Hot on the heels of Talisker Storm comes another no age statement whisky from the very same distillery: Talisker Port Ruighe.
So, what’s the story with Port Ruighe? Wouldn’t you like to know? Well, it’s pronounced Portree, as in the largest town on the Isle of Skye, with ‘Port Ruighe’ being an old Gaelic spelling. The town is based around a large natural harbour, which has been key for business and trade for centuries and latterly has featured some of them there brightly coloured buildings made infamous by a certain children’s television programme. The other thing you need to know is that they have their own top flight (see what I did there) Quidditch team, the Prides, that compete in the British and Irish Quidditch League.
The London Distillery Company, founded in 2011, that’s 2011, have recently released their first full product, created at their rather nifty Battersea distillery. Their plan, ultimately, is to produce whisky in London for the first time in over a century, but in the meantime we have an exciting new gin brand: Dodd’s Gin.
TLDC’s Darren Rook has often pointed to London’s whisky distilling heritage, with as many as six distilleries operating back in the 1800s. Other cities, such as Liverpool, can make similar claims, and whilst English whisky may still be an unusual concept for some, the revival is already well underway. Indeed, we could soon have 5 English whisky distilleries. London’s gin heritage meanwhile, is “too well known to require a dissertation”, to steal a Ralph Dodd (the chap this gin's named after) phrase.
It's finally here. Yes, folks, Joel Harrison and Neil Ridley have raised the anchor and set sail to release the third instalment in their A-Z of whiskies series. This time, they took to the high seas (or high rails?) to celebrate their first crack at creating a blend. And what a blend it was! It stands up to water, cocktails, and rush-hour traffic on the London Circle Line.
Our journey began with an introduction by two salty dogs, dressed to the nines in seafaring garb and presenting us with a fractured history of the London tube. Were there sea shanties, you ask? But of course!
Another month (well, nearly – it’s been over 3 weeks), another clutch of supremely awesome whiskies bottled by That Boutique-y Whisky Company. This time we’re bringing you whiskies from Brora, Arran, Tobermory, Tormore and Aberfeldy.
Sadly, one of these beauties has already sold out (no prizes for guessing which I’m afraid), but the rest are still available for your delectation:
Like a striding colossus of the whisky industry powered by pure inspiration, awesomeness and zeitgeist*, That Boutique-y Whisky Company have brought you not one, but seven brand new releases, as well as a second batch of Aberlour.
Without any further ado:
This week, through thick snow and in the picturesque undulations of Northamptonshire, the Warner Edwards team has been busily bottling up their brand new Harrington Dry Gin – a debut spirit from old Uni pals Sion Edwards and Tom Warner. We’re going to give the gin a road-test shortly, but first some history and background…
Sion and Tom met at university and became good friends from the very beginning, bonding over a love of rugby and the fact they both came from family farms. After graduating, they took on steady jobs and a few years later, feeling slightly bored, decided it was time to embark on a project together, utilising their farming backgrounds.
It’s a scary place, the brain of Ben.
It consists mainly of Alan Partridge and Father Ted episodes, cocktail recipes, and rain-man-esque recall of horsepower and torque figures for most production cars. There’s also usually something in there about whisky.
What I can tell you about the brain of Ben though, is that these Boutique-y whiskies have recently been upgraded from ‘a bit of fun’, to ‘something with a lot of potential’.
Because of this, you’re going to see a pretty decent number of new releases from brand spanking new distilleries over the next few weeks / months, and if the results of some of the recent whisky auctions are anything to go by, I think we’ll see them selling out in pretty short order.
We at MoM Towers love whisky. Can’t get enough it. We also love the USA (yes, it’s true!), and we have a special place in our collective, malty heart for Craft Distillers. So, when we first heard about an American, whisky-producing craft distillery, our minds were blown. Blown, I tells ya! This was well before we even had a chance to behold the amazing beards of Chip Tate, Head Distiller at Balcones, and Jared Himstedt, the Production Manager at the Distillery. Once we saw what these chaps were sporting and making, we knew we would be hooked.
Chip Tate started up Balcones in 2008 and snatched the glory of producing the very first Texas whisky. Balcones is named for the fault line that runs through the south-western part of the state through Waco, Texas where the distillery is located. A dramatic illustrated interpretation of the Balcones Fault can be found in the logo and is truly representative of some of the flavour profiles found in their whiskies: ground-breaking and earth-quaking.
If there was ever a word so god damn awful it’s guaranteed to send a shudder down your spine it is the dreaded p-word – prohibition *a wolf howls in the background and you get the feeling you are being followed by a man with an axe*.
This was the boozeless condition that afflicted the United States of America for thirteen parched years thanks to the tireless campaigning of the American Temperance Movement.
The Movement advocated the ‘Noble Experiment’ to save society from the horrors of alcohol abuse throughout the 19th and 20th centuries and they succeeded in 1920 with the 18th Amendment to the Constitution and the Volstead Act which completely banned the sale of alcohol in the U.S.A.
This led to a decade and three years of corruption and violence across America as mobsters and moonshiners sought to bring alcohol illicitly to the understandably thirsty public before the Amendment was finally repealed in 1933.
It’s that time of year again - the weather has given up the pretence of caring, the trees are shedding their leaves like a sinking ship sheds ballast, and the sun can’t summon the energy to stay in the sky for longer than is absolutely necessary. Thankfully all is not lost as Diageo are about to release their much anticipated Special Releases Range.
Diageo is a multi-national drinks company that owns twenty-eight working distilleries and the remaining stock of a number of closed ones, and every year they release a selection of limited releases from some of these distilleries.
With such a large portfolio to draw from these whiskies tend to be the cream of the crop and get us whisky geeks slathering at their merest mention [go on, find a whisky geek and mention it, watch it slather…].
So this evening we all trooped to London to taste these high-demand whiskies in the warm and, more importantly, dry confines of The Deck at the National Theatre. Last time I was in this theatre I watched Benedict Cumberbatch (that guy off of Sherlock) prance around the stage as Frankenstein’s monster with nothing but his self-esteem to cover his modesty. This time I came armed with a notebook and pen - ready to record my experience of facing this enormous tackle of whisky.