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Feis Ile 2014, Tales From The Isle - Caol Ila Day

by Jake Mountain     27. May 2014 09:21

Tales From The Isle Caol Ila Feis Ile

Greetings traveller,

Traditionally-rigged tall ships are pretty cool. Ships like the Bessie Ellen, for example, Britain’s last wooden coasting ketch still under sail. These days it's a regular sight at Fèis Ìle, making berth at Caol Ila distillery, having originally transported cargo (including peat) around the UK as early as 1906. Happily, it also shares part of its name with both a Laphroaig distillery manager of note and a nearby port town with a rather well-known closed distillery. Plus it has the added bonus of making us feel more than a little pirate-y too. Arr!

In this issue of Tales From The Isle we'll be taking a look at Caol Ila's festival bottling as well as reliving a terrifying tale of piracy from the seas surrounding Islay that's guaranteed to shiver yer timbers!

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Feis Ile 2014, Tales From The Isle - Bruichladdich Day

by Jake Mountain     26. May 2014 10:48

Tales From The Isle Bruichladdich Feis Ile

Greetings traveller,

In this issue of Tales From The Isle we travel to Bruichladdich over on the Rinns of Islay. This was good news for us as we're actually staying on the Rinns, although we still managed to arrive late for the Octomore Discovery tasting with Jim McEwan. Oops. Bruichladdich day is also one of Fèis Ìle's most fun distillery days - watch your step though, for it takes place on the site of some dark happenings and black arts.

Indeed, this is place where things are taken right to the edge and are often shrouded in a Scotch mist of secrecy...

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Feis Ile 2014, Tales From The Isle - Lagavulin Day

by Jake Mountain     25. May 2014 09:47

Tales From The Isle Lagavulin Feis Ile

We've made it to Islay! In fact, we've been here since Thursday (quite keen) but it hasn't all been plain sailing. Alexandra and I actually missed our ferry, which, as every other one was fully booked for days, was a bit of a problem. Fortunately we managed to board another by using our powers of persuasion* and were soon running up and down the metal staircases on either side freeing hostages finding the very best views of Gigha, Northern Ireland, the Paps of Jura and, of course, Islay herself, including the silhouette of good ol' Cnoc Rhaonastil.

Without further ado though, welcome one and all to Tales From The Isle! Over the course of eight issues we'll be bringing you our own unique take on the events and releases at this year's Fèis Ìle, the legendary Islay whisky festival, as well as sharing some dark tales and perhaps even an adventure or two from this famous whisky isle...

Greetings traveller...

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Feis Ile 2014 - Giveaways, Offers & Tales From The Isle!

by Jake Mountain     20. May 2014 12:52

Tales From The Isle Feis Ile

Attention world!

It's that time of year once again (already?!) when the Master of Malt team are getting ready for yet another action-packed adventure at Fèis Ìle, the epic Islay whisky festival.

As ever, this is good news for you. If you're travelling to the festival yourself then not only will you be able to enjoy the wonderful company of Ben, myself and Alexandra at all of the distillery days, but there's also a chance to get your hands on some FREE 'stuff'!

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NEW: Master of Malt 10 Year Old Blended Whisky

by Jake Mountain     7. May 2014 11:52

Master of Malt 10 Year Old Blended Whisky

It’s all go over here at the moment and having recently launched the Reference Series, there is another exciting project or two just on the horizon, not to mention some much-anticipated new releases from That Boutique-y Whisky Company*. With all this going on it’s fallen to me to tell you a little about yet another exciting release – our shiny, new 10 year old blend!

Some people still get their knickers in a bit of a twist about blended whisky, persisting with some kind of Orwellian mantra of “single malt good, blended whisky bad”, but blends can be absolutely marvellous, and many are. Indeed, we’ve been encouraging you all to try your hand at creating your own with our Home Blending Kits and Blend Your Own Whisky service for a long time now, and I covered the subject on the blog last year when I had a go myself. (Don't worry, I had nothing to do with this new blend!)

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The London Whisky Weekender - A Weekend of Whisky Fun (In London)

by Sam Smith     2. May 2014 11:35

Whisky Weekender

What are you doing on May 16th to May 18th? If you’ve got plans, cancel them. If you don’t have plans, make some and then cancel them, because the wonderful folks from The Whisky Lounge are putting on The London Whisky Weekender, a weekend-long celebration of whisky from around the world, and you definitely don’t want to miss it.

The Whisky Lounge are good peoples. They’re devoted to educating, entertaining and generally making the world of whisky not feel like an impenetrable wall of arduous lexicon that you need to attack with a shining silver sword to get any joy from. With a mission statement of “Turn Everyone on to Whisky”, we couldn’t think of a better bunch to put together a whisky festival in the country’s capital.

