Wood Makes the Whisky

Wood Makes the Whisky

Gordon & MacPhail showcase their philosophy

News | 04 Dec 2015 | Issue 132 | By Rupert Wheeler

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Gordon & MacPhail, one of the world's leading single malt whisky specialists, has selected a special series of whiskies to showcase the company's 'The Wood Makes the Whisky' campaign which highlights the importance of this essential element in the whisky maturation process.

For over 120 years Gordon & MacPhail has carefully matched spirit with oak in order to ensure a premium taste which reflects the company's philosophy. Through the campaign, consumers are invited to gain a more in-depth insight into how Gordon & MacPhail's approach to matching wood to spirit has shaped a number of whiskies in their portfolio.

Using expertise honed over four generations, Gordon & MacPhail believe that wood really does make the whisky, with their skilfully coopered casks delivering a full spectrum of flavour compounds; from sweet vanilla notes found through Bourbon cask maturation to rich toffee, dark chocolate and spice notes derived through maturation in Sherry casks.

The array of flavours derived from oak are abundant across the Gordon & MacPhail portfolio, with each whisky demonstrating a unique flavour profile which reflects the cask type as well as the distillery character.

Gordon & MacPhail has selected a series of whiskies, from various collections including Connoisseurs Choice, The MacPhail's Collection and Rare Vintage, which they feel best demonstrate their philosophy.

A book and website have been created to accompany the campaign which can be used to guide whisky lovers through the series, explaining the flavours of each whisky and how this relates to the wood. Ewen Macintosh, Chief Operating Officer said: "Here at Gordon & MacPhail we have always been focused on the close relationship between oak and spirit, and have learned from vast experience that wood really does make the whisky. We have selected the special series of whiskies to demonstrate this complex relationship.

"Our unrivalled collection is a liquid library showcasing whiskies from numerous Scottish distilleries, age profiles and whisky characteristics. From branch to barrel, we aim to deliver a perfectly matured whisky time and time again."

For more information on 'The Wood Makes the Whisky' campaign please visit: www.gordonandmacphail.com/wood

Brown-Forman break ground at Slane Castle, Ireland with new distillery

Slane Castle has played host to many American music legends through the years. Bob Dylan, REM and Bruce Springsteen are among those hosted by the Conyngham family as headliners at the famous outdoor summer concert. It is a different band of Americans who are now being hosted at Slane, as the family partners with US Drinks firm Brown-Forman to bring the patriarch Henry's dream of Slane Irish Whiskey to fruition.

The distillery, which will also include a Visitor Centre, will be built in the former stables of the estate. Brown-Forman Corporation, who own Jack Daniel's, Southern Comfort and Woodford Reserve brands purchased the Slane Irish Whiskey Company from the Conyngham family earlier this year. The Conynghams will however remain involved in the development of the new distillery and the new whiskey brands that bear the estate's name.

The distillery, expected to be completed by late 2016 is the first built by Brown-Forman outside of the United States and is the firm's first foray into distilling Irish whiskey. The first Slane whiskeys will be launched to market in early 2017, initially using whiskey purchased from other Irish distilleries while the first whiskey from the distillery is laid down to mature. Upon completion the distillery will have a potential output of more than 600,000 cases and it is intended that the grain for production will be grown on the estate and surrounding area.

The US Ambassador to Ireland Kevin F O'Malley was amongst guests of honour at the official ground breaking ceremony at the historic County Meath estate in late September. Speaking at the event, he remarked on the significance of the occasion, "There are so many links between Ireland and the great state of Kentucky - people, music, horses and a great tradition of making the finest whiskies. This is a truly modern linkage - combining the best in creativity and expertise to bring new products to the world at a time of huge opportunity for Irish whiskey. I am very pleased to welcome this latest wonderful partnership between our two countries"

Famous Grouse make a 'raise the dram' world record attempt

Reigning Miss Scotland, Mhairi Fergusson and former Red Hot Chilli Piper and General Manager of The Famous Grouse Experience, Stuart Cassells, recently made an attempt at a new world record when visitors took part in a simultaneous 'raise a dram' moment at Glenturret Distillery in Crieff.

Accompanying Mhairi, and also raising a special dram, was her boyfriend and Scotland Rugby star, Finn Russell.

Scotland's only remaining producer of hand mashed whisky was celebrating 240 years of making whisky 'by hand and by heart'. Evidence had to be submitted to Guinness World Records and they currently await official confirmation.

The same night also saw the launch of a new core range, which showcases Glenturret's unrivalled agility in small batch whisky production which enables the distillers to create different taste expressions, offering consumers a clear choice between a Sherry, Triple Wood or Peated malt.

