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Whisky Advent Day 7: Glen Scotia Double Cask

by Master of Malt     7. December 2015 10:00

Whisky Advent Calendar

The final dram of the first week of #WhiskyAdvent... Time to open up window seven of the Drinks by the Dram Whisky Advent Calendar and see what it is!

Why, it's a Campbeltown malt from Glen Scotia, whose whiskies have received all-new, all-new packaging this year and whose range has also seen a complete overhaul. Out have gone the 10, 12, 16, 18 and 21 year olds (most of which were relatively new themselves) and in come Double Cask, a 15 Year Old and Victoriana. It's not just the bottlings that have been revamped either, the last year or two have seen upgrades to the stills, three new washbacks, a new spirit safe and the building of a visitor centre at the distillery!

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Whisky Advent Day 6: Kilchoman Machir Bay 2014 Release

by Master of Malt     6. December 2015 10:00

Whisky Advent Calendar

As we approach the end of the first week of Drinks by the Dram's #WhiskyAdvent, it feels like it may be time for a peated single malt Scotch whisky. Something from Islay, perhaps? Right on cue, behind window six of The Whisky Advent Calendar we find a delicious Kilchoman!

This 2014 release is a vatting of 5 and 6 year old whisky matured in ex-bourbon barrels and Oloroso Sherry butts, the last of the 'work in progress' Machir Bay releases, as it were, which have been a fantastic insight as to how the spirit from Islay's youngest distillery has been developing. (Hint: it's been going pretty well!) Machir Bay has now become both a continuous release and their core expression, with this December marking the 10th anniversary of spirit first running from the stills.

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Whisky Advent Day 5: The Dalmore 15 Year Old

by Master of Malt     5. December 2015 10:00

Whisky Advent Calendar

Christmas just isn't Christmas without a satsuma (not especially exciting) and a chocolate orange (Woo! Get in! Let's chuck this in an unnecessarily aggressive manner at the nearest solid object to disperse its delicious segments!) in your stocking. Well, what if you could have liquid chocolate orange that was also 40% abv? Chuck in a slice of Christmas cake and you're getting pretty close to what's behind window number five of Drinks by the Dram's Whisky Advent Calendar!

Incredibly, it's not made of Christmas though, it's actually made at a distillery in the Scottish Highlands using malted barley, water, yeast and time (at least 15 years in this case) in ex-Matusalem, Apostoles and Amoroso Sherry casks (all made of oak). So, yes, it's single malt Scotch whisky!

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Whisky Advent Day 4: Elijah Craig Small Batch 12 Year Old

by Master of Malt     4. December 2015 10:00

Whisky Advent Calendar

After Scotch and Japanese single malts and a blended whisky, the Drinks by the Dram Whisky Advent Calendar is now taking us to Old Bourbon County for some classic American whiskey! Well, actually, without moving, Elijah Craig was from Fayette, Woodford or Scott Counties, Virginia or Kentucky (keeping up with this season's map in the late 18th century was an expensive business), but that's because Bourbon County was named after the French house rather than the whiskey. It's with ol' Elijah that the story of Kentucky bourbon whiskey may begin, however...

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FREE SHIPPING (for orders over £99)

by Master of Malt     3. December 2015 12:00

Master of Malt Free Shipping

UPDATE: Free Shipping for large orders will now be available until further notice!

A few months ago we talked about how much shipping charges suck, and then we did something about it – making thousands of products free to ship within the UK and giving you £5 off elsewhere.

Well, today it’s time to do more – until Christmas shipping for large orders will now be free within the UK and Europe.

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Whisky Advent Day 3: Compass Box Great King St Artist's Blend

by Master of Malt     3. December 2015 10:00

Compass Box Great King Street Whisky Advent

Day 3 already? Time flies when you're having #WhiskyAdvent fun! (Although it's definitely not too late to catch up if you don't yet have a Drinks by the Dram calendar...)

