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Battle of the Blends - The Results!

by Jake Mountain     12. October 2015 13:50

Battle of the Blends Whisky Magazine

It was truly a battle for the ages, and now - sooner than you may have expected - we can reveal the results!

If you're wondering what this Whisky Magazine #BattleOfTheBlends in association with Master of Malt business is all about then you can catch up by reading our previous blog post about the contest. Right now though, it's time to crown a champion...

The heavyweight contest between Dave Broom and Neil Ridley was decided by the noses and palates of over 250 judges including Master Blenders and well-known brand ambassadors as well as whisky and spirits writers, bloggers and enthusiasts - perhaps even your good self (if so, thank you!). Below you'll find my own Battle of the Blends tasting notes, as well as some comments from the judging panel, before the 2015 winner is revealed...


Become a Judge in the Battle of the Blends 2015!

by Jake Mountain     9. September 2015 09:00

Battle of the Blends Whisky Magazine

UPDATE: Following huge demand, all Judging places have now been filled!

Whisky Magazine readers will know all about the Battle of the Blends already, but for those who haven't had the pleasure of perusing their glossy pages over the last few months, it's "a truly legendary contest... a test of skill, ingenuity and the sternest of palates" as Dave 'The Rummager' Broom and Neil 'Copper Dog' Ridley go toe to toe!

The eight rounds of blending, in accordance with the Marquis of Ridley rules (see below), have taken place and it's now time for the all important judging! Excitingly, as we've been working on this alongside Whisky Mag, this means that there's an opportunity for you to be one of the esteemed judges in this battle royale, an undertaking that will involve receiving and tasting delicious whisky. Sorry about that.


Master of Cocktails - The Bobby Burns

by Ben Ellefsen     7. April 2015 09:22

Master of Cocktails The Bobby Burns

For #MasterofCocktails this week we made a twist on the Rob Roy (which I've decided on balance might be a rubbish drink). It's called a 'Bobby Burns' - and uses a healthy slug of Bénédictine to give the whisky and vermouth a much-needed lift.

It's obviously named after the Scottish Bard, Robert Burns, but in the week that Lynyrd Skynyrd's original drummer Bob Burns tragically died it seems a fitting tribute to him as well.

So, let's get to it...


NEW: Master of Malt 10 Year Old Blended Whisky

by Jake Mountain     7. May 2014 11:52

Master of Malt 10 Year Old Blended Whisky

It’s all go over here at the moment and having recently launched the Reference Series, there is another exciting project or two just on the horizon, not to mention some much-anticipated new releases from That Boutique-y Whisky Company*. With all this going on it’s fallen to me to tell you a little about yet another exciting release – our shiny, new 10 year old blend!

Some people still get their knickers in a bit of a twist about blended whisky, persisting with some kind of Orwellian mantra of “single malt good, blended whisky bad”, but blends can be absolutely marvellous, and many are. Indeed, we’ve been encouraging you all to try your hand at creating your own with our Home Blending Kits and Blend Your Own Whisky service for a long time now, and I covered the subject on the blog last year when I had a go myself. (Don't worry, I had nothing to do with this new blend!)


Ballantine's Brasil!

by Jake Mountain     11. March 2014 11:00

Ballantine's Brasil

You put the lime in the Ballantine’s, you drink 'em both together,
Put the lime in the Ballantine’s, then you feel better,
Put the lime in the Ballantine’s, drink 'em both up,
Put the lime in the Ballantine’s, and call me in the morning…

Flavoured whisky, eh? Obviously not that though. What I should say, of course, is flavoured whisky liqueurs and whisky-based spirit drinks, eh? This one’s a little different to many, however. First of all, it’s not honey flavoured (or even cherry flavoured). Secondly, it’s essentially made by actually steeping lime peel in Scotch whisky, in the cask.


Winner of The Gleneagles Competition!

by Sam Smith     6. November 2013 10:57

Dapper dolphin

There are people who are born winners. Other people become winners. Some people are born as dolphins, which means that they aren’t actually people at all. We’re not concerned about dolphins today (although we should all help save them from extinction!).

No, today it’s all about the lucky winner of our rather marvellous Gleneagles competition!


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:


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*.


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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The Ship Hits the Fans…Caskstrength launches a Cutty Sark!

by Cat Spencer     28. March 2013 12:00

caskstrength cutty sark

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!



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