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Whisky Focus - News Reviews Interviews & More


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 more.
  • 11th January 2019
    Whyte & Mackay Glasgow International Comedy Festival 2019
    If you will be lucky enough to be in or around Glasgow between the 14th and 31st March and you are looking for a good night out, a good laugh and perhaps a drink or two then why not check out the Whyte & Mackay Glasgow International Comedy Festival 2019 which consists of 506 shows which will be taking place across 54 venues around the city of Glasgow over just 18 days.
     
  • 11th January 2019
    New Look Unveiled For Jameson Irish Whiskey
    Irish Distillers has unveiled a new look for its Jameson Irish whiskey, they have overhauled  the iconic green bottle and label which was first introduced back in 1968 but fans of the worlds most popular Irish whiskey needn't worry as it will still be the same smooth Jameson blended Irish whiskey that you will find in the bottle.
     
  • 10th January 2019
    Douglas Laing 2019 Chinese Year Of The Pig Single Cask Whiskies
    Douglas Laing mark the Chinese 2019 Year of the Pig with three single cask whiskies which were distilled in previous Years of the Pig, an XOP Craigellachie 1995 Vintage, Old Particular Bunnahabhain 2007 and a Old Particular Glengoyne 2007.

     
  • 10th January 2019
    Glengoyne Awarded  Green Initiative Master Medal
    In recognition of their ongoing Green Initiatives the Glengoyne distillery has just been awarded a Master medal, the highest possible accolade in the environmentally-focused Green Initiatives category at The Spirits Business Distillery Masters 2019. Judges praised the distillery’s partnership with the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust and its £170,000 investment in establishing a wetlands facility back in 2011.
     
  • 4th January 2019
    Timorous Beastie 12 Year Old Cask Strength Limited Edition
    2019's first foot as far as new release announcements here at Scotch Malt Whisky goes is a not so timorous, Timorous Beastie 12 Year Old Cask Strength limited edition blended Highland malt whisky from independent Glasgow based whisky company Douglas Laing.
     
  • 21st December 2018
    Glenfiddich Fire & Cane Review
    Tasted the Glenfiddich Fire & Cane Experimental Series No 4 which was launched earlier this year, the smoke is gentle but hangs in there from start to finish, it does become a little bolder with each mouthful and compliments the candied fruit and sweet toffee well to make for, and most importantly, a very enjoyable dram.
     
  • 21st December 2018
    Powers Quarter - A New Powers Pub Tour In Dublin
    Powers Quarter is a new guided pub tour in Dublin which will take you through the history of the iconic Powers Irish whiskey brand in Dublin, with a few drams of Powers along the way.

     
  • 20th December 2018
    Rare Whisky 101 Expose The Extent Of Fake Whisky
    In recent tests commissioned by 'Rare Whisky 101', a whisky valuation service, brokerage and consultancy for whisky connoisseurs, it was found that from 55 bottles of Scotch whisky that were acquired by RW101 from different sources through the secondary market, 21 were confirmed as either outright fakes or whiskies not distilled in the year declared.
     
  • 19th December 2018
    The GlenDronach Grandeur 27 Year Old Batch 10 Review
    Just in time for those of you who may be looking for something special to pour over the holiday season or perhaps to see in the New Year, the GlenDronach Distillery has launched the next instalment of their sherry rich premium Grandeur series of single malt whiskies, The GlenDronach Grandeur Batch 10 27 Year Old.
     
  • 14th December 2018
    Glen Moray Edinburgh Rugby Single Cask Private Edition
    Here is one for the whisky drinking rugby fans amongst you who are looking for something new to treat themselves to over the holiday season, Glen Moray has just announced the release of the Glen Moray Edinburgh Rugby Single Cask Private Edition whisky just in time for Christmas, a release which will see Glen Moray contributing 100% of the profits of the sale of the limited edition bottles to the rugby charity, Hearts and Balls.
     
  • 14th December 2018
    Benromach's Susan Colville Visitor Attraction Manager of the Year
    It is usually a sign that a distillery is worth visiting when it receives an award such as this, Susan Colville has just picked up the Visitor Attraction Manager of the Year Award at the Whisky Magazine organised Icons of Whisky Scotland awards.
     
  • 14th December 2018
    Tullamore DEW John Quinn Vice Chair Of Irish Whiskey Association
    Tullamore D.E.W. 44 year veteran brand ambassador has been elected as Vice Chair of the Irish Whiskey Association which was established in 2014 to represent the rapidly expanding Irish Whiskey industry and provides a forum for all operators, new and old, to come together to share expertise and cooperate in building the Irish whiskey category brand.

