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Master of Malt Blog

Category: News

Buffalo Trace Antique Collection 2018: lotteries and charity auctions

Set the excitement controls to very extremely exciting because the 2018 Buffalo Trace Antique Collection is here! As we have done in the past, we will be splitting each allocation…

Set the excitement controls to very extremely exciting because the 2018 Buffalo Trace Antique Collection is here! As we have done in the past, we will be splitting each allocation between a 30ml dram lottery, a bottle lottery, and a charity auction.

To find out when and where the action will take place, see the timeline below.

The release of the annual Buffalo Trace Antique Collection is one of the most eagerly-awaited events in the whiskey lover’s calendar. We were lucky enough to receive a small allocation (see below) and demand is likely to be bananas. Therefore, as in the past few years, we will be using our patented ‘least-worst’ three-pronged approach.

For more information on our approach see this post from 2016, which explains everything in great detail. Here are the prongs:

Prong 1) A third of the allocation will be turned into 30ml Drinks by the Dram samples (drams) so that as many people as possible can taste these whiskeys. These drams will be allocated for sale by lottery.

Prong 2) Another third will be sold as full bottles, again allocated by lottery, with the following statement on the back of each: “I, [your lucky winning name], hereby swear not to sell this bottle – but to drink it with my chums. May my taste-buds and olfactory bulb shrivel and die if I should break my word.

Prong 3) The final third will be sold via auction with everything over RRP (net of any applicable VAT) going to Malaria No More UK. Last year these Buffalo Trace auctions alone raised over £3,000 towards eradicating a disease that is especially deadly to children under five. Your love of whiskey can help save lives. You can find out more about our chosen charity here.

Right, all clear? Let’s have a look at the whiskeys:

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The Nightcap: 18 January

The sun has gone down, the working week is ending, it’s time to pour yourself a glass of something delicious, and catch up with all the news that’s fit to…

The sun has gone down, the working week is ending, it’s time to pour yourself a glass of something delicious, and catch up with all the news that’s fit to drink. Yes, it’s time for… The Nightcap!

This week we went Robert Burns crazy with the launch of our poetry competition. We’ve already been inundated with entries, and the winner will be announced on Burns Night itself (25 January.) Then continuing with the Burns theme, Adam rounded up some Scotch whiskies that would have brought a smile to the Bard’s face. Annie looked at some unusual bottles: rye whiskies from Britain, and peat-smoked spirits from everywhere except Scotland (not sure Burns would have approved.) Our Cocktail of the Week was that tiki classic, the Zombie. Kristy visited the Wolfburn Distillery and spoke to top glass maker Denver Cramer about how to get the most out of your nose.

Lots to get your teeth into! And now it’s time for booze news. Here we go!

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The Nightcap: 11 January

It’s our first Nightcap of 2019 so it’s a special bumper edition. We’ve got a lot to get through so without further delay, ado, procrastination or beating about the bush,…

It’s our first Nightcap of 2019 so it’s a special bumper edition. We’ve got a lot to get through so without further delay, ado, procrastination or beating about the bush, here’s what we’ve been up to since the last Nightcap way back in 2018.

Cast your mind back to New Year’s Eve, we know it seems like a long time ago, Adam came up with some top tips to drink on the night. Between Christmas and New Year, we rounded up our most-read stories of 2018, and looked at Glenkinchie’s exciting plans to become a top tourist destination. Then as January began, Annie fell in love with grain whisky and learned how your other senses affect how you taste. Adam produced a list of mouthwateringly-refreshing drinks and got all seasonal with winter-y botanicals. Kristy peered into her crystal ball (yes, she really has a crystal ball) to see what we’ll be drinking in the next few years and spoke to some bigwigs at Johnnie Walker about the future of whisky. And finally, Henry put in a plea for fortified wines, introduced a new regular feature, Cocktail of the Week, and got all bitter and twisted over amari. See what we mean about bumper edition?

And that’s not all. We had our first Dram Club of 2019 and announced a competition to win a VIP trip to Ardbeg!

Such content. Now we can’t hold back the tide of news any longer. Here it comes!

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Master of Malt’s most read stories of 2018

As 2018 draws to a close, we reflect on the news and features that caught your eye the most this year. Well, we’ve reached the end of another year. The…

As 2018 draws to a close, we reflect on the news and features that caught your eye the most this year.

Well, we’ve reached the end of another year. The Earth has put in another hell of a shift in its orbit around the Sun. Now is the time where we reflect on all that happened in 2018.

It has been another 12 months filled with standout stories, all manner of incidents, and of course highs and lows. Among the articles you read most on our award-winning blog were round-ups of great booze, limited-edition whisky launches, and a sorry tale of a collapsing warehouse. We shed a tear for all that bourbon.

Without further delay, these are the top 10 stories that you read, shared and talked about the most in 2018.

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Diageo to transform Glenkinchie Distillery

Lowland malt distillery Glenkinchie, an important component in Johnnie Walker blended Scotch, has just been granted planning permission for a new visitor centre. Located just over 15 miles from Edinburgh,…

Lowland malt distillery Glenkinchie, an important component in Johnnie Walker blended Scotch, has just been granted planning permission for a new visitor centre.

Located just over 15 miles from Edinburgh, Glenkinchie is one of very few Lowland malt whisky distilleries. Being so close to the capital means that the distillery has huge potential as a tourist attraction, something that Diageo is now looking to build upon. We have just received news that East Lothian Council has granted permission for development work on the distillery.

