Welcome to Whisky Focus where you can
catch up with the latest
whisky news from the
world of whisky.
You will find news of the latest new
whisky releases, reviews, events,
interviews, distillery news and much
Jameson The Blender’s Dog Review
What better way too mark Ireland's
success against Italy last night and
their progression to the next round
of Euro 2016 than with not one, but
nine reviews of Jameson's mostly
outstanding Irish blended whiskey's.
First up is Jameson The Blender’s
Dog, the other eight reviews are
Jameson The Blender’s Dog celebrates
the role of Jameson Head Blender,
Billy Leighton; a master at matching
whiskeys across ages and characters.
A deliciously rich, sweet well
constructed Irish blended whiskey.
Whiskey is for pleasure and Irish
blended whiskey's don't come much
more pleasurable than this.
Jameson The Cooper’s Croze Review
Jameson The Cooper’s Croze showcases
the role of Jameson’s Head Cooper,
Ger Buckley, and explores the
influence that maturation in casks
has on whiskey. A deliciously creamy
vanilla'd Jameson which gets spicier
with each mouthful, with just a
delicate influence from the sherry
Jameson The Distiller’s Safe Review
Jameson The Distiller's Safe
celebrates the role of Jameson’s
Head Distiller, Brian Nation, and is
billed as a showcase of the original
copper pot still distillate. A mouth
watering barley sugar sweet Irish
blended whiskey with a refreshingly
long sweet finish. An outstanding
Jameson Black Barrel Review
Jameson Black Barrel is a
triple-distilled Irish whiskey that
pays tribute to the cooper’s method
of charring barrels for a second
time. An outstanding Irish blended
whiskey, loads going on from the
contributions made from the grain
and pot still whiskeys as well as
American oak, sherry casks and
double-charred bourbon barrels. A
Jameson Signature Review
Jameson Signature is not a
new whiskey more a repackaging of an
existing travel retail favourite of
mine. It is another delicious quality easy to drink Jameson blended whiskey, normally found on shelves at airports and certainly worth seeking out when on your travels.
Jameson Crested launched in
April this year, a blended whiskey
containing a high percentage of rich
pot still Irish whiskey. Its a
cracker, creamy vanilla, layers of
gentle sherried fruit and pot still
spices, coconut, a lovely gentle
Jameson Bold is influenced by
pot still whiskey, not as bold on the nose as its name suggests, the pot still spices and fruit is certainly bold on delivery but don't hang around very long. Could have done with a cask or two in the mix to sweeten up the somewhat dull experience.
Jameson Lively is another travel
retail exclusive, it is influenced
by grain whiskey, shy on the nose,
this is all about the taste and
finish. I was expecting something
much sweeter given it is supposed to
have a a big grain whiskey
Jameson Round is influenced by the
wood contribution, another extremely
enjoyable rich easy drinking blend
from Jameson which wont bust the
bank. It is exclusive to travel
retail so one to remember if you are
off on you holidays or for a good
dramming whiskey if visiting friends
- 22nd June 2016
The Famous Grouse House Edinburgh
To celebrate, Scotland’s favourite whisky will be launching ‘Famous Fridays’ headliner competition giving 4 lucky artists or bands the chance to win a headline slot like no other and earn the right to say they have played at the Edinburgh Festival at the famous venue!
Balvenie Tun 1509 Batch 3 Review
The Balvenie amongst you will
be pleased to hear that the Speyside
distillery has unveiled the Balvenie
Tun 1509 Batch 3 and what a cracker
it is. An absolutely stunning,
mature, deliciously sherry rich,
The Exceptional Malt, Grain and
Blend Launch In Uk & Europe
The Exceptional Malt, Grain and
Blend originally exclusive to the US
launch in the UK & Europe.
The Exceptional whiskies are the creation of Don Sutcliffe, managing director of Craft Distillers, and Willie Phillips, former managing director of The Macallan who have joined forces to create a series of exceptional small batch Scotch whiskies.
The Exceptional Grain 3rd Edition from Sutcliffe & Son is a blend of a selection Scotch grain whiskies from the North British, Loch Lomond, Strathclyde, Cameronbridge and Carsebridge distilleries, blended and married in first-fill Oloroso Sherry butts.
