After a week devoid of important whisky news, came this week with a bunch of new press releases and I’ve put my eyes on two of them (care to guess which? :-))
TOMATIN MAKES CHANGES TO ITS CORE RANGE
Port finishes added to Tomatin Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky range
The Tomatin Distillery Co Ltd has announced a change to the line-up of its core range of single malts. A 14 year old Port Wood Finish and a batch release 1988 vintage are being introduced, while the 15 year old and 30 Year Old expressions will be removed.
The 14 Year Old Port Wood Finish has spent around 13 years in the finest Bourbon oak barrels, with a further year in specially selected Portuguese port pipes which had previously held Tawny port for between 30 and 40 years. The result is an excellent dram which is soft and smooth with a port-influenced sweetness.
The 1988 vintage also takes on an element of port with its contents having been vatted from ex-bourbon and ex-port casks, resulting in a sweet yet surprisingly fresh dram. Presented in a wooden box with its own certificate, this expression will be released in batches, the first batch offering 2500 bottles.
These two new expressions join the brand’s non-aged “Legacy” – matured in a combination of Bourbon and Virgin Oak casks – and the 12 and 18 Year Olds, both finished in Spanish Oloroso Sherry Casks. The 12 Year Old is now being sold at 43% alc./vol. in all markets (increased from 40%).
Stephen Bremner, sales director, said: “In recent years we have really started to make our mark in the single malt market with recognition for the high quality whisky on offer from the Tomatin Distillery. Most recently in March 2014 we were awarded Gold for Legacy and our 12 Year Old, and Double Gold for our 18 Year Old at the San Francisco Spirits Competition. I am confident these two new expressions will sit nicely within the range and, most importantly, will be enjoyed by our customers.”
THE GLENLIVET NADURRA EXPANDS INTO RANGE
The Scotch arm of French drinks group Pernod Ricard is launching the first permanent brand extension for Nadurra – The Glenlivet Nadurra Oloroso – in global travel retail from May 2014, initially through World Duty Free Group and Heinemann stores.
The expression, a no-age-statement 48% abv non-chill filtered whisky aged solely in first-fill oloroso Sherry casks, has aromas of milk chocolate, dried fruits and caramel, with notes of cinnamon and liquorice on the palate.
Nikki Burgess, global brand director for The Glenlivet, said the bottling was the brand’s “first whisky in living memory” exclusively matured in Sherry casks.
“The Glenlivet Nadurra is the purest expression of The Glenlivet that captures the passion and production methods of George Smith’s distillery,” she said.
“We know that whisky connoisseurs appreciate these qualities at the heart of the range, and by expanding the Nadurra range we aim to consolidate our strong and innovative offering in the craft malt arena.”
Burgess added that the decision was taken to expand the Nadurra range as the brand “had more to give”.
Following its launch in travel retail in May, when it will be available at an RRP of US$75 (€55), The Glenlivet Nadurra Oloroso will be rolled out to domestic markets from September 2014, but at cask strength.
The launch, which joins The Glenlivet Master Distiller’s Reserve in travel retail, will be followed in due course by several other expressions, which will not necessarily be wholly matured in a single cask type.
According to figures quoted by Chivas Brothers, single malt Scotch whisky accounted for 1.2 million case sales in European travel retail in 2012.
The Glenlivet previously released a vintage edition of Nadurra – Nadurra Triumph – made using the single barley variety of the same name, in 2009.
BALLANTINE’S COMPLETES LIMITED EDITION COLLECTION
The Ballantine’s 17 Year Old Signature Distillery Collection consists of whiskies from four different distilleries each intended which demonstrates the taste profile and “unique structure” of the blended Scotch whisky.
The four “signature” malt whiskies released in the collection are Scapa, Miltonduff, Glenburgie and, most recently, Glentauchers.
“We are proud to provide whisky enthusiasts with another opportunity to experience the single malts that shape the taste profile of Ballantine’s 17 Year Old, and to showcase the high quality of the single malt produced at the Glentauchers distillery,” said Sandy Hyslop, Ballantine’s master blender.
“Lighter and more delicate in style, the Ballantine’s 17 Year Old Signature Distillery Glentauchers Edition highlights some of the more subtle flavours within the original blend, whilst showcasing the key contribution of the Glentauchers malt with a lingering finish of soft berries.”
Whisky from the Glentauchers Speyside distillery is described as having a light citrus character with soft berry notes and a warm finish.
Ballantine’s 17 Year Old Signature Distillery Glentauchers Edition will be available in a number of Ballantine’s key markets including Asia Travel Retail, China and Japan, from May at an RRP of US$78.