This month, whisky expert George Koutsakis and former British Formula One champion Jenson Button will launch a new blended Scotch: Coachbuilt.
The duo, who met through friends, discovered a mutual appreciation for the parallels between coachbuilding and the blending of fine whiskies. They went on to create what they describe as a “full bodied, intricate and well-balanced” whisky with “notes of summer fruits, and subtle spice, followed by toffee, chocolate and a touch of citrus”, and a subtly smoky finish.
Coachbuilt blends whisky from five Scotch regions – Islay, Speyside, Campbeltown, Highlands and Lowlands – before marrying them in sherry casks. The brand calls the result “a beautifully balanced whisky with rich depth and complexity of flavour to rival some of the best ultra-premiums in the category”.
Founder George Koutsakis, who consults and writes on whisky and lives between Taiwan and Hong Kong, said, "Coachbuilt began from a realisation that blended Scotch whisky does not receive the praise it deserves worldwide. With our whisky, we cast the spotlight on the immense skill required to take components from dozens of distilleries across the country and piece them together to create a liquid defined by balance and complexity. From sourcing liquid from each region of Scotch whisky to the final touch added by the sherry cask finish, craftsmanship is the core of our blend.”
Jenson Button added, “The timing was brilliant – I was in the middle of launching our coachbuilding company Radford when I got introduced to George as he was on a mission to create the ultimate blended whisky. I’ve always loved my whisky but didn’t know a huge amount about the blending world, however…the parallels between blending and coachbuilding became pretty apparent. He then sent me an early sample of what he was working on and that was that – I asked how I could get involved, and two years later, here we are!”
Coachbuilt Whisky (46% ABV) is now available to purchase
(RRP £42). The current release will serve as the brand’s flagship expression, but ultra-rare, aged and limited-edition releases will be developed for future bottlings.