Tonic Wine Cask Finish Single Malt 10 Years Old and Tonic Wine Cask Finish Blended Malt 21 Years Old are the result of months of research into drinks history, the role of religious practice in wine production, and a deep-dive into uncharted flavour territory.
What started as a conversation over drams soon turned into a whisky sourcing, cask seasoning, and sampling adventure, with Schrieberg, Archibald, and the Master of Malt team searching across the UK for flavour inspiration.
The tonic wine used for the bespoke cask seasoning was chosen because of its unique cough mixture character, energetic profile, and its berry-like expressiveness. Due consideration was also given to its cultural and historical significance to the drinks industry. A process of assessing the efficacy of tonic wine as a beverage for cask seasoning was carried out by Schrieberg and Archibald using 1-litre oak vessels, the results of which were extremely promising.
The whiskies for each expression were selected to pair perfectly with the unique finish. The exquisite 10 Years Old was sourced from the same distillery as Master of Malt’s ground-breaking Limitless release, while the 21 Years Old luxuriously marries Highland richness with Island complexity.
Tonic Wine Cask Finish Single Malt 10 Years Old offers an accessibly priced glimpse into this fresh and revolutionary whisky style. It’s rich, fruit-forward, and shows complexity beyond its years. It’s believed the tonic wine finish has rapidly accelerated the development of these flavour compounds, and further organoleptic studies into its effects are still ongoing. A limited release, each 700ml bottle is priced at £44.95.
Tonic Wine Cask Finish Blended Malt 21 Years Old is a true elevation of the style, and offers an unparalleled immersion into the effects of a tonic wine finish on well-matured whisky. A nose reminiscent of stone fruit and church incense gives way to a rich, opulently viscous palate, and a lingering, aniseed-like finish. With just 21 bottles released, each priced at £199.95, it’s a rare and truly unique offering.
“Here at Master of Malt, we’re passionate about whisky innovation and enabling our customers to experience the newest, most exciting developments in drinks production,” said Guy Hodcroft, Master of Malt Head Buyer. “When we first collaborated with our friends Felipe and Paul, we thought, why not get hands-on and start creating? It’s been quite the journey, but we’re delighted to bring the results of the partnership to life in all its prune note-influenced glory.”
“We had a meeting where we all tried some of the early tests with the Master of Malt team, and were pleasantly surprised that this actually didn’t taste bad at all, so everyone was happy to move forward with what started as a joke” says Schrieberg.
“However, Paul drank all the oak-aged tonic wine that came out of the seasoned test casks which meant that we didn’t get to try any at the meeting. That was pretty upsetting.”
Tonic Wine Cask Finish Single Malt 10 Years Old and Blended Malt 21 Years Old are available exclusively from Master of Malt from 1 April 2021.