 62 was released in 2002 and first sold for £25,000 at auction.

The three bottles of The Dalmore Trinitas 64 year old became the world’s first whisky to break the six figure barrier for a single bottle. Two collectors paid £100,000 each at launch for a bottle, and the third sold in Harrods for £120,000 rising in value by 20% in less than six months.

If you had bought Dalmore 62 (2002), Dalmore Sirius (2009) and Dalmore 64 (2010), upon their release, it would have cost you £129,500 in total. Today they are worth £265,000, an increase of nearly 105%………from just three bottles.

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Dr Vijay Mallya , Chairman of Whyte & Mackay and United Spirits

“I always knew there was massive potential with both of these award winning whiskies. With the right focus and investment, it was clear that Jura and The Dalmore could be highly sought after brands. I’m particularly pleased about Jura as it was my father’s favourite whisky, and it’s great to see it getting the plaudits and success it deserves.”
Mallya continued: “And as for the record breaking Dalmore 62. This is an absolute bargain in my mind. The owner of this fabulous bottle now owns one of the rarest and most exclusive whiskies in the world. It’s a fantastic investment, rising in value by £100,000 in 10 years. How much will it be worth in another 10 years?“

The Dalmore creator Richard Paterson

“The Dalmore 62 is legendary and so many people have asked about buying the last bottle. In the space of 10 years it is has grown in value and is worth five times the original asking price, verifying the luxury credentials of The Dalmore, and confirming that whisky – our “liquid gold” – is an investment worth making.”

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Johnnie Walker 18 Year Gold Label Blended Scotch Whisky

johnnie walker gold label 300x79 Johnnie Walker 18 Year Gold Label Blended Scotch WhiskyMay the Road Rise to Meet You…

By Matt Goldstein

Every once in a while, for a special occasion, it’s nice to break out the good stuff.  This weekend just happened to be one of those occasions.  As a groomsman in our dear friends’ Jimmy and Shana’s wedding, I thought it was a good idea to pick something nice for the guys for a little pre-wedding get together.  We were considering both Jameson 18 year and Johnnie Walker Gold Label.  Since my man Jimmy has been more of scotch man lately, the Gold Label was our choice.  This was the perfect choice!  Johnnie Walker 18 Year Gold Label Blended Scotch Whisky is an absolute masterpiece.  There is no question about it.  The bottle was basically gone less than an hour after we opened it, but it was worth every dollar.  Special occasions demand special whiskies.  Everybody seemed to want more and more, even the ladies.  There is no need to put this whisky on ice; the Gold Label is more than perfect when served neat.

johnnie walker gold label1 Johnnie Walker 18 Year Gold Label Blended Scotch WhiskyJohnnie Walker Gold Label is a rich blend of rare whiskies each aged for a minimum of 18 years.  Buried in the Kildonan Hills in the Northern Highlands, the Clynelish Distillery draws its water from a unique source.  Gold Deposits are released into the water from the local granite rock, hence, Johnnie Walker Gold Label.

The Johnnie Walker 18 Year Gold Label Tasting Notes: 

Lightly smoky, grainy, thin but complex.  Exceptionally smooth.  Slightly sweet, with hints of malt, grain and oak.  WE LOVE THIS WHISKEY!

Johnnie Walker Gold Label was blended to celebrate the first 100 years of the House of Walker in 1920. A well-kept secret, it’s only been available outside the company since the 1990s. It has a distinctly smooth, sweet and luxurious character, with a stylish elegance and refined quality.  Gold Label is crafted using whiskies such as Clynelish for a honeyed flavor and creamy teure yet still retaining the signature Johnnie Walker smokiness.

With its rich gold color and old-gold glints, it reveals a full, round, deep nose. There are notes of soft raisins and toffee, fresh malt and light cream – Gold Label is as enticing as it is sensuous.  Its palate is rich and broad with full malt flavors and honeyed spices with almonds and marzipan, which leads to a distinctive creaminess.

