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2003 Vintage Whisky

Whisky During the Iraq War and the Space Shuttle Columbia Disaster

In 2003, the Human Genome Project officially concluded, offering vast scientific insights. China launched its first manned space mission, showcasing its technological advancements. The Concorde made its final flight, ending an era of supersonic travel. The World Health Organization coordinated responses to the SARS outbreak, emphasizing global health collaboration.

Whisky provided some solace, as Dalmore introduced its Cigar Malt, specifically designed to be paired with cigars. The expression brought attention to the concept of pairing spirits with other luxury goods, broadening whisky's appeal. Glenfiddich's 1937 Rare Collection, a 64-year-old single malt, was also released this year, breaking records for its age and auction price, thereby capturing the imagination of collectors globally.

On the independent bottling scene, Scotch Malt Whisky Society (SMWS) grabbed headlines with their unique approach to labeling. Unlike traditional bottlers, SMWS identified whiskies by coded numbers and quirky tasting note descriptions rather than by distillery names. This led to heightened interest in ‘blind’ tasting and put the focus purely on the quality and flavour profile of the whisky.

Collectors found this period rich for investment and exploration, with distilleries and independent bottlers alike pushing the boundaries of what Scotch whisky could offer.

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