WhiskyCast | Weekly Whisky, Scotch, & Bourbon Podcast | Discover Latest News, Tasting Notes, Ratings | Spirits to Drink & Buy
The cask-strength weekly podcast on Bourbon, Scotch, Irish, and Canadian whiskies, along with whiskies from around the world. Listen for the latest whisky news, interviews, tasting notes, and much more!
The Back Stories Behind Picking Private Barrels (WhiskyCast Episode 780: August 11, 2019)Aug 12, 2019 55:05
"Private Selection" bottlings are the rage today, and it almost seems like an arms race as bars and retailers try to outdo each other with their exclusive bottlings. In fact, some whisky collectors now see the "Private Selection" market as the next big thing for so-called "investment grade" bottlings. During the latest Bourbon Salon at Louisville's Oxmoor Farm, host Michael Veach brought together the owners and managers of several highly regarded Bourbon bars to discuss picking private barrels and other topics, and we'll hear some of the stories behind barrel selections from Joe Head of The Century in Dayton, Ohio, Margo McMillen of Bourbons Bistro, and Larry Rice of The Silver Dollar in Louisville. In the news, Pernod Ricard is expanding its U.S. whiskey portfolio with its second distillery acquisition of the year, while Diageo's plans to upgrade visitors centers at many of its distilleries in Scotland got another boost this week. There's a lot of new whiskies to talk about, and a new Gallup Poll shows whisky and other distilled spirits are more popular than ever.
The Uncle Nearest Story: A Timeless Lesson for Modern Times (WhiskyCast Episode 779: August 4, 2019)Aug 4, 2019 56:40
If the story of Nathan "Nearest" Green and Jack Daniel was made into a movie, critics might describe it as "a feel-good story for the ages" or "a story from the past that's still relevant today." History shows "Nearest" Green was the enslaved distiller who not only perfected the "Lincoln County Process" for filtering Tennessee Whiskey, but also taught the young Jack Daniel how to make whiskey - then went to work with him after the Civil War ended and Green became a free man. Next month, Uncle Nearest Whiskey founder Fawn Weaver will open Phase 1 of the Uncle Nearest Distillery in Lynchburg, Tennessee to tell that story, and she'll tell us about it on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the growing potential for a "no-deal" Brexit has Irish Whiskey makers on both sides of the border even more nervous than before. Investors were scared off this week by sluggish earnings for MGP Ingredients, and that raises a question about whether we've reached "Peak Bourbon." We'll also find out the back story behind the "Missouri Bourbon" law, and on Behind the Label, you'll hear how one young distiller started his career with a bang.
Distillers on the Hill (WhiskyCast Episode 778: July 28, 2019)Jul 29, 2019 51:41
It takes a lot to drag distillers away from their stills, but when the stakes are as high as the current debate over extending a federal excise tax cut for craft distillers - that's enough to put them on a plane for Washington. More than 150 distillers from around the country converged on Capitol Hill this week for the annual public policy conference sponsored by the Distilled Spirits Council and the American Craft Spirits Association. It also gave them a chance to put some pressure on their representatives in Congress to extend that tax break currently scheduled to expire at the end of this year. We'll talk with ACSA President Chris Montana of Du Nord Craft Spirits in Minneapolis and several of his colleagues about the politics of making whiskey on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Diageo now faces strike votes by both unions representing workers at its distilleries and bottling plants in Scotland following a breakdown in contract talks. Beam Suntory is reviving an old name for its flagship Jim Beam Distillery in Kentucky as part of a $60 million dollar expansion plan that will include a new craft distillery named for master distiller Fred Noe. We also have a bunch of new whiskies to talk about, and we'll also look at whether it's possible to distill whisky in space on Behind the Label.
Whisky's Man in the Middle (WhiskyCast Episode 777: July 21, 2019)Jul 22, 2019 44:52
Raj Sabharwal doesn't make whiskies, but his role is critical in making sure you get to drink them. He's one of the band of independent importers - the middlemen (and women) who secure the rights from a whisky brand to import their whiskies into the U.S. market. Importers put up their own money to pay for those whiskies and the shipping costs, deal with the government red tape, and then find regional distributors willing to take a chance on getting them into retailers, bars, and restaurants. Sabharwal's Glass Revolution Imports is the single largest customer for Amrut's single malts from India, and he also works with Blackadder, Hammer Head, and other brands to get not only their regular offerings, but exclusive single casks for the U.S. market. We'll talk with him on WhiskyCast In-Depth and find out how proposed changes in federal regulations and the trade war could affect the import business. In the news, Diageo is facing a possible strike in Scotland after two unions rejected the company's latest contract offer. Edinburgh is about to get its first malt whisky distillery in nearly a century, while Bladnoch Distillery will open its new visitors center this week and Glenfiddich unveils a rare bottling to celebrate the 50th anniversary of its visitors center.
Maker's Mark: Bucking Trends for 60 Years (WhiskyCast Episode 776: July 14, 2019)Jul 15, 2019 48:32
60 years ago, Bill and Marge Samuels dipped the first bottles of Maker's Mark Bourbon in Loretto, Kentucky. They left the "e" out of "whisky" and shipped the first cases to Keeneland in Lexington. When Maker's Mark finally decided to start a private barrel program several years ago, Bill Sr. and Marge's grandson Rob decided to put a different spin on the concept and let their customers actually create a unique Bourbon instead of picking from a bunch of cask samples. Keeneland was first in line for a Private Select bottling, too, and we'll get the story behind the program from Jane Bowie of Maker's Mark on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we have the cause - and the effect - of the Jim Beam rickhouse fire in Kentucky earlier this month, and we'll also explain just how whiskey spills near rivers can lead to thousands of dead fish. The Scotch Whisky Association is taking a Virginia distillery to court over its use of the word "Highland" on its labels, and we'll have the details along with tasting notes for two of the offending whiskies.
Whiskey's High Wire Act (WhiskyCast Episode 775: July 7, 2019)Jul 8, 2019 58:46
The husband and wife team of Scott Blackwell and Ann Marshall opened High Wire Distilling six years ago in Charleston, South Carolina to make whiskey, gin, vodka, and an Amaro liqueur. Now, they're turning a corner...literally. They're investing $3 million to move the distillery into a much larger building a few blocks - and around a corner - from their original site, along with adding a second still just for whiskey, an expanded tasting room, and what they're happiest about...a real loading dock! We'll talk with them on WhiskyCast In-Depth. There's enough news to fill a second episode this week! After four days, the fire that destroyed a Jim Beam warehouse with 45,000 barrels of bourbon has finally burned itself out, though the environmental damage to the Kentucky River is still being felt. The trade war between the U.S. and Europe could expand to include punitive tariffs on Scotch and Irish whiskies in a dispute over aviation subsidies, while U.S. regulators are moving forward with a proposal to deregulate most bottle sizes for whiskies and other distilled spirits. There's also a truckload of new whiskies to mention, and we'll have an unusual head-to-head comparison: a whiskey and the beer it was distilled from.
Ten Years with Wyoming Whiskey (WhiskyCast Episode 774: June 30, 2019)Jul 1, 2019 52:48
Wyoming Whiskey is celebrating an anniversary this week. Ten years ago on July 4, 2009, they ran the still for the first time at the Mead family's ranch in Kirby, Wyoming, and Wyoming Whiskey is one of many craft distillers marking their 10th anniversaries this year. We'll talk with co-founder David DeFazio about the lessons of the past and how they're shaping the distillery's future, along with what happens when a Hall of Fame distiller leaves behind a surprise for you to deal with years later. In the news, the U.S. Supreme Court has given retailers who want to sell across state lines a lifeline after decades of states largely banning interstate shipments. We also have plenty of new Bourbons hitting the market just in time for Independence Day, while Chivas Brothers is digging into its warehouses for whiskies from some often-overlooked Scottish distilleries.
New Distillery, Familiar Faces (WhiskyCast Episode 733: June 23, 2019)Jun 24, 2019 55:02
If you're starting a new distillery from scratch, it helps to find some veteran whisky makers to join you on the journey. That's just what Ardgowan Distillery CEO Martin McAdam did when he convinced former Macallan managing director Willie Phillips and Edrington whisky maker Max McFarlane to come out of retirement and join the team behind his fledgling distillery. While final financing is still in the works for the distillery to be built on the Ardgowan Estate on the banks of the River Clyde, McFarlane is already blending Ardgowan's first release for its fall debut - a blended malt to be sold under the Clydebuilt label. We'll talk with Max McFarlane and Martin McAdam on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the owners of Fets Whisky Kitchen in Vancouver will appeal a British Columbia adjudicator's ruling against them in the #FreeOurWhisky case, 18 months after Fets was raided by provincial liquor inspectors for illegally selling Scotch Malt Whisky Society whiskies. Cleanup work is underway at the O.Z. Tyler Distillery in Owensboro, Kentucky following the state's second rickhouse collapse in a year, and we'll look at how rickhouse safety is regulated on Behind the Label.
Pernod Ricard Hops Back Into Kentucky Bourbon (WhiskyCast Episode 772: June 16, 2019)Jun 17, 2019 41:17
Ten years after Pernod Ricard left Kentucky with the sale of Wild Turkey to Gruppo Campari, the world's #2 spirits company is back in the Bluegrass State. Louisville's Rabbit Hole Distillery has agreed to become part of Pernod Ricard, while founder Kaveh Zamanian and his family will retain a significant stake in the distillery and manage it on a day-to-day basis. It's a deal similar to one Pernod Ricard did in 2016 with Smooth Ambler, and we'll talk with Kaveh Zamanian and Pernod Ricard USA's Jeff Agdern on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Kentucky Peerless Distillery is also re-entering the Bourbon business this week - 102 years after selling its last bottle of Bourbon. We'll also have the first details on Ardgowan Distillery's debut release of Clydebuilt Blended Malt planned for this fall in Scotland and much more!
Blackened Whiskey Begins the Next Chapter (WhiskyCast Episode 771: June 9, 2019)Jun 10, 2019 55:01
Rock bands often sound differently after they replace a member, and the members of Metallica considered Master Distiller Dave Pickerell to be part of their family. They collaborated on Blackened American Whiskey until Dave's untimely death last November, and now, Metallica has completed the search for his successor. Rob Dietrich is leaving Stranahan's to join the band's Sweet Amber Distilling Company as the master blender and distiller. We'll talk with Rob on WhiskyCast In-Depth and find out why it's not his first time working with Metallica, too. In the news, U.S. regulators are floating a proposal to remove most of the restrictions on bottle sizes for whiskies and other distilled spirits, and that could open up the market to whiskies not previously available in the U.S. Distilling industry leaders aren't embracing the idea with open arms, while independent bottlers and importers are practically giddy at the possibility. What may be the first Chinese acquisition of a Scotch Whisky company has taken place, with the sale of Loch Lomond Distillers for more than $500 million, and construction has started on another cooperage in Kentucky to help supply the booming demand for Bourbon barrels.
Reviving One of Islay's Legendary Distilleries (WhiskyCast Episode 770: June 2, 2019)Jun 3, 2019 45:46
Construction could begin later this year on Diageo's planned revival of the legendary Port Ellen Distillery on Islay, which was closed in 1983. Only the seaside warehouses and the old kiln building are left, and they'll play a key role in the distillery's future when it opens in 2021 - assuming local officials sign off on planning approval for the project. That application was submitted in mid-May, with a decision expected later this summer. Islay native and former Lagavulin manager Georgie Crawford is the project manager for the Port Ellen revival, and she'll join us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to explain the plans - and how the team tapped into the memories of former Port Ellen workers to help shape those plans. In the news, climate change could be playing a major role in Scotch Whisky's immediate future as distillers and barley farmers deal with the after-effects of last summer's drought. Another dispute between the Trump Administration and Mexico could see tariffs slapped back on American whiskies just days after they were removed, and could North Korea actually be getting into the whisky business?
The Future of Whisky? (WhiskyCast Episode 769: May 26, 2019)May 27, 2019 51:17
This week's episode is certain to arouse the ire of whisky purists. We're looking at Glyph, a "molecular whiskey" that's engineered in a lab instead of a distillery. Alec Lee and his colleagues at Endless West in San Francisco analyzed hundreds of whiskies down to the molecule to isolate specific chemical compounds - then sourced those compounds to blend with grain neutral spirits and a small amount of new make whisky to create Glyph. Technically, it falls under the legal category of a "spirit whisky," but it's already being sold in California and New York alongside traditionally distilled whiskies. Is it a glimpse into the future of whisky or a pale imitation of the real thing? We'll discuss it with Alec Lee on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, American whiskey exports to Canada and Mexico are tariff-free once again, and we'll talk with The Balvenie's David Stewart about the distillery's new Stories range of single malts.
Dingle Whiskey: Oliver's Dream Realized (Episode 768: May 19, 2019)May 20, 2019 52:48
Oliver Hughes and his partners in Ireland's Porterhouse Group opened Dingle Distillery in late 2012, just as the Irish craft distilling boom was beginning. Dingle was Ireland's first new distillery in 25 years since the opening of Cooley Distillery in 1987, but Hughes barely got to see the first early bottlings of Dingle Whiskey before his death in 2016. Today, his family and colleagues have taken Oliver Hughes's dream and are building on it, with the first exports of Dingle's single malt whisky to the United States coming later this year. We'll visit the distillery and talk with some of the people carrying on that mission on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, there's a truce in the trade war between the U.S. and two key trading partners that should mean the end of punitive tariffs on American Whiskey exports. We'll have the details, along with the rest of the week's whisky news and much more.
WhistlePig Rye: Moving On Without the Master (WhiskyCast Episode 767: May 12, 2019)May 12, 2019 51:47
Of all the craft distilleries Dave Pickerell worked with before his sudden death last November, none was more identified with him than Vermont's WhistlePig Rye. He was there at WhistlePig's founding when the first casks of whiskey were acquired from Alberta Distillers more than a decade ago, and trained the team of young distillers and blenders who now carry on his work. Jeff Kozak was around back then, too...but he was the Alberta Distillers executive who sold those casks for the first WhistlePig bottling. Today, he's WhistlePig's CEO, and joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to discuss how his team is moving forward while honoring the legacy Dave Pickerell left behind. In the news, construction is about to begin on Diageo's new Johnnie Walker Experience in downtown Edinburgh now that local officials have signed off on the development plans. We'll also have an update on the #FreeOurWhisky campaign in British Columbia after the owners of Fets Whisky Kitchen in Vancouver had a hearing on charges stemming from a January 2017 raid for selling Scotch Malt Whisky Society whiskies. We'll also remember Amrut Distillery managing director Neel Jagdale, who died this week after a battle with cancer.
Poking the Bourbon Bear (Episode 766: May 5, 2019)May 6, 2019 42:01
Let's face it. When you think of American Whiskey, Bourbon is probably top of mind. After all, Congress declared it "America's Native Spirit" 55 years ago. It wasn't always that way, and people heading to Churchill Downs in Louisville for this year's Kentucky Derby got a reminder of that. Baltimore-based Sagamore Spirit Rye has been trying to build a more complete record of America's distilling history with its "Whiskey Wiki"project, and bought a billboard near Churchill Downs to remind the folks in Bourbon Country that that history began with Rye Whiskey. We'll talk with Sagamore Spirit's Brian Treacy about the billboard and the history project on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Constellation Brands has acquired majority ownership in another craft distillery, while Scotch Whisky's impact on the British economy continues to grow. The Spirit of Speyside Festival honored four Scotch Whisky veterans this week, and there are all sorts of new whiskies to talk about, too!
A New Generation at Michter's (Episode 765: April 28, 2019)Apr 29, 2019 01:01:02
Pam Heilmann's been making Bourbon for her entire career, but it was only in the last three years that she had the title of Master Distiller after she succeeded Willie Pratt at Michter's Distillery in the Louisville suburb of Shively. Now, she's heading into retirement this week, but will have the title of "Master Distiller Emerita" at Michter's while her hand-picked successor, Dan McKee, takes over the day to day responsibility. We'll talk with both of them on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the Bardstown Bourbon Company has put its first whiskey into a bottle. We'll talk with Steve Nally and have tasting notes for it, too. Arran's new Lagg Distillery has started laying down casks of whisky for the future, and we'll have details on new whiskies from Gordon & MacPhail, The Glenlivet, Tamdhu, and more.
Knockin' Around with Knockdhu's Gordon Bruce (Episode 764: April 21, 2019)Apr 22, 2019 43:30
The farming village of Knockdhu has 29 residents, 17 dogs, a bunch of sheep and cattle...and one distillery. Gordon Bruce has called Knockdhu home since 2006 as the manager of Knockdhu Distillery, the home of Inver House's anCnoc single malt Scotch Whisky. We first met Gordon in 2011 during a tour of the distillery, and caught up with him again at the recent Wonderful World of Whisky Show in Cornwall, Ontario - one of his rare trips away from that tiny farming village in Aberdeenshire. You'll hear our conversation on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the University of Kentucky's distilling studies program has a Bourbon benefactor after Beam Suntory donated $5 million to establish the James B. Beam Institute for Distilling Studies. Bushmills has received local approval for a $39 million expansion project that will add a second stillhouse and double the distillery's capacity. We'll also look at the week's new whiskies and much more, along with announcing the winner of our latest WhiskyCast competition!
Good Friends and a Dram of Whisky!Apr 14, 2019 58:56
Lew Bryson and Martin Duffy take their whisky seriously...but not much else! When they joined us at the recent American Whiskey Convention in Philadelphia, the laughter was a perfect complement to serious whisky discussion about the sources of whisky flavor, the growth of craft distilling, and why our discussion was taking place just feet away from valuable Egyptian artifacts in the University of Pennsylvania Museum. OK, that last part wasn't so serious, but it did help Lew explain how he came to meet legendary whisky writer Michael Jackson for the first time at the Penn Museum. We'll also talk with Dick Stoll, the veteran Pennsylvania distiller who made one of the Holy Grails for whiskey lovers...the 16-year-old A.H. Hirsch Reserve Bourbon. In the news, this was a week that won't go down in history at The Macallan, while Craigellachie is bringing a 51-year-old single malt to New York City - and pour it for free! Four Roses has completed its $55 million expansion project in Kentucky, and Woodford Reserve's Chris Morris has to figure out how to get a special barrel down from one of the historic spires at Churchill Downs in time for the Kentucky Derby.
Writing a New Chapter in Whisky HistoryApr 7, 2019 01:07:13
Lindores Abbey has a unique place in whisky history, thanks to Friar John Cor and the aqua vitae he distilled for the King in 1494. Gary Haggart has a direct link to the Friar as the first distillery manager at the Lindores Abbey Distillery, built right next to the ruins of the original abbey. He's even distilling modern-day aqua vitae instead of gin or vodka while the Lindores Abbey single malt matures. During the recent Wonderful World of Whisky show in Cornwall, Ontario, Haggart presented Lindores Abbey's young spirit to consumers for the first time, and we'll talk with him on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We also took our studio setup to Friday night's American Whiskey Convention in Philadelphia to talk with whisky lovers just like you as well as some of the distillers on hand that night. There's a lot to unpack in this episode, so make sure your battery's charged!
A New Tune for Dewar'sMar 31, 2019 59:15
Blending whiskies is both an art and a science, and Dewar's could fairly be accused of focusing more on the science side in recent years with solid, if not innovative whiskies. Master Blender Stephanie Macleod was given the green light to bring back the creativity that helped build the Dewar's legacy, starting with the new "Double Double" range. We'll talk with her about that project and her career on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Bruichladdich is planning an expansion on Islay that will include a new on-site maltings and investments in renewable energy. Balblair is the latest single malt to jettison vintages and return to age statements, and we'll honor two whisky industry veterans who passed away this week.
The Wonderful World of WhiskyMar 24, 2019 48:23
This week, we're on location at the Wonderful World of Whisky Show in Cornwall, Ontario with everything from great whiskies and good friends to a guy dressed from head to toe in clothes made from recycled purple Crown Royal bags! On WhiskyCast In-Depth, we'll talk with John McCheyne, who's been traveling the wonderful world of whisky as the global ambassador for the Scotch Malt Whisky Society and was in Cornwall for this weekend's fun and games. We'll also answer a listener's question about a unique style of barrels on Behind the Label. In the news, there's a short-term delay on Great Britain's exit from the European Union and a likely impact on whisky sales, while more evidence is coming in on the impact of tariffs imposed last year on American whiskies by Canada, the European Union, and other key trading partners. We'll also mourn the death this week of Balcones distillery manager Zack Pilgrim after a sudden stroke at the age of 38.
Irish Whiskey on the Comeback TrailMar 18, 2019 55:13
Irish Whiskey's resurgence is only now beginning to make up for decades of obscurity over the last century, but with 23 active distilleries in Ireland now, things are looking brighter than ever. In fact, there are projections that Irish Whiskey sales in the U.S. could surpass Scotch Whisky sales in the coming years...if Brexit and other political issues don't get in the way. We'll discuss the business side of the comeback with Irish Whiskey Association chairman David Stapleton of Connacht Whiskey Company, and Tim Herlihy will join us to look at the boom in Irish Whiskey culture. The longtime Tullamore D.E.W brand ambassador is one of the authors of the new book "From Barley to Blarney: A Whiskey Lover's Guide to Ireland." He, Sean Muldoon, Jack McGarry, and Conor Kelly traveled throughout Ireland to search out great pubs, visit distilleries, and create a new resource for whiskey lovers visiting Ireland. In the news, Brexit is less than two weeks away, and there's still no solution to the question of the Irish border. We'll also have details on the U.S. arrival of Red Spot, a whiskey writer's switch to making whiskies, and look at how the college admissions bribery scandal could affect the future of one Kentucky distillery.
Whisky Knows No Gender...Why Don't Some Men Get That?Mar 10, 2019 56:39
Women are making whiskies, running whisky companies, and teaching people how to enjoy whiskies all over the world. So...why do many men still treat women as second-class citizens at whisky tastings, bars, and whenever the topic of whisky knowledge comes up? Los Angeles-based freelance brand ambassador Kat Aagesen called out those men for their bad behavior in a column this week for The Whiskey Wash, and her complaints were echoed on social media by women throughout the whisky industry. She'll join us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to explain why "mansplaining" just makes men look foolish - and more importantly - why those men are missing out on a chance to learn something. In the news, investigators are looking for the cause of Barton 1792 Distillery's second accident in a year after a storage tank collapsed and spilled an estimated 120,000 gallons of fermented mash. The Brexit deadline is less than three weeks away, and Scotch Whisky distillers are getting more antsy as the days tick off until March 29. We'll also hear from Suntory Holdings CEO Takeshi Niinami on how much longer the shortages of Japanese whiskies could last, along with a unique collaboration between his whisky makers in Japan and Kentucky.
Living the Whiskey Life in Cascade HollowMar 4, 2019 56:20
Nicole Austin made her mark on the American craft distilling movement at Brooklyn's Kings County Distillery, then spent some time in Ireland working on Tullamore D.E.W's grain distillery project as its commissioning engineer. Last year, she returned to the U.S. - not to another "craft" distillery, but as head distiller and general manager at Diageo's Cascade Hollow distillery in Tennessee. That makes her one of the first craft distillers to join a major whisky company as a distillery manager, though she's pledging to keep "craft" in her job description. We'll talk with Nicole Austin about making the switch, and the one unique thing she asked Diageo for when she was negotiating to take the job. Here's a hint: it didn't involve whiskey. In the news, Nikka is joining Suntory in shaking up its whisky lineup because of supply issues, while also planning a major investment in new warehousing capacity. Bunnahabhain's $14 million refurbishment is underway, and some news reports are claiming an $18 supermarket blended Scotch is the "world's best Scotch whisky." That's not the case, and we'll explain why.
Bourbon...Not Just for the Boys Any More!Feb 25, 2019 50:11
There's a long tradition of fathers and sons in whisky distilling, but Kentucky's Jeptha Creed Distillery is one of the few distilleries where mother and daughter run the show. Joyce Nethery is the head distiller at the family-owned distillery east of Louisville, while Autumn Nethery is both co-owner and in charge of marketing. Joyce's husband Bruce grows all of the grain for their whiskies and other spirits on the family's 1,000 acres of farmland, including the heirloom Bloody Butcher corn that plays a key role in their soon-to-be-released straight Bourbon. We'll meet the Netherys on WhiskyCast In-Depth and taste their new Bourbon, too. In the news, Balcones Distilling is releasing its first permanent Bourbon...a Texas Pot Still Bourbon distilled from roasted blue corn and Texas-grown grain. We'll also have an update on Penderyn's expansion plans in Wales, another distillery opening in Ireland, and much more!
Amazon: Now Delivering Whisky VideosFeb 18, 2019 54:42
Amazon delivers almost everything...even whisky in some places. Now, Amazon Prime Video is delivering content for whisky lovers. We'll talk with the Three Drinkers: Aidy Smith, Helena Nicklin, and Colin Hampden-White, about their new series that's almost like whisky's "Top Gear." If you're more into serious conversation, Fred Minnick's interview series "Bourbon Up" has also made its debut on Amazon Prime. We caught up with Fred at Louisville's Silver Dollar whiskey bar, and this episode was recorded on location at the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience on "Whiskey Row" downtown. In the news, we now have concrete proof that the American whiskey industry is being affected by the trade war, while Scotch Whisky exports reached a new record in 2018. Distell's two-year renovation and upgrade project at Tobermory Distillery is almost complete, while Diageo is moving forward with plans for a new Johnnie Walker Experience visitors center in Edinburgh. We'll also look at the origins of whisky tourism on Behind the Label, and it goes back much farther than you might think!
Whiskey on the Water: Jefferson's JourneyFeb 11, 2019 57:12
Long before highways crossed North America, flatboats with barrels of whiskey were a common sight along the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers bound for New Orleans and beyond to satisfy the thirst of early consumers. Fortunately, today's route to market for distillers is paved and far more efficient - but Jefferson's Bourbon founder Trey Zoeller wanted to figure out what made the whiskey his predecessors distilled in Kentucky become so popular. He decided to send a couple of barrels from Louisville to New York City by boat in what became a year-long journey filled with tropical storms, a wrecked boat, and barrel repairs on the fly - while a batch of the same whiskey stayed behind in the rickhouse to provide a control sample. Both whiskies have now gone on sale, and we'll talk about the journey with Trey Zoeller on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the deadline to avoid another federal government shutdown is approaching, and failure to reach a deal in Washington could cause even more problems for whisky makers. We'll also look at the economic impact of Kentucky's booming Bourbon industry and get an update on record ticket sales for May's Spirit of Speyside Festival in Scotland.
It's Allta 'Bout the Yeast (WhiskyCast Episode 753: February 3, 2019)Feb 4, 2019 39:45
Glenmorangie unveiled its 10th Private Edition release this week in London, and we were there as Allta marked a new style of single malt for Glenmorangie. The barley came from the Cadboll Farm near the distillery, but the big thing is the yeast - which also came from the Cadboll Farm. Dr. Bill Lumsden and his colleagues worked with their yeast supplier to isolate and grow a unique strain of wild yeast from the farm to use in the fermentation for Allta. We'll talk with Lumsden about Allta's origins and share tasting notes for it as well on this episode. In the news, local officials have cleared the way for construction work to begin on the revival of Scotland's Rosebank Distillery, while Diageo has unveiled its proposed design for the revival of Port Ellen Distillery on Islay. We'll also have details on the week's new whiskies, including one that took a journey down the river and up the coast.
A Breakup in the Irish Whiskey BusinessJan 27, 2019 51:50
Even when things appear to be going well, there are sometimes undercurrents of trouble behind the scenes. That played out in Ireland this week after Walsh Whiskey Company and Italy's Illva Saronno Holdings agreed to dissolve their five-year-long joint venture because of disagreements on the company's future. Walsh will keep its Writers' Tears and The Irishman whiskey brands, while Illva Saronno gets the distillery near Carlow. We'll talk with Bernard Walsh about the future of the company that bears his name on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news U.S. Treasury Department employees are returning to work after the tentative end of the federal government's partial shutdown, and they're facing a big backlog of applications for new whisky, spirits, wine and beer labels that piled up during the shutdown. We'll also have details on the long-awaited opening of Michter's new Fort Nelson micro distillery and visitors center on Louisville's Whiskey Row and the rest of the week's news, too.
British Columbia's Whisky Controversy Enters Year Two (WhiskyCast Episode 751: January 20, 2019)Jan 21, 2019 43:37
In our second of two episodes from this week's Victoria Whisky Festival in Victoria, British Columbia, we'll talk with Eric and Allura Fergie of Fets Whisky Kitchen in Vancouver. Fets was one of four Scotch Malt Whisky Society partner bars in British Columbia raided by the province's liquor inspectors a year ago Friday. The Fergies had 242 bottles of SMWS whiskies valued at $40,000 seized because they came from privately-owned liquor stores in BC instead of government-owned stores. While the other three bars settled their cases for small fines, the Fergies are challenging the legality of the raids and have a hearing set for this May. They received support this week from Canada's Competition Bureau, which called on British Columbia officials to change what it terms an "anti-competitive" policy. We'll also have details on the week's new whisky releases, check on the latest distillery updates, and taste four single malts from Scotland in this special episode from the Victoria Whisky Festival.
On the Road at the 2019 Victoria Whisky FestivalJan 19, 2019 53:36
This is the first of our two episodes from the 14th annual Victoria Whisky Festival in Victoria, British Columbia. One of the highlights of the festival each year is the Canadian Whisky Awards, and Forty Creek returned to the top of the podium this year for the first time in five years with a new 22-year-old Canadian Rye whisky. We'll have the details on that and other award winners in the news, and we'll also look at the debate over the impact of terroir in whisky. Vancouver Island's Shelter Point Distillery won the Award for Innovation for its whisky distilled from 100% unmalted barley whisky grown on the distillery's own farm. That's just one example, and Ireland's Waterford Distillery is taking terroir to the other extreme with barley from more than 40 local farms being malted, distilled, and matured separately to maximize the impact of terroir. We'll discuss the findings of new scientific research on Waterford's barley with founder Mark Reynier on WhiskyCast In-Depth.
Your Tax Dollars...Not at Work! (WhiskyCast Episode 749: January 13, 2019)Jan 14, 2019 44:45
The partial shutdown of the U.S. federal government is now the longest on record, and it is having an impact on the whisky business. Two whisky makers have whiskies ready to release in the U.S., but Jim Hough of Liberty Pole Spirits in Pennsylvania and Louise McGuane of Ireland's Chapel Gate Whiskey Company are stuck because their federally mandated label approvals are being held in limbo until the shutdown ends. It's a problem that is affecting a growing number of whisky makers, and we'll have the story on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Islay's newest distillery is days away from going into production, while Suntory is creating what may well be the first whisky blend spanning five countries for the Japanese market. The coming Lunar New Year is also bringing with it new whiskies, and a new study shows legalized cannabis sales may not be cannibalizing liquor sales as much as analysts feared.
Think You Know Bourbon? Here's a Chance to Prove It!Jan 6, 2019 39:52
There are plenty of competitions to find the best whiskies, but what about competitions to find the best whisky tasters? Those are few and far between, but The Big Blind Bourbon Taste-Off will give whisky lovers a chance to test their skills later this month in Lexington, Kentucky. The winner gets $2,000 in cash, a barrel head trophy, and most of all...bragging rights. Daniel Marlowe of Lexington's Whiskey Bear bar is one of the organizers, and we'll discuss the competition on WhiskyCast In-Depth. There's also a discount code in the podcast if you're thinking of entering the competition. In the news, Sazerac continues its acquisition binge as it ups its stake in India's John Distilleries, while Diageo's distillery expansion plans in Scotland are working their way through the approval process along with Islay's latest distillery project. The New Year also brings a handful of new whiskies, and we'll share some of your New Year's drams on Your Voice.
About to Buy a Rare Whisky? It Could Be a Fake!Dec 30, 2018 49:26
2018 may go down in whisky history as the "Year of the Collector" as whisky collecting became popular not only among connoisseurs, but with investors looking for that next big thing to make money on. The trouble is that some so-called "rare whiskies" are cleverly counterfeited fakes so good that even the experts can't detect them without testing the liquid inside the bottle. A new report from the Scottish consulting firm Rare Whisky 101 suggests that there are likely millions of dollars worth of fake whiskies being traded on the secondary market worldwide. Professor Gordon Cook heads the radiocarbon dating lab at the Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre, and among the fakes he's found for Rare Whisky 101 was a single malt claimed to be from the 1860's that was actually distilled in 2005. He'll explain the radiocarbon dating process to us on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the partial shutdown of the U.S. government could start to affect whisky makers within days as 2019 begins, while the arrival of the New Year brings the nation's toughest drunk driving law to one state. We'll also look at Bruichladdich's new "Islay: Badge or Provenance" campaign, and on Your Voice, we'll share some of your picks for drams to send off 2018 and ring in 2019.
Talking Whiskey with the British Bourbon SocietyDec 23, 2018 56:31
One sign of the Bourbon boom worldwide can be found in Great Britain, where the British Bourbon Society was founded in 2016 by six whisky lovers. As 2018 comes to a close, the Society's membership now stands at 2,000 and growing. We'll talk with two of the founders, Ed Rosie and Andrew Watson, on WhiskyCast In-Depth to find out why Bourbon and other American whiskies are becoming so popular in Great Britain even as recent import tariffs make them more expensive. In the news, Edrington has found a buyer for its Glenturret Distillery in Scotland, while Ian Macleod Distillers is waiting for final approval to start construction work on the revival of Rosebank Distillery. Ireland's national planning board has overruled local objections to a planned maturation warehouse complex in County Westmeath, and we'll hear from a U.S. cooperage owner who's not pleased with the federal government's proposed definition for whisky barrels.
Reviving the Historic Chicken Cock Whiskey BrandDec 17, 2018 58:01
While some entrepreneurs are trying to cash in on the Bourbon boom by starting new whiskey brands, others are looking to history for heritage brands that built a history but faded away over the years. That's the approach Manti Antilla of Grain and Barrel Spirits took, and it led him to Chicken Cock, a brand with a unique name and a century's worth of history to build on. He's now working with Kentucky's Bardstown Bourbon Company to lay down stocks for future Chicken Cock whiskies, while releasing four bottlings over the last year using whiskies sourced from another distillery. We'll talk with him about the work involved in reviving a heritage brand on WhiskyCast In-Depth and taste the Chicken Cock 10-Year-Old Double Barrel Bourbon. In the news, Diageo plans to invest $130 million to build another new distillery in Kentucky, while American Single Malt supporters are disappointed that their proposal for an official standard didn't make it into proposed changes in federal regulations. We'll also talk with Fred Noe about the new 30th Anniversary edition of Booker's Bourbon and the arrival of a new "Baby Booker" just in time for the holidays.
Irish Whiskey's Ups & Downs in 2018Dec 9, 2018 53:09
Irish Whiskey continues to be one of the fastest-growing segments of the whisky business around the world, but Ireland's distilleries on both sides of the border have had their share of ups and downs this year. Walsh Whiskey Company founder Bernard Walsh is a former chairman of the Irish Whiskey Association, and on WhiskyCast In-Depth, we'll talk with him about the boom in new distilleries and challenges presented by Brexit and Ireland's controversial new public health legislation. In the news, we'll have details on another executive change in Scotland, while a former consultant now finds herself running the distillery she was hired to consult for. We'll also have details on a breakup that will affect whisky festivals during 2019 in many major U.S. cities, along with a court hearing that could send former Indian whisky baron Vijay Mallya back home to face fraud and money laundering charges. On Behind the Label, we'll find out what happened when a whisky lover won a contest to help create this year's Forty Creek Unity whisky, and we'll have tasting notes for it, too!
WhiskyFest Hits New York CityDec 7, 2018 01:05:48
Whisky Advocate's annual WhiskyFest took over the Marriott Marquis in New York City's Times Square Tuesday night, and we'll have some of the highlights along with the sadness. There was a pall in one corner the ballroom as whisky lovers mourned the death of master distiller Dave Pickerell last month along with teams from several of the whiskies he helped create during his long career. We'll talk with one of Dave's protegés, Hillrock Estate's Dylan Strang, about the distillery's plans to move forward using the lessons he and his colleagues learned from their friend and mentor. In our Behind the Label segment, we'll have an interview you can only hear on WhiskyCast as we talk with artist Michael Dillon, the painter who created the one-of-a-kind label for the 1926 Macallan that shattered the world record for a whisky auction last week in London. In the news, we'll have the details of the U.S. Treasury Department's plan to rewrite federal alcohol regulations for the first time in more than three decades - and some of the agency's proposals have craft distillers nervous.
Whiskey & Music with Three Chord Bourbon's Neil GiraldoDec 2, 2018 51:31
Neil Giraldo is one of music's "hit makers." As a musician and producer, he's worked with some of rock music's legendary performers to create the soundtrack to our lives since the late 70's. While he's not the first musician to create a whiskey brand, he comes to the whiskey business with more than just a name. He helped his grandfather distill whiskey and grappa as a young boy growing up in Cleveland, and tells us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth that there's a lot in common between producing a hit song and blending a hit whiskey. We'll also have the story of a new world record for the most expensive bottle of whisky, along with new ownership for Cutty Sark, the week's new whiskies, and much more.
The Power(s) of Irish Whiskey LoreNov 26, 2018 43:53
Ireland's Power family dominated the Irish Whiskey industry almost from the day innkeeper James Power started making whiskey behind his inn on Dublin's Thomas Street in 1791 until his descendants merged their company with the Jamesons and Cork's Murphy family in 1965 to create Irish Distillers. Powers remains one of Ireland's best-selling whiskies to this day, and is gradually being reintroduced to the world - while its history is being reintroduced to Dubliners through the Powers Quarter. It's a network of pubs around the family's old Johns Lane Distillery, which is now home to Ireland's National College of Art & Design. We'll look at that history and the Powers Quarter on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, a tentative Brexit deal between Great Britain and the European Union still faces tough challenges, but is receiving support from the whisky industry. A distillery project in Northern Ireland is being scrapped a year after construction began, and a bankruptcy filing in the US could be a sign of tough times ahead for craft distillers.
Pour Me a Spot of Whiskey!Nov 18, 2018 45:06
Back on the road again, and this episode comes from the New Brunswick Spirits Festival in Fredericton, New Brunswick! We'll have highlights from the festival, which is now in its 23rd year, and on WhiskyCast In-Depth, we'll get the story behind the revival of Red Spot Irish Whiskey. This single pot still classic from Dublin's Mitchell & Son disappeared in the mid-1960's, and the pleas of Irish Whiskey fans were answered this week when Irish Distillers and the Mitchell family launched the modern version of Red Spot. We'll also have tasting notes for a rare Ladyburn single malt and explain just what "Christmas Cake" has to do with whisky on Behind the Label.
Celebrating 13 Years of WhiskyCast!Nov 12, 2018 54:01
This episode marks our 13th anniversary of the very first WhiskyCast episode on November 12, 2005, and we're celebrating with an old friend! Ian Buxton has been around the whisky industry for nearly 40 years, first as a marketing executive and now as a writer. He's responsible for reviving Aeneas MacDonald's classic book "Whisky" and sharing it with a new generation of whisky lovers, and his "101 Spirits to Try Before You Die" series of books has recently grown to include gins and rums along with whiskies. You'll hear our conversation on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also have details on the public memorial service next week in Louisville for Master Distiller Dave Pickerell along with the rest of the week's news, and we'll have a new answer on the origins of the duty-free whisky business.
Farewell To a Whisky MakerNov 4, 2018 59:04
This time around, we're on the road in Kilkenny, Ireland, but with heavy hearts. The whisky world lost one of its leaders Thursday night with the death of Master Distiller Dave Pickerell in San Francisco. Dave was truly deserving of the Master Distiller title. After leaving Maker's Mark in 2008, he helped dozens of craft distillers and entrepreneurs get into the whisky business, earning him the nickname of craft distilling's Johnny Appleseed. We'll honor his legacy in this episode, while also looking at the local whiskey scene in Kilkenny. Nine whiskey bars and one retailer make up the Kilkenny Whiskey Guild, and are working together to make Kilkenny a destination for whiskey lovers visiting Ireland.
To Whisky...and Beyond!Nov 2, 2018 43:38
This time around, we're blasting off with the crew of the USS Starward! OK, we're talking with David Vitale, the founder of Australia's Starward Distillery, and his whiskies have a certain Space Age look to them. Vitale founded his distillery in a former Quantas hangar at Melbourne's airport, so the flight analogy's not that far off, either. You'll hear that conversation during WhiskyCast In-Depth, and in the news, Britain's Chancellor gave the Scotch Whisky industry a pleasant surprise during Monday's Budget Address in Parliament by extending the current freeze on whisky and spirits taxes. We'll have that story and much more, including an update on a Hockey Hall of Fame member's second career in the whisky business.