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The Glenlivet Nàdurra Oloroso

by Jake Mountain     24. April 2014 16:22

The Glenlivet Nadurra Oloroso

The Glenlivet is one of most popular single malts in the world, selling around 11 million bottles a year (they’re second only to Glenfiddich in terms of overall sales) and is owned by Chivas Brothers (i.e. Pernod Ricard). It is perhaps because of these facts that Nàdurra was such a welcome addition back in 2006 – here was a very big player willing to extoll the virtues of bottling whisky at cask strength without using chill filtration, or adding caramel (Nàdurra being the Gaelic for ‘natural’). It was also (and still is) matured exclusively in first-fill Bourbon barrels, with the batch number displayed on the bottle. The fact that it was/is a great whisky helped too, of course.

Fast forward to 2014 and The Glenlivet are giving the Nàdurra range a bit of a shake up with new permanent editions. Why only release a bourbon cask edition when they’re filling spirit into other cask types? And so, last night, I came to be in front of a glass of The Glenlivet Nàdurra Oloroso, matured exclusively in first-fill Oloroso Sherry casks from Jerez. This first batch is bottled at 48% and will be available exclusively in travel retail (just as the first ever Nàdurra was back in 2005), but the real cask strength deal should be available around September/October time. Suffice to say we’ll be stocking it as soon as we can! Excluding the Rare Single Cask Editions (which were second-fill), this will be the first exclusively Sherry cask matured Glenlivet “in living memory”. And it’s a Nàdurra. If you’re thinking “that’s pretty fucking cool” right about now, then you, Sir, are correct.

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The Singleton Whisky Night Market with Tailfire and Sunray

by Jake Mountain     16. April 2014 13:38

Singleton Tailfire and Sunray

The Singleton of Dufftown recently launched two new NAS expressions. You may have seen them, they’re the ones named after hot rod car paints fishing flies (in keeping with the Singleton logo): Tailfire and Sunray. The colours correspond to the flavour profiles of the whiskies, which makes it a little easier for folk who may otherwise find choosing from a shelf of single malts a daunting proposition.

The new releases are set to be celebrated at The Singleton Whisky Night Market on Thursday May 15th (18:30-22:30) down at Southbank, where they will be paired with specially made chocolates (Cocomaya), cheeses (Pong), and whisky marshmallows (The Marshmallowists) alongside theatrical presentations (no doubt involving the one and only Colin Dunn), comedy (Tom Sandham* off of Thinking Drinkers), some top grub (Forza Win and Mark Hix) and whisky cocktails from the excellent Andrea Montague (of Callooh Callay fame, now Diageo’s in-house ‘malt mixologist’).

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Ardbeg Auriverdes – Coming Soon

by Ben Ellefsen     10. April 2014 12:40

Ardbeg Auriverdes

So – it’s that time of year again isn’t it? I checked my calendar the other day, and realised it’s 6 weeks until Feis Ile. 6 weeks. I’ve got no idea who’s stealing all the time, but as whoever it is takes with one hand, they surely give with the other – we’re only 7 weeks away from the release of this year’s Ardbeg Day special edition.

This year’s offering is called ‘Auriverdes’ – a portmanteau of the latin ‘Aurum’ (Gold) and Portuguese ‘Verdes’ (Green) – Gold for the colour of the whisky, and Green for the iconic green* bottle in which Ardbeg is presented.

Why Portuguese, I hear you ask? Well apparently there’s some sort of kickball tourney on later this year in Brazil? Not really my sort of thing, but I’m sure Jake will use it as an excuse to bore the crap out of you / keep you entertained (delete per your preference).

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Taste The World’s Rarest, Most-Expensive Whiskies… For Free

by Michael Orson     1. April 2014 09:46

Joculus Snift

Imagine a world where you could taste any whisky you wanted, instantly, for free, and in the comfort of your own multi-million-pound caravan-home or luxury yachts-vessel. And just picture yourself, if you will, browsing an immense digital library with fine single malts flashing majestically before your very eyes like that bit in Minority Report.

The time is 9pm, the day is today, and you’re sitting in a wingback chesterfield armchair. It’s slightly old – still maintains its shape, but the burgundy leather has become softer and more forgiving. In essence, you’re the mayor of comfort city. It’s liquor o’clock, and Mrs Hammersworth, the nice lady who looks after you, is strapping a slightly cumbersome though thoroughly modern-looking headset onto your face. The device, pictured below, is the groundbreaking “Joculus Snift” – a unique multi-sensory media experience which stimulates four of the five senses with state-of-the-art (SOTA) technology.

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Categories : News | Old | Rare | Whisky


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