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Whisky Santa's Whisky Advent Day 20: Girvan Patent Still No.4 Apps

by Whisky Santa     20. December 2014 00:00

The Girvan Patent Still No.4 Apps

Day 20! There's really not long left before Christmas, is there? Hopefully you've been enjoying your Whisky Advent Calendars day by day and are ready for another lovely single grain Scotch whisky!

Today it's the turn of The Girvan Patent Still No.4 Apps from William Grant & Sons. I've got quite a sweet tooth, and as such quite enjoy this dram. It's not quite as sweet as a Penguin (biscuit) or a Snowball (cake???), which I do quite enjoy finding left out for me on Christmas Eve, but I think I'd rather a glass of this. And there's never been a better time to buy (or win) one than today...

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Whisky Santa's Whisky Advent Day 12: Monkey Shoulder

by Whisky Santa     12. December 2014 00:00

Monkey Shoulder Blended Malt Scotch Whisky

On the Twelfth Night ye shalt discover a fabulous, unpretentious blended malt in your Whisky Advent Calendar. Why it's Monkey Shoulder, of course: "Better a witty fool than a foolish wit"!

Why is it called Monkey Shoulder, you ask? Well, back in what you refer to as 'the old days', maltmen turned the barley by hand - a very labour-intensive job. With the strenuous work and long hours these chaps undertook, they ended up with a bit of a hunch, known as 'Monkey Shoulder'. I end up with something similar on Boxing Day after carrying around my heavy sa... my heavy bag of presents all night. Luckily I get a year to rest up afterwards!

Made exclusively with malt whiskies from William Grant's three Speyside distilleries (Glenfiddich, Balvenie & Kininvie), Monkey Shoulder's matured in first-fill ex-bourbon casks and married for three-to-six months. It's a lovely treat served neat, with ice or indeed in cocktails.

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David Beckham Haig Club Single Grain Whisky

by Jake Mountain     22. October 2014 12:21

David Beckham Haig Club Grain Whisky

This is really a follow up to my previous post 'Will Grain Whisky be promoted to the Big League as David Beckham signs for Haig Club?', where I talk more generally about single grain and David Beckham as well as taste the Girvan 25yo. Since then a couple of things have happened. Firstly, the brand and the whisky are out there now - from teaser shots where you don't even get to see Becks' face back in July, to us having the whisky for sale on the site, to the Global Launch at the start of October through to the release of the UK television advert at the end of last week. The other thing that's happened is that I've actually got around to tasting it now, finally!

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Categories : News | Review | Tasting Notes | Whisky


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Auchentoshan 25 Year Old 1988 Wine Cask Finish - "YEEAAAHHHH!!!"

by Jake Mountain     17. October 2014 16:18

Auchentoshan 1988 Wine Cask Finish

A 25 year old 1988 vintage. That's quite enough about me though. Feeling a little guilty that I haven't got to this whisky already (we received the package with the sample about a month ago), I'm now making a concious effort in these busy 'already-sort-of-started-but-also-still-building-up-to-Christmas-retailing' times to get to it before my birthday, after which I'll suddenly have a little less in common with it.

Everybody enjoys getting their hands on a whisky distilled in the year of their birth, it's fun. It's one of those things that shouldn't really matter perhaps, but many people are willing to fork out that little bit (or lot-a-bit) extra to get their paws on something from 'their vintage'. Something that's spent the same amount of time on this oblate spheroid as they have. Indeed, some whisky lovers go out of their way to secure these as often as possible. But if it's the same age as you as well? Better still, surely?

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Glenfiddich 18 Year Old's New Packaging and the 12-Pointed Antlers

by Jake Mountain     9. October 2014 16:45

Glenfiddich 18 Year Old New Bottle Launch

Glenfiddich 18 Year Old will soon be getting some new threads in the form of a new bottle, label and tin, thus differentiating it from the 12 and 15 year old offerings in the core range. Present at the unveiling of the new packaging, created with Here Design, we can confirm that the changes aren't drastic or overblown - it still feels very much like the 18yo rather than being anywhere near as grand as the 21yo, whilst nevertheless providing more of a bridge to the the older, more expensive offering. This approach is clear right from seeing the new square tin. (The price, by the way, isn't changing.)

