Grain whisky is going places at the moment – find out what’s going on in the interesting world of grain whisky in these posts.

Diageo Special Releases 2016

Diageo Special Release 2016

The 2016 Special Releases are available for Pre-Order now and we tasted them all last night, including the oldest ever Port Ellen!

When it comes to whisky releases, Diageo’s aptly named annual Special Releases always attract plenty of excitement each year. This year’s selection including whiskies from Port Ellen, Brora, Lagavulin, Caol Ila, Glenkinchie, Cragganmore, Linkwood, Auchroisk, Mannochmore and Cambus distilleries, all of which (at the time of writing) are available to Pre-Order!

One thing you may notice, is that we’re not going to be doing our lotteries or charity auctions for any of these, as we have for some other exciting releases this year, and there’s a simple reason for that. Unlike the situation we had with the Yamazaki Sherry Cask, for example (or will have shortly with a certain collection of American whiskeys), Diageo have endeavoured to price the rarer releases at their ‘market value’. That’s why the prices went up so quickly a couple of years back as they bridged the gap before more or less levelling out (this year’s Port Ellen, from ever-depleting supplies, is £100 more than last year, an increase of around 4%, whereas there had been increases of 100% in recent years).

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Categories : News, Scotch Whisky, Whisky
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Whisky Advent Day 24: 50 Year Old Douglas Laing Grain

Whisky Advent Calendar

Well, here we are. Here we stand, on the very brink of Christmas 2015 – Christmas Eve itself – and the final day of #WhiskyAdvent. Behind window 24 of every Drinks by the Dram Whisky Advent Calendar is a grain whisky that’s at least 50 years old(!), bottled by the fine folk from Douglas Laing for their excellent Xtra Old Particular range.

Whether you have an exclusive 50 year old Invergordon*, a 50 year old blended grain, a 50 year old Girvan (image below) or, as we’ve received here at MoM Towers, a 53 year old North British (tasting note below), you’ll be able to enjoy some extraordinarily well-aged grain courtesy of Douglas Laing. Many of you let us know how much you enjoyed your Girvan grains on Day 18, so this second grain should cause a fair bit of excitement. These are whiskies that matured for over half a century for goodness sake! Enjoy, and have an absolutely fantastic Christmas one and all!

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Categories : Scotch Whisky, Tasting Notes, Whisky
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Whisky Advent Day 18: Girvan Patent Still Proof Strength

Whisky Advent Calendar

Into the final week of #WhiskyAdvent we go and today it’s time for our first grain whisky from The Whisky Advent Calendar by Drinks by the Dram

Now, most of you will have William Grant & Sons’ Girvan Patent Still Proof Strength. As mentioned on Day 2 though, these advent calendars have been extraordinarily popular this year, with sales surpassing all forecasts! This means that on a small number of days not everybody could have the exact same dram. Everyone does have a Girvan today, but some of you may be enjoying a Girvan 20 Year Old 1993 from Douglas Laing’s Clan Denny range, or indeed a Girvan 21 Year Old 1994 from their Old Particular range (both excellent independent bottlings).

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Categories : Scotch Whisky, Tasting Notes, Whisky
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We’re Indie Islands Bottler & Grain Bottler of the Year!

Independent-Bottlers-Challenge

After being named Highland Independent Bottler of the Year in 2014 at Whisky Magazine’s Independent Bottlers’ Challenge, we’re extremely proud to announce that for 2015 Master of Malt have picked up two overall category wins, being named:

Islands Independent Bottler of the Year 2015
&
Grain Independent Bottler of the Year 2015

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Categories : News, Whisky
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Around The World In 80 Drams – Week 11 – James Sedgwick Distillery

James Sedgwick Distillery

Gosh, it certainly takes a lot of effort to run over 5,000 miles. The Proclaimers only walked over 1,000 (or at least they said they would), I wonder it took them about a fifth of the time it took me! Yes, it’s been a couple of weeks, but my Around the World in 80 Drams journey has resumed as I arrive in South Africa after rather long trip from Madrid, Spain. Today, we’ll be taking a look at the first single grain whisky from South Africa – Bain’s Cape Mountain Whisky, which is produced at the James Sedgwick Distillery in Wellington, situated at the foot of the Bainskloof Pass.