Legends & Luxury in the Whisky WorldOct 29, 2018 53:13
Many whisky lovers consider the "water of life" to be a regular part of their lives, but there's no arguing that whiskies are becoming as much of a luxury item as fine watches, artwork, wines, and other rarities. That's the world James Espey and Tom Jago entered with their final act in the whisky business eleven years ago when they formed The Last Drop Distillers after collaborating on too many iconic whisky brands to count. Today, their daughters run the business after it was sold to Sazerac last year, and just days after Tom Jago's death earlier this month, his daughter Rebecca Jago took center stage with The Last Drop at this week's Walpole showcase of British luxury goods. We'll talk with her on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and we'll also catch up with Louise McGuane of Ireland's Chapel Gate Whiskey Company fresh off a win in the Irish Whiskey Awards for her J.J. Corry Flintlock single malt.
Just Call Him "Mr. Bourbon"Oct 25, 2018 49:08
Kentucky's Four Roses Bourbon is marking its 130th anniversary this year, and while Al Young hasn't been there the whole time...he comes closer than just about anyone else. Last year, he celebrated his 50th anniversary with Four Roses dating well back to the brand's days under Seagram's ownership, and he's one of only three people to have a Four Roses bottling named for him. In fact, Four Roses fan Ryan McLaughlin surprised Al Wednesday night at an event in Philadelphia by bringing two bottles of that 50th anniversary bottling - one for Al to sign, and the other for them to share a glass. We'll talk with Al Young about his five-plus decades in the Bourbon business on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the Brexit battle has politicians and distillers looking at the prospect of Great Britain leaving the European Union in a "no deal" departure. We'll also have more details on the $174 million Irish Distillers expansion at Midleton, along with the arrival of this year's Northern Border Collection special Canadian whiskies and a new series of J.P. Wiser's whiskies designed to go with ice...ice hockey, that is!
A Critical Time for the Scotch Whisky IndustryOct 22, 2018 43:27
You might think this would be a great time to be in the Scotch Whisky business, right? This week, the Scotch Whisky Association released a new report showing global exports grew almost 11 percent during the first half of the year on a pace that could break 2017's record year for exports. However, this week also saw yet another failed attempt to resolve the Brexit stalemate between the UK and the European Union, which accounts for around a third of all Scotch Whisky exports. What's more, next Monday could see British taxes on whisky and other spirits rise in Chancellor Philip Hammond's new budget despite industry pleas to keep duties frozen for a second straight year. We'll discuss the good, the bad, and the even worse with Graeme Littlejohn of the Scotch Whisky Association on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the waters near one Speyside distillery could be home to salmon and sea trout again soon, while construction is nearing completion on another Whiskey Row project in Louisville. On Behind the Label, we'll answer the question: when is an Irish Whiskey distilled in pot stills not a Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey, and we'll also have the week's tasting notes and much more.
On the Road at The Great American Whiskey FairOct 19, 2018 55:51
This time around, we're in Columbia, South Carolina for The Great American Whiskey Fair. We'll talk with local distillers creating unique whiskies with local grains, and we'll also look at a global issue: the potential impact of climate change on the whisky industry. Researchers have been looking at the impact of global warming on barley production for beer, but they also see a serious problem for whisky distillers, too. In the news, Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard is planning another expansion at Midleton Distillery and the rest of its facilities in Ireland to meet projected demand, and we'll have the latest on new whiskies and executive changes, along with a tribute to one of whisky's quiet giants.
Back Home on Whiskey Row After 99 YearsOct 15, 2018 57:38
Old Forester released its final edition in the Whiskey Row series of limited-edition Bourbons this week, and the 1910 Old Fine Whiskey honors the brand's return to its historical home. Brown-Forman's $45 million Old Forester Distillery opened in June on Main Street in downtown Louisville on the same site where the company was located from 1882 until Prohibition began in 1919. We toured the distillery just as that final Whiskey Row edition was being bottled, and you'll hear it on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, $843,200 is a high price to pay for a rare whisky, but that high bid Saturday at Sotheby's fell short of the world record by more than a quarter of a million dollars. We'll also have details on an upcoming Supreme Court case that could affect interstate whisky shipments and details on the latest new whiskies.
Bourbon & Cuisine in Louisville’s ButchertownOct 12, 2018 41:35
Louisville's Butchertown got its name from the stockyards and meat processing plants that dominated the neighborhood a century or more ago. Today, it's a thriving, trendy neighborhood that's home to the Butchertown Grocery. Chef Bobby Benjamin opened the restaurant and Lola, its upstairs cocktail lounge, with an eye to great cooking - and great whiskey. Not only are there plenty of private barrel Bourbons behind the bar, but whiskey is also a key ingredient in many of the restaurant's recipes. Chef Bobby Benjamin joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to talk about picking private barrels - and a surprising way to use the char that comes out of those barrels! In the news, Diageo's plans for reviving Brora Distillery have received local approval, while Ireland's tough new alcohol bill is a signature away from becoming law.
The Godfather of Rye WhiskeyOct 7, 2018 52:31
The largest single distiller of Rye Whiskey isn't in Kentucky, but just along the other side of the Ohio River in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. For nearly 40 years, Larry Ebersold distilled Rye - and other whiskies - in what is now known as the MGP Distillery. Under the Seagram's banner and later LDI, Larry made whiskies that were blended into some of the world's top selling whiskey brands, and today, MGP is bottling some of the final whiskies Larry distilled into its own brands. Today, he's consulting for distillery startups like New Riff and Sagamore Spirit, and he'll share some of his stories with us on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also talk with current MGP Master Distiller David Whitmer about why warehouse construction has as much to do with climate in how whiskies mature on Behind the Label. In the news, Canada and Mexico will keep their tariffs on American whiskies in place despite a new trade deal between the three countries, while Irish lawmakers have given the green light to stricter limits on alcohol sales. We'll also have details on a bunch of new whiskies, too!
Creating a More Diverse Whisky Community (WhiskyCast Episode 729: September 30, 2018)Oct 1, 2018 40:49
Let's be honest for a moment. Look around the crowd at most whisky events, and if you're being honest with yourself, you'll notice that there's usually a pretty obvious lack of diversity in the room. Samara Rivers is trying to change that with the Black Bourbon Society, a group she created two years ago to bring African-American whisky lovers together through regional tastings and an active social media presence. Her society has been welcomed by the Bourbon industry, and her ultimate goal is to bring more people of color into that industry as well. We'll talk with Samara on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Kentucky's barrel warehouses are holding more Bourbon now than they have in nearly 50 years, but believe it or not, that's actually creating a tax problem for the Commonwealth's distillers. Also, now that Dave Pickerell and the members of Metallica have unveiled their new Blackened American Whiskey, plans are moving forward on construction of a new distillery - and we'll have the latest in a story you'll only hear on this episode of WhiskyCast!
Her Whisky Love Becomes a Career (WhiskyCast Episode 728: September 27, 2018)Sep 28, 2018 54:55
In 2016, Holly Seidewand started a journey that would change her life by traveling to Scotland to learn more about whisky. That journey later took her to Japan and Australia, and it continues today - only as a whisky professional. Earlier this year, she joined Bacardi as the US brand ambassador for the John Dewar & Sons range of single malts from Scotland. She'll share her journey with us on WhiskyCast In-Depth, including the story of a distillery manager who helped her earn her certificate in brewing and distilling from Heriot-Watt University in Scotland by putting her to work. In the news, Brexit is six months away and there's growing tension within the whisky industry over the impact of Great Britain's departure from the European Union. We'll have that story, along with a look at the state of the US craft distilling industry and this weekend's preview of rare whiskies that will go on the virtual auction block next month.
On the Road at Louisville's Bourbon & Beyond (WhiskyCast Episode 727: September 23, 2018)Sep 23, 2018 01:04:25
Severe weather forced Louisville's annual Bourbon & Beyond music, food, and whiskey festival to end a day earlier than planned, but the heavy rains didn't dampen spirits on Saturday. We'll have highlights from the festival and talk with one of the newest members of the Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame on WhiskyCast In-Depth. Freddie Johnson is the third generation of his family to work at what's now Buffalo Trace Distillery, but their history at the distillery goes back more than 100 years with a legacy that combines family, history, race, and Bourbon. In the news, the Four Roses strike is over after the distillery and its three unions reached a tentative agreement on Friday. We'll have that story and the rest of the week's whisky news, and since we're at a music and whiskey festival, Dave Pickerell will explain the science behind using Metallica's music to shape their new collaboration.
Unlocking the Gates at Kentucky's Castle & Key Distillery (WhiskyCast Episode 726: September 20, 2018)Sep 20, 2018 48:31
In 1972, the gates were locked for what many thought would be the final time at Kentucky's historic Old Taylor Distillery near Frankfort. Wednesday, those gates opened to the public for the first time in nearly half a century at what is now Castle & Key Distillery following a massive four-year-long restoration project to reclaim the distillery and its warehouses, sunken gardens, springhouse, and more from nature's relentless onslaught. Castle & Key's Marianne Eaves has been there for almost the entire time, and joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, there's a big shakeup affecting master distillers at three of Kentucky's major distilleries, and contract talks will resume Friday in the two-week-old strike by Four Roses workers. We'll also have the details on a new Irish Whiskey that packs a punch - or at least the fighter-turned-entrepreneur behind it does.
The Speed Art Museum's "Art of Bourbon" Auction (WhiskyCast Episode 725: September 16, 2018)Sep 16, 2018 41:41
Bourbon & Beyond gets underway this Friday night in Louisville with a charity Bourbon auction to benefit the Speed Art Museum. The whiskies going up for bids include one of the original Pappy Van Winkle 23-year-old Bourbons - the 10th one ever filled - along with other historic whiskies and one-of-a-kind whiskey experiences. We'll talk with Speed Art Museum director Stephen Reily about the auction and the educational programs that will benefit from it during WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, there's still no resolution to the Four Roses Distillery strike in Kentucky, and negotiations aren't scheduled to resume until the end of this week. The Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame has inducted three new members and presented this year's Parker Beam Lifetime Achievement Award, and if you think MMA champion Conor McGregor gets mad in the Octagon...just think how mad he might get by losing a trademark fight outside of the ring.
Go West, Whisky Investor...Westward, That Is (WhiskyCast Episode 724: September 13, 2018)Sep 13, 2018 48:04
Portland's Westward American Single Malt from House Spirits is the latest prize in the spree of acquisitions and investments by major spirits brands in emerging brands. House Spirits announced Wednesday that Diageo's in-house venture capital unit, Distill Ventures, has acquired a minority stake in Westward as its first public investment in a North American spirits brand. Distill Ventures already holds stakes in Denmark's Stauning Whisky and Starward Whisky from Australia as part of its portfolio. House Spirits CEO and Westward co-founder Tom Mooney joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth for his first interview since the announcement. In the news, the Kentucky Bourbon Festival is underway with a looming possibility of fallout from the strike by union workers at Four Roses Distillery. Union leaders plan to have a presence at Bardstown's biggest party of the year, and we'll have all the details. There's also an update on some of the week's new whiskies, including the final whisky in Diageo's 2018 Special Releases Series, and we'll honor one of Bourbon's first families as they celebrate a century of service.
The High Plains and the Highlands Come Together (WhiskyCast Episode 723: September 9, 2018)Sep 10, 2018 59:55
Like most romances, Wyoming Whiskey and Edrington had plenty of potential partners trolling around. Neither one needed a partner, until they found each other and formed what Edrington Americas CEO Chris Spalding calls "a match made in Heaven." The strategic partnership announced this week will see Edrington take on sales, distribution, and marketing for Wyoming Whiskey. The distillery's founders will continue to make the whiskey, and the deal gives them expanded distribution while giving Edrington a foothold in the Bourbon business. We'll break down the deal with Chris Spalding and Wyoming Whiskey co-founder David DeFazio on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, workers at Kentucky's Four Roses Distillery have gone on strike just days before the start of the Kentucky Bourbon Festival, which draws thousands of whiskey lovers to the state's distilleries. Union leaders are pledging to protest the lack of a new contract at the festival if no agreement is reached this week. We'll have an update on Dave Pickerell's new whiskey project with Metallica, along with details on this year's Diageo Special Releases and much more.
Virginia: A Place for Whiskey Lovers (WhiskyCast Episode 722: September 2, 2018)Sep 2, 2018 40:52
Virginia's distilling history dates back to at least 1620, and while many whiskey lovers know about George Washington's Distillery at Mount Vernon, it's just one of the state's 70 distilleries making everything from rum and vodka to single malt whiskies. September is Virginia Spirits Month, and we'll visit some of those distilleries and find out more about what's shaping up to be a model partnership between the state and its craft distillers on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the impact of tariffs on American whiskey exports is forcing Brown-Forman to revise its profit estimates - and raise prices, while Pernod Ricard is projecting an increase in profits for its fiscal year. We'll have details on those stories and more, including the week's new whiskies and an honor for one of Australia's leading distillers.
Bourbon Keeps Him Busy...Really! (WhiskyCast Episode 721: August 26, 2018)Aug 26, 2018 01:02:05
If Fred Minnick had any more balls in the air right now, the circus would be calling him with a job offer as a juggler. He's launching the new Bourbon+ Magazine as its founding editor-in-chief, curating the Bourbon events for next month's Bourbon and Beyond Festival in Louisville, and his book publisher has just commissioned a second edition of his award-winning book "Bourbon Curious." If that's not enough, he and his wife Jaclyn are a few weeks away from having their second child. We got Fred to relax for a few minutes on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Heaven Hill has filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against Bob Dylan's new Heaven's Door whiskies. Scottish officials are taking the next step in reviving distilling at the historic Dallas Dhu Distillery in Speyside while keeping it open as a museum, and the hot summer could mean tighter supplies of barley for distillers.
Doubling Distilleries on the Isle of Arran (WhiskyCast Episode 720: August 19, 2018)Aug 19, 2018 43:43
It's been a hot, dry summer in Scotland, and Euan Mitchell isn't complaining a bit. The managing director of Isle of Arran Distillers is overseeing construction of a second distillery at Lagg on the island's southern coast, and the weather is allowing work to be completed right on schedule. Lagg's stills are scheduled to arrive on the island this week, and plans are still in place for the distillery to begin production in January. We'll catch up on Lagg's progress and changes at Arran with Euan Mitchell on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, whisky auctions Friday brought out bidders in Scotland and Hong Kong, with one rare Japanese single malt selling for more than $340,000! We'll also have details on a rare traffic jam in Speyside as would-be collectors jammed the gates at The Macallan hours before a rare single malt went on sale at the distillery.
Whiskey on the Willamette (WhiskyCast Episode 719: August 12, 2018)Aug 12, 2018 45:50
This week, we'll visit House Spirits Distillery - part of Portland's "Distillery Row" along the eastern banks of the Willamette River. House Spirits is the home of Westward American Single Malt Whiskey, and head distiller Miles Munroe will take us on a tour of the distillery during WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also talk with Jeneen Bell, the president of Portland's 300-member Women Who Whiskey chapter, about what makes Portland a good place to drink. In the news, cleanup work is slowly progressing at Kentucky's Barton 1792 Distillery following the recent rickhouse collapse, but it could take months to work through a massive pile of around 18,000 whiskey barrels. Templeton Rye has opened its $35 million distillery in Iowa, and we'll have the latest on new whiskies from Scotland and Kentucky, too.
Jeff Arnett: 10 Years as Master Distiller at Jack Daniel's (WhiskyCast Episode 718: August 5, 2018)Aug 5, 2018 45:46
Jeff Arnett became the Master Distiller for Jack Daniel's in 2008, joining a small club of distillers that began with Jack Daniel and Nathan "Nearest" Green in 1866. In his first decade on the job, he's created more new Jack Daniel's whiskies than all of his predecessors combined, while also traveling the world as the brand's chief ambassador. We'll talk with Jeff Arnett about that decade and his plans for the future on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, community activists in Northern Ireland are trying to scuttle part of the expansion plan for Bushmills, while Wild Turkey's team is scrambling to meet unexpected demand for one of their newest whiskies.
Building a Showcase for Bourbon History (WhiskyCast Episode 717: August 2, 2018)Aug 3, 2018 01:00:38
Construction workers are racing the clock to complete work at Louisville's Frazier History Museum by the end of this month, when the new "Spirit of Kentucky" Bourbon history exhibit and the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Welcome Center are scheduled to open. Both represent a multi-million dollar investment in Bourbon tourism on Louisville's Whiskey Row, and we'll take a "hard hat" tour with the Frazier's Andy Treinen on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, 2017 was another record year for Scotch Whisky tourism, and a new whisky trail is giving tourists a taste of the Hebrides. We'll also have details on new whiskies from Jack Daniel's, Highland Park, Johnnie Walker, and the revival of Fettercairn with a new range of single malts.
Trade Disputes Lead to a "Whisky Summit" in Louisville (WhiskyCast Episode 716: July 29, 2018)Jul 30, 2018 43:43
Global trade has helped the whisky industry expand massively over the last two decades. With the ongoing trade dispute between the US and its key trading partners threatening that growth, the world's nine major whisky trade associations held their first-ever "W9 Summit" this week in Louisville. WhiskyCast was in Louisville for the summit, and we'll have complete coverage on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll have details on the week's new whiskies from Glenfiddich, Johnnie Walker, Mortlach, Highland Park, and more - along with the week's tasting notes and in our "Behind the Label" segment, we'll look at how a whisky maker crafts a new range of single malts.
On the Road at Tales of the Cocktail (WhiskyCast Episode 715: July 22, 2018)Jul 23, 2018 39:41
This time around, we're in New Orleans for Tales of the Cocktail, the annual gathering of bartenders and drinks industry leaders for a week of education and entertainment. Think of this year's version as Tales 2.0, though. There's a completely new management team in place following some troubled times for the conference in the past 18 months, and the Tales of the Cocktail Foundation has been formed to create a long-term impact on the industry. This week, they started by awarding $250,000 in grants to fund projects aimed at improving diversity and educational opportunities for the hospitality community. We'll talk with the foundation's executive director, Caroline Rosen, on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and have a lot of highlights from the week as well. In the news, the global trade war is bringing whisky industry leaders together for their first-ever summit in Louisville this coming week. We'll have a preview and talk with one distiller who's braving Europe's new tariffs on American whiskies to start exporting for the first time.
Bringing Distilling Back to Lexington's Distillery District (WhiskyCast Episode 714: July 15, 2018)Jul 16, 2018 31:19
The James E. Pepper Distillery dominated the western edge of downtown Lexington, Kentucky for decades until it closed in 1958, and what was at one time the country's largest Bourbon distillery became a rundown eyesore. Several years ago, entrepreneurs bought several of the distillery's buildings and started building bars, a brewery, galleries and other businesses in the "Distillery District." Last December, Amir Peay's Georgetown Trading Co. brought distilling back to the district when he reopened the James E. Pepper Distillery using part of the original distillery building. This week, the distillery opened its doors to visitors for the first time to show off the heritage - and the future of the Pepper brand. Amir Peay joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also have details on Sazerac's Tennessee Whiskey plans, along with the opening next month of Stauning Whisky's new distillery in Denmark and much more!
Parker's Heritage Collection Takes a Twist (WhiskyCast Episode 713: July 12, 2018)Jul 13, 2018 37:12
Heaven Hill has unveiled the 2018 edition of Parker's Heritage Collection whiskey. It's a Bourbon finished in Orange Curaçao liqueur barrels, and that has some purists raising an eyebrow. Heaven Hill Master Distiller Denny Potter joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to explain - and defend the process that went into creating this year's release as a chance to try something different...the way Parker Beam would have. In the news, Western Kentucky is getting a new whiskey distillery that's actually an old one about to be used for the first time, while Angel's Envy in Louisville is starting an expansion project just two years after the distillery opened. We'll also explain why liquor reform in British Columbia will have to wait until after cannabis reform, and taste four craft whiskies in this week's tasting notes.
A New Riff on Distilling (WhiskyCast Episode 712: July 8, 2018)Jul 9, 2018 47:47
Ken Lewis has accomplished a lot of things in his life, from climbing Alaska's Denali to owning one of Kentucky's largest chains of liquor stores. Four years ago, he sold The Party Source stores to his employees and opened New Riff Distilling in Newport, Kentucky to start making whiskey instead of selling it. At the end of this month, the first New Riff Bourbon will go on sale - a four-year-old Bottled in Bond Bourbon. We'll talk with Ken about his disruptive approach to life and whiskey on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the cleanup project at Kentucky's Barton 1792 Distillery has doubled after the second half of a rickhouse collapsed on Wednesday, China's new tariffs on American Whiskey exports have gone into effect, and there are plenty of new whiskies to talk about, too!
The Great Islay Swim (WhiskyCast Episode 711: July 1, 2018)Jul 2, 2018 50:46
The rough, cold waters off Scotland's Isle of Islay are a challenge for even the best sailors, and one might think it madness to try and swim around the island. A year ago, three men did just that and collected whiskies from each of Islay's eight distilleries along their journey in the "Great Islay Swim." Veteran explorers Justin Fornal and Chad Anderson were joined by Beam Suntory brand ambassador Johnnie Mundell, who brought his own open-water swimming background and his connections on Islay to the challenge. We'll talk with Johnnie Mundell about his life-changing experience on WhiskyCast In-Depth and taste the whisky that's been bottled from that challenge and is being sold to raise money for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution. In the news, the ringleader of Kentucky's "Pappygate" thefts has been released on shock probation after serving just 30 days of his 15-year prison sentence, while a judge's ruling is all that remains before the stolen whiskey seized as evidence in the case can be destroyed. Meanwhile, the Scotch Malt Whisky Society whiskies seized from four British Columbia bars last January are still locked up as evidence, but a provincial review panel has recommended policy changes that might lead to those whiskies being returned to the shelves. We'll have that story, along with details on the week's new whisky releases and as summer temperatures soar, we'll have tasting notes for a whiskey-flavored ice cream to beat the heat!
Beetles and Bourbon Rickhouses Don't Mix (WhiskyCast Episode 710: June 28, 2018)Jun 29, 2018 46:32
While the cause of last Friday's warehouse collapse at Kentucky's Barton 1792 Distillery is still not known, the whiskey industry has known for years about the problems so-called "powderpost" beetles can cause in a rickhouse. Anobiid beetles dig deeply into old, untreated wood as larvae, then chew their way out as adults, and are capable of weakening the structural integrity of a wooden structure over many years. University of Kentucky entomology professor Michael Potter is an expert on these beetles, and has worked with Barton 1792 and other distilleries over his 27 years at UK. He'll join us on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and we'll also have details as state officials plan to cite Sazerac for environmental damage from the whiskey spilled in the rickhouse collapse.
45 Is Old...For a Bourbon! (WhiskyCast Episode 709: June 24, 2018)Jun 25, 2018 48:46
If you're young, you might think 45 is old. If you're older, you might think 45 is still pretty young. But when you're talking about tasting a 45-year-old Bourbon, not only is that old, but it's the oldest Bourbon ever bottled! We'll head to Julio's Liquors in Massachusetts for the rare chance to taste the James Thompson & Brother Final Reserve 45-year-old Bourbon, along with its 42-year-old kid brother and three vintage Kentucky whiskies from the 50's and 60's. In the news, we'll have the latest on Friday's partial collapse of a whiskey warehouse at Kentucky's Barton 1792 Distillery that left 9,000 barrels of whisky in a huge pile of timber and tin. On Behind the Label, we'll also explain why those warehouses are called "rickhouses" in Kentucky and why the "ricks" are built out of wood.
Growing a Whisky Business in Glasgow (WhiskyCast Episode 708: June 21, 2018)Jun 21, 2018 41:08
The Glasgow Distillery Company won't release its first 1770 Glasgow single malt whisky until later this year, but the four-year-old company is already kicking off a year-long expansion project to double its production capacity. We'll talk with co-founder Liam Hughes about the expansion and the challenges of launching Glasgow's first malt whisky distillery in a century on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, European Union import tariffs on American-made whiskies go into effect on Friday, setting the stage for potential retaliation against their whiskies from Washington. We'll update distillery projects in Ireland and Scotland as well on this episode of WhiskyCast recorded at New York City's Grand Central Station, where Highland Park premiered a pop-up Orkney exhibition Wednesday night.
Speed Rack: Women Shaking Cocktails for a Cause (WhiskyCast Episode 707: June 17, 2017)Jun 17, 2018 40:34
There are plenty of cocktail competitions for bartenders, but Speed Rack was one of the first to highlight women working behind the bar. Lynette Marrero and Ivy Mix founded Speed Rack in 2012 to not only empower women in the cocktail culture, but also to raise money for breast cancer research and charities. They've succeeded at both over the last six years, and will be staging the first Speed Rack competition in Australia next month. We'll talk with Lynette Marrero on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and while we're talking about cocktail competitions, we'll check in with Lynn House as the eight regional winners in Heaven Hill's 2018 Bartender of the Year competition gather in Sea Island, Georgia for this week's finals. In the news, China has joined the growing list of US trading partners targeting American-made whiskies for punitive tariffs as the trade war expands. Kentucky's Castle & Key Distillery has successfully defended a trademark infringement suit over its use of the original Old Taylor name for its distillery, and on Behind the Label, we'll look at the tricky question of when whiskies made in one country can be labeled as coming from another country.
A Double Whammy for US Whisky Distillers (WhiskyCast Episode 706: June 14, 2018)Jun 15, 2018 47:37
Tax cuts that took effect at the start of 2018 encouraged many US whisky distillers to expand their facilities. Now, they're caught in the middle of the trade war between the United States and its trading partners in Canada, Mexico, and the European Union. Not only are the whiskies some of those distillers export going to be hit with new tariffs at the start of July, but prices for the stainless steel and aluminum they need for those expansion projects are going up because of the US tariffs on imported steel and aluminum. We'll look at the issue on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Brown-Forman has opened its Old Forester distillery on Louisville's "Whiskey Row" downtown, while the management of Bardstown's Willett Distillery is being handed down to the next generation. Wild Turkey is releasing a new Bourbon with a back story appropriate for Father's Day weekend, and we'll head into the weekend with some Dad jokes.
The First American Single Malt Whiskey? (WhiskyCast Episode 705: June 10, 2018)Jun 11, 2018 49:31
Historians aren't sure who distilled the first Scotch-style single malt whiskey in the United States, but Oregon's Clear Creek Distillery has a pretty solid claim to the title. Steve McCarthy started making his McCarthy's Oregon Single Malt in 1993, and while Steve McCarthy sold Clear Creek in 2014 and eased into semi-retirement, his influence still guides Clear Creek's distillers to this day. We'll talk with Clear Creek's Jeanine Racht on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the G7 Summit ends with no progress in resolving a global trade dispute pitting the US against its key trading partners, while new tariffs could affect 65 percent of all US whiskey exports within the next month. We'll look at a new whisky that's raising money for search and rescue operations in the UK, along with other new whiskies, tasting notes, and much more.
Whisky By the Generations (WhiskyCast Episode 704: June 7, 2018)Jun 7, 2018 46:35
With Father's Day coming up, we'll meet a Scottish woman following her father into the whiskey business. That's right...whiskey. Jennifer Nickerson married her Irish farmer husband, Liam Ahearn, and moved to his family's farm in County Tipperary, Ireland. Her father is longtime Scotch Whisky veteran Stuart Nickerson, and when he saw Liam's farm, he persuaded them that it was the perfect place for a distillery. They're now building the Tipperary Boutique Distillery, and while Liam works the farm, Jennifer will be making the whiskey. We'll talk with father and daughter on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the whiskey trade war is expanding, and distillers are preparing to face the impact of new tariffs on exports of Bourbon and other American whiskies. We'll have that story and much more on the midweek edition of WhiskyCast.
A Whisky Trade War on the Horizon? (WhiskyCast Episode 703: June 3, 2018)Jun 3, 2018 47:54
Canada and the European Union are planning retaliatory tariffs on imports of Bourbon and other American whiskies after this week's move by the Trump Administration to impose tariffs on their steel and aluminum exports to the United States. That sets the stage for what could potentially become a full-fledged trade war with whisky as a weapon, and whisky makers are worried that the U.S. will respond with tariffs against their whiskies. We'll talk with William Lavelle of the Irish Whiskey Association, who's urging European Union leaders to carefully consider the economic impact of their plans. We'll also explain just how tariffs on whisky imports work in our Behind the Label segment, and share some of your reactions on Your Voice. In the news, the ringleader of the "Pappygate" distillery thefts in Kentucky has been sentenced to 15 years in prison, but there's still no verdict yet on the fate of the stolen whiskey.
Becoming a Bourbon Badass (WhiskyCast Episode 702: May 31, 2018)Jun 1, 2018 51:10
Bourbon scares some people away...at first. Often, those who approach Bourbon gingerly develop a true passion for it, and become what Linda Ruffenach refers to as a "Bourbon Badass." Linda founded the Whisky Chicks four years ago in Louisville, and while her book "How to be a Bourbon Badass" is geared to women, the term itself - just like a passion for Bourbon - is gender-neutral. We'll talk with Linda Ruffenach on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the trade war is on between the United States and the European Union over steel and aluminum imports, and the Europeans are firing back with plans to impose tariffs on Bourbon and other American whiskies. We'll have that story, along with plans for another new distillery in Scotland's Speyside region, The Macallan's oldest whisky ever, and your comments on the raging inferno from our last episode.
Port Charlotte and Islay's "Middle Child Syndrome" (WhiskyCast Episode 701: May 27, 2018)May 27, 2018 51:30
Bruichladdich's Port Charlotte single malt lies in between the distillery's namesake unpeated whiskies and its Octomore heavily peated malts, and Bruichladdich CEO Douglas Taylor admits the range has suffered from "middle child syndrome" in recent years. As part of Bruichladdich's open day today during the annual Islay Festival of Malt & Music, Port Charlotte is getting some much-needed attention. There's a new Port Charlotte 10-year-old that will be available worldwide, a new 2011 Islay Barley bottling, and an end to "hand-me-down" bottles and packaging. On WhiskyCast In-Depth, we'll talk with Douglas Taylor about the upgrade, along with growing concerns on Islay about the Scotch Whisky industry's impact on the island. In the news, another deadline is approaching in the ongoing trade dispute between the U.S. and the European Union, while Sazerac's plans for a new distillery in Tennessee have gotten the green light. We'll also have tasting notes for a couple of whiskies that take spice - and the score for one - to a new level.
The Macallan's Whisky Cathedral Opens in Scotland (WhiskyCast Episode 700: May 24, 2018)May 24, 2018 49:12
Edrington first announced plans for The Macallan's new distillery in 2012, but the planning process on what may be one of the longest distillery projects on record started well before that, and construction work alone took three and a half years. The Macallan's new home welcomed its first guests the other night, and will open for tours on June 2. We'll talk with The Macallan's Ken Grier about the new distillery and what it means for the brand's future, along with the recent move to revamp The Macallan's core ranges and last week's pair of million-dollar bids for two rare 1926 Macallans at Bonhams in Hong Kong. In the news, Diageo has named project managers for the revival of its Port Ellen and Brora distilleries. There's a report that U.S. trade officials are pressuring Great Britain to weaken protections for Scotch Whisky in a post-Brexit free trade deal, while Gordon & MacPhail has unveiled another new range of single malts and Irish Distillers is adding two new whiskies to its Method and Madness lineup.
Memories of an Irish Whiskey Legend (WhiskyCast Episode 699: May 20, 2018)May 20, 2018 43:16
Irish Whiskey lost one of its longtime champions this past week with the passing of John Clement Ryan. He was the 7th - and final generation of Dublin's Power family to work in the Irish Whiskey business, and while he never distilled a drop of whiskey himself, he traveled the world for three decades promoting Jameson Irish Whiskey during one of the industry's bleakest periods. His evangelism and fervor for Irish Whiskey contributed to the renaissance we see today as Irish Whiskey sales grow year after year. In 2013, we sat down with John Ryan for an interview that's never aired before as he shared some of his history and Irish Whiskey's history with us - you'll hear that interview on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the million-dollar mark for a single bottle of whisky sold at auction has been broken - twice in one day! We'll have the details, along with the story of an unusual collaboration among some of Bourbon's masters for Kentucky charities. We'll also have your comments, tasting notes, and look at barrel vocabulary on "Behind the Label."
30 Years of the Scotch Whisky Experience (WhiskyCast Episode 698: May 17, 2018)May 17, 2018 46:44
In May of 1988, the Scotch Whisky Experience opened its doors on Edinburgh's Royal Mile, next to Edinburgh Castle. Over the last 30 years, millions of whisky lovers have made the hike to the top of the Royal Mile to learn more about Scotch Whisky - and sample a dram or two. This month kicks off a year-long anniversary celebration, and we'll talk with Julie Trevisan Hunter of the Scotch Whisky Experience on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Suntory is disappointing whisky lovers with word that it'll be dropping the Hakushu 10 and Hibiki 17 whiskies later this year because of supply shortages, while Diageo broke ground this week for a new Bulleit Distillery visitors center in Kentucky. We'll also have details on the week's new whiskies and find out how 500 whisky lovers are getting their names on the car Jay Howard is trying to qualify for next weekend's Indianapolis 500. Finally, we'll look at a whisky debate that may send shivers down your spine, depending on how you feel about ice in your dram!
A Big Boost for Scotch Whisky Tourism (May 13, 2018)May 13, 2018 40:54
Scotland's distilleries have been investing millions of pounds over the last several years to upgrade their visitor experiences as more tourists come to Scotland specifically to learn more about whisky. Now, Diageo is making what is likely to be the largest single investment ever in Scotch Whisky tourism with a £150 million project over the next three years. In addition to upgrades for the visitor centers at its 12 distilleries that are open to the public, there are plans for a new Johnnie Walker brand home in Edinburgh. While the plans are still in development, Diageo's Ewan Gunn joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth with a preview. In the news, U.S. distillers are gathering in Washington for the industry's annual public policy conference - and to persuade members of Congress to make the recent cut in federal excise taxes on distilled spirits permanent. The Scotch Whisky industry is gearing up for a tax battle of its own, and Pernod Ricard is getting into the beer business for the first time - to protect one of its key whiskey brands.
The Way of Whisky (WhiskyCast Episode 696: May 10, 2018)May 10, 2018 55:02
Dave Broom has been one of Japanese whisky's most passionate observers for many years, and his latest book "The Way of Whisky" delves into Japan's unique whisky culture at a time when demand for Japanese whiskies far outpaces the supply. We'll talk with Dave about those shortages, along with other so-called "world whiskies" that he's uncovering on his travels and his upcoming Scotch Whisky documentary, "The Amber Light," on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also look at the latest political clashes that could pose problems for whisky lovers and get the details on new whiskies, including one that's getting our highest score ever! To appreciate the great, though, one must taste the not-so-great, and our new "Behind the Label" segment has the back story of what could be one of the worst - yet still highly sought-after whiskies ever bottled.
Sip, Sip, Sippin' On Heaven's Door (WhiskyCast Episode 695: May 6, 2018)May 6, 2018 54:40
Bob Dylan is known for many things, but slapping his name onto a product to make a quick buck is definitely not one of them. In fact, the new Heaven's Door line of whiskies marks the first time the legendary singer and songwriter has ever put his brand on anything other than his music and art. Dylan partnered with a team of spirits experts led by Marc Bushala, who helped bring Angel's Envy to the market before selling it to Bacardi in 2015, and Ryan Perry to create three new whiskies, along with plans for a distillery and art gallery scheduled to open next year in Nashville. Marc Bushala and Ryan Perry join us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to share their story of creating whiskies with Bob Dylan, and we'll also have tasting notes for the Heaven's Door whiskies, too. In the news, a bad Brexit breakup could cost the Scotch Whisky industry millions of pounds each year in trade tariffs, and industry leaders are trying to persuade British officials to avoid that outcome. We'll have that story, along with a look at the first whisky distillery in the Scottish Borders since 1837, and much more on this episode of WhiskyCast.
Challenging Scotch Whisky's Norms at Eden Mill (WhiskyCast Episode 694: May 3, 2018)May 3, 2018 50:51
The area around St. Andrews was home to Scotch Whisky's Haig family and their Seggie Distillery, but after it closed in 1850, the whisky industry largely moved away from St. Andrews. Paul Miller brought it back when his Eden Mill Brewery started distilling whisky in 2014, and now, the first Eden Mill single malts are reaching the market. Miller and his team led by head distiller Scott Ferguson have been challenging the traditions of Scotch Whisky while respecting the heritage, and they'll join us on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also have news on another music icon's entry into the world of whiskies, details on a one-of-a-kind Glenfarclas rescued from the back of a cupboard, and since it's Kentucky Derby week, we'll look at the history of horse racing's favorite cocktail, the Mint Julep.
A Big Bourbon Weekend in Mississippi (WhiskyCast Episode 693: April 29, 2018)Apr 29, 2018 44:22
Oxford, Mississippi is known for many things, but Bourbon isn't usually the first thing you think of. Chef John Currence and his friends might just convince you otherwise, though. They've turned their annual fundraising weekend for Move On Up Mississippi into a full-blown whiskey weekend, with the first Oxford Bourbon Festival and Auction coming up the weekend of May 18-20. Chef John Currence owns four restaurants in Oxford, and the James Beard Award-winning chef and author counts whiskey among his favorite food groups. He'll join us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to discuss the festival, along with his love for Bourbon - and his disdain for pairing Bourbons with specific foods. We'll also have more details on the latest distillery planned for Islay, along with new whiskies, the week's tasting notes, and explain why you might get a pickle-like note in some Rye whiskies in our new "Behind the Label" segment.
On the Road - And at the Pub in Dublin (WhiskyCast Episode 692: April 26, 2018)Apr 26, 2018 44:54
This time around, we’re on the road in Dublin for the launch of the first cask-strength Jameson Irish Whiskey, the new Jameson Bow Street 18. It’s also the first Jameson expression in many years with a direct link to the Jameson family’s old distillery on Bow Street in Dublin, since the casks used for Bow Street 18 spent their final year of maturation in the new mini-warehouse at the Jameson Distillery Bow Street visitor experience. We’ll have that story in the news, along with late-breaking news on another new distillery planned for Islay. On WhiskyCast In-Depth, we’ll talk with Benromach Distillery manager Keith Cruickshank about the Speyside distillery’s dual anniversaries this year: Benromach’s 120th anniversary and the 20th anniversary of its reopening by Gordon & MacPhail. We’ll also have some of your comments, the week’s tasting notes, and much more!
Introducing The Pope to Pappy (WhiskyCast Episode 691: April 22, 2018)Apr 22, 2018 49:33
The Bible says "The Lord works in mysterious ways." As proof, we have the story this week of Father Jim Sichko, a Kentucky-based Catholic priest heading to Rome for an audience at the Vatican with Pope Francis. He admits to not knowing much about Bourbon, but whether you want to call it providence or luck, he was able to get his hands on some of the much-sought-after Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon for the Pope, along with enough whiskey to start a new collection at the Vatican. He'll share his story with us on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and we'll also preview the upcoming Spirit of Speyside Festival. In the news, the world's largest brewer is dipping its toes into the Scotch Whisky business, while construction will begin next month on Edinburgh's first malt whisky distillery in 90 years and Canada's Supreme Court has dealt a legal setback to whisky lovers,. We're also kicking off a new segment this week, as "Behind the Label" looks at things you may have wondered about when it comes to learning more about whisky.
Billy Walker's Back in the Whisky Business with The GlenAllachie (WhiskyCast Episode 690: April 19, 2018)Apr 19, 2018 48:16
Billy Walker could have walked away from the Scotch Whisky business last year after he and his partners sold the BenRiach, GlenDronach, and Glenglassaugh distilleries to Brown-Forman for more than $400 million. However, he decided to jump back in with his "dream team" of industry leaders and buy the Glenallachie distillery from Chivas Brothers, and will launch the distillery's first range of single malts in June. We'll talk with Billy about building that team and giving new life to a long-underrrated distillery on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Anheuser-Busch InBev has acquired Atom Group, the UK-based drinks company that owns Master of Malt, while Diageo has announced plans to invest £150 million to upgrade the visitors centers at 12 of its distilleries in Scotland and create a new "brand home" for Johnnie Walker in Edinburgh. We'll also have details on Gordon & MacPhail's move to consolidate its 12 lines of single malt whiskies into just five starting this month with the Connoisseurs Choice range, and the Spirit of Speyside Festival brings judging for its annual whisky competition to New York for the first time.
Craft Whisky: Optimism and a Reality Check (WhiskyCast Episode 689: April 15, 2018)Apr 15, 2018 48:42
Every distillery opens as a dream, with the backers hoping to become the next Heaven Hill, Wild Turkey, or one of countless other mainstays of the whisky business. During Friday night's American Whiskey Convention in Philadelphia, many startup distilleries showed off their whiskies next to those mainstays. A couple of miles away, James Yoakum was pouring drinks in his tasting room at Cooper River Distillers, days after making the decision to close the distillery after one last Kentucky Derby party May 5th. He'll share some of the lessons he learned over the last four years, and we'll meet some of the distillers still full of optimism - yet tempered with reality - on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, four Kentucky distilleries celebrated milestones this week, while Wild Turkey's partnership with actor Matthew McConaughey has led to a new Bourbon and Diageo has given us a preview of this year's Special Releases single malts...with no Port Ellens or Broras in the mix.