A lovely delicate sherry influence
which becomes more apparent on the
finish after a few mouthfuls.
The Exceptional Malt 2nd Edition from Sutcliffe & Son is a blend of an extraordinary range of mature single malt casks, including Glenfarclas, Ben Nevis, Balvenie, Kininvie, Glenfiddich, Alt-a’Bhainne, Auchroisk, Glenallachie, Westport, Speyside and
The Macallan. A lovely sherried dram
which has been influenced by some of
the most iconic Speyside
The Exceptional Blend 1st
Edition from Sutcliffe & Son is a
exemplary selection of mature grain
and malt casks from North British,
Glenfarclas, Ben Nevis, Balvenie,
Glenallachie, Westport, Speyside and
The Macallan distilleries. A lovely
sherry rich, balanced mature blended
Chivas Masters 2016 Shanghai
Chivas Regal has announced
the 15 international bartenders that
will compete in the Chivas Masters
Global Final in Shanghai on
19th-22nd June – the first time a
major bartending competition has
held its finals in the city.
Benromach 1974 Single Cask
The Benromach distillery
today unveiled a very rare single
cask Scotch whisky, the Benromach
1974 which has spent 41 years
maturing in a sherry butt.
Diageo Reserve’s GB World Class
Bartender of the Year 2016
After a three day final event
Aidan Bowie of Dandelyanwas crowned
Diageo Reserve’s GB World Class
Bartender of the Year 2016. Aidan
will now go on to represent Great
Britain in the global Diageo World
Class competition final will be held
in Miami in September 2016.
Glen Moray Classic Sherry Cask
The new Glen Moray Classic
Sherry Cask Finish launches this
July, it was matured in American oak
casks before being finished in
Oloroso sherry casks for a minimum
of 8 months.
Yes it is young but it is also fun and very
enjoyable, some decent sherry casks at
work here and at £22 a bottle you
just have to!
Glen Moray Classic The 6th Best
Selling Single Malt In The UK
Glen Moray whisky sales
continue to see steady growth and
the distillery owners are building
on that success with a expansion
which will see production and
storage capacity double. The
distillery is also building on its
success by launching the new Glen
Moray Classic Sherry Cask Finish.
William Grant Appoint New Managing
Director for Global Travel Retail
William Grant & Sons has
announced the appointment of Ed
Cottrell as Managing Director for
Global Travel Retail.
Jameson Gets New Look And New
The folks at Jameson Irish whiskey appear to have been very busy as they have announced that they have restructured their whiskey range as well as adding a few new whiskeys to their now very impressive range of Irish whiskey.
The new portfolio is made up of
The Whiskey Makers Series, the range of
Heritage Whiskeys and
The Deconstructed Series with the original Jameson Irish Whiskey at the core.
Glenglassaugh Octaves Classic and
Glenglassaugh today launched two new expressions, the Glenglassaugh Octaves Classic and the Glenglassaugh Octaves Peated single malts.
Both of the new whiskies have been matured in octave casks, which are made from staves of a used cask and are approximately 1/8th the size of a butt.
BenRiach Peated Quarter Cask
The BenRiach Distillery today launched
The BenRiach Peated Quarter Cask, a peated expression of its Single Malt Scotch Whisky matured in quarter casks which the distillery
is hailing as "a peaty fruit bomb.
Glenmorangie Old Fashioned Week
Glenmorangie, which is now firmly established as the Spirit of the British Open Golf Championship, is launching its very first "Old Fashioned Week" ahead of this year’s British Open at Royal Troon.
This year they are in search of
perfect cocktail created using
Glenmorangie’s Extra Matured Range
to celebrate the Greatest Finishes
Whisky Review & Discount Code For US
It isn't often I get the
chance to offer you a discount code
but I thought the sites US based
visitors would be interested in
saving $10 or getting free shipping
on a bottle of SIA Scotch blended
whisky which is currently
exclusively available in the US and
just to help you make up your mind I
have reviewed the whisky.
