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Master of Malt Blog

Tag: Craigellachie

Come along and explore Craigellachie!

It’s a Speyside distillery with a cult following and an intriguing production story (yes, we mean those worm tub condensers). But what is Craigellachie actually like behind the scenes? We…

It’s a Speyside distillery with a cult following and an intriguing production story (yes, we mean those worm tub condensers). But what is Craigellachie actually like behind the scenes? We zipped along to spend a couple of hours exploring!

If you like weighty, meaty whiskies with a fragrant edge, you’ll already know all about Craigellachie. Situated in the Speyside town of the same name, the distillery, which is part of Bacardi’s Dewar’s portfolio, works hard to maintain its beefiness. When we stopped by for a quick visit, it was immediately apparent that every stage of production had been meticulously planned to max out those sulphur notes that give Craigellachie its signature style.

Craigellachie

The glorious stillhouse at Craigellachie

“We’re encouraging less copper contact than most distilleries for that meaty, robust character,” said Matthew Cordiner, Dewar’s brand ambassador, of the distillery that dates back to 1891. Today, this approach starts with the 100% Concerto barley (actually peated ever so slightly – not to give a smoke, but to make sure those big earthy notes are there from the very beginning). “Everything is about allowing those bigger notes to come through.”

There’s a 47,000-litre mash tun, which leads on to eight Siberian larch washbacks, where Craigellachie’s 56-hour fermentation runs take place. The resulting 8% ABV wash heads to one of the two 23,500-litre wash stills and the 28,000-litre spirit stills.

The Craigellachie washbacks. Fermentation is just one factor than influences the distillery’s robust character

Then it’s on to the famous Craigellachie worm tubs. To get to them, you have to head out on to the roof. Yes, really. Forget about condensers you’ve seen before: these worm tubs are ENORMOUS.

How do they work? Actually, really quite simply. The hot vapour from the stills is inside those huge ‘worm’ pipes. It’s cooled by the water in the surrounding giant tank. Back in the day, loads of distilleries would have used this process to condense spirit vapours, but with smaller, more efficient shell-and-tube styles now available, the worms have been largely weeded out for sleeker models.

Craigellachie worm tubs

Worm tubs!

Not so at Craigellachie – the worm tubs live on, and so does the distillery’s mega meaty character. But don’t let us tell you about them. In our video, Cordiner chats us through them in all their glory.

Craigellachie Bridge

Dramming by Craigellachie Bridge

After our whistle-stop tour (you can check the distillery out for yourself in more detail in our virtual reality video, top), we headed down to the famous Craigellachie Bridge to enjoy a dram. And it was a special dram – a 21 year old bottled specially for the town’s famous hotel. It might have been a cold, rainy day but that robust character kept us warm!

Thanks for having us, Craigellachie!

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10 new Master of Malt Single Cask Series whiskies!

We’ve got a whole new batch of Master of Malt Single Cask Series whiskies, people! 10 of them, to be specific. Are you very excited? You should be. Whisky fans,…

We’ve got a whole new batch of Master of Malt Single Cask Series whiskies, people! 10 of them, to be specific. Are you very excited? You should be.

Whisky fans, rejoice. We’ve done it again! You know the drill by now. We introduce a brand new selection of Master of Malt Single Cask Series whiskies, you enjoy the spoils of our labour. What a system.

As always, we’ve managed to get our hands on some truly sublime single malts from a host of fantastic distilleries, including: Laphroaig, Bunnahabhain, Mortlach, Craigellachie and more. The single cask expressions range from 8 to 37 years matured and every single edition is presented at cask strength, without any chill-filtration or added colourings. All you find in these MoM-tastic bottles is very, very tasty whisky.

Now go check out our brand new selection below and enjoy!

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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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The Nightcap: 30 November

Welcome to Friday, team! The weekend has arrived as so has The Nightcap, with our round-up of the newsiest booze stories of the week. Enjoy! And what a week it’s…

Welcome to Friday, team! The weekend has arrived as so has The Nightcap, with our round-up of the newsiest booze stories of the week. Enjoy!

And what a week it’s been! Among all the Black Friday excitement and the most dreamy, delicious deals, there’s been loads going on over on the blog.

On Monday, #WhiskySanta revealed the next Super Wish he’d squirrelled away up his sleeve: a bottle of Midleton Method and Madness Single Pot Still 28 Year Old! And he’s even selected one person who has CLEARLY been very good this year… all will be revealed at the end of the Nightcap.

Next, our Annie caught up with the one and only Salvatore Calabrese to get his take on how to store spirits. Opened something special? Want to keep it in its finest form for as long as physically possible? We got Salvatore’s tricks of the trade to maxing out tastiness.

On Wednesday news broke that La Martiniquaise-Bardinet, the French drinks group that owns the likes of Glen Moray, had snapped up the Cutty Sark brand from Edrington, significantly bolstering its Scotch portfolio in the process. Exciting times. Later that same day we received word of some mighty exciting Scotch bottlings from That Boutique-y Whisky Company, including a 30-year-old Macallan expression and sibling 26 and 28-year-old Rosebanks. Delicious!

Rounding off the week (until now, that is), Henry took us on a journey to Herefordshire where he discovered Chase Distillery, purveyor of potato-based vodka and gin. Intrigued? Check out the post!