Taking Time Out of the Whisky Bottle (WhiskyCast Episode 688: April 8, 2018)Apr 8, 2018 01:11:31
Whisky makers have tried for decades to come up with ways of making young whiskies taste like older ones, but whisky purists will argue that there is no substitute for time in a barrel when it comes to making a quality whisky. O.Z. Tyler created the TerrePURE process, which uses ultrasonic sound waves to break up some of the undesirable byproducts of the distilling process that are left behind after a whisky reaches the barrel. South Carolina-based Terressentia has been using that process on bulk and private-label Bourbons for the last ten years, and revived the old Medley Distillery in Owensboro, Kentucky in 2016. Now, the renamed O.Z. Tyler Distillery will release its first Kentucky Bourbon using that process this week, and we'll talk with Terressentia CEO Earl Hewlette on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, it could soon be legal for the first time to have a Kentucky distillery ship whiskies home for visitors. We'll look at the impact of the just-passed House Bill 400 on distillers, tourists, and retailers. The brewing trade war between the United States and China has now expanded to include American-made whiskies, and one of Sweden's largest distilleries is changing its name.
Whisky is Too Important to be Taken Seriously (WhiskyCast Episode 687: April 1, 2018)Apr 1, 2018 01:06:33
Scotland's Douglas Laing and Co. is celebrating its 70th anniversary in 2018, and for many of those years, the Laing family has taken a light-hearted approach to Scotch Whisky - at least, when it comes to what's on the outside of the bottle. With brands like Big Peat, Scallywag, Timorous Beastie, and the like, Fred Laing has given us many reasons to smile as we pour a dram. Fred has turned over much of the day-to-day operations of the company over to his daughter Cara and son-in-law Chris Leggett, but took the title of Chairman of the Board because "Chief Mischief Maker" wasn't an option. He'll join us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to talk about this year's anniversary releases, the progress of their new distillery in Glasgow, and their newest whisky...the bacon-infused "Big Meat. We'll also have the details on a complete makeover for The Macallan's single malts, a upcoming "crowdsourced" Bourbon from Buffalo Trace, April Fool's fun from Westland, and Dave Broom's future as a film star, along with tasting notes for three Scandinavian single malts and much more!
Wandering the Wonderful World of Whisky (WhiskyCast Episode 686: March 25, 2018)Mar 25, 2018 53:45
Rachel Barrie is known on Twitter as @TheLadyBlender, and she's just winding up her first year as the master blender for Brown-Forman's BenRiach, GlenDronach, and Glenglassaugh distilleries in Scotland. Over the years, she's worked on some of Scotch Whisky's most iconic brands, and joins us to discuss her career and her plans for those distilleries. This week, we're on the road in Cornwall, Ontario at the Wonderful World of Whisky Show to catch up with old friends and make some new ones. Back in 2006, we first met Barry Bernstein and Barry Stein shortly after they left their jobs to form Premium Bottlers and import casks of Scotch Whisky into Canada. That led to their opening Still Waters Distillery in the Toronto suburbs a few years later, and this week, their Stalk & Barrel Single Malt was named the "Best Canadian Single Cask Single Malt" in Whisky Magazine's World Whiskies Awards. We'll talk with "The Barrys" - as they're affectionately known, and hear a tale of one brand ambassador's airport security nightmare that turned into a dream.
Waiting for Waterford's Whiskey (WhiskyCast Episode 685: March 18, 2018)Mar 18, 2018 01:15:01
It's St. Patrick's Day weekend, and while we cover Irish Whiskey all year-round, it's worth paying special attention to the fastest-growing segment of the whisky business this week. Waterford Distillery has been quietly laying down more than 2.3 million liters of spirit since it opened at the end of 2015, and just as he did at Bruichladdich, Waterford founder Mark Reynier is challenging many of Irish Whiskey's traditions. We'll catch up with Mark for a progress report and discuss his newest challenge - distilling whiskey from biodynamically-grown barley. We'll also hear about another newcomer to the Irish Whiskey scene, as Sabine Sheehan joins us to share the story behind Lambay Irish Whiskey - a collaboration between Cognac's Camus family and Ireland's Baring family. In the news, Irish investigators are looking for the cause of a fatal accident this week at the Irish Distillers maturation warehouses in Dungourney, and Ireland's prime minister was in Washington trying to persuade President Donald Trump to reconsider punitive tariffs on steel and aluminum imports set to take effect this week in a move that could set off a whisky-focused trade war.
A Whisky Weekend in Waco (WhiskyCast Episode 684: March 11, 2018)Mar 11, 2018 57:16
This week, we're on the road in Waco, Texas for the inaugural RyeFest at Balcones Distilling, where they're releasing their first-ever Rye whisky after 10 years of making almost every other kind of whisky under the Texas sun. We'll talk with Balcones head distiller Jared Himstedt and taste the new Balcones 100 Proof Rye. On this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, we'll also meet some distillers from Down Under - Australians who are proving that not all Australian whisky comes from Tasmania. In the news, the stage is set for European Union officials to impose tariffs on Bourbon after the Trump Administration kicked off a potential trade war by imposing punitive tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from EU member nations and other countries. Diageo's distillery in Tullahoma, Tennessee is getting a new name - and a new head distiller, and we'll talk with the founders of the #OurWhisky movement to highlight diversity in the whisky industry.
Betting on Irish Whiskey's Future (WhiskyCast Episode 683: March 4, 2018)Mar 5, 2018 01:01:52
Irish Whiskey has been the fastest-growing segments of the global whiskey market for the last several years, and for many Irish entrepreneurs, it's a long-awaited return to the glory days of Irish Whiskey. We'll talk with several entrepreneurs betting their futures on the continued growth of Irish Whiskey on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, including Donal O'Gallachoir of Glendalough Distillery and Peter Clancy, who's spearheading construction of the new Lough Ree Distillery along the River Shannon. We'll also talk with Bourbon & Beyond Festival promoter Danny Wimmer and Fred Minnick about the whiskey lineup unveiled this week for the second year of the festival this September in Louisville. In the news, US President Donald Trump's plans to impose punitive tariffs on steel and aluminum imports could lead to a backlash against the Bourbon industry. We'll also talk with the Diageo executive behind the controversial Jane Walker Edition of Johnnie Walker Black Label, catch up on the rest of the week's whisky news, and deliver a stiff reprimand to a whisky jerk!
Preparing for Whisky's Next Generation (WhiskyCast Episode 682: February 25, 2018)Feb 25, 2018 01:01:13
Distillers like to say they're not making whisky for themselves, but laying it down for future generations. Part of that process is identifying the young distillers who may be asked to take over for them one day, and this week, that process put Woodford Reserve's future in much clearer perspective. Brown-Forman promoted Elizabeth McCall from her role as Woodford's Master Taster to Assistant Master Distiller, putting her on the track to eventually take over for current Master Distiller Chris Morris one day. McCall's story is unique - not because she's a second-generation whisky maker, but because she followed her mother into the whisky business. She'll share her story and her goal of encouraging other young women to consider science careers on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. This week, we're on location in the Boston suburb of Westborough, Massachusetts for the annual Go Whisk(e)y Weekend at Julio's Liquors, and we'll have details on another marriage between music and whiskey as the rock giants of Metallica are teaming up with veteran distiller Dave Pickerell to create not just their own whiskey, but build their own distillery as well! We'll also have details on Ardbeg's new expansion plans and some hints about this year's Ardbeg Committee bottling, along with a first look at Laphroaig's annual Cairdeas release and new entries in the Bottled in Bond American Whiskey category.
Celebrating 5 Years at The Dead Rabbit (WhiskyCast Episode 681: February 18, 2018)Feb 19, 2018 01:11:17
Five years ago, Irish expats Jack McGarry and Sean Muldoon bet their futures on opening an Irish pub in New York City's Financial District. Since then, The Dead Rabbit has become renowned as one of the world's best bars. Now, The Dead Rabbit shares its name with a new Irish Whiskey in a collaboration with Quintessential Brands, which is building the Dublin Liberties Distillery in the city's Newmarket Square. We'll talk about the bar and the whiskey with Sean Muldoon and Darryl McNally, Quintessential's master distiller and blender, on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. There's a lot to cover in the news, including local approval for Glenmorangie's expansion plans in Scotland, the return of whisky distilling to downtown Montreal, and how South Africa's severe water shortages are affecting the country's leading whisky distiller. We'll also answer some of your whisky questions and taste some new whiskies, too.
Whisky and Chocolate: A Divine Combination (WhiskyCast Episode 680: February 11, 2018)Feb 12, 2018 01:01:02
With apologies to the legendary Scottish poet Robert Burns, "whisky and chocolate gang tegither!" Good whiskies and fine chocolates actually share many of the same characteristics, and pairings of the two have become a common feature at whisky tastings and festivals. The Rev. Dr. R.M. Peluso has written extensively on chocolate for years, and is also a whisky lover. She explored the pairing of these two treats in her latest book, "Deep Tasting: Chocolate and Whisky," and joins us for a Valentine's Day conversation on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also catch up with Jack Teeling of Ireland's Teeling Whiskey Company, and 2018 is a big year for the Teeling family. Later this year, they'll be bottling the first Irish Whiskey distilled in Dublin in more than four decades, and this week released a 34-year-old Irish single malt that's one of the oldest of its kind. In the news, Scotch Whisky exports reached a new record high in 2017 ... we have details on an executive shakeup within Pernod Ricard's whisky portfolio ... and we'll look at Glenallachie's progress under its new ownership.
Making Whisky with MGP's Gordon Working (WhiskyCast Episode 679: February 4, 2018)Feb 5, 2018 25:23
When someone wants to start a new whisky brand, but doesn't own a distillery, chances are they'll turn to Gordon Working and his team at the MGP Ingredients Distillery in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. Over the years and several owners, the distillery has gone from being one of the backbones of the Seagram's empire to one of the leaders in "contract distilling" for clients. We'll talk with Gordon Working on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, American whiskies led the overall spirits sector to another year of growth in 2017, while another major Scotch Whisky distiller is planning an expansion to meet growing global demand.
A Whisky Dream Realized (WhiskyCast Episode 678: January 28, 2018)Jan 29, 2018 01:00:07
Three years ago, we introduced you to Graeme Macaloney, a Scottish-Canadian pharmaceutical engineer with a dream of making his own single malt whisky in British Columbia. Back then, he had the plans and the consultants, but not all of the money and more importantly, no site for his distillery. Happily, it all worked out, as Victoria Caledonian Distillery and the Twa Dogs Brewery opened in the autumn of 2016, and Graeme's laying down spirit for the future. We'll catch up with Graeme Macaloney and his master distiller, longtime Diageo veteran Mike Nicolson, on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, British Columbia's attorney general now acknowledges that the province's liquor laws may need updating in the wake of last week's raids on four Scotch Malt Whisky Society partner bars. We'll also get an update on plans for the new Holyrood Park Distillery in Scotland's capital city of Edinburgh, while the boom in whisky-related tourism keeps growing around the world.
On the Road at the Victoria Whisky Festival (WhiskyCast Episode 677: January 21, 2018)Jan 22, 2018 56:47
This week, we're in Victoria, British Columbia for the 13th annual Victoria Whisky Festival - just as the Canadian province's liquor regulators staged a crackdown targeting the Scotch Malt Whisky Society and its "partner bars" in the province. Agents seized several hundred bottles of the Society's whiskies in raids at four bars in Vancouver, Victoria, and Nanaimo because they were purchased from private liquor stores in British Columbia instead of the government-run liquor distribution system. We'll have complete coverage of the crackdown, along with its impact on the Victoria Whisky Festival, which was forced to cancel several tastings and master classes to head off a similar crackdown. We'll also have complete coverage of this year's Canadian Whisky Awards and talk with a pair of brewer/distillers from one of the most remote distilleries around...in the middle of the Yukon!
There's Whisky History Behind That Wall! (WhiskyCast Episode 676: January 14, 2018)Jan 15, 2018 51:56
You never know what might be found behind the walls or under the floors of old houses and other buildings, especially those built during the Prohibition era. As those buildings are being renovated or torn down, salvage crews in major cities are uncovering all kinds of whisky-related artifacts, including evidence from old speakeasies and bootlegging operations. Philadelphia Community Corps founder Greg Trainor leads salvage teams in recovering usable materials from old buildings, and his crews have found all kinds of things that would make a whisky memorabilia collector smile. We'll take a look at some of his Prohibition-era finds and what they can tell us about present-day America on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also look at some bucket-list destinations for spirited travelers with Kelly Magyarics, who just profiled a few of those destinations for Fodors.com. In the news, another distillery has started making Bourbon in Bardstown, Kentucky, the scientist who's created a way to turn distillery waste into biofuel has been honored, and we'll say goodbye to an old friend of Islay whisky fans.
Nearest Green's Legacy Gets a New Home (WhiskyCast Episode 675: January 7, 2018)Jan 7, 2018 40:34
Last November, Fawn Weaver told us about her mission to spread the story of Nathan "Nearest" Green, the former slave who became Jack Daniel's first distiller when he started making whiskey in Lynchburg, Tennessee after the end of the Civil War. Part of that mission is the Uncle Nearest 1856 Whiskey brand, which helps support the Nearest Green Foundation and provides college scholarships for Green's descendants. During our conversation in Episode 666, Weaver told us she'd just acquired a piece of property to build a distillery, but didn't want to say any more than that at the time. Just before Christmas, local officials in Bedford County, Tennessee approved the rezoning of a former horse farm to become the home of the Nearest Green Distillery, and Fawn Weaver joins us this week to update the story. We'll also have news on a distillery accident in Pittsburgh, along with a new way for Bourbon lovers to shop and fly in Louisville, and some of your New Year's drams, too.
A Peek Inside the Irish Whiskey Archive (WhiskyCast Episode 674: December 31, 2017)Jan 1, 2018 36:34
Much of whisky's early history is documented only in tales, with few written records that have survived the centuries. In some cases, though, the documents exist that can help fill in the gaps in those legends. Archivist Carol Quinn is cataloging more than two centuries' worth of documents from the distilleries that merged in 1966 to form Irish Distillers, along with rare whiskies that make up the Irish Whiskey Archive's "liquid library." Few people are ever granted access to the vault-like room that houses that liquid archive, but you'll get to go inside on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, public health activists are concerned about the potential impact of the federal tax cut on U.S. distillers that takes effect this week. Queen Elizabeth has honored one of the founders of a fledgling British whisky distillery, and a retired Kentucky distillery owner's personal stash of Bourbon is about to come on the market - more than four decades after it was distilled.
Meet "The Gatekeeper of the Grains" (WhiskyCast Episode 673: December 24, 2017)Dec 25, 2017 36:02
Distilleries need tons of grain to make their whiskies, and the responsibility for making sure that grain meets quality control standards falls on "The Gatekeeper." Almost every distillery has someone responsible for checking loads of grain as they arrive for moisture levels, mold, and other things that might otherwise slip through the cracks and not be caught until a whisky is already in the barrel. Kristy Fregonese is "The Gatekeeper" at Corby's Hiram Walker Distillery in Windsor, Ontario, and it's here job to not only monitor the grain as it comes in, but make sure the spent grains are also taken care of. We'll meet "The Gatekeeper" on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, U.S. whisky makers are cheering the tax reform legislation signed into law this week. The new law includes several changes to the tax code that specifically benefit the whisky industry. New distilleries are open now in Kentucky and Scotland, and we'll also have an update on last week's story on a new world record for whisky bars.
New Tricks for an Old Elk (WhiskyCast Episode 672: December 17, 2017)Dec 18, 2017 49:56
Greg Metze spent years making whisky near the banks of the Ohio River, but he never really got the recognition he deserved because his distillery was on the northern side of the river in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. After 38 years at what started out as the Seagram's distillery, then became LDI and finally MGP, Greg retired last year intending to focus on consulting work. Curt and Nancy Richardson first met Greg several years ago when he created a custom Bourbon mashbill for the whiskey brand they were developing in Colorado, and after a few months of consulting, they persuaded him to come out of retirement and become their master distiller. Now, Greg's signature is on the front of every bottle of their new Old Elk Bourbon. We'll talk with Greg Metze about his new job - and his old one - on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the owners of Jose Cuervo Tequila are expanding their whiskey portfolio with a $205 million dollar deal for the Pendleton Whisky brand, while Diageo is changing its tune about opening a visitors center at its new Bulleit Distillery in Kentucky. There's also a new world record holder for the bar with the largest whisky selection - but is it really a world record? The answer might just surprise you...
Women in Whiskey, Sisters in Suds (WhiskyCast Episode 671: December 10, 2017)Dec 11, 2017 01:11:32
This week, the New York Times marked the anniversary of the end of Prohibition with a special event at one of America's few women-owned distilleries, Republic Restoratives in Washington, DC. "Women in Whiskey, Sisters in Suds" featured a discussion of the role women play in distilling and brewing - both today and in history. We'll talk with Republic Restoratives co-founder Rachel Gardner and bring you the discussion on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the tentative Brexit deal between Great Britain and the European Union is being welcomed by Ireland's distillers and brewers on both sides of the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Brown-Forman's stock price jumped after a positive quarterly earnings report, and Pernod Ricard plans to start exporting whiskies made by its unit in India. We'll also look at a new English single malt whisky and compare two rye whiskies with port wine influences in this week's tasting notes.
Snowflakes in the Forecast ... and Whiskey Lovers in Line (WhiskyCast Episode 670: December 3, 2017)Dec 5, 2017 50:06
Colorado's ski resorts wish they had lift lines as long as the one that stretched down Kalamath Street in Denver Saturday morning, when hundreds of whiskey lovers lined up for the annual release of Stranahan's Snowflake single malt whiskey. The line actually started on Wednesday morning when three people arrived from Wisconsin to claim "first in line" honors - beating out the longtime "Strana-Fan" who traditionally claims that spot. We'll have all of the fun from Denver on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, another malt whisky distillery has opened in Scotland, and Glen Wyvis may well be the first distillery to open after a successful crowdfunding campaign. The controversial tax reform bill approved by the U.S. Senate this weekend includes tax breaks for distillers, and a new audit suggests Australia's Nant Distillery may have been insolvent for more than two years while the founders were selling casks of spirit to investors. We'll have those stories, along with the tale of a bourbon-slurping opossum, on this week's WhiskyCast!
Wick's Whisky Wizard: Pulteney's Malcolm Waring (WhiskyCast Episode 669: November 26, 2017)Nov 27, 2017 50:52
Pulteney Distillery manager Malcolm Waring wasn't born in Wick, Scotland, but there's no place he'd rather be three decades after getting his first job at what was then the northernmost distillery on Scotland's mainland. There's plenty of rain, plenty of wind, and fortunately for Malcolm...plenty of whisky to keep track of at the distillery. He leaves Wick a few times a year to meet with whisky lovers around the world, and we caught up with him last week during a brief trip to New Brunswick for a chat and a dram of Old Pulteney. Our conversation's coming up on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Glasgow's newest distillery is on the banks of the River Clyde, and Clydeside Distillery has opened its doors to the public. Diageo is ending its Hilhaven Lodge Whiskey partnership with Hollywood producer Brett Ratner over sexual misconduct allegations, while taking former United Spirits chairman Vijay Mallya to court in London to recover $181 million. Country music's John Rich is launching the Redneck Riviera whiskey label with Portland's Eastside Distilling, and in this week's tasting notes, we'll look at a couple of whiskies featured in new Scotch Whisky Advent Calendars for the holidays.
A Spirited Time in New Brunswick (WhiskyCast Episode 668: November 19, 2017)Nov 19, 2017 55:19
This time around, we're on location at the New Brunswick Spirits Festival in Fredericton, New Brunswick...and if you think we get around a lot, spare some sympathy for Distell's Andy Watts. He spent 38 hours traveling to Fredericton from his base in South Africa, where he oversees production and quality control for Distell's whisky distilleries in South Africa and Scotland. Earlier this year, Andy stepped aside from his longtime role as distillery manager for Distell's James Sedgwick Distillery to take up his new position...and spend a lot more time traveling around the world. We'll catch up with him on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, police in Paris are trying to find the burglars who stole nearly $800,000 in rare whiskies during a break-in at La Maison du Whisky. Scotch Whisky producers lost their 5-year-long legal battle to stop the Scottish government from implementing minimum pricing for alcohol sales, and the government in Edinburgh has given the backers of a new malt distillery in Inverclyde more than a million dollars in grant funding. We'll also have details on a couple of rare Canadian whiskies that have some Canadians hip-checking each other in the aisles at retailers, along with the latest Irish Oak-finished whiskey from Midleton Distillery and much, much more...on this special episode from New Brunswick!
12 Years of Whisky Podcasts...and We're Still Here! (WhiskyCast Episode 667: November 12, 2017)Nov 12, 2017 50:21
The very first episode of WhiskyCast was on November 12, 2005, and twelve years later, we've been around long enough to have an age statement! Back on that first episode, the idea that someone would invest $150 million to build a new Bourbon distillery in Bardstown, Kentucky probably would have been good for a few laughs, since the Bourbon boom was in its infancy. Now, that $150 million dollar distillery project isn't just a reality, but the third new distillery to be built in Bardstown. Stoli Group broke ground this week on its new Kentucky Owl Park in Bardstown, less than a year after buying the boutique Bourbon brand from Dixon Dedman. His great-great grandfather started making Kentucky Owl in 1879, and Prohibition killed the brand for nearly a century before Dixon Dedman revived it in 2014. Dedman joined Stoli Group as its master blender as part of the deal, and he'll share his family's story with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Dedman's new distillery is part of a much larger project that will reshape Bardstown's future, while part of Lexington's distilling past is about to come back to life. We'll also look at the week's new whiskies and taste one of the rarest single malts around to celebrate 12 years of WhiskyCast!
The Tale of "Uncle Nearest" and a Whiskey Legacy (WhiskyCast Episode 666: November 5, 2017)Nov 6, 2017 01:11:09
In 2015, Brown-Forman acknowledged what had been an open secret around Lynchburg, Tennessee for generations - that Jack Daniel's distilling mentor was Nathan "Nearest" Green, a slave on the farm owned by Dan Coll until the end of the Civil War. After the war ended, Jack Daniel hired the newly-freed Nathan Green to be the head distiller at his new distillery in Lynchburg. Green's sons and grandsons worked for Jack Daniel later on, and even after 150 years, the distillery has always had at least one of Green's descendants working there. Fawn Weaver was fascinated by the 2015 New York Times story on the relationship between the Greens and Jack Daniel's, and is now devoting her life to researching that history and cementing Nearest Green's role in American history with, among many other things, a Tennessee whiskey that bears his name. We'll discuss the story of America's first African-American master distiller on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Scotch Whisky exports rose during the first half of 2017, but the statistics show some areas for concern. U.S. craft distilling is now a $3 billion annual business and growing, and a Swiss hotel has given a Chinese tourist a full refund after the $10,000 dram of whisky he bought there in August turned out to be a fake.
Ten Years of Making Whiskey at Mount Vernon (WhiskyCast Episode 665: October 29, 2017)Oct 30, 2017 45:51
Distillers from around the United States gathered at Virginia's Mount Vernon this week to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the restoration of George Washington's Distillery at his historic estate, and of course, they celebrated by making some whiskey. The restored distillery has been producing rye whiskey using Washington's original recipe to raise money for Mount Vernon's educational programs, including those on the slaves who worked in the distillery from 1797 until shortly after Washington's death in 1799. We'll look at the past ten years of distilling at Mount Vernon and Washington's legacy on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Buffalo Trace and the Van Winkle family have decided to skip a year...for one of the prized Van Winkle rye whiskies. Tullamore D.E.W. has added a new set of grain whiskey stills at its distillery in Ireland, and Beam has blended American and Canadian rye whiskies together again...this time for the new Basil Hayden's Dark Rye. We'll look at some travel tips for Bourbon Country and taste four Irish whiskeys for this week's tasting notes, too.
Babysitting the Whisky Barrels (WhiskyCast Episode 664: October 22, 2017)Oct 23, 2017 48:16
Managing a whisky warehouse is sort of like running a day care center...but a lot quieter. Corby's Donald Campbell is responsible for 1.3 million barrels of maturing whisky at the Hiram Walker Distillery's warehouse campus outside Windsor, Ontario. Just like the kids at a day care center, each of those whisky barrels is developing each day - and some tend to spring a leak every once in a while, too...just like the kids at a day care center. We'll visit the warehouses this week with Donald Campbell and Hiram Walker Master Blender Dr. Don Livermore on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Sazerac is expanding its global presence with a minority stake in India's John Distilleries, but is getting some pushback on its proposed plans for a second Tennessee distillery. New York distillers have joined forces to create the Empire Rye category, and we'll get the details from Christopher Williams of Coppersea Distilling. This year's Irish Whiskey Awards have been announced, and we'll have the results...along with this week's tasting notes and much more!
Silent Scotch Whisky Stills Coming Back to Life (WhiskyCast Episode 663: October 15, 2017)Oct 17, 2017 01:13:18
Christmas came a couple of months early for some Scotch Whisky lovers with word that the iconic Port Ellen, Brora, and Rosebank distilleries will be reopened over the next couple of years. Diageo will invest $46 million to bring Port Ellen and Brora back to life, while Ian Macleod Distillers has acquired not only the old Rosebank site, but the rights to the Rosebank name and its remaining whisky inventory. We'll talk with Diageo's Dr. Nick Morgan and Gordon Doctor of Ian Macleod about the work that's ahead before the spirit starts flowing from the stills. Scott Watson of The Lost Distillery Company has been reviving historic distillery legacies in Scotland for the last decade, with extensive research to recreate the whiskies those long-lost distilleries might be making today, and he'll share some of that process with us as well. In the news, Heaven Hill completes a massive $25 million expansion at its Bernheim Distillery, while a Sonoma County craft distiller has managed to dodge the Northern California wildfires so far. We'll also have the week's tasting notes and some of your ideas on which heritage distillery should be revived next.
Whisky, Whiskey...We've Got It All This Week! (WhiskyCast Episode 662: October 8, 2017)Oct 8, 2017 47:13
This week, we're in Ireland for the annual release of Midleton Very Rare from Irish Distillers. There's something different about the 2017 edition, though...it's made with some of the oldest casks ever used in Midleton Very Rare. We'll talk with Midleton Master Distiller Brian Nation about this year's release and the new Midleton Cask Circle club, which will give collectors and investors the opportunity to buy their own casks straight from the distillery. Midleton's maturation guru, Kevin O'Gorman, will also tell us about the newly-released Green Spot Chateau Montelena edition, which is finished in Zinfandel wine casks from California's Napa Valley. In the news, Gordon & MacPhail has unveiled yet another cask of 70-year-old single malt Scotch Whisky, this one distilled at Glenlivet in 1943 during the peak of World War II. A much younger cask of Macallan has set an apparent world record at a Hong Kong auction, and we'll talk about the impact of Brexit on the whisky business from two sides - one who sees it as a plus, and another who says it's already cost him a lot of money.
Live at The Whisky Show in London (WhiskyCast Episode 661: October 1, 2017Oct 2, 2017 01:01:51
This week, we're in London for the annual Whisky Show at Old Billingsgate on the banks of the River Thames! We'll catch up with a lot of friends from around the world, including Whyte & Mackay's Richard Paterson as he winds up his 50th anniversary tour of worldwide whisky tastings. We'll also look at plenty of new whiskies introduced over the last few days here in London and other shows in Europe. In the news, plans are being drawn up for what could be a $150 million dollar distillery project in Bardstown, Kentucky, and Scotland's Kilchoman Distillery is starting the first major expansion project for the Islay distillery.
There’s No Whisky Without the Barrels (WhiskyCast Episode 660: September 24, 2017)Sep 25, 2017 45:15
It's often said that wood is responsible for most of a whisky's flavor, and if that's the case, then the people who make the barrels for maturing whisky have a major impact on the whiskies we drink. Independent Stave Company's cooperages dominate the market for new Bourbon barrels, and those barrels then get used for decades to mature other whiskies around the world. Brad Boswell's great-grandfather founded the company in 1912, and he took over for his father as Independent Stave's CEO earlier this year. We'll talk with him about the cooperage side of the whisky business, along with the potential impacts from climate change and government regulation, on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the ringleader of the "Pappygate" Bourbon thieves in Kentucky has pleaded guilty and faces 15 years in prison, while there's still no word on whether the stolen whiskey now sitting in a secured evidence locker will face the death penalty. We'll also have details on this year’s Buffalo Trace Antique Collection series and the new Northern Border Collection series of Canadian whiskies from Corby's Hiram Walker Distillery. In this week's tasting notes, we'll have details on a whisky fit for ringing in the New Year...Israeli style.
On the Road in Bourbon Country (WhiskyCast Episode 659: September 17, 2017)Sep 18, 2017 01:02:04
This week, we're on the road at the annual Kentucky Bourbon Festival in Bardstown, Kentucky! We'll have highlights from the festival throughout this week's show, including the presentation of the Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame's Parker Beam Lifetime Achievement Award to Bill Samuels Jr. of Maker's Mark and the induction of the Hall's Class of 2017. In the news, Brown-Forman will invest $45 million to upgrade its Louisville cooperage over the next two years, while planning to cut around 70 jobs once the project is completed. Local leaders in Bardstown are working on a new project to cement the town's place as the "Bourbon Capital of the World." We'll also catch up with old friends from Bourbon Country and look at the week's new whiskies from around the world.
Making Sense(s) of Whisky (WhiskyCast Episode 658: September 10, 2017)Sep 11, 2017 53:57
Flavor, aroma, and taste. We all know what they mean...or do we? Gerry Nichols isn't so sure. He's a veteran judge in beer and coffee competitions, and has been studying the research of neuroscientists into the way our brains process flavor, aroma and taste. His conclusion: science knows how we process sensory information, but scientists do a lousy job of explaining it - and what's worse...they don't always take one key factor into account. He'll tell us what that is on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, tourism is booming at whisky distilleries worldwide, Jack Daniel's expands its foray into Rye, we'll resolve the question of how Quebec's liquor regulators label Kavalan's Taiwanese single malts, and we'll take another trip to the ice cream store!
Whisky With a Place (WhiskyCast Episode 657: September 3, 2017)Sep 4, 2017 01:00:06
The concept of terroir is frequently discussed among wine lovers, but the whisky world has been more reluctant to discuss whether the place where a whisky is made or matured contributes to its final flavor. That's largely because many distillers get their grain from farms that can be hundreds of miles away, and also because there's much less variety among the grains used in distilling whisky than there can be among wine grapes. Some distillers are experimenting with "heirloom" grains that offer a different flavor profile than those commonly used in distilling, and we'll hear from two of them on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. Meredith and Alex Grelli of Pittsburgh's Wigle Distillery will explain their experiments with rye grain grown in different regions of North America, while Scott Blackwell and Ann Marshall of High Wire Distilling in Charleston tell us about their work with one of South Carolina's native corns.
In the news, we'll have the details on this year's Four Roses Limited Edition Small Batch, along with more new whiskies from The Macallan, Spey, Loch Lomond, and Johnnie Walker. We'll also have a preview of this year's Kentucky Bourbon Festival and Louisville's new Bourbon & Beyond festival coming up later this month, along with some of your suggestions on what a "second-fill Virgin Oak" cask should be called.
A Cask-Strength Celestial Spectacle (WhiskyCast Episode 656: August 27, 2017)Aug 28, 2017 01:05:15
Around 6,000 people combined last Monday's total solar eclipse with whiskey - watching the celestial spectacle from the fields around MB Roland Distillery in Pembroke, Kentucky. WhiskyCast's Aria Gillespie-Smith was on hand, and we'll have her report on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also details on the celebration at Scotland's Teaninich Distillery as it marks its 200th anniversary this month. In the news, Tasmanian police have opened a fraud investigation into Nant Distillery's controversial barrel sales, and we'll compare the economics of craft distilling and craft brewing. We'll also have the story of MMA champion Conor McGregor's entry into the Irish Whiskey business, along with tasting notes for Ardbeg's newest single malt, too!
The World's Hottest Whisky? (WhiskyCast Episode 655: August 20, 2017)Aug 21, 2017 45:50
Since our first visit to Taiwan's King Car Distillery in 2011, its Kavalan single malts have arguably become some of the most-acclaimed whiskies in the world, winning top awards in multiple whisky competitions. As the distillery enters its second decade, there have been many changes, including the addition of a complete second stillhouse. We'll discuss those changes on WhiskyCast In-Depth with Kavalan master blender Ian Chang, along with a future without his mentor, the late Dr. Jim Swan. In the news, union workers at a key Chivas Brothers facility in Scotland have agreed to a new contract and Scotch Whisky exports are up in 2017. We'll also have a special story of patience paying off for an Ohio family.
Distilling Returns to the Birthplace of Scotch Whisky (WhiskyCast Episode 654: August 13, 2017)Aug 13, 2017 57:01
Lindores Abbey has a unique place in Scottish history. In 1494, the abbey's Friar John Cor was responsible for the oldest known written reference to whisky distilling in Scotland when the Exchequer Roll listed him as receiving "8 bolls of malt" to make aqua vitae for the King. 523 years later, whisky distilling is returning to Lindores Abbey, and we'll take a look at the past, present, and future of Lindores Abbey's place in whisky history with Drew McKenzie Smith. His family has owned the farm in Fife where the abbey's ruins survive to this day, and he's the founder of the new Lindores Abbey Distillery. In the news, contract talks will resume this week between Chivas Brothers and its workers in Dumbarton, Scotland, and the union's plans for strikes this week have been called off. Blended Scotch sales may be poised for a comeback, and Bruichladdich is turning the peat volume up to 11 with one of its new Octomore single malts. We'll also have tasting notes for four cask-strength whoppers and a first - a web site that puts you on hold.
Celebrating the World's Whiskies in Dublin (WhiskyCast Episode 653: August 6, 2017)Aug 7, 2017 44:54
Whiskies are celebrated at festivals all over the world these days, but there's no place quite like Ireland when it comes to whisk(e)y. The inaugural Dublin Whiskey Festival kicks off this coming weekend with six days of tastings and events, and the organizers are planning to make it a nationwide event in 2018. John Burke is the festival's founder and the publisher of The Cask magazine, and he'll join us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth with some of the highlights of this year's festival - and the upcoming issue of The Cask. In the news, the owners of San Francisco's Anchor Brewing & Distilling see their future in distilling, and are selling their brewery to Sapporo Holdings. British officials are pledging to reduce tariffs on Scotch Whisky exports post-Brexit, and a family disagreement in Bourbon Country has gone public.
All in the Whiskey Family (WhiskyCast Episode 652: July 30, 2017)Jul 31, 2017 50:13
The Likarish family opened Ironroot Republic Distillery in Denison, Texas in 2013. Brothers Jonathan and Robert Likarish handle the distilling, while their mother Marcia serves as distillery manager. Even though they've only been open for four years, they've collaborated to make several award-winning whiskies, including the Texas Legation Bourbon for Berry Bros. & Rudd in London. We sat down for a chat in the tasting room at Reserve 101 in Houston for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Chivas Brothers workers in Scotland are preparing for a one-day strike next Monday after rejecting a second contract offer, while Douglas Laing & Co. has unveiled plans for a distillery of its own in Glasgow and Alltech's Dr. Pearse Lyons has finally opened his new distillery in Dublin. We'll have some of your whisky bucket list items and tasting notes for two Indian single malts, too!
Tales of a Retired Whisky Maker (WhiskyCast Episode 651: July 23, 2017)Jul 23, 2017 47:34
Jim Boyko's career took him from the old Seagram's distillery in Waterloo, Ontario to the Canadian prairie in Gimli, Manitoba, and eventually around the world for Diageo. Once he got to Gimli, though, he and his family made the tiny town on the shore of Lake Winnipeg their home. Now retired, he shows up at the home of Crown Royal to lead the occasional tour for distillery guests. He'll share his stories with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, including the saddest day of his career when he was one of 210 Seagram's employees suddenly put out of work when the Waterloo distillery closed in 1992. In the news, there's talk yet again of reviving whisky production at the old Dallas Dhu Distillery in Scotland, while another spirits company is investing in Irish Whiskey. Heaven Hill is about to wrap up yet another expansion of its Bernheim Distillery in Louisville, and has also unveiled this year's special Parker's Heritage Collection whiskey. We'll also find out about next month's Bourbon Women "Sip-osium" in Louisville and put four Texas whiskies to the test in this week's tasting notes.
I Spy a Bourbon (WhiskyCast Episode 650: July 16, 2017)Jul 17, 2017 01:03:08
We've seen whisky and movie tie-ins before, but Old Forester's new Statesman Bourbon is a bit different. It's featured in the upcoming movie "Kingsman: The Golden Circle" with Jeff Bridges as the leader of Statesman, a secretive private espionage unit that just happens to make Bourbon in Kentucky and teams up with the London-based Kingsman to save the world. Old Forester President Campbell Brown and his team worked with director Matthew Vaughn during production, and Master Taster Jackie Zykan helped create Old Forester Statesman, which is featured in the film. Campbell Brown and Jackie Zykan join us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth with Statesman's origin story and updates on this year's Birthday Bourbon and the new Old Forester Distillery under construction on Louisville's Whiskey Row. We'll also discuss whisky and Cognac with fifth-generation Cognac maker Cyril Camus, along with the challenges of selling Scotch Whisky and Bourbon in China. In the news, Billy Walker is back in the distillery business after a deal to buy Scotland's Glenallachie Distillery from Chivas Brothers, and that deal also means changes at the top of Inver House as managing director Graham Stevenson departs to join Billy Walker and former BenRiach veteran Trisha Savage as partners in the Glenallachie Consortium. Möet Hennessy is entering the American whiskey market for the first time with a deal to buy the Woodinville Whiskey Company in Washington, and we'll have an exclusive interview with Woodinville co-founder Orlin Sorenson. We'll also update the saga of Australia's Nant Distillery, look at new whiskies from around the world, and debunk a myth that it's illegal to take Scotch Whisky out of Scotland!
The Best Way to Combine Whisky and the Solar Eclipse (WhiskyCast Episode 649: July 9, 2017)Jul 9, 2017 56:23
If you're looking for an excuse to take off from work and watch the total solar eclipse that will cross North America on August 21, there's no better place to observe it than at Kentucky's MB Roland Distillery. That's because Paul and Merry Beth Tomaszewski's distillery just happens to be located in Christian County, Kentucky, and astronomers calculated years ago that the total eclipse will last longest over Christian County. The Tomaszewskis are already reserving campsites for eclipse watchers in the open fields surrounding the distillery, and are planning a weekend whiskey festival leading up to that Monday's eclipse. Paul Tomaszewski joins us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth to explain how they've been preparing for the eclipse for years and what to expect on August 21. In the news, European Union leaders are considering Bourbon as a possible target in a growing trade dispute with the Trump Administration. Congress could vote this week on a 2018 Treasury Department budget that restores the administration's proposed cuts in funding for the TTB, which oversees the whisky industry. We'll also update the progress of Chip Tate's new distillery under construction in Waco, Texas, and look at Distell's plans to invest $14 million into renovations at Islay's Bunnahabhain Distillery.
Glencairn's Whisky Glasses Shatter Expectations (WhiskyCast Episode 648: July 2, 2017)Jul 3, 2017 46:59
When Raymond Davidson and his sons started marketing the Glencairn Whisky Glass in 2001, they thought the target audience was whisky blenders and industry professionals, and never imagined much consumer demand. Last year, Glencairn Crystal sold more than three million of its iconic and often-copied whisky glasses worldwide - up 22 percent from the previous year. Scott Davidson is Glencairn Crystal's managing director now, and joins us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Bacardi is entering the Irish Whiskey market with a deal to acquire a minority stake and U.S. distribution rights for Teeling Whiskey. Sweden's Box Distillery is planning a major expansion, and a few bottles of the final cask of Black Bowmore 1964 are now available in the U.S. We'll also welcome another new Brand Partner to WhiskyCast and announce the winner of our latest giveaway, too!