Glen Grant Gets New Look And
Launches Three New Whiskies
Glen Grant has unveiled a new
look for its whisky range and they
have also expanded the range by
adding three new whiskies to the
current range, these are the Glen
Grant 12 Year Old and Glen Grant 18
Year Old which will join the core
range and the Glen Grant 12 Year Old
Non Chill-Filtered which will be
exclusively available in travel
Glen Grant 18 Year Old Review
The new Glen Grant 18 year old
launches this month and now
sits at the top of the new look Glen
Grant core range, it is light
bodied, complex, gentle and vibrant
with layers of delicate fruit.
Glen Grant 12 Year Old Non
The new Glen Grant 12 Year
Old Non Chill-Filtered is available
exclusively in travel retail.
Loved it, it is malty with a little
spicy kick to the delivery, the
barley sugar has a gentle coating of
oak spice, creamy vanilla, pear,
Glen Grant 12 Year Old Review
The Glen Grant 12 Year Old
slots into the Glen Grant core range
just above the existing 10 year old.
A wonderful, very enjoyable lighter
style Speyside whisky which is sure
to please, a lovely tangy
fruitiness, barley sugar sweetness,
A few Fathers Day Whisky Ideas From
Gordon & MacPhail
At this time of year I get
inundated with requests for
suggestions for Fathers Day Whisky
Gifts. Everyone one is looking for
the perfect gift, something special,
something their Dad hasn't tried
before so here
are a few Fathers Day whisky gift
ideas from Gordon & MacPhail that is
sure to make your Dads Day.
BenRiach's Managing Director Billy
Walker Named Entrepreneur of the
BenRiach’s Managing Director Billy Walker has capped an amazing year in the Scotch whisky industry by being named Entrepreneur of the Year in the Scotland Food & Drink Excellence Awards 2016.
Gordon & MacPhail Whiskies Pick Up
The folks at family-owned Scotch malt whisky specialist Gordon & MacPhail are celebrating an award winning year, so far, the Elgin based independent whisky maker and bottler has been presented with both a gold and silver medal at the International Spirits Challenge, and a Master and silver award at the Scotch Whisky Masters.
Jutland Commemorates Battle And
Raises £45,000 For RNLI
Scapa Jutland 16 Year Old Memorial
Edition is a new single cask single malt Scotch whisky crafted by the Orkney Islands distillery to mark the centenary of the Battle of Jutland on 31st May 2016. Scapa was used as a base by the British naval fleet during the First World War and the artisanal island single malt distillery has released 249 bottles of Scapa Jutland with all profits from their sale which is estimated at over £45,000, to be donated by Chivas Brothers to the RNLI.
Highland Park Midsummer Social at
Dalston Roof Park
Celebrate the Summer Solstice at
Highland Park's mid-summer social at
the Dalston Roof Park London 21st -
22nd June. Guests can fully
immerse themselves in Highland Park
Single Malt Scotch Whisky, enjoy
great cocktails, food and music
whilst celebrating the official
start of summer.
& MacPhail Rare Vintage Strathisla
The Gordon & MacPhail Rare
Vintage Strathisla 1967 was matured
in 1st Fill Sherry butts. I just love these old mature sherried drams and this is a classic example of just that. The sherried fruit, oak and spice are all big contributors, keeping each other in check and not letting the other overwhelm,
complimenting and balancing each
Pub Burgundy Lion - A Montreal
Review of Pub Burgundy Lion
Montreal, a Montreal hotspot on
Notre Dame St. The pub experience is
highlighted by a grand collection of
almost 600 whiskies, boasting a wide
range of single malt Scotch, Irish,
Canadian and American whiskies.
