14th May 2019: Beam Suntory’s Laphroaig has announced the 2019 annual release of its Càirdeas series, Càirdeas Triple Wood Cask Strength. This exclusive bottling celebrates the Friends of Laphroaig and marks the annual Feis Ile festival on Islay.
The unique expression is a special triple maturation, first matured in ex-bourbon barrels, then in quarter casks and finally in European oak casks which previously held oloroso sherry. It is then barrier filtered and bottled at cask strength to create a punchy dram with Laphroaig’s signature richness of flavour and smoky taste.
On Islay there is a saying; We don’t make friends easily but the ones we do are for life. Launched in 1994, Friends of Laphroaig are fans, friends and followers of the distillery from all over the world. Never short of an opinion or two they help Laphroaig explore new expressions, attend tastings and sometimes even visit the distillery at Laphroaig’s home on Islay. To reward the loyalty of its following, each year Laphroaig launches exclusive bottlings within the Càirdeas series.
Càirdeas means ‘friendship’ in Gaelic and, each year, a limited-edition bottling is crafted by distillery manager and fifth generation Islay native, John Campbell, available exclusively to Friends of Laphroaig.
Feis Ile Festival
The unique edition is launched to coincide with the Feis Ile festival, which transforms Islay for seven days each summer into a global hub of whisky lovers. Some 3000 visitors descend on the Islay distilleries to enjoy exclusive tastings, talks from key figures in the industry, and revel in a shared passion amongst likeminded strangers. Laphroaig is one of the largest and most famous distilleries on the island, and the Càirdeas release is a celebration of the people who visit.
John Campbell, Laphroaig distillery manager, comments: “Our friends are very important to us at Laphroaig. It’s a polarising whisky, so it means a great deal that our fans remain loyal to our liquid and continue to push for newer expressions. Friends of Laphroaig gives us a great opportunity to engage with our supporters and give back to them with this exclusive Càirdeas whisky.”
The whisky is available online exclusively to Friends of Laphroaig and at the distillery now for an RRP of £77
Polished leather and tobacco leaves with spicy lemon and clementine zest. Subtle notes of golden syrup and rich heather honey, with autumn leaves, hazelnuts, vanilla fudge and a touch of white pepper and nutmeg. Dried camomile flowers and a touch of passion fruits.
Sweet with rich toffee, with dates, maple syrup, praline and crème caramel. Grilled chestnuts with tarte Tatin, marzipan and strong black pepper. Cedar wood, a touch of furniture polish and beeswax.
Sweet, long with caramel and spicy buttery fudge.
Best served neat, with ice or water, given the higher ABV of this cask strength dram.
Bottled at 51.4% ABV.
Benromach 10 Years Old has been crowned the winner in the 12 Years & Under category at the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Awards 2019. The annual competition seeks out the best whiskies from Scotland’s most prolific whisky-producing region.
Just two finalists are selected in each category during a blind taste challenge held by the judging panel, which is composed of nine leading industry experts and whisky writers. Benromach was the only distillery to have two expressions in the final eight whiskies, including Benromach 15 Years Old which was recognised as the runner up in the 13 – 20 Years Old category.
In the only whisky competition of its type, the shortlisted expressions are then sampled by the public at judging sessions held in cities including New York, Cologne, Rome, Belfast and London.
Visitors and locals to the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival in May then cast the deciding vote on the shortlist, with the results revealed at the Festival’s closing ceilidh.
Keith Cruickshank, Benromach Distillery Manager, said: “We are immensely proud that Benromach 10 Years Old, our flagship whisky, has been recognised in these prestigious awards. It is particularly special because such a breadth of audiences from all over the world have had the opportunity to try two of our whiskies and have recognised them for their quality and taste.
“At Benromach, we are one of only a few Scottish distilleries to craft all our whiskies by hand. Our methods take a little longer, but we believe this extra attention is reflected in the depth of the flavours of our whiskies. We manage the process by sight, sound and touch and use only traditional techniques to create our distinctive expressions – beautifully balanced with a light touch of smoke.’’
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Family owned Benromach Distillery has announced a new addition to its Classic Range, Benromach Cask Strength Vintage 2008 Batch 1, a rich and full-bodied, limited-batch single malt whisky.
The batch release which will be sold across multiple international markets, was matured in First-Fill Sherry and Bourbon casks. Just 5,500 bottles will be available to purchase worldwide from 24th April 2019*.
Laid down in 2008 before being bottled in 2019, Benromach Cask Strength Vintage 2008 is a 10-year- old whisky. The golden amber dram has notes of cracked black pepper, fruits and milk chocolate, with a delicate smoky edge on the palate. The whisky has a long, deep finish with subtle smokiness and bonfire embers.
Bottled at cask strength (57.9% ABV), Benromach Cask Strength Vintage 2008 Batch 1 will replace Benromach 100° Proof in the Classic Range. The new expression will provide single malt Scotch whisky fans with subtle variations on the flavour profile of Benromach 100° Proof with small strength and natural colour variations reflecting different batches.
Keith Cruickshank, Benromach Distillery Manager, said: “By offering the opportunity to own and enjoy batch releases, we are able to further showcase the expertise of our distilling team while determining the right time to bottle each batch to take full advantage of the remarkable single malt whiskies we produce. We believe this expression will allow Benromach drinkers to understand more about the provenance of the whisky they are drinking.
“Every whisky we release has been carefully handcrafted by our close-knit team of distillers. While retaining the overall flavours that Benromach consumers have enjoyed in Benromach 100° Proof, the new Cask Strength Vintage release will differ subtly in both strength and flavour profile, reflecting the specific casks chosen from the vintage year.”
Benromach Cask Strength Vintage 2008 Batch 1 is presented in an elegant bottle with shapes and textures inspired by the Speyside distillery. The copper cut medallion on the packaging signifies the moment in time when the distillers cut to the sweet heart of the spirit run. Each bottle will detail the vintage year, batch number and age.
Benromach Cask Strength Vintage 2008 Batch 1 will be available in selected markets worldwide with a recommended retail price (RRP) of €69.95 (£59.95). Prices in local markets may vary depending on local taxes and duty.*
Benromach is one of only a few distilleries in Scotland to use traditional methods, without any automated machinery. The small team of distillers employ all their senses when crafting the classic Speyside single malt Scotch whiskies, managing the process by sight, sound and touch to create the unique, handcrafted and authentic Benromach taste.
For more information on Benromach single malt Scotch whisky, and to explore the Classic Range, please visit: www.benromach.com.
*Cask Strength Vintage 2008 Batch 1 will be available worldwide with the exception of China and the US. These countries will receive Cask Strength Vintage market exclusives later this year.
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