Cardhu provides strong yet smooth malt and oak flavors. Extra-mature grain whiskies deliver some of the lingering sweetness, while Clynelish™ from the northern Highlands is responsible for the unusual aromatic creaminess. The finish is multidimensional and satisfyingly long.

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The Glenfiddich 18 Year Ancient Reserve Single Malt Scotch

glenfiddich 18 year single malt scotch The Glenfiddich 18 Year Ancient Reserve Single Malt Scotch

A Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky

By Matt Goldstein

Over 120 years later, Glenfiddich is one of the few single malt distilleries to remain entirely family owned and our whisky has become the world’s most awarded single malt*, a true reflection of the passion, integrity and innovative spirit that have been passed down through the generations.  The Glenfiddich 18 Year Ancient Age Reserve Highland Single Malt is produced in small, individually numbered batches, Glenfiddich 18 Year Old combines the Spanish Oloroso wood traditional American casks.  After being married in wooden tuns for at least three months, each batch is unique and is of an exceptional quality.

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Tasting Notes: The Glenfiddich 18 Year Ancient Reserve Single Malt

Scent of honey, syrup, flavor of honey.  Full bodied, full flavored, with a slightly bitter taste and notes of wood, and oak.  When opened up the single malt is sweeter, crisper with a complex finish.  It’s a full bodied finish and full textured finish also with a softer scent when opened.  This is an excellent single malt scotch and must be opened up with a few drops of water to fully appreciate the complexity and excellence.

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glenfiddich logo The Glenfiddich 18 Year Ancient Reserve Single Malt ScotchThe Making of Glenfiddich Single Malt Scotch Whisky

MALTING & FERMENTATION

At The Glenfiddich Distillery we use the finest malt from specialist maltsters, produced to our own specification. Ripe barley is steeped in water for two days, which triggers germination. The barley is then left to germinate for four to five days, which starts the conversion of natural starch into sugar. The resulting ‘green malt’ is dried over fire, and delivered to the Distillery as malted barley.

INSIDE THE MASH HOUSE

Two of Glenfiddich single malt Scotch whisky’s essential ingredients – malted barley and soft clear water – are brought together in the mash house. The malted barley is ground into ‘grist’ – a coarse flour that is mixed with heated pure Robbie Dhu spring water from the nearby Conval Hills and then poured into giant ‘mash tuns’. Here a slowly rotating set of mash knives lift and sift the mash to ensure good sugar drainage. In the mash tuns, the natural bubbling chemistry and clouds of steam rise, filling the air with a pleasantly pungent aroma. The hot water completes the conversion of starch to sugar, which dissolves into the water, producing a sweet liquid called ‘wort’, some six hours later. The wort is drained, cooled and made ready for fermentation. The ‘draff’ – the left over barley from the process – is sold to farmers and fed to their cattle.

FERMENTATION IN THE WASHBACKS

Yeast is added to the wort as it is pumped from the cooler into the traditional wooden fermentation vessels, the ‘washbacks’. Our handmade washbacks are made of Douglas fir rather than the stainless steel that many other distilleries use. This traditional method of production is kept so as to not alter the flavour of the whisky. These washbacks are a towering 17 feet high (5 metres), and are filled to within 3 feet (1m) from the top. As fermentation raises the temperature from around 19°C to about 33°C, the resulting carbon dioxide gas creates a massive, hot frothing head to the wort that foams up the remaining 3 feet (1m) to the top of the washback and has to be kept down with mechanical beaters.

After around 64 hours of fermentation, the furious bubbling subsides, leaving a brown liquid of 8-9% ABV, similar to a strong beer – the ‘wash’.

ALCHEMY AND DOUBLE DISTILLATION IN THE STILL HOUSE

The heart of the distillation process lies in the still house, where the wash is distilled in copper pot stills that exactly match the shape and size of the original stills bought over a century ago by William Grant. Every bump and dent is reproduced – we’re not taking any chances with our unique flavour.

The stills continue to be heated by ‘direct firing’ (applying a naked flame directly under the base). The wash in the stills is gradually heated until the alcohol turns to vapour. The vapour rises through the narrowing neck of the still and is guided downwards and through a water-cooled condenser. This condenses the vapour into an intermediate liquid, known as ‘low wines’. The low wines, containing about 21% alcohol, are heated in remarkably small ‘spirit stills’, smaller versions of the wash still.

