Whisky Focus - Gordon and MacPhail Announced as a Master of the Quaich

Gordon and MacPhail Announced as a Master of the Quaich

14th October 2019
Gordon & MacPhail director Stephen Rankin receives Master of the Quaich award in recognition to his contribution to the Scotch whisky industry.

Gordon & MacPhail director Stephen Rankin with his Master of the Quaich award.

Stephen Rankin, Director of Prestige and fourth-generation member of the family owned and run Elgin based independent whisky bottler and producer Gordon & MacPhail was announced as a Master of the Quaich at the biannual Keepers of the Quaich ceremony at Blair Castle, which recognises the outstanding commitment of those who produce or promote Scotch whisky.

To be inducted as a Keeper of the Quaich is an honour bestowed upon a limited number of people; to become a Master of the Quaich is a special recognition of those who have been inducted as a Keeper over ten years ago, and have made an exceptional contribution to the industry.

Stephen, who is approaching his 20th anniversary within the industry, said: "It’s an honour to be inducted as a Master of Quaich, keeping great company among some of the whisky industry’s most remarkable people, including some of my peers at Gordon & MacPhail.

"Passion and dedication for creating and promoting single malt whisky is something that has been instilled by my family for four generations, and it’s something that I will continue to uphold and progress in my responsibilities as Master of the Quaich."

Guests at the prestigious event, which saw five Masters and 44 Keepers announced, were addressed by the Olympian rower Dame Katherine Grainger, who was also awarded the role of Honorary Keeper of the Quaich.

Annabel Meikle, Director of The Keepers of the Quaich, said: "It was a great pleasure to invite Stephen to become a Master of the Quaich. The accolade of Master is truly special. Those who are invited by the Management Committee have made an exceptional contribution to the Scotch whisky industry for a minimum of ten years, but in reality most have had at least double this length of service. The title of Master has only been awarded to around 200 members."

Stephen’s induction as a Master comes in what would have been the centenary year of his grandfather George Urquhart, who played a huge role in the single malt whisky industry and remains the only person to have been awarded Keeper of the Quaich outside of Blair Castle, when the rules were waived and he received his induction while in a nursing home.

The Society was founded over 35 years ago and takes its name from the traditional two-handled drinking cup which is described in the ancient Gaelic language of Scotland as a ‘cuach’ or quaich, a vessel long associated with friendship and the enjoyment of Scotch whisky.

The family owned and run Scotch whisky business has been bottling whisky for in excess of 100 years now, established in 1895 to this day they continue to match spirit to the quality oak casks which are sent to distilleries throughout Scotland, filled with new-make spirit, and matured either at the distillery of origin or in the firm’s own bonded warehouse in Elgin.

In recent times the portfolio of whiskies which Gordon & MacPhail offers was streamlined, from April 2018 their line-up of whiskies has looked liked this:

  • ‘Gordon & MacPhail Discovery’ – Utterly dependable, this flavour-led range is the perfect introduction to our portfolio of quality single malt Scotch whiskies.
  • ‘Gordon & MacPhail Distillery Labels’ – A range celebrating our long-standing relationships with Scotland’s distilleries.
  • ‘Gordon & MacPhail Connoisseurs Choice’ – The heart of our portfolio - always unique, these non-chill-filtered, natural coloured, small batch expressions are genuine one-offs.
  • ‘Gordon & MacPhail Private Collection’ – Greatly-aged single malts from celebrated, little-known, or closed distilleries specially selected by members of the Urquhart family.
  • ‘Gordon & MacPhail Generations’ – A prestigious collection of old, rare, and exclusive masterpieces.

You will find the current Gordon & MacPhail portfolio of whisky available from specialist online whisky retailers such as The Whisky Exchange and Master of Malt

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