Marvellous stuff. But now: on with the booziest news from the week that was!

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#WhiskySanta’s Craigellachie 31 Year Old Super Wish!

Get those fingers of yours crossed, for #WhiskySanta has yet another spectacular Super Wish lined up. This week, he’s giving away a bottle of Craigellachie 31 Year Old worth £1,500!…

Get those fingers of yours crossed, for #WhiskySanta has yet another spectacular Super Wish lined up. This week, he’s giving away a bottle of Craigellachie 31 Year Old worth £1,500!

If you’ve been keeping track of my stupendous Super Wishes, you’ll have seen me give away an Old & Rare Whisky Advent Calendar and an awesome 1967 secret distillery indie bottling from Douglas Laing. Both wonderful things, we can agree. How am I going to follow this? There are two roads to choose – I could keep upping the stakes and give away something even more amazing, or I could go full-on disappointment and give away four slightly tatty boxes of animal-shaped ice cream wafers. As much as I love those crunchy little devils, I reckon I should keep on impressing you all with my next Super Wish prize – it’s a bottle of Craigellachie 31 Year Old worth £1,500!

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Craigellachie to give away 51 year old whisky for free!

Attention Scotch enthusiasts: Last night we headed to London and received the most excellent news. Craigellachie is set to launch its oldest whisky to date – and it won’t cost…

Attention Scotch enthusiasts: Last night we headed to London and received the most excellent news. Craigellachie is set to launch its oldest whisky to date – and it won’t cost you a penny!

When us whisky lovers hear that a distillery has released a whisky that’s over five decades old, we tend to all think along similar lines: a) this is most wonderful news; b) I wish I could taste it; and c) I probably won’t. It’s going to be PRICEY.

Well, not this time my friends! We found out to much excitement and intrigue at last night’s launch event that Craigellachie has decided to rally against convention. We gathered at Lyle’s, a superb new restaurant in Shoreditch, London, to taste a 51 year old expression. It was GOOD. Delicious, even.

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Exclusive Telegraph Whisky Experience Offer for Master of Malt Blog Readers

On the Monday 30th of November and Tuesday 1st of December, the Telegraph will once again be presenting their Telegraph Whisky Experience at One Whitehall Place in London, bringing together…

Telegraph Whisky Experience

On the Monday 30th of November and Tuesday 1st of December, the Telegraph will once again be presenting their Telegraph Whisky Experience at One Whitehall Place in London, bringing together a selection of leading whisky brands, distillers, specialists and enthusiasts!

Hosted by the charismatic whisky expert Charles MacLean, the Telegraph Whisky Experience will allow lovers of the historic spirit the chance to share a dram with the folks behind the stills, as well as getting access to a private whisky fair in Gladstone library, enjoying a stunning meal designed by the One Whitehall Place head chef and even attend one of two fascinating masterclasses.

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Dramboree 2014 – Another Whisky Weekend in Scotland!

Ah, Dramboree. A truly fantastic event, and one that’s difficult to convey in all its glory within a blog post. (One of the many reasons it’s taken me a little…

Dramboree 2014

Ah, Dramboree. A truly fantastic event, and one that’s difficult to convey in all its glory within a blog post. (One of the many reasons it’s taken me a little while to get round to this write-up.) For those who don’t know, Dramboree is a whisky weekend held in Scotland in early July that’s simply getting better and better with age. Next year it will be three years old. The requisite age for it to be referred to as the real deal? Well, based on the taste we had this time around, we think it’s getting pretty close to perfect already.

The second ever Dramboree was attended by 64 people (that’s about double the number from the first year), most of which first descended upon Glasgow in order to hop aboard the Dramboree coach for a magical mystery tour the hour or so long journey to the shores of stunning Loch Lomond.

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Dramboree: A Whisky Weekend in Scotland! (Part 2)

Following a fine Friday evening at Dramboree (see Part 1 of my Executive report), an entire day of whisky fun still lay ahead! I give you… Part Deux. After a…

dramboree glass whisky weekend 2013

Following a fine Friday evening at Dramboree (see Part 1 of my Executive report), an entire day of whisky fun still lay ahead! I give you… Part Deux.

After a hearty breakfast we set off for Aberfeldy distillery, our first port of call with tastings from Springbank’s Melanie Stranger and the guys from Whisky Lounge to look forward to later on (not to mention that Whisky Table!) all organised by our fantastic hosts Jonny McMillan and Jason B. Standing. There would also be a barbecue courtesy of Master of Malt (that’s us!).

Plenty to look forward to then as we set off on a short stroll down to the home of Dewar’s blend and Aberfeldy single malt Scotch whisky.

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Two Days in Speyside: A Litany of Errors

Gareth: We clung on, fingertips buried in the soft mulch of the steep hillside as the Spey roared dark and terrible in the late afternoon light, 60 feet below. How…

Gareth: We clung on, fingertips buried in the soft mulch of the steep hillside as the Spey roared dark and terrible in the late afternoon light, 60 feet below.

How had it come to this? Half an hour ago we’d been enjoying the rich, dark fruit notes of a Macallan 25yo. Now we faced the very real danger of plunging to our deaths in a raging torrent. Something had gone wrong somewhere, and it was only my third day on the job.

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