Linkwood 22 Year Old Hart Brothers
Review of Hart Brothers Linkwood 22
Year Old. The Linkwood 22 is a
connoisseur’s dram. It has a sense
of being cured, like a fine steak
aged to the point of pure
Highland Park 23 Year Old Douglas
Laing Old Malt Cask Review
Review of Highland Park 23 Year Old
Douglas Laing Old Malt Cask. This 23
year old expression is a wonderful
surprise coming at one from
different angles creating a real
Clan Denny Dumbarton 46 Year Old
Single Grain Whisky Review
Review of Clan Denny Dumbarton 46
Year Old Single Grain Whisky. This
single grain scotch is essentially
and basically perfect from nose to
palate to finish. The almost 50
years in barrel has only served to
augment this dram and create
Jura Tastival 2016 Limited Edition
Jura Whisky today unveiled its Tastival 2016 bottling, a new limited edition expression to mark the distillery’s annual island whisky festival.
Jura Tastival celebrates new and
exciting ways to enjoy whisky and
the creation of this year’s festival
edition is no exception, say the
distillery, with a triple sherry
finish, using hand-selected casks.
The Balvenie Craftsmen’s Dinner With
Michel Roux Jr
Some of The Balvenie fans amongst you may have already been following The Balvenie's Craftsmen's Dinner six part short film series with Michel Roux Jr.
This final episode in the series
culminates with Michel creating the
mouth-watering Craftsmen's Dinner
for each of the craftsmen who
featured in the series.
MacPhail Connoisseurs Choice Tomatin
Gordon & MacPhail
Connoisseurs Choice Tomatin 1997 was
matured in Refill Bourbon Barrels.
A cracking example of just how enjoyable this distillery can be when matured in quality casks. Considering the age and quality of this whisky, for the price I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it.
MacPhail Connoisseurs Choice Tormore
Gordon & MacPhail Connoisseurs Choice Tormore 1997 was matured in 1st Fill Bourbon barrels.
So many whisky producers are trying
to substitute age with 1st Fill
Bourbon barrels these days but when
you get a whisky that has been
matured for a decent number of years
in 1st Fill Bourbon, around 17 years in this case, you end up with and very complex and in this case very good whisky confirming Gordon & MacPhail's philosophy that it is the wood that makes the whisky but also the time spent in the wood.
MacPhail Connoisseurs Choice
BenRiach 1997 Review
Gordon & MacPhail
Connoisseurs Choice BenRiach 1997
was matured in Refill Sherry
Hogshead casks which have imparted
just a delicate sherry influence on
this 1997 vintage whisky, but the
oak still has a big say in its
MacPhail Connoisseurs Choice Ledaig
Gordon & MacPhail Connoisseurs
Choice Ledaig 1999 was matured in
Refill remade Hogshead casks.
The choice of casks has made this
quite different to the original
distillery bottling offerings as
independent bottlings should be. The
peat has been tamed a little in the
years it has spent in the cask which
you expect, this a good example of this peaty dram from the Tobermory distillery.
MacPhail's Collection Bunnahabhain
The MacPhail's Collection
Bunnahabhain 2006 was matured in a
combination of First Fill and Refill
Sherry Hogsheads casks. A young and
fun sherried Bunna and an excellent
affordable everyday dramming
unpeated expression from the Islay
The Glenlivet Single Cask Edition
Pullman Train Collection
The Glenlivet has launched three special limited edition single cask Glenlivet whiskies exclusively in the US market. The three single cask bottlings are The Glenlivet Pullman Club Car, Pullman Twentieth Century Limited and Pullman Water Level Route.
Eva Longoria Announced As Judge Of
Chivas The Venture Competition
World-renowned actress, businesswoman and philanthropist, Eva Longoria, has been announced as a judge for The Venture – Chivas Regal’s search to find and support the most innovative startups from across the world.
The Macallan 65 Year Old in Lalique
Six Pillars Collection
Here is something very
special and very rare for The
Macallan fans amongst you with deep
pockets, The Macallan 65 Year Old in
Lalique. which is the sixth and
final release from their prestigious
The Macallan in Lalique Six Pillars
Collection and has a price tag of
£23,500 with 450 bottles available
Bell's Queens 90th Birthday Decanter
As whisky drinkers and Bells whisky decanter collectors have come to expect
on a special royal occasion, Bell’s whisky has launched of a bespoke, limited edition ‘Royal Birthday Decanter’ to celebrate Her Majesty’s 90th birthday.