Celebrating Canada's 150th Anniversary Whisky-Style (Episode 647: June 25, 2017)Jun 25, 2017 54:44
July 1 is Canada Day, and this year it's even more of a holiday than usual. Canada celebrates its 150th anniversary this Saturday, and Hiram Walker Distillery master blender Dr. Don Livermore marked the occasion with a trip from coast to coast - and all the way from near the U.S. border to the Arctic Circle along the way. He led tastings of the new J.P. Wiser's One Fifty Commemorative Series whisky at each stop, ending in St. John's, Newfoundland. That's where we caught up with him for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also look at the impact of the Trump Administration's proposed 2018 federal budget on the whisky industry. That budget cuts funding for the key Treasury Department agency that regulates whisky and spirits distillers, and also eliminates funding for an Agriculture Department program that has helped boost U.S. whiskey exports worldwide. In the news, the owners of Vermont's WhistlePig Rye have confirmed reports that they're considering offers to sell the distillery and its whiskey stocks in what master distiller Dave Pickerell describes as a "feeding frenzy" market for craft distillers. Chivas Brothers workers at the company's main blending and bottling plant in Scotland have voted to go on strike after rejecting a contract offer, and the threat comes as Scotch Whisky exports during ther first three months of 2017 rose by ten percent over a year ago. We'll also look at the week's new whiskies and taste three Canadian whiskies, too!
A Tale of Texas Whiskey at Balcones (WhiskyCast Episode 646: June 18, 2017)Jun 19, 2017 49:20
Last year, Balcones Distilling left behind its original distillery - hand-built in an old welding shop underneath the 17th Street bridge in Waco, Texas - and moved into a state-of-the art distillery a few blocks away. In fact, the new distillery's boiler shed is about as big as the entire original distillery, and to replicate the original spirit stills on a much larger scale, Forsyth's had to come up with a coiled lyne arm unlike anything ever used before. Jared Himstedt has been at Balcones since the beginning in 2008, and became head distiller after the controversial divorce between founder Chip Tate and his investors in 2014. We'll sit down with Jared on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Buffalo Trace's move to patent a sour mash distilling process has left a sour taste in the mouths of some whisky makers, another Irish distillery is expanding, and there's one more World Series keepsake for Chicago Cubs fans. We'll also have details on the upcoming disappearance of two Old Pulteney expressions, answer a question about storing whiskies on their side, and welcome a new sponsor to WhiskyCast!
Straight Shooting with Bulleit Bourbon Founder Tom Bulleit (WhiskyCast Episode 645: June 11, 2017)Jun 11, 2017 39:19
Tom Bulleit wasn't born into the Bourbon business, but even as a successful Kentucky lawyer, he knew there was something calling him to whiskey. He eventually tracked down his great-great-grandfather's Civil War-era whiskey recipe, and in 1987, he launched Bulleit Bourbon. Thirty years later, Bulleit is viewed by many as an "overnight success," and is the flagship of Diageo's Bourbon portfolio. In March, Diageo opened the Bulleit Distilling Company distillery in Shelbyville, Kentucky, and this past week introduced Bulleit Barrel Strength Bourbon in New York City. That's where we sat down with Tom Bulleit for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, this week's election surprise in Great Britain sent whisky stocks rising and the British pound falling, Irish officials want the European Union to consider a ban on alcohol advertising, and German scientists have come up with a new way to tell counterfeit whiskies from the real thing.
Boom Days for Bourbon (WhiskyCast Episode 644: June 4, 2017)Jun 5, 2017 43:10
Bourbon's growing global profile is at its highest in decades, and that's good news in Kentucky. Even though Bourbon can be made anywhere in the US, Kentucky's distillers still supply more than 90% of the world's Bourbon. At a time when many of the Commonwealth's industries are still recovering from the recession, the Bourbon industry has been one of Kentucky's brightest stars. Carla Carlton's new book "Barrel Strength Bourbon: The Explosive Growth of America's Whiskey" looks not only at the impact in Kentucky, but serves as a guide for those yet to explore the mysteries of Bourbon. In the news, Kentucky's governor has signed new Bourbon legislation into law as the Commonwealth celebrates its 225th anniversary of statehood. We'll look at the week's new whiskies and listen as Elton John and Jack White sing a new song about whiskey, too!
Does The Nose Know For Sure? (Episode 643: May 28, 2017)May 28, 2017 48:32
You may be able to tell different styles of whiskies apart by nosing them - when you know what you're nosing to begin with. When it comes to telling Bourbons and Rye whiskies apart in a blind nosing session, Dr. Jacob Lahne says your nose is more likely to focus on factors other than the mashbill, though. We'll discuss sensory science and whisky with the Drexel University food scientist on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Brown-Forman has given Constellation Brands the brush-off, while distillers and farmers in Scotland are watching the skies and hoping for more rain soon. There's plenty of rain in the forecast for Islay during this week's Islay Festival of Malt & Music. We'll have details on most of this year's Feis Ile whiskies and an update on construction at Ardnahoe, the island's newest distillery.
A Trip Down the Rabbit Hole (Episode 642: May 21, 2017)May 21, 2017 47:44
What would you think of someone who gives up a successful career to make Bourbon for a living? If you said they should seek professional help, Dr. Kaveh Zamanian might not disagree with you. Then again, that's just what this highly trained psychoanalyst did, setting aside his practice to form Rabbit Hole Distilling in Louisville. We'll talk with him on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth and get an update from Sweden with Mackmyra's Angela Forsgren D'Orazio. In the news, the saga of Australia's Nant Distillery is headed for court again, Tullibardine gets a new master blender, and John Glaser revives Compass Box's Double Single blend with a new edition.
Malting Barley the Old School Way (WhiskyCast Episode 641: May 14, 2017)May 15, 2017 36:02
Most Scotch Whisky distilleries source their malted barley from large commercial maltsters today, but a handful of distilleries still maintain their own floor maltings to supply at least some of their malt. This week, we'll visit one of the malting floors at Highland Park and hear how they still do things the old-fashioned way. In the news, Heaven Hill master distiller Denny Potter gets a promotion, Scotch Whisky industry leaders are keeping an eye on the candidates in next month's UK parliamentary elections, and we'll update the story of Glen Fargo American Malt Whisky's trademark battle.
Making Whisky with Passion in Denmark (Episode 640: May 7, 2017)May 8, 2017 42:36
Denmark is known for its beers and aquavit, but is starting to develop a reputation for whiskies as well with distilleries like Braunstein and Stauning winning awards for their rye and single malt whiskies. Nyborg Destillerie hopes to make its own mark when it releases its first single malts next month and opens its new distillery to the public after laying down casks since 2009. Kim Møller-Elshøj is Nyborg's chief blender, and sat down with Mark Gillespie in Copenhagen the other day to talk about making whisky with a unique Danish character and passion, and you'll hear our conversation on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Edrington has acquired The Glenrothes and reunited the Speyside distillery with its single malt brand. We'll also find out how making Scotch Whisky has made one Scottish family very wealthy, and Hollywood is coming to Bourbon Country as an upcoming new movie depicts a band of secret agents as...Bourbon distillers. The latest movie in the Kingsman saga may not get four stars from the critics, but we have a rare 98-point whisky in this week's tasting notes!
Viking Soul & Whisky in Denmark (Episode 639: April 30, 2017)Apr 30, 2017 47:44
This week, we're in Copenhagen, Denmark for the launch of Highland Park's new Valkyrie single malt and new packaging for its core range that doubles down on the Orkney distillery's Viking heritage. The Vikings ruled Scotland's Orkney Islands for around 800 years, and one out of three Orcadians today can still trace some of their lineage back to the Vikings. It's been ten years since Highland Park started embracing that lineage, and we'll discuss the thought processes behind a brand makeover with Highland Park's Jason Craig and Danish designer Jim Lyngvild, who created Valkyrie's unique look - and traces his own Viking heritage back to one of Orkney's early rulers. We'll also discuss the process of creating a new whisky from scratch with Highland Park's lead whisky maker, Gordon Motion. In the news, Scotch Whisky exports rose in 2015 on stronger sales overseas following the Brexit-induced freefall of the British pound. Environmental activists and the whisky industry are both criticizing a Scottish Government plan that could open up Scotland to fracking for shale gas with possible environmental impacts. Louisville now has its own official "Bourbon District" along Main Street's Whiskey Row, and a Speyside cooper set a new world record this weekend during the Spirit of Speyside Festival.
WhiskyCast Episode 638: April 23, 2017Apr 23, 2017 01:04:18
The end of April has grain farmers in North America and Europe poised to get into the fields and start planting this year's crops - and some of that grain will eventually wind up as whisky. Historically, many farmers distilled some of their grain into whiskey - both to prevent it from spoiling and to create something that could be sold or bartered. While those days are many decades in the past, a number of farmers have jumped back into distilling as a way to cultivate more profits than they get from selling grain to commodities brokers. We'll meet the farmers behind the Whiskey Acres Distilling Company in Illinois and Far North Spirits in Minnesota on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, one of the pioneers in craft distilling has been sold, as William Grant & Sons acquired New York's Tuthilltown Spirits this week. Tuthilltown co-founder Ralph Erenzo and Grant's Jonathan Yusen join us to explain a deal seven years in the making. We'll also try to answer a listener's question about whether it's safe to drink Bourbon from vintage ceramic decanters because of the possibility of lead contamination.
WhiskyCast Episode 637: April 16, 2017Apr 17, 2017 46:54
This week, we'll talk with two people who have turned their passion for whisky into careers. Tracie Franklin is one of the newest brand ambassadors for Glenfiddich, but worked her way up through the ranks for many years before joining William Grant & Sons several months ago. Blair Bowman started a whisky club at his Scottish university, then founded World Whisky Day before becoming a writer and whisky consultant. Next month, he'll try to set a world record by visiting 60 Scotch Whisky distilleries in a single day...just a few days before his first whisky book is published. We'll meet them both on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Lagavulin's 200th anniversary charity bottling raised more than $730,000 for Islay charities, while 200 bottles of Buffalo Trace's O.F.C Vintage Bourbons raised almost $1.2 million dollars for non-profit groups in the U.S. We'll also have details on the week's new whiskies and an update on construction work at The Macallan's new $245 million distillery in Scotland.
WhiskyCast Episode 636: April 9, 2017Apr 10, 2017 01:06:57
Scotland's Bladnoch Distillery celebrates its 200th anniversary this year, but the Lowlands distillery almost never made it to that milestone. When Bladnoch owner David Prior bought the distillery out of administration two years ago and hired veteran distiller and blender Ian MacMillan to revive it, the stills had been silent for years and almost everything inside had to be scrapped. Now, almost all that remains of the old Bladnoch is the building, and the stills will be fired up for the first time later this month. We'll talk with Ian MacMillan about the revival and Bladnoch's first series of new releases in many years on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and we'll also look at the upcoming Brexit negotiations between Great Britain and the European Union with former Scotland Secretary Michael Moore of PriceWaterhouse Coopers in Edinburgh. In the news, a rare set of The Macallan's Six Pillars series brought a high bid of nearly $1 million at Sotheby's in Hong Kong, and we'll have the latest details on new distilleries in England and the USA.
WhiskyCast Episode 635: April 2, 2017Apr 3, 2017 01:03:35
There will be music, food, and of course, plenty of whisky on hand during the Spirit of Speyside Festival coming up at the end of this month in Scotland. Ticket sales have already set a new record for this year's festival, and we'll get a preview from festival chairman James Campbell on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also look at the revival of Kansas City's historic J. Rieger & Co. Monogram whiskey brand with Andy Rieger, the great-great-great grandson of Jacob Rieger. In the news, Scotch Whisky industry leaders will be watching the UK's upcoming Brexit negotiations with both benefits and risks in mind, Ireland's craft distillers are hoping for help from a bill pending in that country's Parliament, and we'll have the story of a British man's personal cask of Kilchoman single malt that disappeared after it was accidentally delivered to the wrong address.
WhiskyCast Episode 634: March 26, 2017Mar 27, 2017 50:46
This week's American Whiskey Convention at Philadelphia's Citizens Bank Park featured an air of generational change. At one end, legendary master distiller Jimmy Russell of Wild Turkey with 63 years of distilling experience - and at the other end, a crop of young distillers hoping to follow in his footsteps while creating their own unique whiskies. We'll talk with both generations on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll have the latest on the ongoing Nant Distillery saga in Australia, along with the launch of two more luxury whiskies from Tamdhu and Glenmorangie and the details on a new whiskey that honors a candidate who came in second. We'll also update distillery projects in Scotland, Ireland, and the U.S. while and helping a listener with the answer to his question about whether Canadian Whisky is kosher or not on this week's Your Voice.
WhiskyCast Episode 633: March 19, 2017Mar 20, 2017 43:02
For years, whisky connoisseurs whispered about a mysterious Irish whiskey called Green Spot and begged friends traveling to Ireland to track down a bottle for them. While Green Spot nearly disappeared from the market years ago along with the other "Spot Whiskeys" from Dublin's Mitchell & Son, the Mitchell family and Irish Distillers kept the brand alive through some of Irish Whiskey's darkest days. We'll talk with Robert Jonathan Mitchell and Robert Mitchell of Mitchell & Son about the history - and the future - of the Spots on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth.
WhiskyCast Episode 632: March 12, 2017Mar 12, 2017 52:38
Whisky was historically thought of as a "man's drink" - but today, not only are more women drinking whisky, but women make up around 40% of the Scotch Whisky industry's work force. Diageo's Maureen Robinson is one of the industry's pioneering women, and is celebrating her 40th anniversary in the whisky business this month. She's the first woman to hold the title of Master Blender in Scotland, and joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll talk not only about the changes she's seen over the last four decades, but the subtle art and science that goes into blending whiskies, too. In the news, the fight for control of Australia's Nant Distillery is getting uglier as Nant's founders and its would-be buyer fire charges of mismanagement and more at each other. The UK's government is raising taxes on domestic whisky and spirits sales this week in a move that caught the Scotch Whisky Association and other drinks industry groups by surprise, and the global boom in Irish Whiskey sales is leading to more expansion plans at Bushmills. We'll also have details on the week's new whiskies and tasting notes for whiskies from Balblair, Woodford Reserve, and Ardbeg.
WhiskyCast Episode 631: March 5, 2017Mar 5, 2017 01:06:56
Mickey Heads grew up about three miles from Islay's Ardbeg Distillery, but the third-generation whisky maker never thought he'd wind up as the manager at Ardbeg. This week, he's celebrating his tenth anniversary as Ardbeg's manager and joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also hear from Isabel Graham-Youll of Whisky.Auction, who helped police in London catch an alleged counterfeiter specializing in antique whiskies after spotting fakes the suspect tried to sell through her company's online auction site. There's plenty of news to report this week, including an update on the dispute over the future of Australia's Nant Distillery and hundreds of barrels of whisky owned by investors. We'll also update the progress of the new Slane Distillery in Ireland, meet some of the winners of Whisky Magazine's U.S. Icons of Whisky Awards, and catch up with Jane Maher of Tullamore D.E.W. as she nears the end of a cross-country bus tour across the United States.
WhiskyCast Episode 630: February 26, 2017Feb 27, 2017 38:50
This week, we're in Ireland for the debut of the new Method And Madness range of Irish Whiskies from Irish Distillers. The name comes from the collaboration between Midleton's veteran masters and their apprentices, and it gives us a chance to catch up on Killian O'Mahony's story. In September of 2013, we first met Killian shortly after he became Ireland's first apprentice cooper in decades under the tutelage of Midleton Master Cooper Ger Buckley. Nearly four years later, his training is nearly complete, and we'll hear from both apprentice and master on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Scotch Whisky exports rose in 2016 after three years of declines, with single malt exports reaching an all-time record. One of Scotland's largest trade unions is worried about the future of those exports after Brexit, and is demanding the British government protect the whisky industry's jobs after the UK leaves the European Union. We'll also have a sneak preview of the Old Jameson Distillery in Dublin, which is about to reopen after months of renovation with a new focus...and a new name.
WhiskyCast Episode 629: February 19, 2017Feb 20, 2017 47:51
Camden, New Jersey has a long manufacturing heritage dating back decades, but the city's glory days ended decades ago - leaving behind empty buildings, crime, and many other problems. James Yoakum is one of the entrepreneurs trying to bring back some of that faded glory with Cooper River Distillers in the heart of downtown Camden. He's been making whiskies and rums for the last couple of years, and stopped by our studio the other day with a sample of his first batch of Cooper River Bourbon. The Kentucky native tells us why he gave up on the real estate business to open an urban microdistillery on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. The whisky world lost two of its leaders this week, and we'll honor the legacies of Silvano Samaroli and Dr. Jim Swan. While we never had the chance to interview Silvano Samaroli, Jim Swan was a frequent guest on WhiskyCast, and we'll listen to part of a 2007 interview with him in the news. We'll also have details on master blender Rachel Barrie's decision to leave Beam Suntory to join BenRiach as its lead whisky maker, along with details on what the new trade deal between Canada and the European Union means for whisky lovers.
WhiskyCast Episode 628: February 12, 2017Feb 12, 2017 59:19
This week, we'll be talking about money and politics along with whisky, and of course, there are connections between all three. With the world's attention focused on the transition to the Trump Administration in the U.S., the spirits industry is hoping to benefit from what it sees as a pro-business atmosphere in Washington. We'll discuss the political climate with Distilled Spirits Council CEO Kraig Naasz, and we'll get Wall Street's perspective with David Bolton of Spirited Funds and Alex Gordon of ETF Managers Group. They're behind a new exchange-traded fund that gives investors the ability to buy into the global whisky industry on the stock market. In the news, Beam Suntory plans to close its Canadian Club brand home in Windsor, Ontario next month, and the city's mayor will meet with company executives in Chicago this week to make the case for keeping it open. Bourbon has become Kentucky's fastest-growing industry, with an $8.5 billion economic impact on the state's economy each year...while the wider U.S. spirits industry also showed significant growth in 2016. We'll have details on the week's new whiskies, and this week's tasting notes include single malts from Scotland, India, and Ireland!
WhiskyCast Episode 627: February 5, 2017Feb 5, 2017 01:14:42
It's hard for some people to retire. Jim McEwan says he was pacing around his home on Islay "like a tiger" after retiring from Bruichladdich a year and a half ago...so when Stewart Laing offered him the chance to help build his family's new Ardnahoe Distillery on Islay from the ground up, Jim pounced on the offer. Stewart and his sons recently broke ground on the Hunter Laing & Co.-owned distillery overlooking Port Askaig, with plans to start distilling whisky next year. Jim shares the reasons behind his decision with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also get some historical perspective from Irish Whiskey historian Fionnán O'Connor on Diageo's plans to revive the legendary Roe & Co. whiskey brand and build a new distillery at its Guinness St. James's Gate complex in Dublin. In the news, Distell plans to spend the next two years reworking its Tobermory Distillery and single malt brand, while another distillery project has been approved in Northern Ireland...and we'll also take a look at the week's new whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 626: January 29, 2017Jan 29, 2017 48:43
Marcio Ramos started his whisky journey as a bartender in his hometown of Lisbon, Portugal...but thought he'd left the whisky business behind when he moved to Canada a couple of years ago. That didn't last long, as he wound up becoming Beam Suntory's Canadian brand ambassador for Bowmore, Laphroaig, and Suntory's whiskies. Now, he spends his time traveling all over Canada, expanding his horizons and those of the people who attend his tastings. He'll share his story with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll catch up on new Kentucky Bourbons with a vintage heritage, the tourism boom along the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, a distillery project in England that's being criticized by neighbors as "too Scottish," and the announcement Bourbon and ice cream lovers have been waiting for from Ben & Jerry's.
WhiskyCast Episode 625: January 22, 2017Jan 23, 2017 01:11:30
This week, we're on location at the Victoria Whisky Festival in British Columbia! We'll discuss a new range of premium Canadian whiskies coming this fall from the Hiram Walker Distillery with master blender Dr. Don Livermore, and sit down for a dram with veteran whisky writer Dave Broom to solve some of the whisky world's problems. In the news, there's a new Canadian Whisky of the Year, and we'll have highlights from the 2017 Canadian Whisky Awards, along with another expansion at Ireland's Midleton Distillery and a rare sighting of a "unicorn" whisky - believe it or not...a peated Balvenie!
WhiskyCast Episode 624: January 15, 2017Jan 16, 2017 55:31
This week, we'll tell you about two upcoming opportunities to taste rare whiskies in Scotland and Kentucky. David Faughn and Brian Shemwell will have the story behind a collaboration of several Bourbon clubs in Kentucky and Tennessee to organize the "Rare Bourbon for Rare Disease" charity tasting event on February 25 in Louisville. David's young daughter suffers from a rare genetic disorder, and his NUBPL Foundation received a bottle of Buffalo Trace's new O.F.C. Vintage Series Bourbon to use for fundraising. Brian heads up the Paducah Bourbon Society, and brought the Bourbon clubs together for the event. We'll also get details from Angus MacRaild on The Whisky Show: Old & Rare February 18 and 19 in Glasgow, which is being billed as the "whisky bar of a lifetime" with a chance to taste rare and vintage whiskies. In the news, we'll honor the legacy of Heaven Hill's Parker Beam, who lost his four-year-long battle with ALS this week. We'll also have news of new whiskies, update our story on Ben and Jerry's plans for a new Bourbon-flavored ice cream that's being welcomed along Louisville's Urban Bourbon Trail, and look at a uniquely Scottish whisky cocktail to be served in Edinburgh on Burns Night January 25.
WhiskyCast Episode 623: January 8, 2017Jan 9, 2017 01:07:24
The controversy over Beam Suntory's sudden decision to change its plans for a Booker's Bourbon price hike during the New Year's holiday weekend left both retailers and consumers confused. We'll look at whisky pricing from the retailer's perspective with Ryan Maloney of Julio's Liquors in the Boston suburb of Westborough, Massachusetts, and he'll explain how retailers set their prices and work with whisky makers and distributors. We'll also catch up with Ben Bowers as he winds up his "A Dram a Day" campaign to raise money for a British children's hospital on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Constellation Brands is still expanding its craft distilling portfolio with a deal announced this week for a stake in Virginia's Catoctin Creek Distillery, frequent fliers will find a new Bourbon bar in Louisville's airport, and with the inauguration of Donald Trump closing in, a signed bottle of the Scotch Whisky bottled for his first Scottish golf course is going on the auction block.
WhiskyCast Episode 622: January 1, 2017Jan 1, 2017 50:54
Blending is part art and part science, and unless you're drinking a single cask whisky, every dram you try has been tweaked by the nose of an experienced blender. Nancy Fraley describes herself as a "ghost blender," but it's fair to call her and other blending consultants "noses for hire" - working in the background to create whiskies for distillers large and small. Nancy's client list is shrouded in the secrecy of non-disclosure agreements, but she can talk about some of her work and shares some of her secrets with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll look at a couple of whiskies raising serious money for charities, along with a new chapter of the Red Tape Follies. We'll also have some of your final drams of 2016 and the first drams of 2017 as we kick off a new year.
WhiskyCast Episode 621: December 25, 2016Dec 25, 2016 57:26
The founders of Baltimore's Sagamore Spirits could have chosen to buy a distillery anywhere they wanted to, but they wanted to help revive Baltimore's heritage of making Rye whiskey - and help bring a long-suffering waterfront neighborhood back to life. Sagamore Spirit's new distillery will open next month, and this week, a new cask-strength version of Sagamore Spirit Rye was unveiled to go along with the original version that made its debut earlier this year. We'll talk with Sagamore Spirit's Brian Treacy on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, along with Sazerac CEO Mark Brown, who finished off his year with more acquisitions. Sazerac has bought the Tennessee distillery built to make Popcorn Sutton moonshine, and will begin a long-term project to enter the Tennessee Whiskey business. In the news, yet another distillery has been sold, with Australia's Tasmania Distillery changing hands - and name. It'll share the name of its award-winning Sullivan's Cove single malt whisky, and distillery manager Patrick Maguire will explain the reasons behind the sale and why he's staying on under the new ownership.
WhiskyCast Episode 620: December 18, 2016Dec 19, 2016 45:26
What do oysters have to do with making whisky? You might not think there's much in common, but Glenmorangie is working with Scotland's Heriot-Watt University on a project to restore the European Flat oyster population to Scotland's Dornoch Firth. The oyster beds were wiped out by overfishing a century ago, but a healthy oyster population in the firth would help the overall ecosystem in the area around the distillery. We'll talk about the project with Glenmorangie's Dr. Bill Lumsden and Louise Schiavone, who recently wrote about the project for National Geographic. We'll also have an exclusive interview with Pernod Ricard chairman and CEO Alexandre Ricard on his recent deal to return the company to American whiskey production with West Virginia's Smooth Ambler Spirits, along with his outlook for the whisky business in what's shaping up to be a period of economic uncertainty.
WhiskyCast Episode 619: December 11, 2016Dec 12, 2016 58:39
A couple of weeks ago, we credited San Francisco's Anchor Distilling with being the birthplace of the American craft distilling movement in 1993. While Anchor was one of the early pioneers, the real birthplace was just across the bay at St. George Spirits, where Jörg Rupf started making eau de vie, whiskey, and other spirits in his Holstein still in 1982. Jörg retired several years ago, and his protégé Lance Winters is now the president and head distiller at St. George. We'll talk craft distilling history with Lance Winters on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and how he aced his job interview with Jörg with a bottle of homemade whiskey. In the news, yet another craft distiller has been sold as Pernod Ricard takes a majority stake in West Virginia's Smooth Ambler Spirits, and the deal marks Pernod Ricard's return to the American whiskey market. Beam Suntory is raising prices and cutting availability for Booker's Bourbon, and we'll have reaction from angry Bourbon fans. Irish distillers are hoping to become a major force in the country's tourism industry, and we'll explain why it's not a good idea to get health advice from a guy named "Booger."
WhiskyCast Episode 618: December 3, 2016Dec 4, 2016 48:15
Earlier this year, we reported on the Scotch Malt Whisky Society's changes in the US, with marketing and promotion for the global whisky club and independent bottler changing from the Shayne family, which founded the US chapter in 1993, to a firm led by longtime industry veteran Arnaud Brachet. It's been several months, and we'll sit down with Brachet for an update on the Society's progress on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also take a look at the science of whisky, as Buffalo Trace's Harlen Wheatley shares the findings of his first "Warehouse X" experiments. In the news, Rémy Cointreau is making another move to expand its whisky business with the acquisition of Seattle's Westland Distillery. Master Blender Matt Hofmann is one of Westland's co-founders, and explains why Rémy's bid persuaded him where others had previously fallen short. We'll also check the police blotter in Kentucky, where a delivery driver faces prison time after trying to sell whiskey and other spirits stolen from Beam Suntory's Frankfort warehouse and another "Pappygate" suspect has taken a plea deal.
WhiskyCast Episode 617: November 27, 2016Nov 28, 2016 43:40
What we think of today as the boom in craft distilling started 20 years ago this year, when San Francisco brewer Fritz Maytag bottled the first batch of Old Potrero Single Malt Straight Rye Whiskey at Anchor Brewing in the city's Potrero Hill neighborhood. In 1993, Maytag and his staff cobbled together parts to build a distillery inside the brewery, long known for its Anchor Steam beer, and Bruce Joseph was put in charge of running the still. Today, Bruce Joseph is still Anchor's head distiller, and he'll join us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the results of this year's International Wine & Spirits Competition are in, with William Grant & Sons taking top honors. Two more estate distilleries are being proposed in Scotland, and while North Dakota is known for its barley...it's never been known for its whiskey...until now. Glen Fargo American Malt Whiskey was unveiled this week in Fargo, and we'll find out how its creator avoided a costly legal battle over the name. We'll also have details on this week's new whiskies, along with a way to count down the days - or drams - until Christmas.
WhiskyCast Episode 616: November 20, 2016Nov 21, 2016 54:19
Bourbon's history is as murky as a fermenter full of mash, and questions about the origins of Bourbon have led to more than a few arguments over the years. Now, author Fred Minnick is wading right into the middle of those debates with his latest book, "Bourbon: The Rise, Fall, and Rebirth of an American Whiskey." He's researched everything from Bourbon's early days to the role slavery played in its development and why the Bourbon industry crashed in the 70's and 80's in the face of competition from vodka, rum, and other spirits, and you can hear our conversation with Fred Minnick on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the Scotch Whisky Association is betting on one final appeal in its bid to block Scotland's minimum unit pricing plan for alcohol sales, while US Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy's new report on substance abuse calls for higher alcohol taxes to reduce consumption. For those who can afford a $5,000 bottle of Bourbon, Michter's figures no amount of taxes will make any difference in sales of its new Celebration Sour Mash, and that's just one of the new whiskies we'll have details on. Finally, why are some Manhattans great and others made with the same ingredients...not so great? We'll try to help a listener solve her problem with bad bartending.
WhiskyCast Episode 615: November 12, 2016Nov 14, 2016 35:25
This week, we're celebrating the 11th anniversary of WhiskyCast with a potpourri of sorts, as we catch up with people from all over the world of whisky. We'll hear from Beam Suntory CEO Matt Shattock on his hopes for the incoming Trump Administration's policy goals related to the whisky industry, which can be affected by everything from taxes and trade treaties to agricultural policy. We'll talk with Paul Hletko of FEW Spirits about his new collaboration with Mike Miller and the folks from Delilah's in Chicago, and Dave Scheurich tells us about Boondocks - the whiskey that lured him out of retirement. Dave Pickerell shares details on the latest Boss Hog release from WhistlePig Rye, and Sam Mead explains the story behind Wyoming Whiskey's Outryder. In the news, MGP is expanding its footprint in whisky with the purchase of the Cincinnati-based George Remus line of whiskies, and farther down the Ohio River, Angel's Envy is ready to open the doors of its new distillery on Louisville's Whiskey Row to the public. Alexander Murray & Co. has teamed up with the brewers at Firestone Walker on a new single malt, and we'll finally get the answer on where Costco gets its Kirkland-branded whiskies from!
WhiskyCast Episode 614: November 6, 2016Nov 7, 2016 51:53
This Monday marks the 20th anniversary of the fire that destroyed Heaven Hill's distillery and 90,000 barrels of whiskey in Bardstown, Kentucky. Not a single employee lost their job after the fire, even though it took the family-owned company several years to resume full production at the Bernheim Distillery in Louisville. Then as now, Max Shapira was president of Heaven Hill, and even though three members of the Shapira family's next generation are in senior management roles at Heaven Hill, he's not ready to step aside and let them run the company just yet. We'll talk with Max Shapira about the fire, managing a family-owned business, and planning for future whiskey demand on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We have plenty of new whiskies to talk about this week, along with millions of dollars in new investment to expand whisky production in Scotland and Kentucky. The annual search to find rare bottles of Pappy Van Winkle is underway, along with Bruichladdich's biggest batch of new single malts in several years. Highland Park is playing with fire, Midleton's Brian Nation is putting his own stamp on the annual release of Midleton Very Rare, and Corby's Dr. Don Livermore dug deep into his warehouse to come up with vintage Scotch Whisky for a new Wiser's release that links Scotland and Canada. We'll also look at how one member of the World Series champion Chicago Cubs chose to celebrate the team's victory this week with gifts for his teammates.
WhiskyCast Episode 613: October 29, 2016Oct 30, 2016 44:18
Distillery managers come and go at Lagavulin, but Iain McArthur is a fixture at the legendary Islay distillery. McArthur's something of a legend himself after 44 years as the warehouseman at Lagavulin and previously at Port Ellen, and the native Ileach followed his father and grandfather into the whisky business. We'll go peat cutting with Iain at his family's bog and sit down with him for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. Back in August, Scotch Whisky Association chief executive David Frost told us it would take "a pretty good offer" to lure him back into government service. The offer came, and Frost's sudden resignation to become a special adviser to British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson tops our news this week. We'll also have details on Rémy Cointreau's latest move in the whisky business, Templeton Rye's commitment to distilling in Iowa, and a "write-in" ticket that could bring unity to this year's US presidential race.
WhiskyCast Episode 612: October 23, 2016Oct 24, 2016 43:00
Lagavulin Distillery is celebrating its 200th anniversary this year, and the Islay distillery hasn't changed all that much over the years - at least on the outside. Inside, Lagavulin's team has found new ways to produce more whisky each year without adding new equipment by combining classic distilling heritage with modern technology. We'll talk about the history and future of Lagavulin with distillery manager Georgie Crawford, longtime warehouseman Iain McArthur, and Diageo's in-house historian and director of whisky outreach, Dr. Nick Morgan. We'll also have tasting notes for the 200th anniversary Lagavulin 25-year-old single malt and this year's highly sought-after Feis Ile bottling. In the news, the week-long strike at Jim Beam's two Kentucky distilleries is over after workers ratified a new contract Friday. We'll have the details on that new contract along with another whiskey acquisition for Constellation Brands, another legal setback for the Scotch whisky industry's attempt to block a minimum pricing scheme in Scotland, the results of the 2016 Irish Whiskey Awards, and more new whiskies on the way for the holidays.
WhiskyCast Episode 611: October 16, 2016Oct 16, 2016 35:28
Charles Maclean is arguably one of the most prolific Scotch whisky writers around, and his years of research and writing have given him a unique historical perspective on whisky. He's working on the latest edition of "Whiskypedia" and shares some of his thoughts with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, workers at Jim Beam's two Kentucky distilleries have gone on strike after rejecting two proposed contract offers this past week. We'll also have the details on Chivas Brothers's plans to make Longmorn a luxury single malt, Woodford Reserve's annual Masters Collection release, and a unique tie between London and Texas that's led to a new Bourbon.
WhiskyCast Episode 610: October 9, 2016Oct 9, 2016 44:24
Japanese whiskies have become harder to find as worldwide demand grows for them, but books about them are even harder to find. Longtime whisky writer Dominic Roskrow has been studying Japanese whisky for his latest book, "Whisky Japan", and Roskrow joins us with his perspective on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Constellation Brands is paying $160 million for Utah's High West Distillery, and plans to use it as the foundation for a high-end spirits business. We'll discuss the deal with High West co-founder David Perkins and Constellation's Bill Newlands. There are also details on new whiskies from The Macallan and Chivas Regal, a 1937 Glenfiddich goes for almost $85,000 at auction, and a Colorado distillery is telling voters to #GrabWhiskey instead of something else...
WhiskyCast Episode 609: October 2, 2016Oct 2, 2016 43:47
Transparency in Scotch Whisky isn't a new issue, and it's one that's likely to last a lot longer now that John Glaser of Compass Box is giving up his campaign to change the laws limiting what whisky makers can disclose about the whiskies that go into their blends. Glaser's decision came after industry leaders refused to push for changes in UK and European Union laws. We'll talk with John Glaser and Ian Buxton, who's releasing a new edition of Aeneas Macdonald's classic book "Whisky" - in which he made the argument for transparency nearly nine decades ago. In the news, The Glenlivet is releasing the second edition in the Winchester Collection series of 50-year-old single malts, and we'll have tasting notes for this $25,000 whisky. We'll also update our story on the end of Diageo's Masters of Whisky education program and bring you up to date on new whiskies from around the world.
WhiskyCast Episode 608: September 25, 2016Sep 26, 2016 38:46
We're at a unique point in whisky history when it's not unusual to see people celebrating 40, 45, or even 50 years of working in whisky and still have a lot left to contribute. For Duncan Taylor chairman Euan Shand, this week was the right time to announce his retirement from the Scotch Whisky maker's day-to-day operations - though he'll still be involved in selecting casks for bottling. Former Springbank distillery manager Frank McHardy seems even busier than ever in his retirement, and Colin Scott is not quite ready to step aside yet after 43 years, but last week's move to a new role as Custodian Master Blender for Chivas Regal eases the transition to a new generation of blenders. We'll talk with all three of them on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Knob Creek is losing its age statement, Islay's latest distillery has the green light to begin construction, and another distillery has been hit by thieves.
WhiskyCast Episode 607: September 17, 2016Sep 18, 2016 42:50
This week, Ardbeg unveiled its first single malt with an age statement since the original debut of the 10-year-old edition many years ago. The Ardbeg 21 will be available in limited amounts starting October 1. We'll get the back story behind this whisky from Dr. Bill Lumsden on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and along with tasting notes for it as well. There's plenty of news out of Bourbon Country during Kentucky Bourbon Festival week, including the start of production at the first new distillery to open in Bardstown since 2012 as the Bardstown Bourbon Company fired up its stills. We'll have the details on that, along with an update on Luxco's new Bardstown distillery slated to open late next year and the reason why Wild Turkey's Jimmy Russell needs to clear some more space on the shelf for another award!
WhiskyCast Episode 606: September 11, 2016Sep 12, 2016 47:32
Eddie Russell has been working in the shadow of his father, Wild Turkey's legendary master distiller Jimmy Russell, for the last 35 years. Now, Eddie's taking on more of the responsibility for developing new Wild Turkey and Russell's Reserve whiskies, just as his own son enters the family business. We'll talk with Eddie Russell and find out more about his latest project - the upcoming Master's Keep Decades Bourbon - on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Utah's High West Distillery could fetch $100 million at auction, Angel's Envy has fired up the still at its new distillery in Louisville, and the Red Tape Follies return with an Irish tale that has a happy ending.
WhiskyCast Episode 605: September 4, 2016Sep 5, 2016 43:53
This week, we'll visit the Sherry capital of the world...Jerez de la Frontera in Spain. The sherry casks that many whisky makers depend on come from Jerez, and we'll tour one of the city's cooperages - or to use the Spanish word: tonelería. The A. Páez Tonelería gets most of its business now from whisky makers, and Francisco Lozano "Paco" Romero will explain the process to us on WhiskyCast In-Depth. This week, Irish Distillers unveiled the Redbreast Lustau Edition in Jerez, which uses A. Páez casks that were first filled with Bodegas Lustau's Oloroso Sherry. We'll have that story in the news, along with more of the week's new whiskies and troubling signs of slowing whisky sales in key global markets.
WhiskyCast Episode 604: August 28, 2016Aug 28, 2016 37:07
This week, we're in Sweden visiting Box Distillery for a follow-up to our 2014 visit, and Box is making some big changes six years after it opened in a former steam plant. The first permanent expression from Box is coming this fall, and exports are making up a larger share of the distillery's sales. We'll talk with distillery manager Roger Melander and managing director Thomas Larsson about the changes on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, construction is underway on a new distillery in Glasgow and we'll have word on new whiskies from Scotland, the US, Australia, and more. Finally, this week marks the debut of our new feature on regulatory overreach...The Red Tape Follies!
WhiskyCast Episode 603: August 21, 2016Aug 21, 2016 42:47
After years of working with supermodels and high-strung art directors in New York City, Michael Myers lives a much simpler - and more rewarding life in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Myers gave up his career as one of New York's top photographers to move to Colorado, and next month will be the fifth anniversary of his first still run at Distillery 291. We'll talk with Myers about his career and life changes, and how he maintains a connection to his past career in his new one. In the news, there are plenty of new whiskies to talk about this week, and plans for Edinburgh's first malt whisky distillery in nearly a century are a step closer to reality now that local leaders have signed off on the project.
WhiskyCast Episode 602: August 14, 2016Aug 14, 2016 57:34
Diageo has faced criticism on social media for its decision to shut down the long-running Masters of Whisky program, a US-based education program aimed primarily at bars and restaurants along with whisky festivals. The program's 24 ambassadors work for an agency that is losing its contract with Diageo to operate the program, and the ambassadors will lose their jobs at the end of September. Now, the drinks giant has pledged to meet with all of those affected by the shutdown and discuss their future options with a new program that will replace the Masters of Whisky. We'll look at the program and its impact on the whisky world with longtime Master of Whisky Steve Beal on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Isle of Arran has received planning permission to build a second distillery on the Scottish island, one of Ireland's most popular whisky attractions is closing for a six-month-long facelift, and we'll have details on this year's Parker's Heritage Collection and Old Forester Birthday Bourbons!
WhiskyCast Episode 601: August 7, 2016Aug 7, 2016 01:04:44
We've packed this week's WhiskyCast full of cask-strength conversation from around the world! Texas distillers Amanda and Nick Swift will explain why they decided to make Scottish-style single malt whiskey in the heart of Texas, and why they both gave up successful careers to pursue their shared passion. We'll also discuss the outlook for the Scotch Whisky industry in the post-Brexit environment with Scotch Whisky Association chief executive David Frost, and why he's not interested in returning to Her Majesty's diplomatic corps anytime soon. We'll also honor three whisky industry leaders who passed away this past week and look at the week's new whiskies, along with the old distilleries you'd use a time machine to save!
WhiskyCast Episode 600: July 31, 2016Jul 31, 2016 47:22
Philadelphia has a long history of whisky distilling dating back to Colonial days, and craft distillers are reviving some of that history that died out several decades ago. During this week's Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, the Distilled Spirits Council arranged a tour of local craft distilleries for reporters covering the convention. We'll take a non-partisan tour with them on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth.
In the news, Diageo's CEO wants UK politicians to protect Scotch Whisky interests during Brexit negotiations, and we'll find out who won this year's Australian Malt Whisky Tasting Championship. We'll also help a listener draw up his whisky shopping list for a friend visiting Tokyo, find out what whisky William Shatner last tried, and taste whiskies from Japan, Islay, and Minnesota!