There has been a distillery on the site since 1837, but the current Glenkinchie set-up dates back to 1890. As part of Diageo’s plans, its Victorian red brick warehouse will become a new all-singing, all-dancing visitor experience which including a shop, a bar, a cocktail classroom, and tastings rooms. The new visitor centre will also show off Glenkinchie’s unique asset, a scale model of the distillery built for the 1925 Empire Exhibition (watch this short film to see the model in all is magnificence.) Work will begin on the expansion early next year.

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Time for #WhiskySanta to say toodle-oo…

#WhiskySanta has had his biggest year yet, with countless gifts flying far and wide to their new homes. There’s just one thing left that #WhiskySanta wants to say… HAVE A…

#WhiskySanta has had his biggest year yet, with countless gifts flying far and wide to their new homes. There’s just one thing left that #WhiskySanta wants to say…

HAVE A MERRY CHRISTMAS, EVERYBODY!

Ho! Ho! Ho! My little radio system here at MoM Towers is playing Wizzard’s I Wish it Could be Christmas Everyday for the 15,844th time, which means it’s about time I say goodbye for another year. It has been the perfect soundtrack to me giving away well over £250,000-worth of delicious drinks gifts since this year’s festivities kicked off at the start of November!

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The Nightcap: 21 December

It’s so nearly Christmas! Have you bought all your presents? Ordered a turkey? Thought up a list of safe topics for the dinner table? No? Nor have we! It’s going…

It’s so nearly Christmas! Have you bought all your presents? Ordered a turkey? Thought up a list of safe topics for the dinner table? No? Nor have we! It’s going to be chaos this weekend. But before we panic, it’s time for the final Nightcap of 2018. Where did the year go?!

This week, the wise Annie Hayes said ‘forget the eggnog, there’s a new wave of Christmas cocktails to try’; we had news of Glenturret’s new owner, a Swiss gentleman who also owns crystal house Lalique; we took an Ardbeg masterclass with Brendan McCarron; and our very own features editor, Henry Jeffreys, talked about his new book, The Home Bar.

But that’s not all! We also counted down the days with a Drinks by the Dram Whisky Advent Calendar which has yielded some mighty whiskies: Glenfarclas 105, Peat’s Beast, Jim Beam Rye, Aberfeldy 12 Year Old, an an Irish single malt from That Boutique-y Whisky Company, Rock Oyster and GlenDronach 12 Year Old. And there’s still three more doors to open before the big day. We’ve also had an amazing ##WhiskySanta Super Wish, a Glenfarclas 1956, and the return of Master of Malt Auctions! Phew.

Right, let’s hear the final booze-filled news of 2018. Who can even imagine what 2019 will bring?

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Buyer found for Scotland’s oldest distillery, Glenturret

Good news for whisky lovers and for whisky workers, Glenturret distillery has found a buyer! We reported back in June that The Macallan owner, Edrington, was selling Glenturret, Scotland’s oldest…

Good news for whisky lovers and for whisky workers, Glenturret distillery has found a buyer!

We reported back in June that The Macallan owner, Edrington, was selling Glenturret, Scotland’s oldest working distillery, as well as the Cutty Sark brand. Last month, Cutty Sark was bought by French spirits group La Martiniquaise-Bardinet, the owner of Glen Moray. Now Glenturret has gone to high-end wine distributor Art & Terroir as it makes its first foray into whisky. It’s like its Scotch transfer season.

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Master of Malt Auctions returns for a pre-Christmas whisky fiesta!

Love the thrill of an auction? Us too. Which is why Master of Malt Auctions is back with one final whisky bonanza this side of Christmas, featuring a Lagavulin Feis…

Love the thrill of an auction? Us too. Which is why Master of Malt Auctions is back with one final whisky bonanza this side of Christmas, featuring a Lagavulin Feis Ile bottling, 38 year old Royal Salute, and a particularly tasty Talisker from Diageo’s Special Releases way back in 2003

Ready to rock and roll, team? We’ve got one final fabulous flurry of Master of Malt Auctions bottlings set to go up for auction this side of Christmas. And we reckon there’s a bottling (or ten!) that will take your fancy.

Up for auction from 3pm today until Tuesday evening are ten sensational Scotch whiskies. They are all unusual in some way – either limited edition bottlings, stuff with some serious age, or they were limited to travel retail the first time round. There’s all kinds of tastiness. And bidding gets under way soon!

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The Nightcap: 14 December

Thank heavens it’s the end of the week. It’s time to dust off your dancing shoes and head to your local discotheque to strut your funky stuff, perhaps whilst wearing…

Thank heavens it’s the end of the week. It’s time to dust off your dancing shoes and head to your local discotheque to strut your funky stuff, perhaps whilst wearing novelty reindeer antlers. It’s up to you. But first, the Nightcap!

A great way to make those winter days go a bit quicker is with a Drinks by the Dram Whisky Advent Calendar. We’ve been counting down the days and this week we had a surfeit of K sounds in our whiskies: Kilchoman, Kirkwall Bay, Kavalan, Cotswold, Cardhu and Nikka. Plus Glenrothes standing aloof refusing to have anything to do with all those noisy Cs and Ks. For the Super Wish on Monday, #WhiskySanta was giving away a bottle of The Macallan M worth £3,300. And there was an opportunity to win £250 to spend at Master of Malt by finding #WhiskySanta in a Where’s Wally-style game. Head on over to our YouTube page to join in!

And that’s not all. Round 3 of the Master of Malt Auctions is under way; Annie talked to the people behind the Port of Leith distillery, Edinburgh’s first single malt distillery in more than 100 years; Henry wrote a bit about his favourite cocktail, the Negroni; and picked the best booze books of the year. Some excellent stocking fillers there.

Now on with the news!

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