While not as busy as last week, we still had some very nice new whisky announcements this week – the official announcement of Gartbreck Distillery (new Islay distillery, yay!), Glengoyne up the bar to 25yo from 21yo for their official bottlings and in the last minute, more news from Glenglassaugh – vintage releases from 1968 to 1986.
Gartbreck, the 9th Islay distillery aims to revive traditional methods of whisky making
Plans for what will be the 9th whisky distillery on an isle which is regarded as the Mecca of whisky have been revealed. Gartbreck Distillery will be built at Saltpan Point on the site of an old farm located on the shore of Loch Indaal near Bowmore, on the isle of Islay on the Western coast of Scotland.
Gartbreck Distillery will be unique in reviving the traditional method of whisky making which had been abandoned for the benefit of cost efficiency. Its two pots stills which will be overlooking the sea through a large glass garble will be direct heated with a live flame, it will use worm tub condensers and fermentation of the wash will take place in Oregon Pine wooden washbacks. This has nothing to do with nostalgia, the reasons of those choices being this is how Jean Donnay who
has now completed the design of the distillery wants to make whisky since he believes this is how he should do in order to obtain the specific character he is aiming at. His belief is largely based on his experience of having previously designed Glann ar Mor Distillery in Brittany under the very same lines, and having operated it successfully since 2005. Its whiskies have earned wide recognition with in particular five “Liquid Gold Awards” in Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible, and he has been named “Distillery Manager of the Year 2014” at the “Icons of Whisky – Rest
of the World” for his distillery in Brittany.
Although reverting to time proven methods, Gartbreck’s bespoke equipment will include some technical evolution allowing in particular to significantly minimize the drawbacks usually associated with the direct heating of the stills. The distillery’s water will flow by gravity from Grunnd Loch which overlooks the distillery 900m away from it, and the floor malting and the kiln will allow to produce 20% of its needs in peated malt in using local barley from the isle.
The plans also include the production of gin in limited volume, to be sold exclusively at the distillery’s visitor centre in order to stimulate business activity during the initial period when the distillery’s whisky will not yet be available.
The highest attention has been paid by the local architects and designers to respect the exceptional location, the distillery’s building keeping a sleek silhouette for a smooth integration in the landscape. Once it will be operating at nominal capacity the distillery will be producing 55.000 LPA per year. One type of Single Malt will be produced, offering a highly peaty character for which Islay whiskies are so famous.
The new distillery will see up to 10 jobs being created. Planning Permission has been granted by the Argyll and Bute Council and it is hoped that the fundings of the 2.5M£ investment will be completed in time to start work during the third quarter 2014, with an aim to have the distillery starting operation by autumn 2015.
Glengoyne introduces NEW 25YO
Glengoyne Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky is expanding its whisky portfolio with the release of an outstanding 25YO bottling. Matured exclusively in hand-selected sherry casks for a quarter of a century, this unique malt is an important addition to the Glengoyne collection, which includes the 10, 12, 15, 18, 21 Year Old and Cask Strength malts.
The malt is presented in a new heavy bespoke bottle and outer box. The bottle features a fine metal stopper, crafted cartouche and delicately branded neck tag and is attractively displayed in an oak box interior, which includes an engraved plinth. The elegant exterior has a refined feather pattern subtly varnished on the pack.
Commenting on the new malt, Iain Weir, Marketing Director for Ian Macleod Distillers, said: “The Glengoyne 25YO is an extremely special malt. Matured in our traditional dunnage warehouses for 25 years in the finest European oak sherry casks, unchill-filtered and bottled as taste insists at 48%ABV, the result is a flavour of soft oak, cinnamon, stewed fruits and a Seville marmalade tang. A perfect after dinner dram.”
Glengoyne is owned by one of Scotland’s leading, independent, family-owned distillers, Ian Macleod Distillers Ltd. Unlike most other single malt whiskies, Glengoyne dries its malted barley using only warm air resulting in this extremely subtle yet complex malt where all the delicate flavours are freely expressed.
Glengoyne Distillery – highly regarded as Scotland’s most beautiful distillery in Dumgoyne near Loch Lomond – runs its stills slower than any other distillery, supporting the claim that Glengoyne genuinely is “Worth the Wait”.
The Glengoyne 25YO will be available from April. The UK RRP for the 70cl bottle is £250. For more information, please visitwww.glengoyne.com.
Official Tasting Notes:
Colour: Bright amber
Nose: Red fruits, old leather and brown sugar
Taste: Soft oak, cinnamon, stewed fruits and a Seville marmalade tang
Finish: Very long, with spicy liquorice, slowly drying
Glenglassaugh releases first batch of single cask bottlings
GLENGLASSAUGH has today (4April) released its first batch of single cask bottlings.
Revived from the dark and hand-selected by Managing Director and Master Distiller Billy Walker, there are eight phenomenal malts in Batch 1 which range from 45 to 28 years.
All are crisp, fresh, sweet Highland malts that hit the palate with the power of complex fruit bombs – from apples, bananas, pineapples, grapefruit, prunes and plums to lime, cantaloupe melon and caramelised orange!
The oldest, cask # 1601, 45 years old, was distilled in May 1968. Bottled at 44.3% vol, this autumn gold veteran is long and luxurious. On the nose, heady red candy apples balance with delicate spiced orange softening to distant pineapple juice. And on the palate, crisp oak spices soften to reveal elegant waves of fresh green apple and wisps of ripe banana. Delicate hints of passion fruit, cedar wood and lime zest bring a fantastic depth to the long finish.
As a contrast, the youngest in the batch is a 28 year old distilled in February 1986.
This rich amber beauty, cask # 2101, was bottled at 43.7% vol. On the nose, gentle heather honey holds warm cigar box spices. Crisp, freshly-ground barley surrounds soaked raisins and sultanas. And on the palate, a toasted white oak spice runs through Demerara caramelised orchard fruits which mellow to dried apricot and hints of vanilla in the long subtle finish.
Sales Director Alistair Walker said: “We took over Glenglassaugh last year and were thrilled to discover a treasure trove of old and rare spirits slumbering in the warehouses. Revived from the dark, selected by Billy Walker for their excellence and personality and bottled last month, this is an extraordinary collection of rare casks which will be warmly welcomed by connoisseurs worldwide. Taken together, they are stunning examples of Glenglassaugh at its finest.”
All eight are presented in a beautiful golden box.
The batch details are:
1968 cask # 1601 / 45 years old / Finished in the finest Sherry Hogshead / 44.3% vol
1972 cask # 2114 / 41 years old / Matured in the finest Sherry Butt / 50.6% vol
1973 cask # 6801 / 40 years old / Finished in the finest Manzanilla Sherry Puncheon / 52.1% vol
1975 cask # 7301 / 38 years old / Finished in the finest Oloroso Sherry Hogshead / 40.7% vol
1975 cask # 7801 / 38 years old / Finished in the finest Moscatel Hogshead / 42.4% vol
1978 cask # 1803 / 35 years old / Finished in the finest Sherry Hogshead / 41.6% vol
1978 cask # 1810 / 35 years old / Finished in the finest Port Hogshead / 42.9% vol
1986 cask # 2101 / 28 years old / Finished in the finest Hogshead / 43.7% vol