WhiskyCast Episode 599: July 24, 2016Jul 24, 2016 46:59
The Scotch Malt Whisky Society is not only an independent bottler of Scotch whiskies, but also the world's largest whisky club - and it's looking to grow under new ownership. The SMWS has worked out a major change with its US chapter, and a marketing firm has been brought in to help increase membership. We'll discuss that and other changes with the Society's Paul Skipworth and Kai Ivalo, along with Gabby Shayne of the SMWS US chapter. In the news, another Dickel distiller has left to join Popcorn Sutton in Tennessee...a Scottish politician wants Diageo to give the old Dallas Dhu distillery to the government, and the original home of Scotch whisky will soon be home to a distillery once again.
WhiskyCast Episode 598: July 17, 2016Jul 17, 2016 30:36
There are lots of whiskies to choose from, and there's a story behind each one. This time around, we'll talk with the entrepreneurs behind two vastly different whiskies: Florian Passera's Vicomte French single malt and Frank Maestri's Throttle to Bottle - an all-American Canadian whisky. We'll also taste three whiskies from entrepreneurial craft distillers for this week's tasting notes. In this week's news...the UK's new government won't seek an immediate hike in post-Brexit whisky taxes, while attendees at the US political conventions are vying for spots on the guest lists at the Distilled Spirits Council's parties in Cleveland and Philadelphia over the next two weeks.
WhiskyCast Episode 597: July 10, 2016Jul 10, 2016 41:43
The push by distillers for US Government recognition of an "American Single Malt Whisky" definition would also have an impact on single malt whiskies from so-called "non-traditional" whisky-producing countries around the world. India's Amrut fought for more than a year to get approval to sell its single malts matured in used oak barrels in the US - before giving in and producing special whiskies matured in new oak just for the US market. Raj Sabharwal of PVI Global is Amrut's US importer and fought those battles not only for Amrut, but on behalf of clients in England and Australia, and explains the impact a "single malt" definition could have for American whisky lovers. In the news, the results of this year's International Spirits Challenge are in, South African distiller Andy Watts gets a promotion, and The Balvenie's David Stewart gets his date with the Queen!
WhiskyCast Episode 596: July 3, 2016Jul 4, 2016 46:41
Single malt whiskies have been sold in the US for decades, but technically, there's no official definition for "single malt" in the federal government's regulations for whiskies. Rob Dietrich of Stranahan's Distillery in Denver wants to change that, and he's trying to rally other distillers behind his cause. We'll talk with the master distiller of Stranahan's, which is back in nationwide distribution across the US after supply shortages several years ago forced Proximo Spirits to pull back and sell Stranahan's only in Colorado. In the news, the UK's "Brexit" vote is starting to affect whisky sales as consumers take advantage of the weak British pound, but two UK distillery projects managed to make their crowdfunding goals despite economic uncertainty following the vote. We'll also have details on the week's new whisky releases and help a listener teach his bartender how to make a proper Manhattan!
WhiskyCast Episode 595: June 25, 2016Jun 26, 2016 49:45
Willie Cochrane retired last month after 39 years at Jura Distillery, and spent the last 11 of them as the manager of the Isle of Jura's largest business (and only distillery) before turning over the keys to his hand-picked successor, Graham Logan. He's spent most of the last few weeks away from the island traveling with his wife and spending time with their three children and grandchildren - but Willie slowed down enough to spend some time with us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. The UK's Brexit vote and its potential impact on the whisky industry dominates the news this week, and we'll also have some of your comments on this week's Your Voice. We'll also kick off a contest with our newest sponsor...listen for details on how you could win one of five Speyburn goodie bags!
WhiskyCast Episode 594: June 18, 2016Jun 19, 2016 34:11
Moving is one of those things that no one really enjoys...let alone when one has to move hundreds of rare whisky samples to a new home. Whyte & Mackay's Richard Paterson faced that challenge recently when the company moved to its new headquarters in Glasgow, and he'll discuss how he and his team handled the move on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, construction has started on Scotland's latest distillery project - while another new distillery is ready to open in Virginia. We'll find out what it's like to go barrel-picking at Wild Turkey, and learn more about a new bar in Zurich that may just set the standards for airport whisky bars worldwide.
WhiskyCast Episode 593: June 12, 2016Jun 13, 2016 37:35
Many factors go into the decision to give a whisky brand a shakeup, and we'll look at the factors behind two major facelifts announced in the last few weeks. Both Glen Grant and Jameson unveiled major changes to their whisky lineups with new expressions and packaging. We'll talk with Glen Grant's Dennis Malcolm and Jameson's Billy Leighton and Dan Lundberg about the thinking behind their moves on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. Meanwhile, Dennis Malcolm is in the news for another reason as well this week...he turned up on Queen Elizabeth's annual Birthday Honours List as a newly-minted Officer of the Order of the British Empire! We'll also have more on a battle royal brewing in Canada over a politician's pick in whiskies, as well as details on the week's new whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 592: June 4, 2016Jun 5, 2016 46:06
Penderyn is the only whisky distillery in Wales, but may soon spin off a second distillery under its name in nearby Swansea. Local leaders want a second Penderyn Distillery as part of their revitalization plan for a former copper works along the River Tawe, and the idea fits with Penderyn's plans for future expansion. We'll discuss the project with Welsh Whisky Company managing director Stephen Davies and look at Penderyn's long-term future on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, BenRiach's sale to Brown-Forman is complete - and that leaves just one of every four Scotch Whisky distilleries in Scottish hands. We'll also look at new whiskies from around the world, and find out why Bruce Springsteen keeps coming back to his favorite Dublin pub!
WhiskyCast Episode 591: May 28, 2016May 29, 2016 45:11
This weekend usually marks the beginning of summer, and many people will be heading for the beach - either for real or in their dreams. The entrepreneurs behind the new Beach Whiskey have those people in mind...people who want a dram at the beach, but think a heavy, spicy Bourbon or Single Malt might be too overpowering on a hot day. We'll talk about building a new whiskey brand with Smoke Wallin, Andrew McGinnis, country music star Jake Owen, and television's Billy Bush on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll have the latest on the WhistlePig Rye standoff in the news, along with details on new whiskies from Glen Grant and The Glenlivet, and more on the US debuts of new single malts from India. Finally, this week's tasting notes include three cask-strength whoppers...including the $300 Booker's Rye!
WhiskyCast Episode 590: May 22, 2016May 23, 2016 01:02:46
One of Scotland's newest distilleries opened its doors for the first time to visitors this week, though opportunities to visit InchDairnie Distillery in Fife will be few and far between. The state-of-the-art distillery will produce two different styles of malt whiskies - one for blending and one for use in its own single malts that won't be bottled until at least 2029, if founder Ian Palmer has his way. We'll take a tour of InchDairnie with Ian Palmer on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth and uncover more of InchDairnie's mysteries. In the news, WhistlePig Farm is in the middle of a dispute as founder Raj Bhakta is asking a Delaware court to block a vote by dissident investors to remove him. We'll have the details, along with your responses to last week's question - what's the most you've ever spent on a bottle of whisky?
WhiskyCast Episode 589: May 14, 2016May 15, 2016 36:16
Booker Noe passed away in 2004, but some of the whiskey he laid down shortly before his death is adding a new chapter to his legacy. This past week, Booker's son Fred filled the first bottle of Booker's Rye, an experimental whiskey only Booker and a handful of people at Jim Beam knew about for many years - and discovered long after his passing. It's one of two new whiskies that help make up what we're unofficially calling the "Booker Noe Trilogy" along with the 25th Anniversary edition of Booker's from 2014, and we'll talk about it with Fred Noe on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll have the latest on new whiskies from around the world, and one of the whiskies in this week's tasting notes may "enlighten" you a bit...
WhiskyCast Episode 588: May 7, 2016May 8, 2016 54:21
Jonathan Drew wants to take his success in the cigar business and expand into the spirits industry, and he plans to do it with the same unique style and drive that turned Drew Estate into a cult favorite among cigar lovers - including fans of the Pappy Van Winkle-branded cigars. His John Drew Brands range is heading to market with a Canadian Rye whisky, a rum, and his Brixton Mash Destroyer - a blend of Bourbon and rum. We'll meet Jonathan Drew on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, along with tasting notes for his rye whisky. In the news, Jim Rutledge and his partners have pulled the plug on the crowdfunding campaign for their new distillery after just five days, and he'll explain the reasons why. Another historic Kentucky distillery is being earmarked for restoration, while one of Ireland's historic whiskey brands is about to be sold and a distillery strike in Canada has come to an end.
WhiskyCast Episode 587: April 30, 2016May 2, 2016 46:26
The other night, one of the whiskey bars in Louisville held a "Jim Rutledge Tribute Night" to honor the retired Four Roses master distiller. Less than 24 hours later, Jim announced his plans to come out of retirement and start a $2 million crowdfunding campaign to build a new distillery near Louisville. We'll talk with Jim about his new project on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Brown-Forman is back in the Scotch Whisky business after 11 years with a $416 million deal to buy the BenRiach Distillery Company from Billy Walker and his partners, Compass Box is hoping to "enlighten" those who oppose transparency in Scotch whisky with two new bottlings, and Cleveland Whiskey's Tom Lix is using his "magic" maturation machine for a new range of finished whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 586: April 23, 2016Apr 25, 2016 53:05
Paul Hletlko is one of the leaders in North America's craft distilling movement, and the founder of FEW Spirits is in the middle of a distillery expansion that will triple his annual spirits production - in the heart of what was once the capital of America's temperance movement. We'll talk with Paul Hletko on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and look at some of the highlights from this week's Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America convention and Independent Spirits Expo in Las Vegas during the news. Finally, we'll listen as one of today's hottest country music stars - and a budding whisky entrepreneur - pays tribute to Prince shortly after the music icon's death this week.
WhiskyCast Episode 585: April 17, 2016Apr 18, 2016 43:21
Japan's Hombo Shizu has been making whiskies off and on since 1949, and the company's whisky heritage claims a critical link to Masataka Taketsuru, the "father of Japanese whisky." Now, Hombo Shizu's Mars whiskies are back for good, and the company is beginning construction of a new distillery on the site of its original Kagoshima distillery on the southern tip of Japan while producing whisky full-time at its Shinshu distillery near Nagano. Mars whiskies are now starting to reach the US market, and will be available soon in Europe ... we'll discuss these developments with Hombo Shizu's Saki Umemara and Eric Swanson of Tokiwa Imports on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Kentucky's governor has signed a new law that loosens up some of the limits on the state's distillery visitor centers, Diageo is releasing several new North American whiskies, and there's no Canadian content in a Canadian celebrity's new whisky! We'll also share a special moment with you as a new Keeper of the Quaich finds out about his nomination!
WhiskyCast Episode 584: April 10, 2016Apr 10, 2016 44:39
The Whisky Sponge has been puncturing egos and tweaking the Scotch Whisky industry with impunity - and relative anonymity - for nearly three years, but on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, the Sponge publicly reveals his true identity for the first time. We don't want to spoil the surprise, but it's not "Jill Bumsden" and especially not "Dark Mollesty"! In the news, Luxco's plans for another Bourbon distillery in Bardstown, Kentucky have been confirmed as the longtime blender and bottler tries to lock in whiskey supplies for the future ... Crown Royal's distillery strike could last well into the summer ... and we'll look at the results of two recent whisky competitions.
WhiskyCast Episode 583: April 3, 2016Apr 4, 2016 45:24
A lot of trends come out of Portland, Oregon...and while the craft distilling movement didn't originate there, Portland's House Spirits helped jump-start the industry when Christian Krogstad started making gin, aquavit, and whisky in 2004. Last November, House Spirits moved into an all-new distillery with a goal of making its Westward Oregon Straight Malt Whisky a leader in the emerging American Single Malt category. Tom Mooney is president of House Spirits, and is also wrapping up a year as president of the American Craft Spirits Association. We'll talk with him on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Islay is mourning the passing of Kilchoman Distillery's John MacLellan, legislation to ease some of the restrictions on visitors centers at Kentucky's distilleries is headed for the Governor's desk, and we'll have details on a single malt matured in a cask first used for chili pepper sauce. No, it's not an April Fool's joke!
WhiskyCast Episode 582: March 26, 2016Mar 28, 2016 48:05
You'll see a lot of businesses with the "& Son" as part of the name, but rarely do we see businesses with "& Daughter" - let alone "& Daughters." The Last Drop doesn't have that in its name, but it has something more...Beanie Espey and Rebecca Jago have taken over the day-to-day management of the company from their fathers, longtime Scotch Whisky industry figures James Espey and Tom Jago. We'll talk with Beanie Espey about that transition and the latest Last Drop release - a 50-year-old double-matured blended Scotch - on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also look at the resurgence of Rye whiskey among Pennsylvania's craft distillers as they reclaim the state's distilling heritage that dates back to Colonial times, along with the details on Whistlepig Farm's newest release, a 15-year-old Rye finished in casks made from oak trees that came from the farm in Vermont. We'll also have the story of one man's goal to taste 366 drams in 366 days - on video, and for a good cause.
WhiskyCast Episode 581: March 19, 2016Mar 20, 2016 54:20
After two years of victories for Pacific Rim whiskies, a single malt Scotch is back on top of the World Whiskies Awards. Old Pulteney's 1989 Vintage was named "World's Best Single Malt Whisky" in Whisky Magazine's annual World Whiskies Awards. Thursday night's announcement caused celebrations at the distillery in Wick and Inver House's main offices near Edinburgh. We'll discuss the results of this year's competition with judging panel chairman Neil Ridley, along with his plans to launch a new line of independent bottlings at the end of this month with his business partner under the "Exile Casks" brand. In the news, Heaven Hill takes "Distiller of the Year" in the Icons of Whisky Awards, Ardbeg shines some light on its new Dark Cove malt, and High West releases a "light" whiskey.
WhiskyCast Episode 580: March 12, 2016Mar 13, 2016 01:00:51
There was once a time when Ireland's single pot still whiskies were among the world's most popular drams, but a combination of changing tastes, politics, and other factors nearly destroyed the Irish Whiskey industry decades ago. Now, whisky lovers are rediscovering the heavier, oilier flavor of single pot still Irish whiskies, and one Irish historian has researched the origins and development of those whiskies. We'll talk with Fionnán O'Connor on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, along with a look at one of Ireland's newest distilleries, the William Grant & Sons-owned Tullamore Distillery. In the news, Scotch Whisky Association lawyers have won a battle in India, while Indian banks and opposition politicians are trying to keep Vijay Mallya from collecting his $75 million exit package from United Spirits. We'll also look at the week's new whiskies and a new place for tourists to learn more about Irish Whiskey in Killarney.
WhiskyCast Episode 579: March 5, 2016Mar 6, 2016 35:58
Adam Hannett has a tough job, though he wouldn't trade places with anyone for the world! He took over for the legendary Jim McEwan as head distiller at Bruichladdich following Jim's retirement last summer, and has just released his first bottling: Octomore 7.4 Virgin Oak. We'll talk with Adam about the future at Bruichladdich, what it's like to have your mentor living right next door to the distillery, and Bruichladdich's plans to make its recipes for the "Classic Laddie" more transparent starting next month. In the news, the Scotch Whisky Association has warned Bruichladdich to run those plans by UK regulators first, while nearby Lagavulin has unveiled its 200th anniversary bottling with a nod to the distant past. Teeling Whiskey is sending 12 different single barrel Irish whiskies to the US in time for St. Patrick's Day, Scotland's northernmost mainland distillery is releasing its first whisky, and we now know the new name for the restored Old Taylor Distillery in Kentucky.
WhiskyCast Episode 578: February 28, 2016Feb 29, 2016 54:50
There's been a lot of attention paid recently to women working in the whisky industry, but when Allisa Henley was promoted to Head Distiller at Tennessee's George Dickel Distillery last March, she just took over for John Lunn without even so much as a news release. While most people thought of her as being in charge of the distillery's visitor center, she had quietly been Lunn's understudy for a decade and stepped right into the role she had been training for - at the distillery just a few miles from where she grew up. We'll talk with Allisa on WhiskyCast In-Depth about the transition and the challenges of being a whiskey maker in the heart of the Bible Belt, especially since the Dickel distillery is located in a dry county. In the news, a new report projects American whiskey could outsell single malt Scotch worldwide as soon as 2020, with much of that demand for Bourbon and Tennessee whiskies. Whisky Magazine has announced the North American winners in the 2016 World Whisky Awards, and there's a surprise winner in the battle for "World's Best Bourbon" honors. Balcones Distilling in Texas fired up the stills at its new Waco distillery for the first time this week after taking home three Whisky Magazine awards, and we'll have your reaction to last week's interview with Balcones founder and former master distiller Chip Tate as he prepares to begin making whisky again at his new distillery. We'll also have more of your reaction to the Compass Box transparency campaign, along with tasting notes for two unique craft whiskies from Washington and Colorado.
WhiskyCast Episode 577: February 20, 2016Feb 21, 2016 51:15
Chip Tate is about to get back into the whisky business, about 15 months after his acrimonious departure from Balcones Distilling, the Texas distillery he built from the ground up only to be forced out following a dispute with his business partners that led to restraining orders, lawsuits, and ultimately a settlement with a non-compete clause banning him from making whisky until March 5, 2016. Tate took the money from his Balcones buyout and is about to open his new Tate & Co. distillery in Waco, and is also building custom stills for other craft distillers. We'll talk with Chip Tate about his enforced hiatus from whisky-making, what he learned from the experience, and what he plans to do as soon as he can start firing up his new hand-made stills on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Compass Box has launched an online petition drive to persuade European Union regulators to allow more transparency in whisky labeling, and John Glaser is getting support from another Scotch whisky maverick distiller as Bruichladdich plans to test the limits of what it can disclose about one of its whiskies. Bushmills is releasing its first new whisky in eight years...a year after new owners acquired the Irish distillery, and we'll taste four new Irish whiskies in this week's tasting notes.
WhiskyCast Episode 576: February 14, 2016Feb 15, 2016 48:21
With oil prices in the doldrums, stocks sagging, and other forms of investments losing value, a number of investors are turning to rare whiskies as a viable investment option. Rare Whisky 101's tracking of UK whisky auctions shows the value of whiskies sold during 2015 gained 25% over 2014's auction results, and we'll discuss both the trend and the outlook with Andy Simpson of Rare Whisky 101 on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we have details on new whiskies from Tennessee, Scotland, and around the world, along with a new role for one of the whisky industry's leading ambassadors.
WhiskyCast Episode 575: February 6, 2016Feb 7, 2016 44:10
One of the Southern Hemisphere's biggest whisky festivals is coming up later this month, and DramFest 2016 caps off a busy few weeks for Michael Fraser Milne and the folks at the Whisky Galore shop in Christchurch, New Zealand. Last month, they finally moved into their new store - just down the street from the original shop condemned after the 2011 earthquake that caused widespread damage in Christchurch. This year's DramFest comes as whisky distilling is being revived in New Zealand two decades after the country's biggest distillery shut down, and we'll discuss DramFest, post-earthquake recovery, and New Zealand's whisky scene with Michael Fraser Milne on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, US whisky sales grew again during 2015 while the strong dollar kept a lid on exports of Bourbon and Tennessee Whiskey, while Suntory's early challenger for the most talked-about new whisky of 2016 reached the US. We'll have tasting notes for the Yamazaki Sherry Cask 2016 Edition and other world whiskies, too!
WhiskyCast Episode 574: January 30, 2016Jan 31, 2016 48:22
The debate over age statements on whiskies shows no sign of going away, but how does a brand decide to remove the age statement from its whiskey? Earlier this month, Heaven Hill announced that it would remove the 12-year-old age statement from its Elijah Craig Small Batch Bourbon and start making the whiskey with casks 8 to 12 years old. We'll discuss the reasons behind that move with Heaven Hill co-master distiller Denny Potter and longtime Heaven Hill executive Larry Kass on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, along with the company's latest plans for expanding its Bernheim Distillery in Louisville to meet demand. In the news, Diageo plans to start focusing on more affordable whiskies in emerging markets because of currency exchange rates, Scotland's government is giving a boost to two distillery projects, and Whisky Magazine announces its Icons of Whisky Awards world whisky winners.
WhiskyCast Episode 573: January 23, 2016Jan 24, 2016 51:36
Drew Mayville's 36 years in the whisky business include stints as the final master blender at Seagram's and as Sazerac's master blender for Buffalo Trace and its other whiskies, as well as the Pappy Van Winkle whiskies. He was one of the featured presenters at the Victoria Whisky Festival, and joins us to discuss his career on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Stewart Laing and his sons have unveiled their plans for Islay's newest distillery...we'll have the latest on new whiskies from Kilchoman, Glenmorangie, GlenDronach, and Highland Queen, bid the Elijah Craig Small Batch's age statement farewell, and pay tribute to a unique craft distiller.
WhiskyCast Episode 572: January 17, 2016Jan 18, 2016 38:09
One of the most-discussed topics at this weekend's Victoria Whisky Festival was a National Post feature on whisky questioning the future of vintage whiskies, and whether the whisky boom has already reached its peak. One of the whiskies mentioned in the story was The Glenlivet's Founders Reserve, which is replacing The Glenlivet 12 in many markets around the world. We'll get the reaction from The Glenlivet's Ian Logan to that article, and what his colleagues at Chivas Brothers are doing to fight that perception on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also look at the impact of international trade deals on whisky exports, new whiskies, and while they're not the same as the ones stolen last September during a New York City whisky show, Simon Brooking of Laphroaig has his green wellies back!
WhiskyCast Episode 571: January 15, 2016Jan 16, 2016 42:58
This week, we're on location with the first of two episodes from the Victoria Whisky Festival in Victoria, British Columbia. For the last several years, the Victoria Whisky Festival has had at least one tasting session reserved for women only, and this year's tasting featured Canadian Club's Tish Harcus...one of the pioneers in leading tastings geared to women. We'll talk with Tish and Julia Ritz Toffoli, founder of Women Who Whiskey...one of the fastest-growing whisky clubs for women with chapters in the US, Canada, Europe, and Africa. In the news, Corby's Lot No. 40 has taken top honors as Canadian Whisky of the Year in the Canadian Whisky Awards for the second time in three years...the Nelson brothers have sold a stake in their Green Brier Distillery in Tennessee to Constellation Brands, and we'll have the latest on new whiskies from Japan and Ireland.
WhiskyCast Episode 570: January 9, 2016Jan 10, 2016 40:04
America has a love-hate relationship with alcohol, and it's fair to say that drinking has changed the course of American history - for better and for worse. Susan Cheever explored that relationship for her new book "Drinking in America: Our Secret History" and joins us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, 28 purloined Pappy Van Winkle bottles may not receive the reprieve many Bourbon fans were hoping for once the "Pappygate" case in Kentucky ends, and flooding has closed Scotland's Glencadam Distillery for repairs. We'll also answer a listener's questions on how to prepare for a whisky festival and more on this week's WhiskyCast!
WhiskyCast Episode 569: January 2, 2016Jan 3, 2016 43:21
David Stewart will need new business cards soon, though the longtime master blender at William Grant & Sons is far too modest to ask for them. That's because he'll soon be able to add the initials "MBE" to his name, now that he's been named a Member of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth. Stewart was included on the Queen's New Year's Honours List released by Buckingham Palace this week, and he'll tell us how he found out about the honor on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, holiday flooding has hit Scotland and Ireland, a trademark lawsuit has been settled in Bourbon Country, and whiskey lovers found a bargain on Pappy Van Winkle whiskies this week in an unusual place. We'll also hear about some of your New Year's drams and more on the year's first episode of WhiskyCast!
WhiskyCast Episode 568: December 26, 2015Dec 27, 2015 01:30:20
There are a lot of issues facing the world of whisky and spirits these days, and we'll discuss many of them on this week's WhiskyCast. During the recent New Brunswick Spirits Festival in Canada, WhiskyCast's Mark Gillespie moderated a panel discussion with Glenfiddich's Ian Millar, Dr. Kirstie McCallum of Burn Stewart Distillers, Angostura Rum master distiller John Georges, and The Glenlivet's Alan Winchester. We discussed topics ranging from declining whisky sales to the impact of the thaw in diplomatic relations between the US and Cuba and more, and you'll hear the entire discussion on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the European Court of Justice rules against - and for - minimum unit pricing on alcohol sales in Scotland and kicks the debate back to Edinburgh, and we'll have a story of how distillers in Scotland teamed up to help an ailing colleague realize his dream.
WhiskyCast Episode 567: December 19, 2015Dec 20, 2015 58:11
This week, we'll look at the business behind the whiskies we drink - and investors hope to profit from. More investors are looking seriously at the whisky business...they're not just looking to invest in rare bottles, but something even rarer...the distilleries that make whisky. We'll talk with Frank Lampen, one of the co-founders of Diageo's in-house venture capital unit, Distill Ventures. This week, Distill made its second major whisky investment of the month by taking a minority stake in Australia's Starward Whisky after doing the same thing with Denmark's Stauning Whisky. We'll also hear from Bardstown Bourbon Company CEO David Mandel, who's not only looking for new brands to make whiskey at his distillery when it opens in 2016, but has figured out a way to help them finance the cost of distilling and maturing their whisky. In the news, Islay is mourning the loss of one of Bruichladdich's legendary leaders, the head of William Grant & Sons is stepping down, and we'll look at one of the few places where you can get a university degree in whisky distilling.
WhiskyCast Episode 566: December 13, 2015Dec 14, 2015 28:49
This week, we'll give you a glimpse at something rarely seen...the very first still run at a new distillery. This week, the stills at Ireland's Waterford Distillery came to life - 24 years after they were last used at the old Inverleven Distillery in Scotland. Like a lot of pieces of the Waterford story, those stills spent some time on Islay at Bruichladdich, but like the old Guinness brewery in Waterford that closed two years ago, they found new life in the Irish Whiskey boom. We'll talk with Waterford founder Mark Reynier and some of the brewery team that returned to work at Waterford on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the new owners of Bushmills have big expansion plans in mind for their distillery, while yet another new Bourbon distillery is being planned in Bardstown, Kentucky. We'll also have details on the week's new whiskies and much more on this week's WhiskyCast!
WhiskyCast Episode 565: December 5, 2015Dec 6, 2015 57:23
Every once in a while, you might want to step outside of your comfort zone and try something besides whisky. A WhiskyCast listener asked for suggestions along those lines after hearing our October episode about Armagnacs, and we turned to Jeff Cioletti for answers. He's the author of the new book "The Year of Drinking Adventurously: 52 Ways To Get Out of Your Comfort Zone" and editor-at-large for Beverage World magazine, and he'll join us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Diageo has bought a stake in Denmark's Stauning Distillery, while The Macallan and Glenfiddich are both planning new expansions. Glenfiddich's plans have a local politician concerned about "whisky nutters" crowding the roadside to take pictures. We'll also have details on some of the week's new whiskies, say farewell to one of Speyside's leaders, and taste three whiskies from around the world.
WhiskyCast Episode 564: November 29, 2015Nov 30, 2015 37:00
This week, we'll be talking about whisky and education. Not teaching people how to drink whisky, but how to make it! There aren't many university-level programs in distilling, but the University of Kentucky has now started offering a certificate in Distillation, Wine, and Brewing to undergraduate students who complete a series of courses in chemistry, engineering, and other subjects. Dr. Seth DeBolt is one of the program's founders, and joins us to discuss it on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll look at the progress of two proposed distilleries in Scotland, along with plans for next June's Kentucky Bourbon Affair in Louisville - complete with Kentucky's first major whisky festival including whiskies from all over the world. There are also new whiskies coming out of Scotland, along with Italy's first single malt and we'll kick off the holiday season by sampling a whisky-filled Advent calendar!
WhiskyCast Episode 563: November 21, 2015Nov 22, 2015 55:38
This week, we're at Canada's oldest whisky festival...the New Brunswick Spirits Festival in Fredericton, New Brunswick. The festival is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, and draws visitors from all over Canada and the northeastern United States. This year, festival attendees also celebrated the 2016 Whisky Bible's naming of a Canadian whisky as the World Whisky of the Year. We'll get reaction to Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye's place at the top of the podium, and why it's helping lead a renaissance of classic Canadian rye whisky. We'll also have the latest on the week's new whiskies and much more on this special episode from New Brunswick.
WhiskyCast Episode 562: November 14, 2015Nov 15, 2015 50:46
As we begin the 11th year of WhiskyCast, we're taking a look back this week to catch up with some of the friends we've made over the last ten years...people who are now making their own way in the whisky world. We'll hear from a Kentucky sheriff's deputy starting his post-police career as a Bourbon distiller, a couple from New Zealand who gave birth to a whisky distillery and a baby son at the same time, and a Scottish expat who followed his wife to New Jersey and wants to teach his new neighbors about Scotch Whisky. In the news, Scottish environmental officials have released their annual list of industrial polluters with just a handful of whisky-related violations caused by things like excessive rainfall. We'll also get the details on Bonhams' return to whisky auctions in New York City and details on the week's new whiskies...including one that covers the spectrum of woods.
WhiskyCast Episode 561: November 7, 2015Nov 8, 2015 48:28
Scotland's Glenturret Distillery celebrated its 240th anniversary this week by gathering 240 people at The Famous Grouse Experience for a toast, and by announcing the debut of the distillery's first range of single malts in many years. Stuart Cassells heads up Glenturret, and was instrumental in making those single malts possible. He'll join us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to discuss the history and the future of Scotland's oldest distillery. We're also celebrating an anniversary this week, though it's just ten years instead of 240. Still, we've packed a lot into this special episode...with the latest on the Compass Box controversy from John Glaser - and some of your opinions as well. We'll also check up on the week's new whiskies, meet the distiller playing David to the University of Kentucky's Goliath in federal court, and American Bartender of the Year Ivy Mix will share a warming cocktail recipe for the holidays - or any cold evening.
WhiskyCast Episode 560: October 31, 2015Nov 1, 2015 46:53
Popular, yet controversial in many ways, WhistlePig Farm's distillery has finally opened after a series of lengthy delays and disputes. Founder Raj Peter Bhakta spent around $250,000 in legal fees battling Vermont regulators over whether WhistlePig Farm qualifies as an "agricultural operation" under the state's unique laws protecting farms from commercial development. Even though whiskey distilled from rye grown on the farm is still several years away from being ready for sale, Bhakta claims WhistlePig is one of the leading "grain to glass" distilleries in the United States. We'll challenge that claim as we discuss the distillery's future with Raj Peter Bhakta on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Compass Box is in the middle of a controversy of its own after another Scotch Whisky producer accused it of being too transparent with details on its latest two releases. That's just one of several legal battles within the whisky industry this week, and we'll have all the details, as well as tasting notes that might just be illegal in Scotland.
WhiskyCast Episode 559: October 24, 2015Oct 25, 2015 52:31
Andy Cant has been a Scotch Whisky nomad for nearly four decades, working at distilleries and maltings all over Scotland. He's done everything from making grain whisky for blends to running a maltings and multiple malt whisky distilleries from Islay to the Highlands. These days, you'll find him at Cardhu Distillery in Speyside, but we caught up with him recently at Mount Vernon in Virginia, where he was part of a team from Scotland making single malt whisky at George Washington's Distillery. He shares some stories of the distilleries and the people he's worked with along the way on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. Travel retail releases dominate the news this week, with a bunch of new whiskies being unveiled at the travel retail industry's annual showcase in Cannes. We'll also have the details on Diageo's 2015 Special Releases from Scotland, this year's Masters Collection release from Woodford Reserve, and tales of lawyers on the loose in Kentucky!
WhiskyCast Episode 558: October 17, 2015Oct 18, 2015 33:45
George Washington's Scottish distiller never made single malt whisky at Mount Vernon in the 18th Century, but Scottish distillers John Campbell, Bill Lumsden, and Andy Cant did in the spring of 2012. They returned to Virginia this week to bottle that whisky for charity, and the first set of two bottles sold at the Spirit of Mount Vernon gala for $26,000. We'll hear from the distillers on the challenge of making whisky the "old school" way on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Pappy Van Winkle shortages will be even worse than usual this year, another rare Bourbon is making a comeback, and Irish Whiskey experts honor this year's crop of whiskies in the Irish Whiskey Awards.
WhiskyCast Episode 557: October 10, 2015Oct 11, 2015 35:14
It's rare that we talk about spirits other than whiskies on WhiskyCast, but with many people complaining that rising prices for single malts are forcing them to seek alternatives, it's a good time to take another look at Armagnacs. We first looked at the French spirit back in 2007, and while whisky prices have been rising sharply, prices for vintage Armagnacs have been rising much more slowly. Florence Castarède is the sixth generation of her family to manage Armagnac Castarède, and we'll discuss Armagnacs with her on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Sazerac plans to revive the Michael Collins Irish Whiskey brand - just in time for the centennial of the Irish revolutionary's rise to prominence during the Irish Civil War. Shakespeare asked "what's in a name" -- and two whisky makers are asking that after winding up with the same name on their whiskies...and Neiman Marcus has the $125,000 answer to the question "what to give a whisky lover who has everything."
WhiskyCast Episode 556: October 4, 2015Oct 5, 2015 34:05
Earlier this year, Japan's Nikka Whisky announced plans to replace many of its age-statement single malts with new no-age-statement versions. The company's past projections of estimated demand couldn't have forecast the current boom in Japanese whisky sales, and Nikka didn't lay down enough whisky to meet today's demand. We'll discuss the situation with Nikka's chief blender, Tadashi Sakuma, on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Brown-Forman has started construction of its new distillery at Ireland's Slane Castle, and the popularity of flavored whiskies may lead to a sale of its Southern Comfort whiskey liqueur. Heaven Hill's warehouses have yielded a treasure from the old Stitzel-Weller Distillery, and we now know what The Glenlivet's Alan Winchester had in mind when he hinted earlier this year that he'd been experimenting with peat.
WhiskyCast Episode 555: September 25, 2015Sep 29, 2015 52:31
In this special bonus episode from Whisky Live Paris, we'll have more highlights from one of Europe's top whisky festivals. We'll look at the recent controversy over a legal definition of France's Breton Whisky, and hear from an American making single malt whisky in England...the very idea might make some heads explode in Scotland! In the news, Taiwan's award-winning King Car Distillery is starting a massive expansion project -- not just doubling production capacity, but boosting it by five times as much! There's also more news on new whiskies from around the world, along with tasting notes and much more...
WhiskyCast Episode 554: September 26, 2015Sep 27, 2015 28:39
This time around, we're in Paris for the first of two episodes this weekend from Whisky Live Paris! Each year, Whisky Live Paris draws whisky fans and whisky makers from all over the world, and this year, that includes a record number of American distillers as Europeans discover a taste for US-made craft whiskies as well as their larger counterparts. We'll talk with several US distillers who made the trip to Paris as part of WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, one of Ireland's newest distilleries is already kicking off an expansion program, while construction at one of Kentucky's newest distilleries is well underway with a goal of opening next June. We'll also check on some of the new whiskies being introduced this weekend in Paris, and taste some, too!
WhiskyCast Episode 553: September 19, 2015Sep 20, 2015 54:13
Sam Mead is a fifth-generation rancher, but never had any interest in distilling...until he came back home to work at Wyoming Whiskey, the distillery his parents founded in 2006. He started at the bottom milling grain, and eventually discovered the distilling bug within him. After a series of changes at the distillery, he wound up being the head distiller (and won't allow people to call him a "master distiller"). We're on the trail in Wyoming this week, and we'll hear from Sam Mead on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also have coverage of this week's Kentucky Bourbon Festival, including a rare interview with Parker Beam after he received the Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame's first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award Wednesday.
WhiskyCast Episode 552: September 12, 2015Sep 13, 2015 53:19
The Glenrothes was one of the first Scotch Whisky distilleries to label its single malts with wine-style vintages instead of age statements. While the Berry Bros. & Rudd-owned brand remains committed to vintages, it's re-launching its entire range of vintage-less whiskies known as The Glenrothes Reserve Collection. Luke Tegner of Berry Bros. & Rudd was in New York City this week to introduce the new range, and joins us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth to discuss the changes. We also have a lot of new whiskies to talk about this week, including the annual Buffalo Trace Antique Collection, single grains from a closed Glasgow distillery, more Laphroaig 200th anniversary single malts, and new expressions from Arran, Burn Stewart, The Dalmore, and more...along with a special segment on whisky and space!
WhiskyCast Episode 551: September 5, 2015Sep 6, 2015 33:29
Louisville isn't just famous for Bourbon...it's also becoming a popular city for culinary connoisseurs, and the foodies are flocking to Chef John Varanese's restaurant specializing in New American cuisine. The menu at Varanese also gets a lot of inspiration from Bourbon, and we'll kick off Bourbon Heritage Month in Kentucky by talking whisky and cuisine with Chef Varanese on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, there's a new #1 at the top of the Single Malt Scotch whisky sales rankings and a new #1 at the top of the list of oldest Scotch whiskies ever bottled. We'll also have details on new whiskies from around the world and much more on this week's WhiskyCast.
WhiskyCast Episode 550: August 29, 2015Aug 30, 2015 43:51
Kieran Folliard is a native son of Ireland, but calls Minnesota his home now. While running a group of Irish pubs in Minneapolis, he and his staff decided they should sell their own special Irish whiskey. Two Gingers became so successful in the pubs that Folliard decided to sell his stake in the pubs to his staff and make a go of Two Gingers, which was named for his mother and aunt back in Ireland. He wound up selling his brand to Beam, while retaining control over the day-to-day management. We'll hear more from this Irish entrepreneur on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Heaven Hill's hoping to raise more money for ALS treatment and research with the 2015 Parker's Heritage Collection whiskey and Old Forester honors its founder with the annual Birthday Bourbon. In Scotland, Royal Brackla finally gets its due as a single malt, Edinburgh could soon have its first malt whisky distillery in 90 years, and a forgotten time capsule yields a really old bottle of whisky!
WhiskyCast Episode 549: August 22, 2015Aug 23, 2015 34:25
Many American craft distillers produce single malt whiskies, but Seattle's Westland Distillery is one of the few that only produces single malts. The distillery in Seattle's SoDo neighborhood also produces one of the few peated American single malts, and while Westland is currently importing peated malt from Scotland, that's about to change. The distillery has exclusive rights to one of the only harvestable peat bogs in the Pacific Northwest, and is working with Skagit Valley farmers and a local malting house to produce Washington-grown peated malt for distilling. We'll visit the distillery -- and the peat bog -- on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Four Roses' Jim Rutledge goes out with a bang, Bowmore goes to Japan for its latest cask finish, and we'll go bottom-shelf in this week's tasting notes.
WhiskyCast Episode 548: August 17, 2015Aug 18, 2015 44:22
The "Bourbon Boom" has led to a corresponding boom in the publishing industry, with almost as many new Bourbon books as there are Bourbons on the market. Fred Minnick's second whisky book, "Bourbon Curious" not only shares some of the history behind many Bourbon brands, but breaks down many of them by flavor characteristics to help new Bourbon fans find the whiskies they're most likely to enjoy. Fred's based in Louisville, and keeps a close eye on the Bourbon industry. On this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, we sat down over drams to discuss his book and the state of Bourbon today, including the growing interest among distillers in using technology to do what only time has been proven to do successfully, create a mature whisky. In the news, longtime Burn Stewart whisky guru Ian Macmillan is leaving to become Bladnoch's new master distiller and blender as part of that distillery's revival, the still maker under scrutiny following April's distillery explosion in Kentucky is keeping quiet, and we'll have a roundup of the week's new whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 547: August 8, 2015Aug 9, 2015 45:16
This week, we're on location at the M.B. Roland Distillery in Pembroke, Kentucky for a special benefit to raise money for the Lifting Spirits - Jay & Kyle Rogers Support Fund. Jay and Kyle were critically burned in the April 24th still explosion at the Silver Trail Distillery in Hardin, Kentucky, and while Kyle died of his injuries two weeks later, Jay is well on the road to recovery. He and Silver Trail founder Spencer Balentine will share their stories of that tragic day and the weeks since then with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also hear from M.B. Roland co-founder Paul Tomaszewski on why he and his wife opened their distillery to help Silver Trail get back in business. In the news, another suspect has pleaded guilty in the Kentucky Bourbon theft ring, Nashville's Corsair Artisan Distillery is expanding again in the Tennessee capital, another new Irish distillery has opened, and a 110-year-old New Jersey woman credits her longevity to a dram and three beers a day for the last 70 years!
