Maxximum Acquires Canadian Club As a result of the recent Jim Beam Brands acquisition, Maxximum Canada announces the addition of Canadian Club Whisky to its premium spirit portfolio. Together with three other brands including Sauza Tequila this makes Maxximum the third largest spirits group in Canada as a complement to its number one position in imported wine.
£30 Million Additional Tax Could Hit Scotch Whisky Industry
The Scotch whisky industry could be forced to pay an extra £30m in tax charges if the Inland Revenue have their way. The industry body the Scotch Whisky Association has just lost a court battle but is planning to take the case to the House of Lords.
William Grant & Sons have previously won a test case on the issue which originates from a ruling by the revenue in 2002 that companies should pay tax on depreciated stock every year, rather than when stock is eventually sold. For most companies which sell and replaces stock often, this technicality is not important. However, for the whisky industry which stores their stock for at least three years, an implementation would mean a one-time charge of something along £25m-£30m in the next 5-10 years. Source: The Herald
Triple-Distilled Islay Whisky By Bruichladdich
“Trestarig”, a long forgotten Hebridean whisky, is being re-created by independent whisky distiller Bruichladdich. Trestarig is pronounced “trace-arak”, and is according to a 300 year old manuscript a triple distilled spirit that may have it’s origins in ‘Arak’, the original Middle Eastern spirit distilled from wine.
The recreation makes Trestarig the first triple-distilled spirit in the western Isles in modern times, and maybe it was about time; Master Distiller Jim McEwan claims this is the best new spirit he has ever tasted fresh from the run –which was unusually long, 7 hours. The ‘middle cut’ was made between 86% & 81.5%.
New Whisky Price Record Set
A rare bottle of Irish whiskey is for sale for £100,000, making it the world’s most expensive single malt ever.
The bottle is believed to be from the Nun’s Island Distillery in Galway. The Distillery ceased production in 1913, but the bottle is believed to be from the late nineteenth century. Source: Scotsman
LVMH Acquires Marketing Rights for Glenmorangie
Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH) has acquired distributing and marketing rights for Glenmorangie from Brown-Forman. Brown Forman, one of the largest American-owned companies in the wine and spirits business, sold their shares in Glenmorangie PLC to LVMH in the fall of 2004. According to Christophe Navarre, CEO of Moët Hennessy, the transfer of marketing and distribution rights is a natural consequence of that purchase.
New Vintage Glen Moray!
Glen Moray Distillery has launched a new vintage, Glen Moray 1989 40% first fill bourbon cask. RRP is £50.
Highland Park Named No1
The American Spirit Journal has named Highland Park 18 yo the best spirit in the world. The magazine has compiled a list of the world’s 100 finest distilled drinks. According to Paul Pacult, the Managing Director of the spirit journal who has compiled the list, the Highland Park 18 yo was his favourite among vodkas, tequilas, whiskies, rum and many other spirits from around the world. Several other Scotch whiskies did well on the list including Ardbeg, Bowmore and The Macallan. Highland Park was founded in 1798 and is the northernmost distillery on the Orkney Islands. Source: Scotsman
Compass Box has five years anniversary!
The Compass Box whisky company located in London, celebrates its five year anniversary. The American John Glaser founded the company with the ambition to make high quality whisky for a new generation of whiskydrinkers. The whisky comes from 12 different distilleries around Scottland and are all blended to create new tastes. Peat Monster, Asyla and Hedonism are rapidly becoming known brands and are winning awards. As a result, Compass Box is expanding and constantly adds new countries to its list of export destinations.
New world record for whisky tasting!
The old whisky tasting record was set in Sweden in 2001. That time 1210 people did the tasting together. The new record is 1610 and was set in Edinburgh. The sponsor, the Easy Whisky Drinking Company was delighted to bring the record “back home to were it belonged”.
On the Rocks on Purpose
The privately-owned Islay distillery Bruichladdich has just launched a new single malt –The Bruichladdich Rocks. The new bottling is a challenge to whisky puritans since it is actually designed to be drunk on the rocks.
The whisky is matured in Bourbon casks before it is finished in Grenache wine casks from south west France. The whisky has been specifically designed by Master Distiller Jim McEwan and is composed of whisky from several contrasting years. Jim McEwan claims this allows for great complexity and also states that “I never thought I could actively recommend drinking a single malt with ice… but with Bruichladdich Rocks you most definitely can.” The Bruichladdich Rocks is bottled at 46%.
New French Whisky Distillery!
The creation of the Glann ar Mor Distillery has been eight years in the making. The distillery is situated on the Northern coast of Brittany, France. Glann ar Mor means “by the sea” in Breton. The distillery will produce both peated and unpeated whisky. To make the peated whisky the distillery will use malt with a phenol level of 35-40 ppm.
Although the distillery is just about to open, there is already a bottling for sale, the Taol Esa 1999. The release is very limited, there are only 99 of the50 cl bottles. The Taol Esa 1999 is not representative for the whisky which will be forthcoming from the Glann ar Mor Distillery however; the founders wished to gain experience in the early stages of the planning process, and Taol Esa, which means ’The Essay’ in Breton, is the result.
The wash for Taol Esa was made by a local distillery and the whisky was distilled in a small wood-heated still. It is an undeniably unique whisky considering the circumstances under which it has been made. Taol Esa was bottled at 46% at an age of slightly more than 4 years. It is unchill-filtered and has no colour additives.
New Vintage Bottling From Balvenie
Balvenie has recently launched a new bottling, The Balvenie Vintage Cask 1971. David Stewart, the malt master at Balvenie, has asked three retired Excisemen to help him select the four over 30-years-old casks. No more than 170 bottles of The Balvenie Vintage Cask 1971 will be sold in the UK.
Diageo Purchases Bushmills from Pernod Richard
Diageo has entered into an agreement with Pernod to purchase Bushmills, the world’s second largest Irish whiskey brand, for approximately 200 million. The deal will also grant Diageo to purchase the bulk of Allied Domecq’s Montana wine business for approximately 320 million. Montana is one of the leading New Zealand wine brands and the number one New Zealand export brand.
The agreements are conditional upon the successful completion of Pernod’s agreed bid for Allied Domecq which Pernod and Allied Domecq have both stated they expect to occur on 26 July 2005. Both acquisitions are expected to close in late 2005 or early in 2006.
Glenburgie Distillery Re-opened!
On June 3, Allied Distillers inaugurated their completely rebuilt production building at the Glenburgie Distillery near Forres. Allied lost five months in production between the demolition of the old Glenburgie and the completion of its successor. The reason for the stop was that the old stills were moved into the new production facility rather than installing new stills and risk to alter the character of the Glenburgie whisky.
With the exception of the stills and the milling equipment, everything else in the building is new, including the state-of-the-art computer technology which allows every aspect of the distilling process to be controlled by just one person. The new Glenburgie distillery will be capable of producing 2.8million litres of spirit a year, compared to 2.3million at the old distillery. The new distillery is built to hold another two stills which would take capacity up to 4.2million litres.