The vaporised alcohol is drawn off and condensed as before, and then trickles down into the imposing, gleaming brass and glass ‘spirit safe’, where the flow of spirit can be controlled. This liquid is now legally a bonded, taxable spirit, so it is kept under lock and key. The stillman runs the delicate operation of monitoring this distillation – any mistake can ruin the whisky’s flavour. Only the fine middle cut, or ‘heart’ of the distillation is retained for maturation. The stillman catches it at the flick of a tap – a new batch of Glenfiddich is born.

COOPERING & MATURATION

HAMMER AND TONGS – INSIDE THE COOPERAGE

The new spirit is reduced to around 63% alcohol with natural spring water from our Robbie Dhu springs and then filled into hand-built oak casks, prepared and maintained at the Distillery’s own cooperage. All casks filled at The Glenfiddich Distillery are first checked by one of our qualified coopers, a practice unique to the making of Glenfiddich whiskies.

The coopers, who apprentice for approximately five years (as much as a doctor!), work with incredible speed and agility to assemble, repair or reconstruct around 25 casks each every day. We use only the very best casks made from the very best wood, such as sherry butts from Spain and bourbon barrels from America that have had only one filling of sherry or bourbon whisky.

By using these ‘second-hand’, high quality casks, we achieve a high quality spirit. Mellowed by previous use, the oak helps mature the Scotch whisky, allowing it to breathe, soften, assume subtle flavours and absorb a pale golden colour. Sometimes we char the inside of the cask with a blast of fire to open the grain of the wood, allowing the Scotch whisky to interact more easily with it.

We know that the quality of our barrels is vital, as this is where the magic happens. Even when pressure-testing our sherry barrels, we use sherry instead of water so that their integrity is not compromised.

MATURATION – WHERE THE MAGIC HAPPENS

Our distillery is the only single malt whisky still using wooden marrying tuns (2,000 litre plus vats). We also marry our whiskies for an unusually long period of time…

These wooden casks are then stored on-site in our traditional warehouses, and the spirit is left to mature. The atmospherically dark, damp interior of the warehouse and the temperature, humidity and climate of this environment provide optimum conditions for maturing the best quality Scotch whiskies. It is here that the Glenfiddich spirit acquires its distinctive, well-balanced character.

As a cask ages and develops, it breathes in the pure Highland air through the porous oak. Consequently, alcohol compounds evaporate off the whisky, through the wood, back into the air – roughly 2% from each cask per year. It is estimated that throughout Scotland, approximately 16 million litres of Scotch whisky is lost this way each year. This lost spirit is known as “the Angels’ Share”.

MARRYING & BOTTLING

The perfect match – marrying the whisky

As no two distillations ever taste exactly the same, before bottling we perform one further practice not used by many distilleries today: marrying. To maintain a consistent quality of flavour, aroma and palate, we combine or “marry” various casks, post-maturation, in a marrying tun – a large oak barrel which holds approximately 30 casks of whisky.

Glenfiddich is the only single malt which is still made using these oak Marrying Tuns. Our whiskies are married for up to nine months so that the different elements become unified into the special and distinctive taste of Glenfiddich single malt Scotch whisky. It is a dying art in the whisky world but for the maker’s of Glenfiddich the time spent marrying is important because it ensures all the flavours of the whisky are in harmony and makes the product even more unique.

Glenfiddich comes of age – the bottling hall

When the spirit has matured to perfection, the casks are emptied and the whisky is ‘cut’ with pure Robbie Dhu spring water. This reduces the alcohol by volume once more to around 40% ABV.

Nearly all of the Glenfiddich single malt Scotch whisky range is then bottled on site at The Glenfiddich Distillery, other than 12 Year Old (which is made bottle ready, ensuring all quality-control parameters are kept on site). Glenfiddich is the only Highland single malt distilled, matured and even bottled at its own distillery, using a single source of spring water throughout the process.

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