WhiskyCast Episode 546: August 1, 2015Aug 2, 2015 46:14
Scotland's Bladnoch Distillery will be 200 years old in 2017, but for more than a year, it was fair to question whether one of the oldest Lowlands distilleries would be around for that milestone. The questions about Bladnoch's future have been answered with the distillery's sale to Australian entrepreneur David Prior, who's making a "substantial investment" in equipment upgrades with plans to resume distilling in 12 to 18 months. We caught up with Prior in Bali during a combination business and surfing trip to discuss his plans for Bladnoch, including a release this fall of vintage casks maturing in the distillery's warehouses. He'll also explain why he decided to buy a distillery in Scotland instead of investing in Australia's growing whisky industry. In the news, investigators have released their report on the Silver Trail Distillery explosion in Kentucky, while the state's distillers are using the tragedy to start a new safety initiative. We'll also have details on two new distillery projects in Kentucky, a reprieve for a French distillery, and the week's new whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 545: July 25, 2015Jul 26, 2015 47:01
The history of Bourbon is filled with enough myths to make a dozen Disney movies, enough crimes for years of True Detective, and enough mysteries to make Sherlock Holmes hang up his deerstalker cap. In part two of our conversation with "Bourbon Empire" author Reid Mitenbuler, we'll look at the crimes, corruption, and prejudice that are part of Bourbon's past, as well as the resurgence of craft distilling and other factors that give Bourbon a bright future. In the news, Brown-Forman has started work on its new Old Forester Distillery on Louisville's Whiskey Row two weeks after a four-alarm fire threatened the $45 million dollar project, Utah's High West has opened its new distillery outside of Park City, and a rock group is lending its name to a new Irish whiskey.
WhiskyCast Episode 544: July 19, 2015Jul 20, 2015 50:11
Bourbon has a unique place in American history, but as with other elements of American history...many of the stories of Bourbon are based more on myth and legend than actual facts, and the truth often gets lost over decades of marketing mythology. Reid Mitenbuler debunks many of the myths and provides historical context in his book "Bourbon Empire: The Past and Future of America's Whiskey." He'll share some of his stories with us in the first of a two-part interview on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, a more recent whiskey tale will cost Templeton Rye thousands of dollars in refunds and legal fees after the Iowa company settled three class-action lawsuits in what Templeton Rye co-founder Keith Kerkhoff called "legalized stealing." Scottish National Party activists want the Edinburgh government to intervene in the Scotch Whisky industry to keep more profits in Scotland, and we'll have details on new whiskies from Jack Daniel's, The Famous Grouse, The Dalmore, Pendleton, and more!
WhiskyCast Episode 543: July 11, 2015Jul 12, 2015 34:20
There are dozens of stakeholders in the Scotch Whisky industry, and while they do work together on a few key fronts, their competitive nature makes it difficult to set aside their own needs for the common good. Victor Brierley is on a one-man mission to change all that with an ambitious dream of creating a unified marketing platform for Scotch Whisky. He'll share his plans with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, sparks from a construction worker's tool are being blamed for this week's Whiskey Row fire in Louisville, while high winds get the blame for tearing roofs off two Heaven Hill warehouses in Bardstown. We'll also have word on new whiskies from Johnnie Walker and Kininvie, along with tasting notes for a collaboration between four craft distillers.
WhiskyCast Episode 542: July 4, 2015Jul 5, 2015 46:47
Jim Rutledge gets most of the credit for reviving Four Roses Bourbon in the US over the last decade after years of neglect by the brand's previous owners, who shipped the distillery's high-quality Bourbon to export markets while giving domestic consumers a cheaply blended Four Roses American Whiskey instead. This week, Rutledge announced his plans to retire September 1 after 49 years with Seagram and Four Roses, and will become the distillery's Master Distiller Emeritus. We'll talk with Jim about his plans for the future, and how the success of Four Roses in recent years came with a personal cost. We'll also talk about whisky and food with award-winning chef David Bouley, discuss Suntory's new Hibiki Japanese Harmony whisky with blender Shinji Fukuyo, and preview the upcoming Harlem Whiskey Festival.
WhiskyCast Episode 541: June 27, 2015Jun 28, 2015 35:56
Just as whisky brands need to change things up once in a while to remain fresh, so do whisky festivals. Tickets have gone on sale for this September's Kentucky Bourbon Festival, and while most of the changes this year are taking place behind the scenes, next year's 25th edition of the festival should look very different. We'll talk with the Bourbon Festival's new executive director, Jill Hawkins, on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Silver Trail Distillery's Jay Rogers is back home two months after the explosion that destroyed the distillery, Heaven Hill is planning to expand the Bernheim Distillery in Louisville to avoid Bourbon shortages in the future while introducing a new/old Rye whiskey, Chivas Brothers opens the Dalmunach Distillery in Speyside, and Prince Charles visits Islay to help Ardbeg and Laphroaig celebrate their 200th anniversaries.
WhiskyCast Episode 540: June 20, 2015Jun 21, 2015 39:46
It's Father's Day weekend, and we have two stories to share on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. Euan Henderson didn't want to work in the whisky business when he left school, but when your father is veteran distillery manager Iain Henderson, it's hard not to wind up in the family business. Euan's now a team leader at Aberlour, Glenallachie, and Tormore distilleries...and he'll share his story - and his dream to ultimately follow in his father's footsteps - with us. We'll also talk with Phil Brandon, who's beaming like a proud papa this weekend as his Rock Town Distillery in Little Rock, Arkansas celebrates its fifth anniversary. Like any toddler, Rock Town's had some growing pains, too...and Phil discusses them all with us. In the news, Nikka makes the tough decision to replace its entire single malt range with no-age-statement versions because of inventory shortages, a billionaire gets into the whisky business with a new Baltimore distillery, and Heaven Hill is bringing back a revered name in rye whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 539: June 13, 2015Jun 14, 2015 47:10
Dave Schmier and Michael Kandar started Bardstown Barrel Selections five years ago to bottle some casks of good whiskey they'd come across from MGP-I in Indiana, but their Redemption Rye business took off. In this case, success was too much of a good thing, and the partners ran out of capital to keep investing in new casks. This week, they sold Redemption Rye to Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits, which has already completed a long-term supply contract and plans to take the brand nationwide as part of its push into the whiskey business. We'll hear from Dave Schmier and Deutsch president Tom Steffanci on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and in the news, we'll look at a bunch of new whiskies hitting the market ranging from Bottled in Bond Bourbons to experiments with Oregon Oak and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 538: June 6, 2015Jun 7, 2015 39:16
This week, we're looking at the end of an experiment nearly 14 years in the making...Buffalo Trace's Single Oak Project. The attempt to create "Bourbon's Holy Grail" used 96 trees to make 192 special casks filled with whiskey for 8 years, with nearly 1,400 different possible variables that could have an impact on the final whiskey. More than 5,000 people posted their tasting notes on the 192 different bottlings, but it took a team of whisky writers to make the final selection from five finalists. We'll discuss the results with Buffalo Trace CEO Mark Brown, along with the fallout from the "PappyGate" series of whiskey thefts, the distillery's expansion plans, and projections for future Bourbon supplies. In the news, Diageo's Bulleit Bourbon is the latest brand to face a class-action lawsuit over the language on its labels, Brown-Forman is jumping into the growing Irish Whiskey market with a $50 million deal for Slane Castle's fledgling distillery, and we'll have the latest on the week's new whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 537: May 30, 2015May 31, 2015 41:06
Irish Whiskey once dominated the world, but several factors combined to nearly wipe the country's distillers out over time. While it's now the fastest-growing segment of the whisky industry, Ireland's distillers only have a 4% share of the global market - and now have ambitious plans to triple that over the next 15 years. Irish Whiskey Association chairman Bernard Walsh explains just how he and his colleagues plan to do that on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, more details are coming out about exactly what happened in last month's Silver Trail Distillery explosion, along with another round of arraignments in the Kentucky Bourbon thefts. There's also good news with expansion plans at Four Roses and another new distillery in Scotland, and The Glenlivet is shaking up its travel retail range of single malts...we'll have the details along with a roundup of the week's new whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 536: May 23, 2015May 24, 2015 50:36
Gordon & MacPhail reopened Benromach Distillery in Speyside in 1998 after 15 years of inactivity, and Keith Cruickshank has been there since the stills were fired up. After two years as a stillman, he was promoted to distillery manager, and remains one of the three men who tend the stills at Benromach. He'll take us on a tour of the distillery on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, a lawsuit has been filed in connection with last month's explosion at the Silver Trail Distillery in Kentucky, and we have the first interview with the man who built Silver Trail's still and now faces a product liability lawsuit, Terry Wilhelm of Revenoor Stills. Five of the nine people indicted last month in connection with the Kentucky Bourbon thefts appeared in court this week, and a tenth person has been indicted on charges she looked the other way as whiskey was being stolen from Buffalo Trace. We'll also have a roundup of the week's new whiskies, including several Feis Ile festival bottlings.
WhiskyCast Episode 535: May 16, 2015May 17, 2015 34:32
The labels on whisky bottles often give us more than just the legal description of what's inside the bottle. Good ones convey the character and heritage of the spirit...perhaps even a sense of what it tastes like. Author Noah Rothbaum has been looking at whisky labels from before Prohibition to the present day, and picked 100 of them for his new book "The Art of American Whiskey." He'll share the story behind the book in this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, one of the victims of last month's Silver Trail Distillery explosion has died, distillers in Ireland have ambitious plans for the future, and we'll have details on the week's new whiskies along with tasting notes for the new Glenmorangie Duthac, the Ben Nevis 10-year-old single malt, and the new Compass Box Hedonism Quindecimus.
WhiskyCast Episode 534: May 9, 2015May 10, 2015 32:42
This episode wraps up our special coverage of the Spirit of Speyside Festival in Scotland, and we'll hear from soccer's Michael Owen. The former Manchester United and Real Madrid star is working with Speyside Distillery as a global ambassador for its Spey single malts, and surprised visitors touring the distillery last Monday. He'll tell us why his whisky is better than David Beckham's Haig Club. We'll also look at another pairing -- this one matching whisky with bacon rolls, and George Grant of Glenfarclas let festival visitors pick the distillery's next Family Cask release. In the news, two of the Kentucky Bourbon theft defendants have pleaded guilty and are cooperating with prosecutors, Maker's Mark has won a court battle in Florida, and we'll have a roundup of new whiskies from all over the world.
WhiskyCast Episode 533: May 2, 2015May 3, 2015 26:02
Lots of people try to pair whiskies with foods, but pairing whiskies with music? That's the challenge Neil Ridley and Joel Harrison took on when they curated the "Sound of Aberlour" tastings for this year's Spirit of Speyside Festival. We'll continue our special coverage from Speyside with Neil and Joel, along with the drams and musicians they put together. In the news, Glen Grant's Dennis Malcolm received the inaugural "Spirit of Speyside Award" for his contributions to both the whisky industry and the community, and we'll have the latest on a bunch of new whiskies from Speyside, the Highlands, and all over Scotland...along with music from Charlie McCarron and his friends performing at Fleming Hall in Aberlour.
WhiskyCast Episode 532: May 1, 2015May 3, 2015 34:04
We're kicking off this weekend's special coverage of the Spirit of Speyside Festival in Scotland this time around! Thousands of people from around the world are in Speyside this weekend, and you'll hear some of them take part in a blind whisky nosing and tasting competition. With the "PappyGate" arrests fresh in the news, we'll get a glimpse into the ancient art of whisky thievery with Glenfiddich's Ian Millar, and there's plenty of news as well!
WhiskyCast Episode 531: April 25, 2015Apr 26, 2015 39:56
It's been a busy week in the whisky world, and there's a lot to talk about on this episode. We'll have the latest on Friday's explosion at the Silver Trail Distillery in Hardin, Kentucky that left distillers Jay Rogers and Kyle Rogers critically burned, along with the outpouring of support for them following the accident. Nine people were indicted in the theft of thousands of dollars worth of Pappy Van Winkle, Buffalo Trace, and Wild Turkey Bourbon in Kentucky, but there's a viral campaign seeking a pardon...for the whiskey. Finally, Bruichladdich's Jim McEwan suddenly announced his plan to retire in July after 52 years in the whisky business...so he really can spend more time with his family. We'll have all that, plus more of the week's news and tasting notes for one of Jim McEwan's favorite whiskies along with two single malts from 1975.
WhiskyCast Episode 530: April 18, 2015Apr 19, 2015 41:18
If distilleries have ghosts, the ones haunting the former Old Taylor Distillery in Kentucky finally have some people to scare. After nearly 43 years, the historic distillery is being restored with plans to begin distilling by the end of this year and open to visitors in the spring of 2016. Marianne Barnes left Brown-Forman recently to oversee the project for the distillery's partners and will be the master distiller when production begins. She joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth with an update on the progress of bringing the old site back to life and trying to recreate the Bourbon that was originally made there for decades. In the news, investigators may announce indictments in the Pappy van Winkle and Wild Turkey Bourbon thefts this week, Scotland's newest distillery has been dedicated, and Scotch Whisky is helping global drinks companies weather the decline in Chinese spirits sales.
WhiskyCast Episode 529: April 11, 2015Apr 12, 2015 53:53
This week, we're on location at the Maker's Mark Distillery in Loretto, Kentucky for the annual Maker's Mark Handcraft Festival and the running of the Maker's 46 Mile at Lexington's Keeneland Race Course. Friday also brought an estimated 1,000 whisky and Kentucky basketball fans to Keeneland for the annual signing of the Maker's Mark Keeneland charity bottle. This year's bottle honors legendary University of Kentucky basketball coach Adolph Rupp, and several of his former players spent hours signing bottles for the fans who turned out at Keeneland. We'll have a complete wrap-up of the weekend's events on this week's WhiskyCast. In the news, Tennessee's controversial whiskey law will stand for at least another year after a repeal attempt was scrapped, Scottish doctors want to see the drinking age raised from 18 to 21, and we'll get the latest on new whiskies from BenRiach, Amrut, High West, and Heaven Hill.
WhiskyCast Episode 528: April 4, 2015Apr 5, 2015 26:16
Bacardi took a step into the Bourbon business this week with its acquisition of Angel's Share Brands, the parent company of Angel's Envy Bourbon and the Louisville Distilling Company's distillery under construction in Louisville. The deal is a friendly one, since Bacardi had owned a small stake in Angel's Share since it was founded by the late Lincoln Henderson and his partners in 2006. Henderson's son Wes and the other Angel's Share executives will run the company as a separate division within Bacardi, and he joins us to discuss the reasons behind the sale on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Bacardi has also acquired a small share in Compass Box as part of a larger deal to supply whisky for the Compass Box blends, one of the whisky industry's major travel retail companies is being sold, and the Scotch Malt Whisky Society is changing hands, too.
WhiskyCast Episode 527: March 28, 2015Mar 29, 2015 30:58
Suntory Holdings CEO Takeshi Niinami is one of Japan's leading business executives. He's the first CEO from outside the founding Torii family, and is also a key economic adviser to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe. He inherited last year's $16 billion acquisition of Beam when he joined Suntory six months ago, and has been focused on making the deal work while changing Suntory's internal culture. We'll discuss the growing pains of the deal, which made Beam Suntory the world's #3 spirits company, with Takeshi Niinami on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, a preliminary ruling in one lawsuit against a "handmade" spirits maker could be a sign of problems for whisky makers facing similar lawsuits, Four Roses plans another round of construction in Bourbon Country, and milestones mean commemorative bottlings of whiskies from around the world.
WhiskyCast Episode 526: March 21, 2015Mar 22, 2015 38:25
US President Barack Obama visited a whisky maker for the first time this week during his trip to Cleveland for a speech to the City Club of Cleveland. He visited the small business incubator that's home to Tom Lix's Cleveland Whiskey, along with nearly two dozen other small manufacturers. Lix's proprietary -- and controversial -- process takes young whiskey and gives it what Lix claims is the color, aroma, and taste of older Bourbons. He'll tell us about the President's visit and discuss his process on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the investigation into the theft of whiskey from a Wild Turkey warehouse in Kentucky continues, Jim Beam fights back in the courts, another "world" whisky is named the World's Best Single Malt, and a Japanese CEO has banned his executives from drinking some of his company's own whiskies to make more available for consumers.
WhiskyCast Episode 525: March 14, 2015Mar 15, 2015 37:01
Anthony Bourdain is many things...a chef, author, journalist, and media personality. At heart, though, he's a hedonist seeking pleasure from everything he encounters - including whisky. The host of CNN's "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown" was the lead juror for this year's American Craft Council Rare Craft Fellowship Awards presented by The Balvenie, and we spent a few minutes discussing whisky at Tuesday's awards luncheon in New York City. He'll share his thoughts on the global interest in whisky, along with his take on what defines a "craft" whisky and more on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth.
In the news, a Buffalo Trace employee has been arrested has been made in the theft of five barrels of Bourbon from Wild Turkey, and investigators are looking for any links to the infamous 2013 "Pappygate" theft. Scotch Whisky industry leaders are hoping for a tax cut in this coming week's UK budget announcement, and a Bourbon brand not sold in the US for two decades is coming back. We'll also have plenty of feedback on last week's interview with class-action attorney Abbas Kazerounian on his consumer fraud lawsuits against Jim Beam and Maker's Mark over their claims of being "hand-made."
WhiskyCast Episode 524: March 7, 2015Mar 8, 2015 49:25
Lawyers are circling around the whisky industry, much like sharks around a shipwreck. At least five different US distillers and bottlers have been hit with class-action lawsuits since last September accusing them of misleading consumers. The litigation largely focuses on whether their whiskies are "hand-made," "small-batch," or claim to come from a small-scale distillery that actually purchases bulk whiskey from larger distillers.
This week on WhiskyCast In-Depth, we'll hear from one of the attorneys targeting the whisky industry. Abbas Kazerounian's California law firm specializes in class-action consumer cases, and is currently suing Maker's Mark, Jim Beam, and Tito's Vodka over claims that their products are hand-made. His goal is to get drinks producers to be more honest with consumers, and plans to expand that fight to Scotch Whisky and other spirits as well. Beam Suntory declined to make anyone available to discuss the lawsuits, but company spokesmen have said the lawsuits are without merit.
In the news, George Dickel master distiller John Lunn is leaving Diageo for a new opportunity, Brown-Forman plans to turn up the heat on Fireball with its Jack Daniel's Tennessee Fire, and two sides are squabbling over the trademark rights to a historic distillery name. This week's tasting notes feature The Glenlivet Founder's Reserve and the Evan Williams Single Barrel 2005 Vintage Bourbon.
WhiskyCast Episode 523: February 28, 2015Mar 1, 2015 55:20
Lots to talk about this week, with news from all over the world! Bruichladdich's Jim McEwan joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to talk about the world's peatiest whisky ever -- his Octomore 6.3 with a phenol level of 258ppm! We'll also hear about new whiskies from Tomatin, Duncan Taylor, Midleton, and Whistlepig...the latest on Teeling Whiskey's new Dublin distillery that could be ready to make whiskey by St. Patrick's Day, and look at the Bourbon boom with Beam Suntory's chief of marketing and sales for Whiskies and Cognacs, Chris Bauder.
WhiskyCast Episode 522: February 21, 2015Feb 22, 2015 35:08
For the second straight year, a Texas whiskey has won Best in Show honors at the American Craft Spirits Association competition. San Antonio's Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling .36 Single Barrel Straight Bourbon beat a field of whiskies and other spirits from around the US. Ranger Creek co-founder Mark McDavid joins us this week on WhiskyCast In-Depth to share the story behind that whiskey and the distillery. In the news, a California law firm is challenging Beam Suntory on two fronts now over claims that Jim Beam and Maker's Mark are "hand-made", a distilling prodigy is leaving Brown-Forman for the craft distilling world, and doctors don't want us to confuse the "Bourbon Virus" with the "Whisky Bug".
WhiskyCast Episode 521: February 14, 2015Feb 15, 2015 44:07
It's Valentine's Day, and who better to explain his passion for making whisky than Rifino Valentine of Valentine Distilling. His Woodward Ltd. Bourbon is named after Detroit's legendary Woodward Avenue, which runs just a couple of blocks away from his distillery in the suburb of Ferndale, Michigan. Valentine is preparing to move from his original site to a brand-new facility in Ferndale, and is part of a craft distilling boom in the Detroit area. We'll talk with Rifino Valentine and his head distiller, Justin Aden, on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. There are plenty of new whiskies to talk about this week, and we'll also have more tasting notes from the #28DramsIn28Days project.
WhiskyCast Episode 520: February 7, 2015Feb 8, 2015 54:38
Ian MacMillan has been overseeing the whiskies from Deanston, Tobermory, and Bunnahabhain for years...but Cognac casks were one thing he hadn't experimented much with until the opportunity presented itself several years ago. The result is the new Deanston 18 Cognac Matured single malt that's being released in the US this month. We'll discuss Cognac casks with Ian on WhiskyCast In-Depth, along with his other single malts and his new take on the Black Bottle blend In the news, there's word that The Glenlivet may be replacing its flagship 12-year-old expression with the no-age-statement Founder's Reserve in some markets, old stills from Islay will be getting a new life in Ireland, and whisky sales keep growing in the US. We'll also kick off the #28DramsIn28Days series of tasting notes, too.
WhiskyCast Episode 519: January 31, 2015Feb 1, 2015 54:45
Graeme Macaloney gave up a secure career in the pharmaceutical industry to pursue his dream of making whisky, and the Scottish expat is getting closer to realizing his dream. He's hoping to begin construction on the Victoria Caledonian Distillery in Victoria, British Columbia soon, and has already brought Dr. Jim Swan and former Diageo distillery manager Mike Nicolson as consultants. Graeme explains why he and his family mortgaged their future (and their house) on his dream on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Wild Turkey's Eddie Russell joins us to discuss his promotion to Master Distiller alongside his father, the legendary Jimmy Russell. We'll also look at whisky economics in Scotland, where a new report estimates the industry's economic impact at £5 billion annually. There's word on new whiskies from anCnoc and GlenDronach, and this week's tasting notes include whiskies from Kentucky, Texas, Scotland, and France!
WhiskyCast Episode 518: January 24, 2015Jan 25, 2015 36:39
Kentucky's Four Roses Distillery announced this week that supply problems will prevent this spring's release of the annual Four Roses Limited Edition Single Barrel Bourbon. In his first interview on the subject, master distiller Jim Rutledge explains why dropping the limited-edition release will make more single barrel bottlings available to consumers, along with the prospects for bringing back the annual release in the future. In the news, Scotch Whisky producers are preparing for a fight with Westminster over taxes, we have more details on last weekend's Sunday Herald report about water usage violations at some Scottish distilleries, US regulators are cracking down on vague age statements, and there are new whiskies to talk about from Woodford Reserve and Glenmorangie. Finally, tasters at an event planned for Valentine's Day in London may really detect a note of sweat in their whiskies...
WhiskyCast Episode 517: January 18, 2015Jan 19, 2015 34:47
In the second of our two episodes from this weekend’s Victoria Whisky Festival, we'll catch up on more of the week's news - including more details on the $50,000 bottle of The Balvenie 50 stolen in a Montreal robbery Thursday and a Scottish newspaper report that several distilleries are in hot water with environmental protection officials over using too much water. We'll also get the latest on new whiskies from Springbank, the revival of a historic blended Scotch brand, and Corby's Dr. Don Livermore clears up more misconceptions about Canadian Whisky.
WhiskyCast Episode 516: January 17, 2015Jan 18, 2015 43:52
We're on the road for the first time in 2015 this weekend, with the first of two episodes from the 10th annual Victoria Whisky Festival in Victoria, British Columbia. The weekend kicked off with the annual Canadian Whisky Awards presentation Thursday night at the Hotel Grand Pacific, including a special Lifetime Achievement Award presented to Forty Creek founder John Hall. We'll hear from John and Canadian Whisky Awards founder Davin de Kergommeaux on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Montreal police are looking for a robber with very expensive taste in whisky following a holdup Thursday at the SAQ's flagship store in Montreal, Collingwood Rye takes Canadian Whisky of the Year honors, and Beam Suntory plans to export Alberta Premium for the first time.
WhiskyCast Episode 515: January 10, 2015Jan 11, 2015 29:34
On New Year's Day, David Perkins and his team at Utah's High West Distillery fired up the still at their new distillery for the first time. High West has been making whiskey since 2009 at its historic distillery and restaurant in the heart of Park City, and while the current distillery will continue, the bulk of High West's production will eventually come from the new facility located on a dude ranch and resort along Interstate 80 a few miles north of Park City. Perkins joins us to discuss the new distillery on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also have details on the latest chapter in the Balcones saga, a fake whisky scam in the UK, new whiskies from Aultmore and Balblair, and tasting notes on whiskies from Glencadam, Glenfiddich, and a new single barrel from Crown Royal.
WhiskyCast Episode 514: January 3, 2015Jan 4, 2015 24:21
Irish whiskey will take another step in 2015 with the first exports of Yellow Spot to the US market, still the strongest market in the world for Irish whiskey sales. While Yellow Spot is produced by Irish Distillers at Midleton Distillery near Cork, the brand is owned by Dublin-based whisky and wine merchant Mitchell & Son. Robert Mitchell is the latest family member to head up the 210-year-old business, and joins us to discuss this month's US launch of Yellow Spot, along with the global potential for Irish whiskey sales. In the news, Japan's Nikka Whisky is mourning the death of former president Takeshi Taketsuru, the adopted son of founder Masataka Taketsuru, Chip Tate is expected to announce more details on his new Texas distillery this coming week, and Laphroaig will revive its 15-year-old Islay single malt for 2015 as part of the distillery's 200th anniversary celebration.
WhiskyCast Episode 513: December 28, 2014Dec 29, 2014 39:55
As we close out 2014, we'll hear from the man some might call "The Whisky Whisperer" for his ability to coax young distilleries into producing spirit that's mature after just a few years. Dr. Jim Swan's client list includes Penderyn, Kilchoman, and Taiwan's King Car Distillery, which took the top two spots in this year's Malt Maniacs Awards with Kavalan Solist single malts. He's also involved with new distilleries in Scotland and England, as well as projects around the world, and will share some of them with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll have the latest on plans for another expansion at The Glenlivet, along with new whiskies from Bruichladdich and Woodford Reserve, and this week's tasting notes focus on Tomatin's Cuatro series of identical single malts finished in four different types of sherry casks.
Episode 512: December 20, 2014Dec 21, 2014 36:57
Each year, the Malt Maniacs honor some of the world's best whiskies with the Malt Maniacs Awards. This year, for the first time, the overall winner didn't come from Scotland or Japan..but from Taiwan's King Car Distillery, which took the top two spots with Kavalan Solist sherry cask bottlings. Only four gold medals were awarded in the competition, and we'll discuss the results with Maniacs Peter Silver and Robert Karlson...two of the 10 judges on this year's judging panel. In the news, Diageo wins a trademark lawsuit in Houston against the maker of "Crown Club" whiskies, while giving Texans the first ever single-barrel bottling of Crown Royal. We'll also have more on new whiskies from around the world, and this week's tasting notes include an Aultmore single malt from Douglas Laing & Co. that raised eyebrows when it was released in Israel.
WhiskyCast Episode 511: December 13, 2014Dec 14, 2014 29:13
Amrut got whisky lovers used to the idea of single malt whiskies from India, and now, Paul John is challenging Amrut's standing as the leader in Indian single malts. John Distilleries has been making single malt whisky in Goa for the last 10 years, but only started exporting it to the UK and Europe in 2012. The Paul John whiskies have now arrived in Australia, and are expected to enter the US market in 2015. Krish Kumar of Paul John explains the distillery's story on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Maker's Mark is now facing a court challenge over its claims of being "handmade", another Bourbon attraction is coming to downtown Louisville, and the airport security guards are going to love a new shoe design coming from London...one with compartments for whisky bottles in the heels!
WhiskyCast Episode 510: December 8, 2014Dec 8, 2014 01:10:01
As we reported on our last episode, Balcones Distilling founder Chip Tate has accepted a buyout agreement from the majority owners of the Waco, Texas distillery. Tate will not return to the distillery he built in 2009, and sold his 27% ownership stake in Balcones for an undisclosed amount. In this bonus episode of WhiskyCast, we'll have complete interviews with Tate and Balcones chairman Greg Allen - in his first interview on the dispute. Of course, we have much more than just that to bring you. We'll have the details on the start of construction on The Macallan's $168 million distillery and visitors center in Speyside, the winners of Whisky Magazine's 2015 Scotland Icons of Whisky Awards, details on new whiskies from Oban and BenRiach, and tasting notes for Glenmorangie's new Dornoch travel retail exclusive release.
WhiskyCast Episode 509: December 6, 2014Dec 7, 2014 37:11
In the first of this week's two episodes of WhiskyCast, we'll travel to Sweden to look at two of the country's whisky distilleries. Mackmyra is Sweden's oldest distillery...even though it's only 15 years old, and matures its malts in a former mine 50 metres underground. The Box Distillery has just released its second single malt four years after beginning production in a former power plant, and both releases sold out within hours at Sweden's state-run liquor monopoly. In the news, Chip Tate has accepted a buyout offer from Balcones Distillery's majority owners and has left with plans to start his own distillery in Waco, Texas, but there remains a great deal of bitterness between the two sides. We'll have more on this story in this week's bonus episode. Former Bruichladdich managing director Mark Reynier is back in the whisky business after working out a deal to buy a former Guinness brewery in Ireland and convert it into a distillery, and the Beam brothers have brought a new partner in to help grow their Limestone Branch Distillery in Kentucky.
WhiskyCast Episode 508: November 29, 2014Nov 30, 2014 31:11
Irish Whiskey has been leading the global growth in whisky sales for the last several years, posting double-digit gains every year. That growth is being reflected in the number of new distilleries under construction or being planned in Ireland, and distillers from both sides of the border have come together to form the Irish Whiskey Association. Peter Morehead of Irish Distillers was elected the association's first president, and joins us to discuss the state of Irish Whiskey on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, former Bruichladdich managing director Mark Reynier is getting back into the whisky business with a new distillery, Chip Tate's scheduled to return to Balcones at the end of this coming week and plans major changes while his dispute with Balcones' majority investors continues, and Springbank's owners thumb their noses at the results of the recent Scottish independence referendum with a new release honoring the losing side in that election.
WhiskyCast Episode 507: November 22, 2014Nov 23, 2014 40:23
Dewar's has focused on its Blended Scotch whiskies for generations, with the limited exception in recent years of single malts from Aberfeldy. However, a team within Dewar's has been working quietly for the last six years to change that focus, and the result is the Last Great Malts series. The new range made its debut earlier this year with redesigned packaging for Aberfeldy, and new whiskies from Craigellachie and Aultmore are just now entering the market. In 2015, we'll see The Deveron single malts from Macduff Distillery and the first mainstream single malts ever from 212-year-old Royal Brackla. Stephen Marshall led the Dewar's team behind the Last Great Malts, and opens up about the process behind the new range on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, new distilleries are on line in Scotland and Kentucky, a historic Speyside whisky bar is open after major renovations, and the "Bourbon Summit" may already have a winner.
WhiskyCast Episode 506: November 15, 2014Nov 16, 2014 43:26
Stuart Harvey has been the master blender for Inver House for nearly 11 years, and he's living proof that you don't have to be born into the industry to become a master blender. He started out making beer, but made the switch to whisky and never looked back. He'll join us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth to discuss the art of blending, and how it's just as much of a challenge to create a Single Malt expression as it is a Blended Scotch. In the news, Chip Tate has won a key battle in his bid to regain control of Balcones Distilling, thieves strike a whisky warehouse near Glasgow, and the Kentucky sheriff investigating last year's Pappy Van Winkle theft is convinced it was an inside job...but needs more evidence before he can make any arrests. We'll also look at the week's new whiskies, and this week's tasting notes feature the new Jura 1984 and Douglas Laing's new Timorous Beastie Highland Blended Malt.
WhiskyCast Episode 505: November 8, 2014Nov 9, 2014 01:03:54
This episode marks the end of our 9th year, and we'll hear from two of the more outspoken voices in the whisky world on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. Simon and Phil Thompson run the family-owned Dornoch Castle Hotel in the Scottish Highlands, and their hotel's bar was named Scotland's Whisky Bar of the Year this week by the Scottish Licensed Trade News. The Thompson brothers are almost as well-known for their opinions as their whisky selection, and they pulled no punches in a wide-ranging interview the other night in Dornoch. In the news, Diageo pulls the trigger on a swap of Bushmills for Don Julio Tequila, Glenfiddich goes retro with a new expression re-creating the one it pioneered in 1963, Pappy Fever hits epidemic status, and a Canadian liquor store pays the price for bargain-basement shelving.
WhiskyCast Episode 504: November 1, 2014Nov 2, 2014 41:41
The battle between Scotland's illicit distillers and the excisemen known as "gaugers" is the stuff of which legends, books, and now, a movie have been made. Filmmaker Mike Dziennik's "Peat Reek" will be shown this coming weekend at the Inverness Film Festival, and tells the story of a young gauger sent to the Highlands to shut down the whisky makers and the local minister who helps him see the light. We'll talk with Mike Dziennik on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the Wall Street Journal reports Diageo may be close to trading Bushmills for control of the Don Julio tequila brand, Emperador closes its deal to buy Whyte & Mackay, Old Pulteney goes green with biomass power, and Fireball faces a firestorm in Scandinavia. This week's tasting notes include The Balvenie's new Tun 1509 Batch 1, Balblair's 1999 Vintage Second Release, and what may well be one of the world's worst whiskies - a herring cask-finished single malt!
WhiskyCast Episode 503: October 25, 2014Oct 26, 2014 43:36
This week's episode comes from Whiskey Live Dublin, and we'll be focusing on Irish whiskies this time around with some of the winners from Thursday night's Irish Whiskey Awards ceremony at Kilbeggan Distillery. We'll also get the details on the most expensive Irish whiskey ever released, the Midleton Very Rare 30th Anniversary Pearl Edition...as well as the upcoming US debut of Yellow Spot. It won't be an all-Ireland show, though...we''ll hear from Chip Tate on his side of the Balcones Distilling dispute now that his gag order has been lifted, and while Bourbon's global boom is causing a boom in Kentucky's economy, a slowdown in Scotch whisky sales has prompted Diageo to slow down its expansion plans in Scotland.
WhiskyCast Episode 502: October 18, 2014Oct 19, 2014 31:19
Finland has a love-hate relationship with whisky. Finns love it, and the Finnish government hates it. Distilled spirits advertising is banned, and regulators went so far as to force the organizers of a Helsinki beer and whisky festival this coming weekend to drop "whisky" from the event's name or risk losing their permits. It's still legal to make whisky in Finland, though...and we'll find out more about Teerenpeli Distillery & Brewery and the Kyrö Distilling Company on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Chivas Brothers gives its new Speyside distillery a name, both sides in the Balcones Distilling dispute head back to court this week, and we'll find out about some wearable whisky fashion, along with tasting notes for one Bourbon, one Scotch...and one Joker.
WhiskyCast Episode 501: October 11, 2014Oct 12, 2014 59:20
This week, we'll look at the growth of craft distilling through the eyes of Darek Bell and James Rodewald. Bell is one of the co-founders of Corsair Artisan Distillery, and has just published his second book. "Fire Water" looks at ways of producing uniquely smoky whiskies. Veteran drinks writer James Rodewald studied the boom in craft distilling for his new book "American Spirit." We'll also look at a bunch of new whiskies flooding the market from around the world, a flood at a distillery in Speyside, and a Manhattan mixologist teaches us how to make the perfect Manhattan.
WhiskyCast Episode 500: October 6, 2014Oct 7, 2014 56:22
This is a special episode of WhiskyCast - not only is it the 500th episode, but it's the second of two episodes this weekend from The Whisky Show in London! We're packing a lot into this episode, with news on new whiskies from Girvan, Kilchoman, and others, a re-start of production at Sweden's Mackmyra Distillery, and a look at some of the new whisky books just being published. Our main focus, though, is an in-depth look at whisky collecting, following yet another mainstream media story in Sunday's Telegraph touting the investment value of rare whiskies. We'll talk to some of the whisky lovers who hoped to get one of the rare Karuizawa single malt bottlings produced specially for the show, but were beaten to the punch..along with some who managed to get their hands on one. Much of the demand is coming from Asia, and things have gotten so crazy that some whisky bloggers are shooting video of themselves smashing empty sample bottles of Ardbeg's recent Supernova release just to prove they didn't sell their coded samples. Finally, we'll hear from one of the world's top whisky collectors...Sukhinder Singh, who's seen whisky investing from all sides as both a collector and retailer of rare whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 499: October 4, 2014Oct 5, 2014 31:44
This is the first of two episodes this weekend from The Whisky Show in London, and we'll be looking at some of the new whiskies that made their debut this weekend at Vinopolis, home of The Whisky Exchange. Some of the newest whiskies are actually very old whiskies, including four special Gordon & MacPhail Private Collection single malts to celebrate the transition of the family-owned business to a new generation of Urquharts. Michael Urquhart, the last of the third generation members to retire, helped introduce the 57 to 63-year-old whiskies during a master class today in London. Another longtime family-owned firm, Berry Bros. & Rudd, unveiled the oldest single grain Scotch whisky bottling on record, a 50-year-old North British grain distilled in 1962. We'll also check on the new Chivas Brothers distillery in Speyside that's ramping up operations this week, along with Edradour's plans to expand Scotland's smallest distillery, and check on other new releases from around the world.
WhiskyCast Episode 498: September 26, 2014Sep 27, 2014 38:01
With all of the issues being raised over whisky labeling in the US and a new lawsuit challenging claims on Templeton Rye's labels, we'll hear this week from an attorney who's become an expert in the US regulatory process as both a lawyer and distillery owner. David DeFazio is one of the co-founders of Wyoming Whiskey, and has been through the TTB's maze of red tape on several occasions. He'll explain the process and the potential pitfalls on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll have more on the class-action lawsuit targeting Templeton Rye, Brown-Forman will invest $30 million in a new downtown Louisville distillery for Old Forester, and Scotch whisky exports fell during the first half of 2014. We'll also have the latest on new whiskies from around the world, and here's a riddle to this week's tasting notes: think of a deer lost in space.
WhiskyCast Episode 497: September 21, 2014Sep 22, 2014 42:51
It's Kentucky Bourbon Festival week, and there's a lot of news coming out of Bourbon Country these days. Thousands of Bourbon lovers descended on Bardstown and the Louisville area for the annual festival, which comes as Diageo opened the new Bulleit Frontier Whiskey Experience at Louisville's historic Stitzel-Weller Distillery to the public for the first time, the Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame welcomed a new member, and much more. In the news, Diageo and The Explorers Club have settled their legal differences, while the next hearing in the Balcones Distilling dispute has been delayed until October 7. We'll also get reaction to this week's decision by Scottish voters to stick with the United Kingdom...for now.
WhiskyCast Episode 496: September 12, 2014Sep 13, 2014 41:41
Templeton Rye has been in the spotlight in recent weeks as critics go after so-called "sourced whisky" producers for what they claim are violations of a US regulation that requires the disclosure of the "state of distillation" of a whisky if it's different from the producer's home state. The Iowa-based company announced two weeks ago that it will change its labeling to disclose that its whisky is distilled in Indiana, while noting that it's been up front about that fact for years everywhere but on the label. Templeton's Scott Bush and Keith Kerkhoff will tell us their side of the story on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Scotch Whisky producers are nervous about the upcoming independence referendum, Kentucky's Bourbon Hall of Fame will induct one of the industry's pioneering women, and there are plenty of new whiskies to talk about. This week's tasting notes include the Four Roses 2014 Limited Edition Small Batch, Maker's Mark Cask Strength, and the Parker's Heritage Collection 2014 "Original Batch" Wheat Whiskey.
WhiskyCast Episode 495: September 7, 2014Sep 8, 2014 32:06
When you've worked at the same place for 60 years, it's hard for your colleagues to keep a secret from you. Wild Turkey and the Kentucky Distillers Association managed to keep a secret from Jimmy Russell for months, though. This Wednesday will be his 60th anniversary at the distillery, and last week, the KDA held a luncheon at Wild Turkey to honor Jimmy with only the sixth lifetime honorary membership ever presented by the association in its 130-year history. We'll hear from the "Buddha of Bourbon" on just how surprised he was, along with the KDA's Eric Gregory...and Jimmy even gives us advance details on a new release of Wild Turkey Forgiven, too. In the news, there are plenty of new Bourbons on the way, along with several new single malts from Scotland, and we'll also get some of the reaction to last week's interview on whisky labeling issues with Steve Gertman of California's Ascendant Spirits.
WhiskyCast Episode 494: August 30, 2014Aug 31, 2014 30:19
Steve Gertman of California's Ascendant Spirits produces Breaker Bourbon, and his brand is one of those targeted by a Chicago-based law firm that specializes in class-action lawsuits, and is "investigating" claims by small-batch whisky brands about the source of their whiskies. Like many small producers, Gertman has been sourcing whiskey from other distillers while the Bourbon he's making is aging, and he responds to the claims on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth along with criticism he's received since appearing on WhiskyCast last January. In the news, Templeton Rye is also a target of the law firm's probe, and has announced that it will change its label to reflect that the whiskey is distilled in Indiana and not Iowa. We'll also have reaction from other targets of the probe as well, along with the reaction of Charbay's Marko Karakasevic to last weekend's Napa Valley earthquake and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 493: August 22, 2014Aug 23, 2014 35:56
This week, we'll wrap up our conversation with Bourbon Hall of Fame member Chuck Cowdery, author of the new book "Bourbon: Strange" and get his views on more of the controversies facing the whisky industry. Diageo broke ground this week for the new Bulleit Bourbon distillery in Kentucky, and Chuck has some harsh words for the way Diageo and its predecessors have handled American whiskey in the past. He's also upset with what he and other critics see as lax oversight by federal regulators on whisky labeling, and doesn't hesitate to name names in Part 2 of our WhiskyCast In-Depth interview. In the news, we'll hear more from Tom Bulleit on the groundbreaking for the new Bulleit distillery and Cara Laing updates us on upcoming new whiskies from Douglas Laing & Co. Finally, we'll talk about the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and the new Whiskey Ice Challenge in honor of Heaven Hill's Parker Beam, and Parker's wife Linda passed along a message to everyone supporting the fight against ALS.