Glenmorangie Distillery May Open
Glenmorangie’s are inviting you to share the secrets of their single malt at the Distillery’s open weekend, Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd May, they will open the doors of the Distillery for FREE, offering visitors unprecedented access to Glenmorangie’s innovative whisky making and an insight into the Distillery’s pioneering work to protect its environment and heritage.
Douglas Laing Unleash Scallywag Cask
Strength Limited Edition No.2
Douglas Laing today unleashed
a second cask strength limited
edition of its Scallywag Speyside
vatted malt. This 2nd limited
release has been created using an
impressive line up Speyside Single
Malts, including those distilled at
Mortlach, Macallan and Glenrothes
Suntory The Chita Japanese Single
Up until now Suntory The Chita Japanese Single Grain whisky has only been available exclusively in the Japanese domestic market but from July this year The Chita will be available from global travel retail.
Jura Distillery Manager Willie
Another era at the Isle of Jura distillery came to an end this week when Distillery Manager, Willie Cochrane, retired after an incredible 39 year career.
Kilchoman 100% Islay 6th Edition
Just in time for summer,
Kilchoman today released the 6th
edition of their excellent, easy
drinking, lower peated level,
Kilchoman 100% Islay 6th Edition,
the only single malt produced
on-site from barley to bottle.
Scotch Whisky Based Cinnamon Infused
Independent family-owned Ian Macleod Distillers, who are more well known for their Scotch single malt and blended whiskies has entered the spirit drink market with the launch of a new Scotch whisky based, cinnamon infused spicy party drink called Rocket Cat.
Take The Tomatin Caledonian Sleeper
Are you looking for a break north of the border and want to avoid the hassle of airport queues and of course if you enjoy a we dram or two then the overnight Caledonian Sleeper
and Tomatin have the thing for you.
Johnnie Walker Island Green
Diageo have announced the launch of Johnnie Walker Island Green blended malt whisky which will be exclusive to travel retail.
Gold For Glengoyne 21 & 25 At Asian
Glengoyne are celebrating after bringing picking up two Gold medals from this year’s Asian Spirits Masters for their Glengoyne 21 Year Old and their outstanding Glengoyne 25 Year Old expressions.
Diageo Reserve Announce Finalists
For 2016 World Class Competition
The finalists have been
announced following two very competitive
UK Diageo Reserve World Class Competition semi finals which saw 100 competitors narrowed down to 11 finalists who will now compete to be crowned 2016
UK Diageo Reserve World Class Bartender of the Year.
You can try out the 11 semi final
winning cocktails at home, I have
Beam Reaches 14 Million Barrel
Jim Beam Bourbon, the world’s
No. 1 bourbon, made history this
week when it filled its 14 millionth
barrel of bourbon since the repeal
of Prohibition in 1933.
Compass Box Enlightenment
Box Enlightenment a fruity Scotch blended
malt whisky from the innovative whisky
creators at Compass Box. Described as fresh, vibrant and uplifting with a mouthfeel that is moreish and
Compass Box The Circus
Compass Box The Circus is the
latest premium blended whisky from
the innovative folks at Compass Box.
The Circus is built around a core of
old Blended Scotch and Blended Grain
whisky parcels that were aged
pre-blended in sherry butts for many
Review of Ardbeg Dark Cove 46.5% ABV
standard release which will launch
on May 28th. A marriage of sherry
cask and hallmark ex-bourbon cask
matured Ardbeg. The nose really is
deliciously rich and enticing, it
only hints at the lovely sherried
Ardbeg peat which follows on the
Brown-Forman To Buy The BenRiach
Distillery Company Limited
Jack Daniel's owner Brown-Forman has
reached an agreement to purchase The
BenRiach Distillery Company Limited
which for approximately £285
million. They are set to acquire
Glendronach, BenRiach, and
Glenglassaugh single malt brands.
William Grant Sets Sites On Japan
With the demand for exceptional Scotch malt whisky in Asia Pacific continuing to rise, William Grant & Sons will be focusing on two recent additions to their offer at TFWA Asia Pacific this year: Glenfiddich 21 year old in its new stand out packaging and . Also high on the agenda are the recently launched
William Grant & Sons Announce
Changes To European Travel Retail
William Grant & Sons has announced a couple of changes to its Global Travel Retail European team during April.