Producing whisky the traditional way since opening its doors as a single malt distillery in 1775, The Famous Grouse Experience at Glenturret Distillery is the most visited distillery in Scotland welcoming over tens of thousands of visitors annually.

Stuart Cassells, General Manager of The Famous Grouse Experience at the distillery says, "Our 'raise a dram' world record attempt was the perfect way to mark 240 years of Glenturret Distillery, standing alongside members of the public and whisky lovers from the area. We've been raising a dram here on this site for 240 years which is incredible. It was great to see everyone come together to celebrate."

To find out more about The Famous Grouse Experience and Glenturret Distillery, visit www.thefamousgrouseexperience.com

An important arrival for Walsh Whiskey Distillery

What is set to be one of the largest independent whiskey distilleries in Ireland, the Walsh Whiskey Distillery at Royal Oak in County Carlow, took a big step closer to being commissioned next January with the arrival of almost 30 tonnes of copper and steel whiskey distilling equipment. The precious cargo made its first and last ever journey, all of 1,046 kilometres (650 miles), by road and sea from the north-west of Scotland. The crown jewels in the shipment are the three giant copper pot stills and column stills that will be the prime engines in the distillation of up to eight million bottles of premium, craft, Irish whiskey annually.

There to greet the convoy as it arrived at the 18th Century estate were founders Bernard and Rosemary Walsh, their family, company employees and the community of the small village of Royal Oak. The whiskey distillery is the first to be developed in Carlow and the south-east in 100 and 200 years respectively.

The distillery will be the only one in Ireland to produce all three types of Irish whiskey in one still house, namely - pot, malt and grain.

Icons of Whisky India 2015

The Icons of Whisky India Awards are now in their seventh year and this year's spectacular event took place on Friday 16 October 2016 at ITC Grand Chola, Chennai.

Over 300 guests attended the event made up of luxury and lifestyle buyers, whisky enthusiasts and members of the hospitality industry. The Icons of Whisky Awards are a highlight in the whisky calendar and Whisky Magazine has run the Scotland, America and Rest of World stage for over ten years.

The India stage is brought to the country by Spiritual Luxury Living, India's premier international spirits and whisky experience company, since 2008 and is presented together with Singleton Single Malt Scotch Whisky and the ITC Grand Chola, Chennai.

According to Rupert Wheeler, Managing Editor, Whisky Magazine, "The magazine has been celebrating the whiskies of the world consistently and seeks to present the highest accolade for whisky, the Icons of Whisky, in every leading whisky nation of the world."

The Awards

Whisky Distiller of the Year

Pernod Ricard India

Whisky General Manager of the Year

Kunal Chauhan

General Manager, The Leela Palace, Bengaluru

Whisky Ambassador of the Year

Neelakanta Rao Jagdale

Chairman, Amrut Distilleries, Bengaluru, India

Whisky Innovator of the Year

Diageo India

Whisky Chef of the Year

Chef Manisha Bhasin

ITC Maurya, New Delhi

Award Winners in 2015

26 Whisky Bars

Golf Bar, ITC Maurya, New Delhi

Polo Lounge, Hyatt Regency, New Delhi

The Library, The Leela Palace, New Delhi

The Blue Bar, The Taj Palace, New Delhi

The Oval Bar, JW Marriot, New Delhi

Rubicon, The Leela, Gurgaon

Piano Bar, The Oberoi, Gurgaon

Bombay High, ITC Maratha, Mumbai

JW Lounge and Bar, JW Marriott, Sahar, Mumbai

Atrium, Taj Landsend, Mumbai

The Eau Bar, The Oberoi, Mumbai

Reflections, JW Marriott, Mumbai

The Bar, Grand Hyatt, Mumbai

Harbour Bar, The Taj Mahal Palace & Towers, Mumbai

Dublin, ITC Windsor, Bengaluru

Highland Nectar, ITC Gardenia, Bengaluru

Bene, Sheraton, Bengaluru

The Library, The Leela Palace, Bengaluru

Bar Uno, JW Marriott, Bengaluru

Cheroot, ITC Grand Chola, Chennai

The Library Blu, The Leela Palace, Chennai

Chipstead, Taj Coramandel, Chennai

Bar 101, JW Marriott, Pune

Junction, Taj Bengal, Kolkata

Ninety Six, The Trident, Hyderabad

Westminster, Crowne Plaza, Chennai

Highly Commended Bar

The Bar, Ritz Carlton, Bengaluru

The Library, The Leela Palace, New Delhi

Whisky Bar of the Year

The Taj Mahal, New Delhi
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