WhiskyCast Episode 492: August 16, 2014Aug 17, 2014 48:56
Chuck Cowdery is regarded as one of the top Bourbon writers around, and is one of the few writers to be inducted into the Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame for his work. His latest book is "Bourbon: Strange", and Chuck debunks some of the mythology surrounding Bourbon while sharing some stories as well. He'll join us this week on WhiskyCast In-Depth for part one of a two-part interview, with the rest on next week's episode. In the news, Russia is now going after Jack Daniel's as the trade war with the West gets uglier, and we'll have the latest on new whiskies and new distilleries. Also, The Balvenie is kicking off its 2014 Rare Craft Collection tour this weekend on California's Monterey Peninsula, and three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti will tell us how he selected the items for this year's collection. He'll also tell us about his private tasting session with The Balvenie's David Stewart, and why you won't see him driving the brand's vintage Morgan sports car any time soon.
WhiskyCast Episode 491: August 8, 2014Aug 9, 2014 35:11
Stuart Nickerson has kept a low profile since leaving Glenglassaugh Distillery following its sale last year, but he has several new projects coming on line in the coming weeks. He's about to launch the first single cask bottling from his own line of whiskies, and will launch a new gin this coming week as the first product from a new distillery he's working with on Shetland - with whiskies to come in the future. He'll discuss both projects with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Scotch Whisky narrowly avoids Russian economic sanctions in the dispute over Ukraine, while a Kentucky Bourbon gets the boot from Moscow. The Explorers Club won the first round in its battle with Diageo over a Johnnie Walker travel retail collection, and we'll have tasting notes for a new whisky with a dark origin.
WhiskyCast Episode 490: August 1, 2014Aug 2, 2014 31:04
Scotland's newest distillery has opened on the Ardnamurchan Peninsula along the western coast, and the first casks of spirit were filled on Thursday at Adelphi's Ardnamurchan Distillery. Veteran whisky maker Graeme Bowie left Balblair Distillery last year to oversee construction of the distillery and serve as its first manager, and he'll join us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Diageo reported a sharp downturn in sales during the last fiscal year, and the drinks giant's shares are on a Barclays watch list for possible effects from next month's Scottish independence referendum. We'll have the details on a New York craft distiller that's now maturing its whiskies in casks made from locally grown trees, new whiskies from Arran and Elijah Craig, and a truce in the Bourbon Feud between the mayors of Louisville and Bardstown.
WhiskyCast Episode 489: July 25, 2014Jul 26, 2014 35:11
Tasmania's distillers have been making some unusual and incredible whiskies in recent years, but many of them are flying under the radar of whisky lovers. Belgrove Distillery is one of those underrated distilleries, but when WhiskyCast listener Matt Wooler told us we had to check it out, we did. Peter Bignell built the distillery from the ground up on his farm, where he grows his own grain, makes his own whisky, and even fills and labels each bottle by hand. He's also making what may well be one of the few peated rye whiskies in the world, and shares his story with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Kentucky's stocks of maturing Bourbon have reached the five million barrel mark for the first time since 1977, we'll get the latest on commemorative bottlings from Maker's Mark and The Famous Grouse, and Woodford Reserve mourns the death of a longtime family member...Elijah, the distillery cat.
WhiskyCast Episode 488: July 18, 2014Jul 19, 2014 40:02
Celebrity-branded spirits are a big trend these days, and the whisky world is no exception. Last week, we reported on the lawsuit filed by John Wayne's heirs against Duke University seeking to protect the family's trademark rights to produce a "Duke Bourbon" featuring the late actor. It's a little easier when the brand is based on a character instead of the actor, though...and this week, we'll hear from two entrepreneurs who have done just that. Michael Howard of Prairie Creek Beverages in Dallas is behind the J.R. Ewing Bourbon named after the legendary "Dallas" villain, and Ed Caan of Riviera Imports worked with Paramount Pictures on Ron Burgundy Great Odin's Raven Scotch as part of last winter's "Anchorman 2" premiere. He'll tell us what Paramount executives originally wanted to call the whisky, too.
We'll also have the latest on the pending sale of Whyte & Mackay, along with word that distillers just down the road from J.R.'s Southfork Ranch have won a zoning battle for their new distillery site. David Beckham, Simon Fuller, and Diageo have launched their Haig Club single grain Scotch in London, and The Famous Grouse releases a special bottling for the Glasgow Commonwealth Games. Finally, we'll look at ideas for summer whisky cocktails with bartender Jeff Bell of PDT in New York City.
WhiskyCast Episode 487: July 11, 2014Jul 12, 2014 39:39
Glenmorangie's Dr. Bill Lumsden wanted to push the envelope 16 years ago when he got his hands on some French Oak barriques from an undisclosed Bordeaux wine chateau, and see just how long he could put a whisky away for finishing. He got his answer a couple of years ago when five of those barriques yielded the Glenmorangie Pride 1978 single malt that was released this week. We'll discuss that process with him on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and he'll respond to Ardbeg lovers who claim the Islay landmark's current releases don't quite match up to those old classic Ardbegs, but still want him to revive the Ardbeg 17-year-old. In the news, Scotland's whisky industry gets dragged into the independence referendum debate, while two distillers pick their sides in the showdown. Speaking of showdowns, John Wayne's family is squaring off in court against Duke University over a Bourbon honoring the legendary movie star.
WhiskyCast Episode 486: July 4, 2014Jul 5, 2014 37:50
Corn farmers have a saying "knee high by the Fourth of July" to gauge whether their crop will be a good one, and we'll look at the grains that go into making "America's Native Spirit" with veteran Bourbon distiller Dave Pickerell on this Independence Day episode. Corn, rye, wheat, and barley each add their own unique character to a Bourbon, along with many of the exotic grains distillers experiment with, and Dave will break them down for us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Glasgow leaders give their blessing to a new distillery along the River Clyde, and we'll have more on new distilleries in Ireland and New Zealand, along with an update on new whiskies from Highland Park, Jim Beam, and Kininvie. This week's tasting notes include Barrell Bourbon, Jim Beam's new Signature Craft Quarter Cask, High West's American Prairie Reserve, and a rare Glengoyne 15 matured exclusively in Bourbon casks.
WhiskyCast Episode 485: June 27, 2014Jun 28, 2014 44:12
Michael Urquhart is retiring from Gordon & MacPhail in September, but the leader of the family-owned business calls it a natural "changing of the guard." However, his successor is the first person from outside the Urquhart family to lead Gordon & MacPhail in its 120-year history. We'll talk whisky and family with Michael and Ewen Mackintosh on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, there's another retirement as Bruichladdich's Duncan McGillivray wraps up his 40-year career, the Bourbon Capital of the World is getting another new distillery as the Bardstown Bourbon Distillery brings a Bourbon Hall of Famer home, and we'll catch up with the guys from Seattle's Westland Distillery as they spread their wings with a new distribution deal.
WhiskyCast Episode 484: June 20, 2014Jun 21, 2014 44:01
Distilling is serious business, and safety is paramount. Brianna Bailey of The Oklahoman can testify to that...she was an eyewitness to an explosion inside Twister Distillery in Moore, Oklahoma on Friday, June 13. Distiller Jeff Thurmon was critically burned after an open propane flame ignited the stream of alcohol spraying from his still. Bailey and the distillery's owner escaped unhurt. She shares the story of that day with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and Scott Harris of Catoctin Creek Distillery explains why distillers have to make safety their top priority. Even if you never plan to work in a distillery, you may visit one someday, and we all need to keep safety in mind. We also have updates on new distilleries and expansion projects in Scotland, Utah, and Kentucky...the latest on new whiskies from Maker's Mark, Crown Royal, and Bowmore...and the kickoff of the Summer Whisky Challenge.
WhiskyCast Episode 483: June 13, 2014Jun 14, 2014 28:46
David Blackmore spends most of his year on the road as the brand ambassador for Glenmorangie and Ardbeg, and was in Taipei for Ardbeg Day 2014 in what he describes as one of his most interesting road trips yet. He'll share stories from the road with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth during a brief break from his travels. In the news, we have word on new whiskies from Maker's Mark, Crown Royal, GlenDronach, and Kilchoman. Diageo wins a legal battle with Tennessee regulators, and a sad story from Oklahoma is proof that craft distilling isn't without its risks. This week's tasting notes have a Hollywood feel, as we'll look at a couple of whiskies with famous names...if not whisky pedigrees.
WhiskyCast Episode 482: June 6, 2014Jun 7, 2014 39:36
Humans have been drinking alcohol for centuries, but there are still many things we don't understand about it...basic things like the chemistry behind fermentation and the biology behind the effect it has on us. Wired Magazine's Adam Rogers has been studying the science of alcohol for his new book "Proof: The Science of Booze" and "distills" it into layman's terms for us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, UK regulators want the public to weigh in on the sale of Whyte & Mackay, Campari completes its acquisition of Canada's Forty Creek Distillery, and Australia's Tasmania Distillery is on the move. We'll continue the science focus in this week's tasting notes with a look at the latest Buffalo Trace Experimental Collection Bourbons.
WhiskyCast Episode 481: May 31, 2014May 31, 2014 32:20
Tokyo's whisky bars are legendary, but so hard to find that they're often compared to Prohibition-era speakeasies. Hidetsugo Ueno owns Bar High Five in Tokyo's Ginza district, and shares his stories of Tokyo bar life with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Diageo announces plans for a new $115 million distillery in Kentucky, while the drinks giant's CEO is warning of problems if Scotland breaks away from the United Kingdom. Robb Report names Redbreast 21 its "Best Of The Best" among spirits, and Ardbeg kicks off its World Cup-themed Auriverdes single malt not on Islay, but just outside Boston. This week's tasting notes include Auchentoshan's new American Oak single malt, Tomatin's new 14-year-old, and the Buchanan's Master blended Scotch.
WhiskyCast Episode 480: May 24, 2014May 24, 2014 30:46
Seiichi Koshimizu has been making whisky at Suntory for 41 years, and became the company's chief blender in 1991. Over the years, he's been responsible for the Hibiki range of blended whiskies, along with the Yamazaki and Hakushu single malts. With help from interpreter Ayami Nakao, he'll share his story with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. The Islay Festival of Malt & Music kicks off this weekend, and we'll have updates on several of this year's Feis Ile bottlings along with a new Laphroaig, experimental Bourbons from Buffalo Trace, and more in the week's news. This week's tasting notes include the Hibiki 17, Orphan Barrel Rhetoric, Bernheim Original Wheat Whiskey, and Armorik Double Matured from France.
WhiskyCast Episode 479: May 17, 2014May 18, 2014 37:07
The old saying goes "when life gives you lemons, make lemonade." Dan Garrison's life was full of lemons back in 2003, and he decided to make lemonade...or in this case, Bourbon. His Garrison Brothers Distillery in the Texas Hill Country helped spark the Texas whiskey boom, and Dan Garrison shares his story with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the third Orphan Barrel Bourbon from Diageo is on the way, along with another batch of Buffalo Trace's Single Oak Project Bourbons...we'll get a preview of Bunnahabhain's Feis Ile whiskies, and Scotch Whisky Association leaders are expressing more concerns about September's independence referendum.
WhiskyCast Episode 478: May 10, 2014May 11, 2014 37:21
Mark Brown heads up Buffalo Trace and its parent company, Sazerac, and he's known for speaking his mind even when it goes against the rest of the Bourbon industry. These days, he's expressing concerns about an ongoing shortage of Bourbon that can't meet today's demands, let alone the potential demand in years to come. Not only is aged Bourbon in short supply, but the new oak barrels Bourbon producers depend on are also in short supply. Brown says distillers, cooperages, and forest owners need to start working on a strategy for the future. In the news, Whyte & Mackay sells for $724.5 million, Suntory's moving quickly to get more Japanese whisky into the US market after closing its deal to buy Beam, and a Speyside golf club now has whiskies from every one of the area's distilleries in its clubhouse.
WhiskyCast Episode 477: May 3, 2014May 4, 2014 28:16
Most distillery startups these days come from entrepreneurs looking for a new challenge in life, and Ken Lewis is no different. His New Riff Distillery in Newport, Kentucky is literally a "new riff" after 38 years of running The Party Source, one of the largest liquor stores in the Cincinnati area. New Riff is scheduled to distill its first spirit this week, and Ken joins us to discuss his reasons for switching from selling whisky to making it on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Suntory closes its $16 billion deal to acquire Beam, Edrington opens the doors on its new US division, Louisville looks to build on the boom in Bourbon tourism, and at a time when no-age-statement whiskies are fashionable, Heaven Hill adds one to its Bernheim Wheat Whiskey.
WhiskyCast Episode 476: April 26, 2014Apr 27, 2014 33:21
Whisky has inspired many musicians over the years, but Copper Dogs is turning that around. Four whisky industry veterans have turned to performing, though Sam Simmons, Cat Spencer, Rob Allanson, and Simon Roser won't be giving up their day jobs any time soon. They're performing at Balvenie Castle during the upcoming Spirit of Speyside Festival, and Sam Simmons joins us to discuss music and whisky on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We have plenty of new whiskies to talk about this week from The Balvenie, Aberfeldy, Tomatin, The Glenlivet and more, while Kavalan's Taiwanese single malts are finally available in the US, Suntory's acquisition of Beam is almost complete, and Sullivan's Cove French Oak -- dubbed the World's Best Single Malt in last month's World Whiskies Awards -- is completely gone.
WhiskyCast Episode 475: April 19, 2014Apr 19, 2014 38:26
Whisky has a place in the kitchen as well as the bar, and Bourbon may well be one of the most versatile spirits chefs can experiment with. It adds a special touch to sauces, desserts, and meat as well as cocktails, and Charlotte Observer food editor Kathleen Purvis explores all of them in her new cookbook, "Bourbon". She joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, three top Beam executives are planning new careers once Suntory takes control of the company, Asia's whisky boom may be turning into a bubble, Scotch whisky gets new protection against fakes in Australia, and four craft distillers are collaborating on a new Bourbon that hits Chicago this coming week. We'll have tasting notes for Four Kings Bourbon, along with Bulleit and Jim Beam's new single barrel Bourbons.
WhiskyCast Episode 474: April 11, 2014Apr 13, 2014 35:26
Craft distillers took center stage during Whisky Live New York on Wednesday evening, and we'll hear from several of them on this week's episode. Chip Tate of Balcones and Mike Reppucci of Sons of Liberty both won World Whiskies Awards last month for their whiskies, while Daric Schlesselman of Brooklyn's Van Brunt Stillhouse was making his Whisky Live debut with a four-grain American whiskey and a single malt. There's also plenty of news this week, as David Beckham takes some flak for teaming up with Diageo and Simon Fuller on the Haig Club single grain Scotch, the Scotch Whisky Association reports flat export numbers for 2013 and expresses concerns over Scotland's independence referendum, and Kentucky's Bourbon distillers help Gov. Steve Beshear pay off his NCAA basketball wager with Connecticut's governor.
WhiskyCast Episode 473: April 5, 2014Apr 6, 2014 21:41
Many of Scotland's historic distilleries have faded into history, to be remembered only by archivists and the occasional whisky lover. While the actual malts from Auchnagie, Stratheden, and others no longer exist -- a group of whisky lovers and entrepreneurs are trying to keep the names alive, and replicate those old malts as best they can using present-day whiskies. We'll find out more about The Lost Distillery Company's whiskies on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we have word on new whiskies from Glenglassaugh, Bowmore, and Buffalo Trace, along with a new look for Benromach, this year's Maker's Mark Keeneland commemorative bottle, and the inside scoop on just what whisky Queen Elizabeth presented to Pope Francis this week at the Vatican.
WhiskyCast Episode 472: March 29, 2014Mar 30, 2014 40:46
James Espey has created some of whisky's legendary brands during his career, along with the Keepers of the Quaich, and was named an Officer of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II last year for his services to the whisky industry. Now, he's busy with a brand of his own...and his own brand. The Last Drop is a boutique whisky brand he and his longtime friends created, and his story of personal brand-building is the subject of his new book "Making Your Marque." He'll share his story on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and you'll have a chance to win a signed copy, too.
WhiskyCast Episode 471: March 22, 2014Mar 23, 2014 34:01
Dave Broom has written and edited many books on whisky and other spirits, but none quite like his latest book. "Whisky: The Manual" is for whisky drinkers who just want to enjoy a dram without having to know everything about it. He'll explain the logic behind his new book on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Australia's Sullivan's Cove French Oak scores an upset win in the World Whiskies Awards as the "World's Best Single Malt", and we'll hear from distillery manager Patrick Maguire. There's more to talk about in the noisy debate over what the definition of a "Tennessee Whiskey" should be, and word of a compromise proposal that's being floated at the state Capitol in Nashville. This week's tasting notes include two of the World Whiskies Awards winners, along with a special version of Jameson for St. Patrick's Day...and the other 364 days of the year.
WhiskyCast Episode 470: March 15, 2014Mar 16, 2014 56:00
Bruichladdich expressions come and go...sort of like the waves on Loch Indaal do. Laddie fans are lamenting a decision to pull the Laddie Ten, Sixteen, and Twenty-Two single malts out of retail, but Bruichladdich's leaders say short supplies and global demand gave them no choice. We'll chat with CEO Simon Coughlin, Production Director Jim McEwan, and Commercial Director Douglas Taylor on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Campari moves into Canadian whisky with its acquisition of Forty Creek, Brown-Forman and Diageo square off in Nashville over standards for Tennessee Whiskey, and might Dad's Hat Pennsylvania Rye want to re-brand itself "Dad's Beret" for its debut in France?
WhiskyCast Episode 469: March 8, 2014Mar 9, 2014 38:46
Graham Eunson has seen a lot during his career in the Scotch whisky industry. He shed a tear or two when he was assigned to close Scapa and Glendronach distilleries, burned with pride when Glenglassaugh's stills were fired up for the first time in more than two decades, and now manages Tomatin Distillery southwest of Inverness. In Tomatin, the distillery manager isn't just the boss, but the mayor...since the village was built around the distillery and its workers live in company-owned homes. We'll talk with Graham about life in Tomatin and taking over for the previous manager/mayor, 53-year Tomatin legend Douglas Campbell, on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth.
This week's episode was recorded on location at the Philadelphia Flower Show, where Jim Rutledge of Four Roses was signing bottles of a limited single barrel release for Pennsylvania's state-owned liquor stores. Jim shares the story behind that release, which he thinks is one of his best, along with details on the soon-to-be-released 2014 Four Roses Limited Edition Single Barrel. We'll also get details on Scotland's newest distillery, which is now being built on the Isle of Harris with a goal of not just creating good whisky, but good jobs.
WhiskyCast Episode 468: March 1, 2014Mar 2, 2014 35:36
Maker's Mark celebrates its 60th anniversary this year, and the distillery is about to undergo a $70 million dollar expansion that will increase capacity by 50% to meet future demands, along with changes to make it easier for distillery workers and thousands of visitors to get around the complex. Maker's Mark President Rob Samuels explains the project and plans for marking the anniversary on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, there are more distillery projects planned in Scotland, details on the third Orphan Barrel Bourbon, and a new Scotch whisky from The Last Drop. We'll also answer a listener question about the history of Speyside distilleries, and this week's tasting notes include the new 25th Anniversary edition of Booker's Bourbon.
WhiskyCast Episode 467: February 23, 2014Feb 23, 2014 36:36
Alwynne Gwilt couldn't stand whisky...hated it, in fact. That is, until a former boss in London dragged the Canadian expat to a media tasting. It's not quite the same transformation Peter Parker had following his encounter with a radioactive spider, but that evening turned Alwynne into "Miss Whisky". Now, she's on her own blogging, freelance writing, and leading whisky tastings...and joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Diageo plans to open Stitzel-Weller Distillery in Louisville to the public, but there are still no official plans to restart production...yet. Beam loses a preliminary battle in its legal fight over Irish whiskey supplies, Teeling Whiskey gets more distribution in Latin America, and The Glenrothes uncovers a single cask from 1969.
WhiskyCast Episode 466: February 15, 2014Feb 16, 2014 44:05
There have been many more questions than answers about Diageo's new Orphan Barrel range of whiskies...until now. Diageo's Ewan Morgan answers our questions about the origins of Old Blowhard and Barterhouse Bourbons, hints at the next release in series, and explains what distilleries often mean when they talk about "discovering" old casks of whisky in a warehouse. In the news, Whyte & Mackay is officially up for sale now, a Houston bar may be the only one in the world with a bottle of Glenmorangie 1963, and they're preparing for DramFest 2014 in Christchurch, New Zealand - three years after a massive earthquake devastated the city.
WhiskyCast Episode 465: February 8, 2014Feb 9, 2014 29:44
Whisky's brand ambassadors roam the world, racking up tens or hundreds of thousands of frequent flier miles every year and spending up to half their nights away from home, while pouring more drams than some full-time bartenders. We'll hear some of their tales from the road -- good and bad -- during this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, US whiskey exports hit a new high during 2013, while Irish whiskey exports could double by 2020. We'll hear from supporters and critics of the UK's new Scotch Whisky certification program, and this week's tasting notes include four vintage Bourbons.
WhiskyCast Episode 464: February 1, 2014Feb 2, 2014 33:41
Kilchoman became Islay's newest distillery in 2005, about the same time Jean Donnay started making whisky at Glann ar Mor on France's Brittany Coast. Fast forward 10 years to 2015, when Donnay is scheduled to open his new distillery on Islay's Gartbreck Farm and claim the title of Islay's youngest distillery. Gartbreck received planning permission this week, and construction is expected to begin this May. Jean Donnay joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth to discuss his longtime dream of distilling on Islay and his plans for Gartbreck Farm. In the news, the TSA relaxes its rules on carrying duty-free whiskies on board flights for international passengers, Dublin officials give Teeling Whiskey the green light to start construction on its new distillery, and the Kentucky Bourbon Affair's "golden tickets" sold out in little more than a week.
WhiskyCast Episode 463: January 25, 2014Jan 26, 2014 32:26
Colin Scott is celebrating two anniversaries -- his 40th anniversary in the whisky business and 25th anniversary as the Master Blender for Chivas Regal and Royal Salute whiskies. His latest release is a tribute to Royal Salute's ties to the world of professional polo, and Colin took his inspiration for the blend from working with his family's polo ponies. He'll discuss his blends and working with whiskies that were just being distilled when he started his career on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Suntory denies reports that it's bidding for Whyte & Mackay and the Kentucky Bourbon Trail sets a new visitor record. We'll also have reaction to a moment in this week's WhiskyCast HD interview that caught Richard Paterson off guard, along with tasting notes for the Dalmore expression he created with Chef Daniel Boulud.
WhiskyCast Episode 462: January 19, 2014Jan 20, 2014 35:38
More coverage of the Victoria Whisky Festival in this bonus edition of WhiskyCast, with details on new and upcoming releases from Springbank, Duncan Taylor, Tomatin, and Glenfarclas. In the news, Whyte & Mackay's Richard Paterson discusses his concerns over the future of the company in an exclusive WhiskyCast interview, the world record price for a single bottle of whisky sold at auction has been shattered, and Barry Wilde of Alberta's Highwood Distillers updates us on the recovery from last summer's massive flooding that shut the distillery down for weeks.
WhiskyCast Episode 461: January 17, 2014Jan 18, 2014 22:51
This is the first of two episodes from this weekend's Victoria Whisky Festival in British Columbia, where Canadian whisky was featured on opening night with the presentation of the 2013 Canadian Whisky Awards. Corby's Lot No. 40 ended Forty Creek Distillery's three-year run as Canadian Whisky of the Year, but by the slimmest of margins. We'll hear from the winners, as well as the equally pleased runners-up. In the news, Suntory's $16 billion deal to acquire Beam is drawing fire from some critics, Wild Turkey will honor Jimmy Russell with a special bottling to mark his 60th anniversary at the distillery this year, and Clynelish will be the latest Diageo distillery in Scotland to get an expansion. Mark also offers a commentary on the Suntory-Beam merger and why it's good for whisky lovers.
WhiskyCast Episode 460: January 11, 2014Jan 12, 2014 39:26
London and Seattle have a few things in common: reputations for foggy, rainy weather...a vibrant cultural scene...and now, craft distilleries. Seattle's had them for several years, and the guys at Westland Distillery are actually on their second one, having moved from their original distillery to a brand-new one just south of downtown Seattle. London had whisky distilleries until 1905, but Darren Rook's London Distillery Company has just started making its first experimental batches of whisky in Battersea using one of the UK's smallest distilleries. We'll find out more on both distillers in this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth...in the news, the UK is implementing a new plan to certify the authenticity of Scotch Whisky, there's talk that the UK may cut whisky taxes ahead of the Scottish independence referendum, and Louisville's about to announce a major Bourbon event for this May.
WhiskyCast Episode 459: January 4, 2014Jan 5, 2014 29:02
Southern California isn't the place you'd normally think of for a Bourbon to call home, but Steve Gertman picked the wine country of Santa Barbara County to locate his Ascendant Spirits Distillery and produce Breaker Bourbon. Gertman joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and explains why he gave up a career most guys would dream of: producing TV shows featuring some of the world's hottest cars. We'll also look at a new Scottish Government report on the impact of Scotch Whisky exports, the latest release from Bowmore, and tasting notes for a 60-year-old Glenfarclas single malt.
WhiskyCast Episode 458: December 29, 2013Dec 29, 2013 19:56
The classic Irish pub is becoming an endangered species, thanks to a combination of progress and the economy. There are some pubs that still cling to tradition, and the Tap Tavern in Kinsale, County Cork, is a classic example. The Tap's been owned by four generations of the same family since 1886, and Mary O'Neill has been in charge since she inherited the pub from her aunt in 1974. We'll meet Mary and her son Brian on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the whisky industry loses two legends, another potential bidder may enter the contest for Whyte & Mackay, and Whisky Advocate announces its annual year-end awards.
WhiskyCast Episode 457: December 21, 2013Dec 21, 2013 42:02
Think of Belgium and drinks, and beer is usually the first thing that comes to mind. However, Belgians are quite fond of whisky as well, and Etienne Bouillon is trying to satisfy their passion with Belgium's first single malt whisky. The Owl Distillery has been making whisky since 2004, and sells almost all of its production within Belgium, including a 5-year-old single cask bottled this year at a whopping 76.1% ABV. In the news, an industry panel sides with critics of the controversial Dewar's "Meet The Baron" video, Diageo runs into another bump for control of India's United Spirits, and Jim Beam is making plans for a single barrel Bourbon that will even be sold by the barrel.
WhiskyCast Episode 456: December 14, 2013Dec 14, 2013 35:19
Dewar's was forced to remove an online video promotion from the Internet this week after a social media-fueled protest campaign over the portrayal of women in its "Meet the Baron" video. Canadian whisky blogger Johanne McInnis was one of the leaders of the protest, and joins us to discuss the controversy in this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. McInnis has filed a complaint against Dewar's with the Distilled Spirits Council accusing the ad of violating the group's Code of Responsible Practices, and Frank Coleman of DISCUS will explain just how the code works. In the news, Kentucky distillers are working through a weather-related shortage of barrels, we'll have the latest on new whiskies, and Ardbeg's hitting the road with a new three-wheeler.
WhiskyCast Episode 455: December 8, 2013Dec 8, 2013 47:03
The Malt Maniacs announced the results of the 11th annual Malt Maniacs Whisky Awards this week, and a 1973 Karuizawa single cask from Japan ended GlenDronach's three-year reign as the overall champion. This year's competition was one of the toughest ever, with only four gold medals out of nearly 200 entries. Maniacs Oliver Klimek and Keith Wood join us to discuss this year's competition on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, there's a $10,000 reward being offered in the Pappy Van Winkle thefts, The Macallan's David Cox updates us on the US launch of M and the distillery's £100 million expansion project, and Glenmorangie's David Blackmore explains how 50 bottles of the Glenmorangie 1963 were discovered in a warehouse. This week's tasting notes include the latest batch of Aberlour A'Bunadh and the Jack Daniel's Sinatra Select.
WhiskyCast Episode 454: December 2, 2013Dec 3, 2013 58:36
There's one question Diageo's whisky team has been asked for years -- why can't we have more Mortlach single malt bottlings? The Dufftown distillery has been prized by blenders for decades because its malt whisky adds depth and texture to their blends, but we're about to see what Mortlach can be on its own. Diageo is investing millions of dollars to make Mortlach the next major single malt Scotch whisky, in what's being described as the company's biggest single malt venture since the launch of the Classic Malts range 25 years ago.
We'll tour the distillery and discuss the expansion with managers Steve McGingle and Sean Phillips, and go through the four new Mortlach expressions to be launched in 2014 with Dr. Matthew Crow. In the news, The Macallan is getting a major investment of its own -- a $245 million distillery expansion scheduled to begin in late 2014. We'll also have more of your comments on age statements in Your Voice, along with tasting notes for a couple of the new Mortlachs and the latest Blue Hanger release from Berry Bros. & Rudd.
WhiskyCast Episode 453: November 23, 2013Nov 24, 2013 46:46
Gavin Hewitt is stepping down next month after ten years as the chief executive of the Scotch Whisky Association, balancing the needs of member whisky companies with the industry's overall best interests as Scotch whisky sales have exploded globally. On this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, he'll go through the highlights of the last ten years and a few things he would have done differently. In the news, Diageo says it doesn't need to make a bid for Beam to succeed in the Bourbon business, Wild Turkey brings back its 101-proof Rye whiskey, and we'll have a complete roundup of new whiskies hitting the market this week.
WhiskyCast Episode 452: November 16, 2013Nov 18, 2013 32:35
Dr. Matthew Crow of Diageo is one of Scotch Whisky's up-and-coming blenders. Working under Dr. Jim Beveridge, he helped create Johnnie Walker Double Black and worked with Jim last year on the £120,000 John Walker & Sons Diamond Jubilee whisky to mark Queen Elizabeth's 60th anniversary on the throne. In the past year, he's helped create three new Talisker releases, and joins us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth to discuss the subtle differences in blending Single Malts versus Blended Scotch whiskies. In the news, Heaven Hill opens the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience on Louisville's Main Street, Glenfiddich releases a special whisky to support wounded warriors, and we'll take a look at the 2014 Malt Whisky Yearbook with editor Ingvar Ronde.
WhiskyCast Episode 451: November 9, 2013Nov 10, 2013 01:07:54
This week, we'll take a tour of a distillery very few people ever get to visit, Beam's Alberta Distillers facility in Calgary, Alberta. 80% of the distillery's whisky is sold in bulk to clients around the world, which means if you've tried all but a few Canadian whiskies, the chances are pretty good Rick Murphy and his team had something to do with them. The remaining 20% is bottled under the Alberta Premium and Alberta Springs labels for the Canadian market, along with the Tangle Ridge label available in the US and a few other markets. The distillery is on the edge of the Canadian Rockies, which means high altitude, low humidity, and lots of cold and snow. One of their innovations is a unique "straddle loader" to move barrels of whisky around without the risk of using a forklift in extreme weather. In the news...still no arrests in the Pappy Van Winkle theft, Diageo opens a new Scotch whisky warehousing complex in Fife, and Jim Murray names his whisky of the year for the 2014 Whisky Bible.
WhiskyCast Episode 450: November 2, 2013Nov 3, 2013 27:09
This week, we're in Banff, Alberta for a very special Bowmore weekend in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. The "Bowmore on the Rockies" weekend featured a dinner with the entire 1964 Bowmore Trilogy series of Black, White, and Gold Bowmores, the 1995 release of the original Black Bowmore, and the 1964 Bowmore Fino Sherry Cask. Morrison Bowmore's Master of Malts, Iain McCallum, joins me to discuss the newest releases from Bowmore, Auchentoshan, and Glen Garioch, along with some of the issues facing the whisky business today. In the news, the man wanted for questioning in the Pappy Van Winkle theft turns out to be Bardstown High School's principal...who told investigators he was trying to buy some Pappy, not sell it.
WhiskyCast Episode 449: October 26, 2013Oct 27, 2013 34:54
Ireland's Kilbeggan Distillery is said to be the world's oldest whiskey distillery, and it's now being run by what may well be one of the youngest head distillers. Andrina Fitzgerald grew up a few miles from Kilbeggan, and was promoted to head distiller shortly after Beam acquired Kilbeggan as part of the Cooley Whiskey deal. We'll hear from this rising star in the whiskey business on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the latest from Kentucky on the Pappy van Winkle theft, along with an update on the Teeling family's plans for a new distillery in Dublin. This week's tasting notes include the "hottest" whisky in the world right now, this year's Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve 20-year-old Bourbon.
WhiskyCast Episode 448: October 19, 2013Oct 20, 2013 33:23
The most secure jobs in the whisky business may be the coppersmiths at Forsyth's of Rothes in Scotland, since almost all of the major distillery construction projects underway worldwide are buying their stills from Forsyth's. We got word of two more new distilleries this week...the Morrison family's Glasgow Whisky Distillery to be built on the Queen's Dock along the River Clyde and Bernard Walsh's new distillery in County Carlow, Ireland. Tim Morrison and Bernard Walsh join us to discuss their plans on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the search is on for the "Pappy Pilferer", two whisky auctions this week raised tens of thousands of dollars for charities, and if you're feeling a cold coming on, this week's tasting notes may have just the answer.
WhiskyCast Episode 447: October 12, 2013Oct 13, 2013 39:48
With 28 malt whisky distilleries and two grain whisky distilleries in Scotland, Diageo almost always has something going on. Dr. Nick Morgan is head of whisky outreach for the world's largest whisky producer, and we sat down in New York City this week with drams of Talisker Storm to discuss the malt's U.S. debut, this year's special releases, and more for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth segment. In the news, plans for another malt distillery in Scotland are getting clearer, Arran releases its Millennium Casks, and WhistlePig unleashes The Boss Hog. We'll also hear WhiskyCast listeners venting their frustrations (and singing their praises) in this week's Your Voice.
WhiskyCast Episode 446: October 5, 2013Oct 6, 2013 35:35
Baker Beam comes from one of Kentucky's legendary Bourbon families. However, the grand-nephew of Jim Beam and cousin to Booker Noe, Fred Noe, and Parker Beam doesn't often get the spotlight. If his name sounds familiar, it's because he's the namesake for Baker's Bourbon from Beam's Small Batch Collection, and that makes him one of the few living distillers with a Bourbon that bears his name. He'll share his history in distilling and memories of working with Booker Noe on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the U.S. government shutdown is affecting whisky makers, but plenty of new whiskies beat Washington's budget clock in time to hit the market this week.
WhiskyCast Episode 445: September 29, 2013Sep 30, 2013 40:21
This week's WhiskyCast comes from Forty Creek Distillery's annual Whisky Weekend in Grimsby, Ontario. Forty Creek's John Hall makes his whisky differently from any other distiller, and we'll deconstruct Forty Creek Barrel Select on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth during a Whisky Weekend tasting session with John, Davin de Kergommeaux, and Johanne McInnis. In the news, a WhiskyCast exclusive -- Diageo's supply of whiskey for Bulleit Bourbon from Four Roses will be cut off next spring, and that could force Diageo to make a decision on the future of the long-closed Stitzel-Weller Distillery in Louisville.
WhiskyCast Episode 444: September 22, 2013Sep 23, 2013 39:46
In the second of two episodes from this weekend's Kentucky Bourbon Festival in Bardstown, we'll hear from the newest members of the Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame. Fred Noe is the 7th generation member of the Beam family at Jim Beam, and Tom Blincoe's Buzick Construction has been responsible for most of the state's major distillery construction projects over the last several decades. In the news, Whisky Magazine announces the winners of this year's U.S. Icons of Whisky Awards, Jimmy Russell explains just what happened when his team made a mistake that led to Wild Turkey's new Forgiven, and Mike Veach tells us about the Filson Historical Society's Bourbon Challenge next month.
WhiskyCast Episode 443: September 21, 2013Sep 22, 2013 30:29
Parker Beam surprised everyone the other night at the Kentucky Bourbon Festival in Bardstown. He wasn't expected to attend the Kentucky Distillers Association's All-Star Sampler event with master distillers from all of the KDA member distilleries, but he came and spent the entire evening signing bottles and meeting Bourbon lovers. We'll hear from Parker about his battle with ALS on the first of this weekend's two episodes from the Kentucky Bourbon Festival.
WhiskyCast Episode 442: September 15, 2013Sep 16, 2013 34:27
Ger Buckley is the fifth-generation cooper at Ireland's Midleton Distillery, but had no one to pass the torch to. In fact, there hadn't been an apprentice cooper at any Irish distillery for nearly four decades...but Ger was able to convince Irish Distillers that the tradition needed to be kept alive for another generation. 21-year-old Killian O'Mahony has just signed on for a four-year apprenticeship...he and Ger join us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we pay tribute to the late Lincoln Henderson, Buffalo Trace plans to keep honoring the late Elmer T. Lee, and the latest on this year's Buffalo Trace Antique Collection. This week's tasting notes include Wild Turkey's new Forgiven...an accidental blend of Rye and Bourbon.
WhiskyCast Episode 441: September 7, 2013Sep 8, 2013 38:52
There was a changing of the guard at Ireland's Midleton Distillery this week, in addition to the housewarming party for Midleton's massive distillery expansion. Brian Nation officially replaced Barry Crockett as Master Distiller for Ireland's largest distillery, and it's the first time in almost 70 years that a Crockett family member won't be at the distillery. We'll meet the man charged with carrying on the legacy of names like Jameson, Power, and Crockett on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and get the details on the distillery expansion in our news update. There's also word on this year's special releases from Diageo, and Fred Laing tells us about the new Douglas Laing's Old Particular range of single cask bottlings. In this week's tasting notes, there's a little-known Irish whiskey from Midleton, Glen Grant's Five Decades single malt honoring longtime Master Distiller Dennis Malcolm, and a new Dalmore bottling from Single Cask Nation.
WhiskyCast Episode 440: August 31, 2013Sep 1, 2013 44:11
Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve Bourbons may well be some of the hardest whiskies to find, and hundreds of people call the Old Rip Van Winkle Distillery office in Louisville every year begging to get just one bottle. Celebrities, ordinary people with a special occasion, and the most ardent Bourbon lovers all get the same answer from Preston Van Winkle and his father, Julian Van Winkle III: "We can't help you, now, but if you check with your local retailer in October, they might be able to find you a bottle." Preston Van Winkle joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth to discuss "Pappy-Mania" -- and he'll tell us why this year's 23-year-old Pappy may well be the last of its kind. Ryan Maloney of Julio's Liquors in Massachusetts explains why he and his colleagues have to resort to lotteries to allocate their few bottles of Pappy each year, and Benjamin Lee will tell us about his quest to explore all 59 U.S. national parks (and a few distilleries) by motorcycle.
WhiskyCast Episode 439: August 25, 2013Aug 25, 2013 27:58
When Kentucky was still a wilderness in Colonial days, Pennsylvania was a hotbed of whiskey distilling. Back then, the Keystone State was known for its rye whiskies. Over the last several decades, though, Pennsylvania's distilling industry dried up and withered away. Herman Mihalich and John Cooper are trying to revive the tradition with their Dad's Hat Pennsylvania Rye Whiskey, producing it themselves at a converted wool mill in the Philadelphia suburb of Bristol. We'll hear their story on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Jack Daniel's is expanding, John Teeling's been pulled back into the Irish Whiskey business, the new Parker's Heritage Collection Bourbon has a mission of raising funding -- and awareness -- for ALS research, and this week's tasting notes include one of whisky's Holy Grails, the Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve 23-year-old Bourbon.
WhiskyCast Episode 438: August 18, 2013Aug 19, 2013 45:06
Utah's High West Distillery & Saloon crams a craft distillery and high-end restaurant into two historic buildings in the ski resort's downtown area. James Dumas, a James Beard Award-nominated chef and partner in High West, takes us on a tour of the distillery for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and it's often hard to tell where the distillery begins and the restaurant ends. Dumas didn't learn to appreciate what whisky offers until he started working with High West founder David Perkins, but now, he's a complete convert, as he showed us during the tour.