     
  • 13th December 2018
    Glengoyne Behind The Scenes Tickets Sell Out In 24Hrs
    Tickets to a closed doors, behind the scenes experience at Glengoyne Distillery which I only told you about on here yesterday have sold out within 24 hours after single malt fans from around the world rushed to pick up the bucket-list experience and keys to the distillery.
     
  • 12th December 2018
    Douglas Laing 70th Anniversary Year XOP Port Ellen & Big Peat 26
    Douglas Laing has just unveiled two rather special "Platinum" themed whiskies to round off their 70th anniversary year, a XOP Platinum Port Ellen 1982 Vintage Single Cask and the second release of Big Peat’s aged limited edition trilogy; the Platinum Edition Aged 26 Years Old.
     
  • 11th December 2018
    Go Behind The Scenes At The Glengoyne Distillery
    The Glengoyne distillery is offering whisky enthusiasts the chance to go behind the scenes at the distillery. There are 36 places available for whisky fans to effectively get the keys to the distillery for one day to get a deeper insight than ever before into how Glengoyne’s single malt is crafted.
     
  • 11th December 2018
    World Class 2019 Bartending Global Final Coming To Glasgow
    Diageo Reserve has announced that Glasgow will be the location for the 2019 World Class Global Final, the world's biggest bartending competition. The worlds brightest and best bartenders will descend on Scotland’s cultural capital, Glasgow, in September 2019 to battle it out to be crowned the Diageo Reserve World Class Bartender of the Year.
     
  • 10th December 2018
    J & B Rare Review And 'A Rare Discovery' Christmas Cocktail
    Review of the often overlooked J & B Rare
    a quality easy drinking Speyside style blend that could easily rival some of the entry level Speyside single malts and in keeping with the festive season and given the increasing popularity of whisky cocktails I thought you would appreciate this J & B Rare Christmas cocktail idea which was created by a bartender from Drake & Morgan’s The Parlour in London, called 'A Rare Discovery'.
     
  • 10th December 2018
    The Three Wise Men Of Loch Lomond Christmas Whisky Cocktails
    Review of the Loch Lomond 12 year old, Inchmurrin 12 year old and Inchmoan 12 year old and three Christmas whisky cocktails ideas which utilises these three single malt whiskies from the Loch Lomond distillery.

     
  • 10th December 2018
    Rachel Barrie First Female To Join Whisky Magazine Hall Of Fame
    Rachel Barrie Master Blender for The GlenDronach, BenRiach and Glenglassaugh distilleries has become the first woman to be inducted into the Whisky Magazine's Hall of Fame.

     
  • 10th December 2018
    #JOINTHEPACT Anti Drink Driving Campaign Returns To Edinburgh
    Edinburgh Airport and Edinburgh Trams joined F1’s Mika Häkkinen on Friday 7th December to urge Scots to #JOINTHEPACT and pledge to never drink and drive.
    The two-times F1 World Drivers’ Champion also brought the Johnnie Walker Caparo T1 supercar to the Airport as part of a series of events in Edinburgh to promote the #JOINTHEPACT Never Drink and Drive campaign over the festive season.
     
  • 10th December 2018
    Gordon & MacPhail Whiskies Scoops 3 Design & Packaging Awards
    It seems that the folks at Elgin based whisky creators Gordon & MacPhail not only creates whisky that tastes good but also looks good as the family owned and run business has just been recognised for its premium portfolio of exclusive single malt whiskies at The Spirits Business 2018 Design & Packaging Masters, securing three ‘Master’ accolades.
     
  • 6th December 2018
    Get Your Face On The Big Peat’s Pals Feis Ile Edition 2019
    Douglas Laing calls on whisky fans to submit their photos for inclusion on the Big Peat’s Pals Feis Ile Edition 2019.

     
  • 5th December 2018
    Benromach 1978 Vintage 40 Year Old
    Following on from the popularity of previous 1970's single cask vintage releases from Benromach the distillery today unveiled another rare single cask limited edition expression which was laid down in the 1970's, the Benromach 1978 Vintage 40 Year Old which has been fully matured in a single Refill Sherry Hogshead Cask No. 2608.
     
  • 5th December 2018
    Isle of Arran 21 Year Old Unveiled
    The Isle of Arran distillery has unveiled there latest and oldest expression of single malt whisky to join its core range to date, the Arran 21 Year Old, matured in a combination of of ex-Bourbon and ex-Sherry casks before being bottled at 46% ABV, non chill-filtered and natural colour.
     
  • 5th December 2018
    Glenmorangie Commission Piece For National Museum of Scotland
    Glenmorangie has once again teamed up with the National Museum of Scotland, on this occasion the Scotch malt whisky maker has commissioned a major new piece of contemporary silverwork for display in the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh.
     