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Categories : Tasting Notes, Whisky
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Whisky Santa’s Whisky Advent Day 20: Girvan Patent Still No.4 Apps

The Girvan Patent Still No.4 Apps

Day 20! There’s really not long left before Christmas, is there? Hopefully you’ve been enjoying your Whisky Advent Calendars day by day and are ready for another lovely single grain Scotch whisky!

Today it’s the turn of The Girvan Patent Still No.4 Apps from William Grant & Sons. I’ve got quite a sweet tooth, and as such quite enjoy this dram. It’s not quite as sweet as a Penguin (biscuit) or a Snowball (cake???), which I do quite enjoy finding left out for me on Christmas Eve, but I think I’d rather a glass of this. And there’s never been a better time to buy (or win) one than today…

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Categories : Competitions, Scotch Whisky, Tasting Notes, Whisky
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Whisky Santa’s Whisky Advent Day 1: Haig Club

David Beckham Haig Club Grain Whisky

Well would you look at that – it’s the first day of Whisky Advent everybody! This is my very favourite time of the year as we all get to count down to Christmas Day with Drinks by the Dram’s wonderful Whisky Advent Calendars!

In fact, I’m so delighted I’m going to bring you some Whisky Advent treats each and every day (see below).

Don’t have a Whisky Advent Calendar yet? Well it’s certainly not too late, you’re only one day behind so get your order in right away! For the rest of us it’s time to open the first window… behind which you’ll find… Haig Club single grain whisky! Yes indeed, the David Beckham one. Ho ho!

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Categories : Competitions, Tasting Notes, Whisky
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David Beckham Haig Club Single Grain Whisky

David Beckham Haig Club Grain Whisky

This is really a follow up to my previous post ‘Will Grain Whisky be promoted to the Big League as David Beckham signs for Haig Club?‘, where I talk more generally about single grain, Haig Club, and David Beckham as well as taste the Girvan 25yo. Since then a couple of things have happened. Firstly, the brand and the whisky are out there now – from teaser shots where you don’t even get to see Becks’ face back in July, to us having the whisky for sale on the site, to the Global Launch at the start of October through to the release of the UK television advert at the end of last week. The other thing that’s happened is that I’ve actually got around to tasting it now, finally!

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Categories : News, Scotch Whisky, Tasting Notes, Whisky
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Irish Whiskey Academy

Irish Whiskey Academy

I like a bit of Irish whiskey me. That’s why I made a point of writing a big ol’ three-part blog post about it earlier in the year. So, bearing that in mind, when I received an invitation to attend the Irish Whiskey Academy at Midleton distillery over in County Cork I didn’t really need to think about it for too long. The Academy opened in February 2013 and along with a new still house and archive became a focus for the Irish Distillers’ Housewarming celebrations last year.

The Academy is a state of the art training facility whose courses have been attended by many of the leading whisk(e)y writers, journalists and bartenders. There’s a nice Dave Broom quote on their site that sums it up quite nicely: “I can honestly say that this is the finest training facility I have ever been in, and some of the finest training I have ever had”. That.

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Categories : Irish Whiskey, News, Whisky
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New Product Range: DARKNESS! Single Malt Whiskies

DARKNESS! Single Malt Whiskies

Doesn’t really take a huge deal of explanation, this one, does it?

What we’ve gone and done is take a range of delicious single malts, and finished them for a touch over 3 months in specially commissioned, 50 litre, First-Fill Sherry casks.

Traditionally known as ‘Octave Casks’, these smaller-than-average maturation vessels give a significantly greater surface area to volume ratio, meaning more cask-influence, and more of that superb rich, Christmas-cakey deliciousness that we all know and love from heavily-sherried whiskies.

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Categories : Whisky
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