In The Whisky Advent Calendar today is a treat from one of our favourite independent bottlers and blenders, whisky zealot John Glaser's truly excellent Compass Box.

The Great King Street Artist's Blend takes its name from the address of Compass Box’s Edinburgh offices and, like all their whiskies, is bottled with neither chill-filtration nor artificial colouring. Priding themselves on transparency, we can tell you that this small batch blend always contains around 50% malt whisky (a very high percentage for a blend) In fact, we can tell you that it's made up of 46% first fill American oak matured Lowland grain whisky, 28% 'fruity and malty' Northern Highland single malt, 17% 'grassy' Northern Highland single malt, and 9% 'meaty' Speyside single malt! (66% of the blend is matured in first fill American oak overall and 8% in first fill Sherry butts with 28% finished in new French oak casks).

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Kingsbarns Distillery Founders' Club

by Master of Malt     2. December 2015 11:00

Kingsbarns Distillery Founders' Club

It’s been an exciting year for the Kingsbarns Distillery. On the 30th of November 2014, the distillery was officially opened, with the first spirit running from the still in January 2015 and filled their first cask the following month - which is proudly presented in their “Doocot”, a very charming architectural feature of the Kingsbarns Distillery grounds, which once upon a time housed a flock of pigeons. All massive milestones for a burgeoning distillery that is now maturing whisky for us all to taste when the time comes!

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Whisky Advent Day 2: Yoichi/Miyagikyo Single Malts

by Master of Malt     2. December 2015 10:00

Yoichi Miyagikyo Whisky Advent

It’s Day 2 of Drinks by the Dram’s #WhiskyAdvent and once again we get to open a window of the excellent Whisky Advent Calendar to see what delights lay within…

Starting with Speyside single malt Scotch yesterday, the second dram takes us all the way to Japan with Nikka’s Yoichi Non Age! If you’re now staring at your dram and thinking to yourself “Hey, hold on, mine says Miyagikyo Non Age”, then I believe we can explain... You see, these advent calendars have been so unbelievably popular this year, with sales surpassing all forecasts, that there are a very small number of days where not everybody could have the exact same dram. Indeed, we’ve been careful to ensure that the contents/spoilers of all the respective calendars were always up to date on the product pages of our site to reflect where this may happen. What we have today then are two single malts from Nikka’s two malt whisky distilleries, set up by the great Masataka Taketsuru (whose own story has recently reached a new generation in his native Japan thanks to the popular television serial Massan).

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Whisky Advent Day 1: Glenfarclas 25 Year Old

by Master of Malt     1. December 2015 10:00

Glenfarclas 25 Year Old Whisky Advent

Once upon a beginning, the folk of the world drew chalk lines on their doors to physically count down the first 24 days of December. Today that sounds more reminiscent of a prisoner counting the days of their incarceration than a celebration of the festive season, but it would be many years before some bright spark decided that using candles would be rather less bleak. I mean, candles, they're okay aren't they?

It wasn't until the early 20th century that calendars with windows first emerged. Ah, the possibilities! You could put literally anything behind them! What did the combined intellect of man decide upon? Well... pretty drawings. Again, quite nice, but there was more potential here. Enter the chocolate advent calendar. In a post-rationing world, this was a pretty big deal. They still delight children the world over, but cheap choccies are just one thing you can hide behind a window. Better than a drawing? Yes. Better than a slap in the face? Certainly. The best thing? Not even close...

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Sorry About Today

by Master of Malt     20. November 2015 17:32

Blue Screen

So you may have noticed the little incident we had this afternoon.

At midday we put the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection up on the site and to much excitement you all came rushing to buy the limited number of bottles available. A few moments later our site went down, preventing a lot of lovely people from purchasing their whisky, for which we are truly sorry. We were down 13 minutes in total, and the lucky few who got on the site right as it recovered snapped up the last few bottles (and we got that wrong earlier too - we thought they’d all been sold before the site went down, but they hadn’t). It's not the customer experience we wanted to provide; we are going to learn from today and improve.

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