Marina Steel has joined as Business
Development Manager – Global Travel
Retail Europe, Jillie Cooper has
joined the team as Business
Four Roses Bourbon Announce New
After two months of
searching, Four Roses Bourbon have
named Benji Purslow as the face of
the cult bourbon brand. Benji will
fight their corner in the Bourbon
battle for supremacy in the
increasingly popular UK Bourbon
A few of you may have been
lucky enough to get hold of a bottle
of the superb pot still rich Irish
blended whiskey Jameson Crested Ten
in the past, a whiskey which has
rarely been seen outside of Ireland
and has acquired itself somewhat of
a cult following. I am pleased to
tell you that that Jameson have
announced the international launch
of Jameson Crested, note they have
dropped the word Ten from the title
of the whiskey.
Douglas Laing Launches The Epicurean
Lowland Blended Malt
Douglas Laing have once again
been busy assessing the maturing
stock in their warehouse and have
just announced the addition of
Douglas Laing's The Epicurean
Lowland blended malt Scotch whisky
to the firm’s Remarkable Regional
Glenmorangie Tarlogan Travel Retail
Glenmorangie Tarlogan is the
third and I believe final release in
the Glenmorangie travel retail
exclusive Legends series, it follows Duthac and the more recently released Tayne.
It was matured in a combination of American ex-bourbon and virgin oak casks and it was bottled at 43% ABV.
Laphroaig Lore Review
Laphroaig Lore labelled "the
richest of the rich". This really is
a deliciously peaty powerful beast
of a Laphroaig, Laphroaig as you
expect it to be, Laphroaig as you
want it to be, big powerful and
bold. I can't confirm the ages of 7
to 21 years for the contributing
whiskies in Lore but I can confirm
that it is a very well put together
mix of fiery youthful Laphroaig and
some more tamed mature Laphroaig
with a good helping of quality
Highland Park ICE Edition Triumphs
At Ultimate Spirits Challenge
Highland Park ICE Edition which was only just launched in March this year has been awarded Ultimate Spirits Challenge's highest award of excellence in the single malt Scotch category.
Tastival 2016 Line Up
You know spring is in the air
when Jura announces its annual Jura
whisky festival (aka Tastival) line
up. Once again they have put
together a great line up of tasting,
tours and more. As usual tickets are
expected to sell quickly so don't
Redbreast 21 Crowned SFWSC Best In
Going by the recent haul of awards,
Irish Distillers continues to lead the field in the production of quality Irish whiskey, the Irish whiskey producer has recently scooped top honours at the prestigious San Francisco World Spirits Competition and World Whiskies Awards.
Redbreast 21 year old was awarded ‘Best in Show’ at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, overcoming all other whiskeys – not only Irish. In an equally impressive feat, Green Spot Chateau Leoville
Barton, was crowned World’s Best
Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey at
World Whiskies Awards.
Kilchoman Loch Gorm 2016
Loch Gorm annual limited edition was first launched back in 2012, as fans of the small Islay farm distillery will know it is now
the time of year for another instalment of the deliciously sherried, peaty Islay dram.
Justin Rose Announced As
Glenmorangie Golf Ambassador
Glenmorangie are extending
their link to that other great Scottish creation, golf, they have announced that Justin Rose will be the whisky brand’s new
global golf ambassador.
Roses Bourbon Announce Brand
Ambassador Job Finalists
Spirit Cartel has now whittled down its search for the UK Four Roses Brand Ambassador to five talented finalists. The extensive nationwide search, a first for the brand, will see some of the country’s brightest bourbon buffs battle it out for the highly desirable title at the final on Monday 18th April.
Benromach Imperial Proof Picks Up
Benromach Imperial Proof which is
also known as the Benromach 100°
Proof picks up top award at the 2016
San Francisco World Spirits
Benromach Imperial Proof is
bottled at 57% ABV and has the same
classic Benromach style that draws
its influence from Speyside whiskies
of the pre-1960s.
earlier Whisky News from 2016 >>>
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