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Highland Park Freya

by Sam Smith     5. February 2014 09:53

Highland Park Valhalla Collection Freya

The sun is starting to peek through the clouds once more and there’s that glorious feeling of love in the air. Is that because Valentine’s Day is creeping closer and closer? It actually has nothing to do with Valentine’s Day at all (but you can still address all heart-shaped boxes of chocolate to Sam Smith, MoM Towers, Tunbridge Wells). No, that lovely feeling is coming from the parcel that has found its way to my desk.

Hidden beneath a shock of shredded black paper sits a fancy looking black box tied up with quite a fancy leather string bow. It's the kind of box that people can only hold really awesome or really scary stuff. You're not going to get a box that looks like this with a stapler or a bike lock or a bank statement in it. It's either amazing or devastating. A gold ring or a ring finger. A puppy or too many scorpions. Cake or death. I'm quite partial to cake, to be perfectly honest.

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An Alternative Burns Night with Monkey Shoulder!

by Jake Mountain     22. January 2014 14:08

Montgomery Burns

On Monday night I attended a Burns Supper with a difference, courtesy of the Monkey Shoulder Social Club. There was haggis, of course, and Scotch whisky too, but rather than Scotland’s favourite son taking centre stage, the star of this particular show was one Charles Montgomery Plantagenet Schicklgruber Burns, Sr. Oh, yes.

Monkey Shoulder, as I'm sure many of you will know, is a fantastic blended malt from William Grant that's made with whiskies from their three Dufftown distilleries: Glenfiddich, Balvenie and Kininvie.

The theme for the evening had been hiding in plain sight for some time as guests entered to win tickets to ‘A Celebrations of Mr Burns’, accompanied by a picture of Rabbie in a pair of shades that had apparently been enough to throw many off the scent. Upon arrival at The Caledonian Club, everything seemed perfectly above board... although... did I spot Groundskeeper Willy on my way up the street?.. Probably nothing, let’s just enjoy this Monkey Shoulder whisky punch (created by Roman Foltan of the Artesian Bar) in the library and speak to a couple of these nice people from the ‘Dufftown Burns Appreciation Society’.

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Ballantine’s 12 Year Old Trip – Part Two

by Ben Ellefsen     19. September 2013 11:48

Ballantines helmet

So – with the distillery tour over and done with, it was time to move onto the main event; that which we had all been invited along to see. The deconstruction of Ballantine's 12 Year Old.

Before we get into all that though, I’d like everyone to take a second to behold the image below:

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Ballantine's 12 Year Old Trip - Part one

by Ben Ellefsen     17. September 2013 15:23

Ballantines selection

Okay. I’ll start here with an apology. This is possibly the most overdue blog post in the history of man (except my review of Dead Rabbit NYC, that’s more overdue). Things have happened since then, y’see. Things involving setting up new and exciting drinks distribution companies, developing a whole mess of new products, and the introduction of a mini sleep-terrorist into my house. These things have precluded me from doing what I should have done ages ago. The last one has also probably precluded me from spelling any words in this post correctly or being sure if my hands are, in fact, my hands. If you’re reading this, Ballantine’s-press-folk, you can have one free shot next time I see you, subject to the normal rules of course*.

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World Whisky Day - Sat 18th May

by Jake Mountain     13. May 2013 09:13

World Whisky Day 2013 logo

The second World Whisky Day, organised by Aberdeen University student Blair Bowman, is just around the corner. A new date of Saturday 18th May has been chosen for this year’s celebrations, a date that Blair hopes one day could even become a national holiday in Scotland.

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Categories : Blended | News | Whisky


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