French flair

French flair

Joe Bate shops across the Channel to check out the latest shopping opportunities

Travel Retail | 01 Nov 2007 | Issue 67 | By Joe Bates

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Paris Charles de Gaulle airport. The French famously drink more whisky in a week than they do Cognac in a month. It is perhaps rather fitting then that whisky plays such a major role in two new liquor and tobacco outlets, which opened at Paris Charles de Gaulle airport’s new S3 terminal over the summer.

Covering more than 550sq m, the two rather luxurious Pure & Rare outlets, which are located at either end of the terminal, cater predominantly to high-spending business travellers flying to long-haul destinations such as the United States, Hong Kong and China. Consequently, the wine and spirits offer is suitably high-end – think Château Petrus, Château d’Yquem, and Rémy Martin Louis XIII.

As you’d expect, the whisky selection is rather impressive too with more than 200 different lines stocked. Clearly, the shop operator Aelia has forged some good relationships with the major suppliers as several exclusive vintage expression are sold such as a Glenfiddich 1975 at E375 (£262.70), a Caol Ila 1994 at E55 (£38.50), and an Edradour 1995 Burgundy Finish at E65 (£45.50).

The rest of the assortment is well worth browsing with plenty of deluxe blends such as Dewar’s Signature (E119/£83.35) and aged malts such as Talisker 30 Year Old (E295/£206.75). There are also some quirky little drams nestling among the big name brands such as a rare Girvan Single Grain at E362 (£253.62), and a 27 Year Old bottling from now mothballed distillery of Port Ellen priced at E165.20 (£115.70).

Contact details

Tel: +33 (0)1 481 643 14
Opening hours: 06.00 to 23.30hrs, 7 days a week


If you like stags, thistles, and tartan on your whisky bottle packaging, then this latest travel-retail exclusive release from the Glengoyne distillery is not for you. The look of this new whisky from Ian Macleod Distillers is very much out of the futuristic mould of its award-winning blend Smokehead, which was launched last year.

The bottle’s black label features GPS map contours of the Dumgoyne spring which flows through the Glengoyne distillery. The typography is fluorescent yellow, while the outer gift box is crowned by an unusual brushed aluminium clasp. The unusual name refers to the distillery’s original name.

As for the whisky itself, Burnfoot is unaged but is said to contain whiskies up to 34 years in age. It is priced at a premium to Glengoyne 10 Year Old, and has a recommended price of ™36.

In terms of taste it is slightly sweeter and smoother than other Glengoyne expressions, but with the same complexity, with plenty of honey and citrus fruits on the nose, a smooth, creamy and oaky flavour on the palate, and a long, dry finish.

The Balvenie

SherryOak 17 Year Old

If you are a bit of a sherry monster when it comes to whisky, try and track down this new limited edition from The Balvenie, which is finally getting some of the attention it deserves from owner, William Grant.

As the name suggests, the new The Balvenie SherryOak 17 Year Old has been made solely from Oloroso sherry casks. As you’d expect, the resulting 43% ABV whisky offers rich spice and sherry fruitiness.

The catch, of course, is that there is not much of it to go around. Only 500 cases have been allocated to duty-free at a price of about£60 per bottle.

Leading UK, French and US airport shops will be the most likely recipients.
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