  • 4th December 2018
    The Glenfarclas Family Cask Trunk 1954 - 2003
    Following on from their incredibly popular Family Cask Collection, the Glenfarclas distillery has unveiled The Glenfarclas Family Cask Trunk which contains every single vintage from 1954 to 2003. The unique collection of fifty 200ml bottles, one from each year from 1954 to 2003, are presented in a custom made trunk which will be available worldwide with a RRP of £100,000.
     
  • 4th December 2018
    The SMWS Brings The Festive Spirit To Edinburgh Christmas Parties
    Those festive folks at The Scotch Malt Whisky Society in Edinburgh are offering businesses in the city the chance to bring some festive spirit to their Christmas party celebrations. So why not crap your usual humdrum office party traditions this Christmas by having an expert from The Scotch Malt Whisky Society hand-deliver exceptional drams right to your desk.
     
  • 4th December 2018
    Win Prizes In The Benromach Online Advent Calendar
    The Benromach distillery is giving whisky fans the chance to win prizes in their Benromach online Advent Calendar 2018. Packed with fun facts, helpful tips and insights into how Benromach is handcrafted and it offers whisky fans opportunities to win prizes ranging from a bottle of the flagship Benromach 10 Year Old to a limited edition Benromach 20th Anniversary Bottling.

     
  • 4th December 2018
    Glenmorangie Festive Pop Up At The Devonshire Club London
    In the run up to Christmas Glenmorangie has teamed up with The Devonshire Club in the London to bring a whisky and wood inspired festive pop-up experience to life. The ephemeral bar will be open to all whisky lovers – both members and non-members of the Club - serving bespoke cocktails using Glenmorangie’s whisky range. In addition to whisky cocktails and drams, guests will also be able to enjoy warming Glenmorangie Hot Toddies, unctuous hot chocolate made by award-winning chocolatier William Curley and hand-made bespoke chocolates created to pair perfectly with Glenmorangie.
     
  • 30th November 2018
    Red Spot 15 Year Old Irish Single Pot Still Whiskey Review
    Irish Distillers has added a 15 year old expression to their single pot still 'Spot' range, the Red Spot 15 Year Old whiskey is not exactly a new expression but it hasn't been seen since the 1960's. Deliciously rich and complex and if you are able to get hold of this where you are, I am sure you wont be disappointed to find this rich Marsala wine influenced, spicy Irish single pot still in you Christmas stocking.
     
  • 27th November 2018
    Glen Moray 10 Year Old Fired Oak Review
    Glen Moray 10 Year Old Fired Oak is the latest addition to the Speyside distillery's core range, matured for 10 years in ex-Bourbon casks and finished in heavily charred American Oak casks. No surprises, just what you would expect from this type of maturation, a delicious balance of sweet and spice and a nice touch of fruit, a cracking Speyside whisky for your money and a very welcome addition to the Glen Moray range.
     
  • 26th November 2018
    Deanston Makes TV Debut In The Three Drinkers On Amazon Prime
    After making its big screen Hollywood debut back in 2012 in the movie The Angels' Share, Deanston distillery is set to hit small screens in a brand new series on Amazon Prime called ‘The Three Drinkers’, with the highland single malt launching the first episode of the series, which will premiere today.
     
  • 23rd November 2018
    Douglas Laing Unveils Final Scallywag Red-Nosed Reindeer Edition
    Those festive folks at Douglas Laing today unveiled the the third and final Scallywag 12 Year Old Red Nosed Reindeer Edition. Expect an explosion of Christmas character on the palate thanks to 100% Sherry maturation over 12 Years, a limited release of only 450 bottles.
     
  • 23rd November 2018
    Master Blender Billy Leighton Joins Whisky Magazine Hall Of Fame
    In recognition of his 42 years in the industry and contribution to the growth of the Irish whiskey category with Irish Distillers, Middleton distillery Master Blender Billy Leighton has been inducted into the Whisky Magazine Hall of Fame in a special ceremony at The Dean Hotel, Dublin.
     
  • 22nd November 2018
    Ex-Chief Executive Of Cadbury Joins Cotswolds Distillery Board
    We often hear of whisky and chocolate pairings that really work well, but here is a slightly different whisky and chocolate pairing, The Cotswolds Distillery has announced that Sir Dominic Cadbury, previously Chief Executive and Chairman of Cadbury Schweppes, has joined the board of directors at The Cotswolds Distillery.
     
  • 21st November 2018
    Glengoyne Teapot Dram Batch No. 006
    Its that time of year once again, Glengoyne has just announced the release of the Glengoyne Teapot Dram Batch No. 6, the sixth release in this highly rated and very popular series of big sherried cask strength drams from the Highland distillery.
     
  • 21st November 2018
    Diageo Reserve Appoints Jason Clark As Talisker Brand Ambassador
    Those of you who have had the pleasure of attending premium whisky events and tastings will have no doubt come across dedicated whisky brand ambassadors for many of the whisky brands available but strangely Diageo who owns 28 Scotch malt whisky distilleries has very few ambassadors dedicated to just one of their whisky brands so it is good news to hear that Diageo Reserve has appointed Jason Clark as the new Brand Ambassador for its premium Scotch whisky, Talisker.
     
  • 16th November 2018
    Ailsa Bay Release 1.2 Sweet Smoke Review
    Ailsa Bay Release 1.2 Sweet Smoke is a new whisky from William Grant & Sons, it follows and replaces the inaugural release of Ailsa Bay launched back in early 2016. I loved the inaugural release from Ailsa Bay and this 1.2 is every bit as good, with a delicious smooth delivery of clean sweet peat and creamy vanilla, I would say that it has an extra maturity about it which has simply added to the pleasure.
     
  • 15th November 2018
    The Clydeside Distillery Whisky & Chocolate Tour
    The Clydeside Distillery has introduced two brand new tours as part of its visitor experience, the Whisky & Chocolate Tour and the Distillery Manager Tour which will take you behind the scenes at he distillery.
     
  • 15th November 2018
    William Grant & Sons Makes It A Double At The IWSC Awards 2018
    Last night, independent family distillers William Grant & Sons made it a double when they picked up the 2018 International Wine & Spirits Competition awards for Distiller of the Year award and Scotch Whisky Producer of the Year.
     
  • 14th November 2018
    New Look For Douglas Laing Premier Barrel Range
    Douglas Laing today unveiled a new look for it Premier Barrel Single Cask Single Malt Scotch Whisky range. The range will still be presented in the now familiar ceramic decanter but the labelling has had a makeover. The new look launches with a Bunnahabhain 10 Year Old, Dailuaine 10 Year Old, Glen Garioch 8 Year Old and Craigellachie 10 Year Old.
     
  • 14th November 2018
    Caol Ila Distillery Plans To Transform Visitor Centre
    Diageo has submitted plans to the Argyll & Bute Council transform the visitor experience at the Islay distillery. The detailed Planning Application which was submitted today sets out proposals to significantly expand and enhance the experience the distillery offers to tourists from around the world.
     
  • 12th November 2018
    Johnnie Walker Opens Experiential Retail Store In Madrid
    Johnnie Walker has opened its first flagship experiential retail store in Madrid, the cutting-edge store is located on Calle de Serrano - adjacent to the Puerta de Alcalá. The exciting new space plays host to a wide variety of immersive experiences, including whisky appreciation classes and tastings designed to help people explore the world of Johnnie Walker and Scotch.
     
  • 8th November 2018
    Gordon & MacPhail ‘Private Collection’ Range Gets A New Look
    Gordon & MacPhail debuts new Private Collection range look with rare Inverleven 1985 33 Year Old and Glenrothes 1974 44 Year Old single malt whiskies.

     
  • 8th November 2018
    John Walker & Sons Private Collection 28 Year Old Midnight Blend
    Johnnie Walker has launched John Walker & Sons Private Collection 28 Year Old Midnight Blend, the fifth and final edition in the John Walker & Sons Private Collection. A limited release of 3,888 individually numbered decanters.
     
  • 7th November 2018
    Highland Park Viking Tribe Amazon Exclusive
    Highland Park Viking Tribe single malt whisky is a new expression from the Orkney Island distillery which will be available exclusively from Amazon. Bottled at its marrying strength, 46% ABV, which they say has resulted in intensified flavours of citrus fruits, sweet vanilla and peppery spices, balanced with Highland Park's characteristic aromatic smokiness.
     
  • 6th November 2018
    Benromach Château Cissac Bordeaux Wood Finish 2010
    The Benromach Distillery has just unveiled the Benromach Château Cissac Bordeaux Wood Finish 2010 the latest limited release addition to their popular series of vintage wood finish whiskies.
     
  • 5th November 2018
    The Glasgow Distillery Hosts Opera World Premiere
    On Friday 2n and Saturday 3rd November The Glasgow Distillery Company, producer of the new 1770 Glasgow Single Malt Scotch Whisky, hosted the world premiere of the brand new whisky industry inspired opera, Navigate the Blood, with two sold-out performances.
     
  • 2nd November 2018
    3  Differently Finished SMWS The Jazz Trio Macallan 22 Year Olds
    The SMWS has released 3 differently finished 22 year Macallan whiskies named The Jazz Trio which were all originally matured in the same sherry puncheon for over 20 years, sold as a set I doubt they will be available for long so dont hang around if you are interested.
     

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