In the news, Tomatin takes top honors at the Whisky Fringe for the second year in a row. We'll also have the latest on new whiskies from Tullamore Dew, Single Cask Nation, and a new series of Jameson bottlings...along with a reason to skip the duty-free shop if you're flying on Ryanair.
WhiskyCast Episode 437: August 12, 2013Aug 13, 2013 33:46
Last December, Wyoming Whiskey made its debut with thousands of whiskey lovers descending on the tiny town of Kirby, Wyoming. Kirby's quiet again, but the state's namesake Bourbon is still selling as fast as the distillery can produce it. This week, we'll catch up with Wyoming Whiskey co-founder David DeFazio and talk with the guys from Bin 21 in Jackson Hole about the demand for this unique whiskey. In the news, plenty of new Bourbons are coming from Elijah Craig, Four Roses, Buffalo Trace, and Old Forester. We'll also visit with Bob and Barbara Townsend of the Miner's Delight Inn in Atlantic City, Wyoming. Would you believe some people think they're on the Jersey Shore instead of high in the Rockies?
WhiskyCast Episode 436: August 3, 2013Aug 3, 2013 38:31
Keith Batt never dreamed of distilling whisky when he and his family bought the Nant Estate in Tasmania, but the farm had lots of barley and lots of water, along with a 120-year-old grist mill. Now, the Nant Distillery is celebrating its fifth anniversary, getting rave reviews for its whiskies, and Keith's 10-year-old son is already asking questions about the business. Keith joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Diageo's profits are up and the world's largest whisky maker is looking for more acquisitions, a legendary Chicago whisky bar is getting its own Compass Box whisky and sharing it with the world, and we'll get the latest on new whiskies from around the world.
WhiskyCast Episode 435: July 27, 2013Jul 28, 2013 47:51
Ask a Scot about Ben Nevis, and you're more likely to hear about the highest peak in Scotland than the whisky of the same name. However, the Ben Nevis Distillery in Fort William is making a name of its own these days, with a 15-year-old single cask bottling that just won Best Single Malt Scotch 15 Years and Under in the International Wine & Spirit Competition. Longtime Ben Nevis manager Colin Ross joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth to share his team's triumph and some history...including a dramming session years ago at Lagavulin that wiped out a historic sample of Malt Mill single malt. In the news, there's word of a deal between Diageo and Louisville air quality regulators over complaints about fungus from the angel's share at one of its maturation warehouses, and UK competition regulators have confirmed they're looking into Diageo's acquisition of United Spirits and its Whyte & Mackay unit in Scotland.
WhiskyCast Episode 434: July 20, 2013Jul 21, 2013 38:46
The whisky world lost one of the legends this week with the passing of Buffalo Trace Master Distiller Emeritus Elmer T. Lee. Not only was he responsible for making Single Barrel Bourbons popular when he came up with the idea for Blanton's, but two years later, he had a Single Barrel Bourbon named after him following his retirement in 1985. Elmer kept selecting the barrels for his bourbon right up until shortly before his death, and his whiskey is as good as the man himself. We'll remember Elmer T. Lee on this week's episode, with a look back at his life and legacy. In the news, Kentucky's distillers join forces to help Parker Beam raise money for ALS research, Balcones breaks ground on a new distillery in Waco, Texas, and the latest on nearly two dozen single cask Scotch whiskies released this week.
WhiskyCast Episode 433: July 13, 2013Jul 14, 2013 30:16
What goes into reviving a distillery that's been closed for 14 years? That was the question from WhiskyCast listener Scott Mansfield after Chivas Brothers reopened Glen Keith Distillery in Scotland last month, and we put it to Alan Winchester of Chivas Brothers for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Diageo plans to meet with UK regulators over the future of Whyte & Mackay after its purchase of India's United Spirits, new distilleries are coming to Louisville and Ireland, and our tasting panel from this month's WhiskyCast Virtual Tastings shares their thoughts on Russell's Reserve Single Barrel Bourbon.
WhiskyCast Episode 432: July 6, 2013Jul 7, 2013 35:31
Duncan Taylor's Euan Shand is in the middle of what he calls the company's busiest year in its 75-year history. He's just started work on the distillery he's wanted to build in Huntly for several years, is in the middle of turning an old supermarket into a new bottling hall and gift shop, entering the furniture business, and sponsoring a race car with plans for next year's 24 Hours of Le Mans. We'll catch up with Euan on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Diageo completes its acquisition of India's United Spirits, Edrington and Isle of Arran report profits, while Arran's also releasing a devilish new whisky as well.
WhiskyCast Episode 431: June 29, 2013Jun 30, 2013 38:06
Women are changing whisky history every day as distillery managers, master blenders, and some entrepreneurs are even creating their own brands. Earlier this month, we heard about the history of women in whisky from author Fred Minnick, and this week, we'll hear from two women who want to help write the next chapter in that history. Carin Luna-Ostaseski will launch her new SIA blended Scotch in San Francisco in the next several weeks, and used the power of the whisky community to help realize her dream. Allison Patel was searching for world whiskies to bring home to the US when she discovered a Cognac producer in France who was making whisky for himself and his friends, and launched Brenne in New York last autumn. In the news, Woodford Reserve will get a $35 million expansion, Alberta's Highwood Distillers is still closed after last week's flooding, and Beam's Fred Noe explains how it's legal to add flavors to Bourbon to create the new Knob Creek Smoked Maple.
WhiskyCast Episode 430: June 23, 2013Jun 23, 2013 38:31
Here's a challenge: Pick the whiskies for a wedding party, with an emphasis on quality over quantity, and you're spending a lot of someone else's money. Which whiskies do you pick, and where do you start? Rich Howard's been facing that task for a wedding this coming week in Minnesota, and the Malt Maniac joins us to talk about his choices on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Duncan Taylor's long-planned distillery in Huntly is finally under construction as the Scottish Government comes up with economic development funds for several other distillery projects, honours for the founder of the Keepers of the Quaich, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 429: June 16, 2013Jun 16, 2013 34:26
When Beam acquired Ireland's Cooley Whiskey at the end of 2011, Cooley Managing Director Jack Teeling had the chance to stay on at the company his father founded in 1987. However, the idea of being a small fish in a big corporate ocean didn't appeal to him, and he decided to start his own company. This week, the Teeling Whiskey Company released the first of a new Vintage Reserve series of Irish single malts, and Jack Teeling hopes to have Dublin's first working distillery in nearly 40 years open by the end of 2014. We'll hear more from Jack on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Glen Keith is out of mothballs and back in business, Speyside's smallest distillery will get a big boost in production, and F. Paul Pacult answers the question "How do you pick between two excellent whiskies for the Best Spirit in the World title?"
WhiskyCast Episode 428: June 8, 2013Jun 9, 2013 51:11
Joshua Hatton and Jason Johnston-Yellin started out as whisky bloggers, and are now bottling their own whiskies for a unique audience. Single Cask Nation and the Jewish Whisky Company are on the leading edge of a growing trend in the whisky business...targeting the unique and growing niche market of Jewish whisky lovers. While there's no clear consensus on what makes a whisky kosher, Single Cask Nation is bottling both kosher and non-kosher whiskies and letting each person make their own choice. In the news, a tanker truck full of whisky crashes and catches fire in New Jersey, The Glenlivet discloses the details of Alpha, and George Washington's Whiskey is now being made in New York as well as Virginia.
WhiskyCast Episode 427: June 1, 2013Jun 1, 2013 50:21
Stories are what give whisky its unique place in the drinks world, and this week, we'll hear from two authors of new books on the stories and history of whisky. Gavin Smith's "Stillhouse Stories & Tunroom Tales" shares the stories of current and retired whisky makers in Scotland, while Fred Minnick looks at the history of women in whisky in his new book "Whiskey Women: The Untold Story of how Women Saved Bourbon, Scotch, & Irish Whiskey". In the news, The Famous Grouse tests flavored versions in Sweden, The Tweeddale Blend arrives in Canada, Kentucky officials approve tax incentives for two distillery projects, and UK regulators are said to be weighing in on Diageo's acquisition of India's United Spirits.
WhiskyCast Episode 426: May 25, 2013May 26, 2013 46:11
The annual Islay Festival of Malt & Music gets underway this weekend, and they'll be celebrating more than just whisky on Islay this week. Bruichladdich's Jim McEwan, a native Ileach, is celebrating his 50th anniversary in the whisky business this week, and scotched the rumors that he might announce his retirement during the Feis in this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth interview. He'll also share some of his memories, as well as a life lesson his own mentor taught him many years ago when he was an apprentice cooper at Bowmore. In the news, Buffalo Trace is warning of a Bourbon shortage, we'll check on new whiskies from anCnoc, The Glenrothes, and a couple of Islay Festival bottlings, and honor another 50-year whisky veteran who's retiring this week.
WhiskyCast Episode 425: May 19, 2013May 19, 2013 22:41
Gordon & MacPhail has released thousands of single cask bottlings over the years, including the two oldest whiskies ever bottled: 70-year-old casks of Mortlach and Glenlivet single malts. Now, the family-owned company is reviving its "Rare Old" series of single malts with a series of new releases. Many of those new releases are from distilleries that closed 30 years ago this year during one of the industry's biggest cutbacks in distilling capacity. We'll discuss those distilleries and whether a new "whisky loch" is filling up with Gordon & MacPhail's Michael Urquhart in this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, another Indian distillery expands its single malt lineup, Miltonduff Distillery gets a turn in the spotlight, and more new distilleries are coming to Northern Ireland. This week's tasting notes include Ardbeg's new Ardbog, The Glenlivet's new Alpha single malt, and Forty Creek's upcoming Heart of Gold Canadian whisky.
WhiskyCast Episode 424: May 12, 2013May 14, 2013 37:56
One of the fun things about WhiskyCast has been the opportunity to watch dreams come true, and that's the case with this week's episode. Back in 2006, we first met Barry Stein and Barry Bernstein as they were just getting started as Canada's first independent Scotch whisky bottlers and dreamed of making their own whisky. in 2009, they opened Still Waters Distillery in a Toronto suburb, and on April 27, the first cask of their Stalk & Barrel single malt whisky went on sale. This weekend, they were pouring it at the Spirit of Toronto festival, and we'll catch up with the guys on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Diageo's shaking up the executive suite, the Kentucky Bourbon Trail gets a new stop on Louisville's Whiskey Row, and we'll hear about new whiskies from Mackmyra, Jura, Corby, and Masterson's.
WhiskyCast Episode 423: May 4, 2013May 5, 2013 47:26
Family-owned businesses often face obstacles that other companies don't, and the whisky business is no exception. This week, Fred and Stewart Laing dissolved their 40+ year partnership in Glasgow-based Douglas Laing & Co., with Stewart taking his half of the business to form his own company with his sons. Meanwhile, Fred has brought his daughter Cara into what remains of Douglas Laing, and both brothers are already working on new whisky ideas. We'll hear from both brothers on their views of the split and their plans for the future. In the news, Kentucky's Bourbon distillers had their busiest year in nearly four decades during 2012, Heaven Hill's partners are signing on to help support Parker Beam's Promise of Hope fund for ALS research, and the Maker's Mark controversy pays off for Beam.
WhiskyCast Episode 422: April 28, 2013Apr 28, 2013 44:21
When Ireland's distillers joined forces in 1966 to merge their struggling distilleries into one company, they placed their bet on Jameson as their principal export brand. Powers became the leading whiskey in Ireland, with limited exports to the U.S. and other key markets. The bet paid off, and Jameson became the world's best-selling Irish whiskey. Now, Irish Distillers is giving the world a taste of the pot still whiskey John Ryan's family created seven generations ago. He's been in the U.S. for a series of Powers tastings, and joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, a gutsy thief steals a $26,000 bottle of whisky in Toronto, Kentucky's getting ready for Derby Week, and Amrut's greedy angels are on the loose.
WhiskyCast Episode 421: April 20, 2013Apr 20, 2013 42:16
The English Whisky Company has been distilling since 2006, and while it may not be able to claim the title of "England's only whisky distillery" for much longer, it'll be able to call itself "England's oldest whisky distillery". Andrew Nelstrop's been touring the U.S. to introduce his family's whiskies for the first time in the colonies, and joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, South Africa's Distell Group has bought Burn Stewart Distillers, Chivas Brothers clears a hurdle to building a new distillery in Speyside, and we'll have the weekly update on new whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 420: April 14, 2013Apr 14, 2013 46:01
When Magnus Eunson set up his illegal still on Orkney in 1798, the gaugers in the village of Kirkwall were a safe distance away. Graham Manson manages Highland Park now, and Kirkwall has grown up around the distillery. We'll hear from Graham on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and get some historical perspective from retired Highland Park and Scapa worker Davie Reid. In the news, U.S. craft distillers have broken away from the American Distilling Institute to set up their own organization, the Scotch Malt Whisky Society expands to India, and Chicago's getting ready for Whisky Week.
WhiskyCast Episode 419: April 6, 2013Apr 7, 2013 42:16
Scotch Whisky exports account for 80% of all Scottish food and drink exports each year, along with about 25% of all UK food and drink exports. The Scotch Whisky Association released its final 2012 export report this week, with little to no gain from 2011. SWA Chief Executive Gavin Hewitt discusses the export data and other key issues facing the industry on this week’s WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Diageo’s Nick Morgan outlines the company’s plans for a massive expansion of distilling capacity in Scotland, Beam North American President Bill Newlands discusses the Maker’s Mark controversy, and we’ll get sneak previews of this year’s Four Roses Limited Edition Single Barrel Bourbon from Jim Rutledge and the new Wild Turkey visitors center from Jimmy Russell.
WhiskyCast Episode 418: March 30, 2013Mar 30, 2013 27:11
Cutty Sark is marking two anniversaries within a week or so: the brand's 90's anniversary on March 23 and the third anniversary of its acquisition by the Edrington Group April 1. It's a legendary brand that lost its way in recent years, but recorded its first annual increase in sales during 2012 after years of declining sales. Edrington's first move three years ago was to put Jason Craig in charge of turning the ship around, and he joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll have plenty of new releases to talk about from Arran, Balblair, Four Roses, Kilchoman, and more...including a very special Bruichladdich single cask with a lot of sentimental value for former managing director Mark Reynier. This week's tasting notes include a special limited edition Cutty Sark, a single malt from Germany, and a Kentucky classic.
WhiskyCast Episode 417: March 23, 2013Mar 24, 2013 47:46
This week's episode required 35 hours of flying and 17,000 miles of round-trip travel, but it was well worth it to visit Amrut's distillery in Bangalore, India. We'll catch up with Amrut's Rick Jagdale to discuss a series of new Amrut single malts, including one that pays tribute to the excessively greedy angels in Amrut's warehouses, and Rick will answer some of your questions about Amrut as well. In the news, Billy Walker's investment team has added Glenglassaugh Distillery to their portfolio that already includes BenRiach and GlenDronach, Whisky Magazine announces this year's winners of the World Whiskies Awards and the Icons of Whisky Awards, more whiskies receive honors in the Ultimate Spirits Challenge, and it'll cost more for a dram of Scotch in Scotland after a UK tax increase.
WhiskyCast Episode 416: March 16, 2013Mar 17, 2013 32:21
This week's episode comes from Frankfurt, Germany...during a layover on my trip to visit the Amrut Distillery in Bangalore, India. However, we're focusing on a rare breed of whisky this week...the Peated American Single Malt. There are very few examples of this rare breed, one being Leviathan from Lost Spirits Distillery on California's Monterey Peninsula. Bryan Davis of Lost Spirits explains his reasons for producing a highly-peated single malt in this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Dewar's enters the flavored whisky market, Highland Park unleashes the shape-shifting Loki on the whisky world, and Scottish officials consider reviving the old Dallas Dhu Distillery in Speyside as a working distillery as well as a museum.
WhiskyCast Episode 415: March 10, 2013Mar 10, 2013 29:36
Buffalo Trace's Single Oak Project is at the halfway point, with 96 of the 192 single cask bottlings released and the remainder to be parceled out every three months for the next two years. We'll get a progress report from Buffalo Trace Master Distiller Harlen Wheatley on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and get some hints about a possible new release from the distillery in the near future. In the news, there's word on a bunch of new whiskies from Heaven Hill, Jefferson's, Michter's, Johnnie Walker, Corby, and Ranger Creek...Ichiro Akuto has a U.S. distribution deal for his Japanese single malts, and Bourbon Hall of Fame member Mike Veach's new book on the history of Bourbon is now available.
WhiskyCast Episode 414: March 2, 2013Mar 2, 2013 51:51
Whisky has historically been thought of as a “man’s drink”, but thankfully, that’s changing. Not only are more women drinking whisky now than ever, more women are making it as well. Victoria MacRae-Samuels is Vice President of Operations at Maker’s Mark, and she’s the first woman to run one of Kentucky’s major distilleries since Prohibition. She discusses her 24 years in the whisky business and the growing diversity within the industry on this week’s WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, an accident sends Chivas Brothers whisky down the drain, Glenmorangie kicks off its Cask Masters project, we’ll discuss the new Bulleit 10-year-old Bourbon with Hollis Bulleit, and get a preview of this month’s Bourbon Classic in Louisville.
WhiskyCast Episode 413: February 24, 2013Feb 25, 2013 35:41
Chip Tate of Balcones Distillery in Texas is winning even more awards for his whiskies, with two gold medals in the inaugural Spirits of the Americas competition. One was for his Texas Single Malt, and the other for a whiskey that Chip used to say he'd never make. He'll tell us about it on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the latest on the Maker's Mark controversy, along with your comments on Maker's in our new "Your Voice" segment. We'll also have the latest on new whiskies from Angel's Envy and Highland Park, Tuthilltown's recovery from a fire last autumn, and a tour of the new WhiskyCast.com!
WhiskyCast Episode 412: February 16, 2013Feb 17, 2013 43:16
So, you have an iconic brand, but not enough supply to meet growing global demand...so you make one change in the product to increase supply, and all hell breaks loose! That's the situation Rob Samuels of Maker's Mark found himself in this week after announcing that the Bourbon his family has produced for more than 50 years would be lowered from 45% ABV to 42%. With media outlets from all over the world calling him for interviews, Rob sat down to talk with us this week about the reasons for the change, and why most people shouldn't notice any difference. In the news, we mourn the passing of Truman Cox, get the first word on an all-new Bourbon from Jim Beam, and discover a new use for whisky glasses.
WhiskyCast Episode 411: February 9, 2013Feb 10, 2013 43:11
It's been a big week for Barry Crockett. Midleton Distillery's Master Distiller was named this year's Lifetime Achievement Award winner by The Whisky Advocate, and just a couple of days later, announced his plans to retire next month after 47 years at Midleton. We'll catch up with Barry on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Maker's Mark makes the first major change in its whisky in five decades to meet demand, the Distilled Spirits Council releases 2012 economic data on whisky sales, and there are new whiskies ranging from a case full of Bourbons to single casks.
WhiskyCast Episode 410: February 2, 2013Feb 2, 2013 33:31
It's hard to keep things quiet in the close-knit Scotch Whisky industry, but that's exactly what the owners of the new Wolfburn Distillery in Thurso managed to do until construction began last fall. The distillery went into production this week when manager Shane Fraser hammered in the bung on the first barrel of Wolfburn, which has a history that dates back to 1821. Shane joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll have sad news from Heaven Hill as Parker Beam is diagnosed with ALS, and word of new whiskies from An Cnoc, Master of Malt, and The Balvenie.
WhiskyCast Episode 409: January 26, 2013Jan 26, 2013 30:01
Georgina Bell is part of a new generation of whisky connoisseurs, and is already making her place in the whisky industry as an ambassador for the Scotch Malt Whisky Society. She'll explain how one goes from studying whisky in college to traveling the world promoting it two and a half years later during WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, there's word that the Stitzel-Weller Distillery in Louisville may be reopening after 22 years in mothballs, another proposed Scotch distillery gets government assistance, and there are new whiskies from Glenfiddich and The Balvenie.
WhiskyCast Episode 408: January 20, 2013Jan 21, 2013 34:06
Time for our second episode of the weekend with highlights from this weekend's Victoria Whisky Festival! We'll get the latest on new whiskies from Tullibardine, Springbank, and Duncan Taylor, along with word on expansion plans for Benromach and a new program for Scotch Malt Whisky Society members in the U.S. In the news, Shackleton's whisky has been returned to Antarctica for reburial in the ice at Cape Royds, and we'll answer a listener question about the two types of mash tuns in use at most distilleries.
WhiskyCast Episode 407: January 18, 2013Jan 19, 2013 34:34
It's time for one of the world's top whisky festivals...the Victoria Whisky Festival in British Columbia. The festival kicked off with the presentation of the annual Canadian Whisky Awards, and we'll hear from founder Davin de Kergommeaux and the distiller behind the 2012 Canadian Whisky of the Year, Forty Creek's John Hall. We'll also get an update on the progress of British Columbia's largest whisky distillery from Shelter Point owner Patrick Evans, and update the week's news in the first of two episodes from Victoria this weekend!
WhiskyCast Episode 406: January 12, 2013Jan 13, 2013 35:46
Dreamers abound in the whisky business. In the case of the Kingsbarns Distillery project planned near St. Andrews in Scotland, two dreamers had to join forces to achieve their goal. Doug Clement had everything needed to make Kingsbarns work...except money. William Wemyss wanted to build a distillery in the area where his family has lived for centuries. Now, Wemyss Malts has acquired Kingsbarns, and Doug Clement might just wind up as the distillery manager when it opens in 2014. In the news, Indian regulators are raising issues with Diageo's acquisition of United Spirits, whiskies, designer, and celebrity chefs join forces, and a Detroit bartender wins Woodford Reserve's annual Manhattan cocktail competition.
WhiskyCast Episode 405: January 5, 2013Jan 6, 2013 29:21
Most of us spend a lifetime working in the shadows, wondering if anyone notices. Then, one day, a letter comes in the mail with news that you're being honored for that work. Douglas Campbell of Tomatin got a letter like that, with news that he's being honored by Queen Elizabeth as a Member of the Order of the British Empire. The honor's not only for his work at Tomatin, but his work in the community of Tomatin as well. Douglas tells us what it was like to open that letter on this week's episode.
WhiskyCast Episode 404: December 28, 2012Dec 29, 2012 36:31
There are plenty of ideas for entrepreneurs seeking a place in the world of whisky, but as always, getting the funding is the hard part. This week, we'll hear about some entrepreneurs who have taken advantage of the Web to raise money for their projects using Kickstarter.com. It's a light week news-wide because of the holidays, but there's word that Shackleton's whisky is about to be returned to Antarctica, Penderyn's planning an expansion, and a new report on Scotch Whisky's economic impact.
WhiskyCast Episode 403: December 22, 2012Dec 22, 2012 54:11
Bruichladdich's $90 million acquisition by Remy Cointreau was one of the biggest whisky stories of the year, and CEO Simon Coughlin joins us for this week's "In-Depth" segment to discuss what's changed...and what hasn't since the deal. In the news, Maker's Mark faces a controversy over allegations of discrimination at a downtown Louisville lounge that licenses the Maker's Mark name, Bulleit unveils a new 10-year-old Bourbon in Kansas, Suntory's ready to go shopping, and Scotland's Isle of Harris will be getting its first legal whisky distillery.
WhiskyCast Episode 402: December 15, 2012Dec 15, 2012 39:46
John McDougall's years of experience as a distillery manager in all five of Scotland's whisky regions have made him a sought-after consultant for new distilleries. His latest project is the Dingle Distillery in Ireland, which started producing its first spirit this month. We'll catch up with John for the first time in a few years to learn more about Dingle, along with his line of single-cask bottlings and his upcoming US tour with the Wild Scotsman, Jeffrey Topping. In the news, the list of potential suitors for Beam gets even longer and more complicated, Springbank spins Glengyle off, and the final bottle of Glenfiddich's 55-year-old Janet Sheed Roberts Reserve malt goes on the auction block.
WhiskyCast Episode 401: December 8, 2012Dec 9, 2012 57:16
For the 10th year, the Malt Maniacs are honoring some of the world's best whiskies with the Malt Maniacs Awards. Maniacs Keith Wood of Germany and Krishna Nukala of India join us to discuss this year's competition, which was dominated once again by GlenDronach with three gold medals. In the news, new whiskies from Evan Williams, Aberfeldy, and Kavalan...Johnnie Walker expands in China and brings the House of Walker back to New York City...and an update on last weekend's Hurricane Sandy benefit whisky auction and tasting.
WhiskyCast Episode 400: December 1, 2012Dec 2, 2012 45:44
We're marking one milestone with another...this week's episode was recorded on location in Kirby, Wyoming, the home of Wyoming's first legal whiskey since Prohibition. Wyoming Whiskey made its official debut today at the distillery in Kirby, and the little town of 92 people was swarmed with around 4,000 whiskey lovers from as far away as Australia for the launch party. In the news, whisky events postponed by Hurricane Sandy return to the East Coast, Laphroaig tries to balance supply with demand, and Lidl fires back in its whisky war with discount competitor Aldi.
WhiskyCast Episode 399: November 24, 2012Nov 24, 2012 47:16
Most whisky lovers dream of making their own whiskies, but that's easier said than done, since building a distillery takes a lot of time and even more money. But...what if you could rent time at a craft distillery, complete with consultants and professionals to help you? The Distilled Spirits Epicenter in Louisville is just that place, and we'll talk about the possibilities with Colleen Rice on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, New York whisky lovers are hoping to raise money for Hurricane Sandy relief efforts, Angel's Envy goes cask-strength, new whiskies from Douglas Laing, Arran, and Aldi...yes, Aldi.
WhiskyCast Episode 398: November 17, 2012Nov 17, 2012 56:16
Edwin Foote started his distilling career in the old Henry McKenna Distillery, and wound up as the Master Distiller at the legendary Stitzel-Weller and Old Fitzgerald Distillery in Louisville. This Bourbon Hall of Famer sits down with us for WhiskyCast In-Depth to discuss his career and how the whiskey business has changed over the years...both good and bad. In the news, an updates on the Balblair 1969 and other new whiskies, water bottled specially to be mixed with whisky, and more!
WhiskyCast Episode 397: November 10, 2012Nov 11, 2012 40:36
Kentucky is synonymous with Bourbon, but few places maintain the history of Bourbon in the Bluegrass State like the Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History in Bardstown. Mary Ellyn Hamilton is the museum's curator, and tells us about the collection's early days in the mansion of Barton Brands founder Oscar Getz to its current home in Bardstown's Spalding Hall. In the news, Diageo agrees to take a majority stake in India's United Spirits, Beam expands its presence in Louisville, and I'll explain why this week's episode comes from Thermopolis, Wyoming.
WhiskyCast Episode 396: November 3, 2012Nov 4, 2012 52:01
This week, we promise a politics-free episode! We'll look at the history and future of India's Amrut Distillery with third-generation Amrut executive director Rick Jagdale and learn how graduate school helped bring Amrut to the world. In the news, Hurricane Sandy had an impact on the whisky community, trapping a number of distillery representatives in New York as their post-WhiskyFest flights were cancelled. We'll also get an update on the latest Bonhams auction in New York, and in non-hurricane news, word of new whiskies from Glenmorangie, Balblair, Buffalo Trace, and more!
WhiskyCast Episode 395: October 27, 2012Oct 28, 2012 53:01
Lots to talk about this week, with new whiskies and a new version of a very old whisky. Whyte & Mackay is producing a new release of MacKinlay's to help raise money for the New Zealand Antarctic Heritage Trust, which maintains the historic sites from Sir Ernest Shackleton's expeditions to Antarctica. In the news, Nikka whiskies are on their way to the US, Woodford Reserve unveils this year's Masters Collection Bourbon, and we'll get an update on Wiser's plans to increase its profile worldwide. Dr. Nick Morgan of Diageo joins us for WhiskyCast In-Depth to discuss distillery expansions, this year's Special Releases from the Classic Malts, and the global impact of Blended Scotches.
WhiskyCast Episode 394: October 20, 2012Oct 21, 2012 37:51
The pre-holiday rush of new whiskies is in full swing, and we'll sit down with Iain MacCallum of Morrison Bowmore to taste and talk about new single malts from Bowmore, Auchentoshan, and Glen Garioch. In the news, Gable Erenzo of Tuthilltown Distillery updates us on repairs following last month's fire, Alyssa Henley of George Dickel explains the new Dickel Rye, and the latest on distillery expansions in Scotland.
WhiskyCast Episode 393: October 13, 2012Oct 13, 2012 27:51
Italians are known for their wine, but one Italian firm helped pioneer the concept of single cask whiskies. Silvano Samaroli started bottling his own casks in 1968, and while his bottlings are hard to find, they're well worth the extra effort. Samaroli's Francesco Binetti explains the company's unique philosophy in this week's episode, and I'll have tasting notes for some of the Samaroli whiskies. In the news, we'll get updates on recent whisky auctions, George Dickel jumps on the Rye bandwagon, and the 2010 Water of Life Drive brings clean water to two Ethiopian villages!
WhiskyCast Episode 392: October 6, 2012Oct 6, 2012 39:46
Jack Daniel's has operated with one simple whiskey recipe for 100 years...until now. The distillery started quietly working on a rye whiskey recipe a couple of years ago, and has now unveiled what's being called "Jack Daniel's Unaged Rye." Master Distiller Jeff Arnett explains how his new whiskey fits into the Jack Daniel's tradition, and why an unaged spirit is being released years before a fully mature version will be available. We'll also have highlights from the Glenfiddich 125th Anniversary Party in Dallas this week, the latest on Scotch whisky exports, and reaction to last week's interview with "Midwest Whisky Olympics" organizer Greg Ramsay.
WhiskyCast Episode 391: September 29, 2012Sep 29, 2012 59:31
This week's episode looks at a controversial whisky tasting/competition recently held in Michigan. The "Midwest Whisky Olympics" at Journeyman Distillery has been criticized because it was organized by Greg Ramsay of the New Zealand Whisky Company, and two of his whiskies won medals. Greg Ramsay explains his side of the story in this episode, and for the first time, we have the complete list of the 17 entries. In the news, fire damages New York's Tuthilltown Distillery, a Scottish biofuel project using distillery by-products gains steam, Scottish designer Maeve Gillies creates a unique decanter to be auctioned in Edinburgh, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 390: September 22, 2012Sep 22, 2012 47:21
This week, we're catching up with old friends and on new whiskies. After two full weeks on the road, there was much more to talk about than what would fit in the episodes from Paris and Bardstown -- even with bonus episodes each week. We'll "Czech" up on Hammer Head's new 23-year-old Czech single malt, Gordon & MacPhail's re-release of the Glenlivet 70 in Vancouver, and find out about a really old Karuizawa single malt from Japan...complete with tasting notes!
WhiskyCast Episode 389: September 16, 2012Sep 17, 2012 33:11
Bonus coverage in this special episode from the Kentucky Bourbon Festival, with highlights from the Bourbon Hall of Fame induction ceremony for the legendary I.W. Bernheim, the World Championship Bourbon Barrel Relay, the Master Distillers' Auction, and much more. In the news, Michter's unveils a whopper of a bourbon along with expansion plans in Louisville, Woodford Reserve opens up to the archaeologists, and Jim Beam's Fred Noe pens his memoirs.
WhiskyCast Episode 388: September 15, 2012Sep 16, 2012 31:45
This weekend, I'm in Bardstown for the annual Kentucky Bourbon Festival. There's a legitimate claim that this could be the world's largest whisky festival, with an estimated 50,000 visitors from around the world. In this first of two episodes from Bardstown, we'll hear from members of the Beam family who are getting back into the family business, look at the boom in Bourbon tourism, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 387: September 9, 2012Sep 10, 2012 45:09
More from Whisky Live Paris in this special episode...we'll hear from David Roussier of France's Distillerie Warenghem, which marks its 25th anniversary this year. Ann Miller of Aberlour tells us about the latest release for France's most popular single malt, and we'll hear from Michael Urquhart of Gordon & MacPhail, Doug McIvor of Berry Bros. & Rudd, Daryl Haldane of Highland Park, and catch up with an old friend...Midleton Distillery cooper Ger Buckley.
WhiskyCast Episode 386: September 8, 2012Sep 9, 2012 50:12
This is the first of two episodes from Whisky Live Paris, and there's a lot to cover this weekend. We'll hear from The Balvenie's Malt Master, David Stewart, on his 50th anniversary single malt, along with the latest on whiskies from all over the world. In the news, updates on Diageo's plans for another new malt whisky distillery in Scotland, and Pernod Ricard's Chivas Brothers unit is getting closer to a decision on a new distillery of its own.
WhiskyCast Episode 385: September 1, 2012Sep 1, 2012 40:26
Emerging markets have been responsible for most of the growth in whisky sales worldwide, and Billy Walker of BenRiach and GlenDronach joins us this week to discuss the growing world of whisky. In the news, new whiskies from Bruichladdich, the Classic Malts, and Compass Box. Glenfiddich's Mitch Bechard tells us about the US debut of the Malt Master's Edition and a series of upcoming tastings, and Wild Turkey holds another groundbreaking ceremony in Kentucky...this time for a new $4 million visitors center.
WhiskyCast Episode 384: August 25, 2012Aug 25, 2012 42:41
Par Caldenby caught the whisky bug at an early age, but built a career as a lawyer in Sweden. The whisky bug first inspired him to write the book "Enjoying Malt Whisky" in 2006, and later to build his own distillery on Sweden's West Coast. This week, Smögen Whisky marked the second anniversary of its first cask filling, and we'll catch up with Par on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Heaven Hill's Craig Beam tells us about this year's Parker's Heritage Collection bourbon, John Glaser of Compass box updates us on new Great King Street and Flaming Heart releases, and Springbank announces its 2013 Whisky School dates.
WhiskyCast Episode 383: August 18, 2012Aug 18, 2012 36:36
You have questions about whisky, and this week, we have some of the answers. It's the annual Question and Answer episode of WhiskyCast, and whisky experts will answer some of the many questions that have come in from WhiskyCast community members. We'll get the definitive answer on whether to store whisky bottles on their side or standing up, among other things. In the news, the Kentucky Bourbon Trail gets a new member, Bowmore and Jameson release new whiskies, and The Famous Grouse goes over and above in setting a new world record.
WhiskyCast Episode 382: August 11, 2012Aug 11, 2012 36:22
Canadians Barry Bernstein and Barry Stein have made whisky their second careers. After starting out as Canada's first independent Scotch Whisky bottlers with Premium Bottlers whiskies, they've moved into the distilling business. Their Still Waters Distillery near Toronto has already produced its first Canadian whisky, and is about to release its first single malt whisky. We'll catch up with Barry and Barry on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, new whiskies from Four Roses, Buffalo Trace, Glenfarclas, and the story of a world record that could have been...
WhiskyCast Episode 381: August 4, 2012Aug 4, 2012 52:56
Kirsteen Campbell has tried to keep a low profile since she was named Master Blender for Cutty Sark two years ago. However, it's hard to stay out of the spotlight when your whiskies are winning major awards. This week on WhiskyCast In-Depth, Kirsteen tells us about reviving one of Scotch whisky's iconic brands. In the news, Beam beats Wall Street expectations and the latest on new whiskies from Laphroaig, Buffalo Trace, BenRiach, Compass Box, and WhistlePig. We'll also announce the winner of the Glenmorangie/Open Championship Golf Giveaway!
WhiskyCast Episode 380: July 28, 2012Jul 28, 2012 44:16
What's the most intense environment one could age a whisky in? A Kentucky rickhouse with 100-degree temperature swings and high humidity...maybe. How about a deep-sea fishing boat on the ocean for more than three years? Trey Zoeller of Jefferson's Bourbon came up with the idea to put several Bourbon casks on a friend's boat...and his Ocean-Aged Bourbon is the result. He'll tell us how the marine environment changed the spirit into something unique. In the news, the latest on Bruichladdich's sale, a new Bourbon honoring a legendary whiskey thief, and much more...
WhiskyCast Episode 379: July 21, 2012Jul 21, 2012 54:21
Ian MacMillan manages three distilleries for Burn Stewart, each with their own unique personality. We'll talk with Ian about Bunnahabhain on Islay, Tobermory on the Isle of Mull, and Deanston in the Highlands. In the news, the Bruichladdich sale to Remy Cointreau has been completed for a whopping $90 million, the latest on Whyte & Mackay's financial situation, Glenmorangie goes golfing, and plenty of new whiskies are on the way!
WhiskyCast Episode 378: July 14, 2012Jul 14, 2012 45:22
You've probably never heard of the James Sedgwick Distillery, but South Africa's first whisky distillery has been producing some award-winning whiskies. Three Ships 5-year-old won top honors among blended whiskies in this year's World Whiskies Awards, and Bain's Cape Mountain grain is featured in Ian Buxton's new book "101 World Whiskies to Try Before You Die". Distillery manager Andy Watts tells us what makes his whiskies so unique in this week's episode. In the news, Remy Cointreau's bid to Bruichladdich is just days from completion and details on new whiskies, including one that just might have you singing "Satisfaction"...
WhiskyCast Episode 377: July 7, 2012Jul 7, 2012 40:31
Each year, F. Paul Pacult takes all of the spirits he tastes during the year for the Spirit Journal and distills them down into the SJ 140, his list of the world's finest spirits. Paul discusses the 2012 SJ 140 with us in this episode, along with this year's choices for the Spirit Journal Hall of Fame. In the news, Edrington announces its annual financial results and hints at expansion plans in Scotland and Gordon & MacPhail updates its Connoisseur's Choice range.
WhiskyCast Episode 376: July 1, 2012Jul 3, 2012 35:36
Ken Loach's new film "The Angel's Share" focuses on an attempt to steal rare bottles of Malt Mill single malt Scotch. The actual Malt Mill distillery was hidden away inside Islay's Lagavulin Distillery until it closed in 1962. What may be the most precious Malt Mill artifact is now on display at Lagavulin: a sample of new make spirit from Malt Mill's final still run. It's been at Lagavulin all this time, handed down by each distillery manager to his successor. Georgie Crawford is the current manager, and with the interest in "The Angel's Share", she decided to reveal the existence of Malt Mill's secret sample to the world.
WhiskyCast Episode 375: June 24, 2012Jun 25, 2012 30:01
Crown Royal master blender Andrew Mackay didn't have to look far when it came time to create a successor to the original Crown Royal XR, which used whiskies from the old Waterloo Distillery in Ontario. He just had to look in the warehouses at his home base, the old Lasalle Distillery in Montreal. In the news, Edinburgh's North British distillery is open again after receiving a clean bill of health from inspectors following the area's Legionnaire's disease outbreak. We'll also update last year's visit to Knockdhu Distillery, and Bonhams has pulled a controversial Ardbeg bottle from this week's auction in New York City.
WhiskyCast Episode 374: June 17, 2012Jun 17, 2012 44:16
Whisky lovers tend to be passionate about other things as well. For Mark Dermul of Belgium, it's whisky and "Star Wars". Mark and his friends celebrated the 35th anniversary of the premiere of "Star Wars" last month by restoring one of the movie's location sets in the Tunisian desert...then restoring themselves with a couple of bottles of single malt Scotch. He'll tell us why they picked this mission...and which whiskies they celebrated with. In the news, results from Australia's Malt Whisky Tasting Championship and the Compass Box 24 Hours of Le Whisky.
WhiskyCast Episode 373: June 10, 2012Jun 10, 2012 30:01
How do you spend a billion and a half dollars? Believe it or not, it's hard to spend that much money. Diageo's Dr. Nick Morgan and his colleagues are about to find out just how hard it can be, since the world's largest spirits company has committed to investing that much to increase its Scotch whisky production. Nick explains the tentative plans for one new malt distillery and possibly a second, along with expansions at several existing distilleries and new warehouse facilities. In the news, Edinburgh's North British grain whisky distillery has been closed temporarily after a Legionnaire's Disease outbreak that has claimed at least one life.
WhiskyCast Episode 372: June 3, 2012Jun 3, 2012 44:31
Ian Buxton's 2010 book "101 Whiskies to Try Before You Die" was a hit with whisky lovers around the world. Now, Ian has compiled a new list of "101 World Whiskies to Try Before You Die", and his new book is on the way to booksellers now. He'll share some of the unusual whiskies he found in non-traditional whisky-producing countries such as Austria and Finland with us in this episode. In the news, Chivas Brothers plans to expand its Scotch whisky production, lawyers take on Louisville's "Bourbon Barons", and a herd of cows turns a backyard picnic into a beer bash!
WhiskyCast Episode 371: May 28, 2012May 27, 2012 44:21
This week's episode was recorded on location at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on the day before the 2012 Indianapolis 500. The Speedway holds a lot of memories for me, and I decided to make the trip this year for the first time in many years...and found some Scotsmen who feel the same way about Indy. We'll hear from them, and more to the point, we'll discuss the revival of another Irish pot still whiskey that's been gone for four decades. Irish Distillers has re-created Yellow Spot, one of the legendary Irish whiskies that holds a special place in the hearts of many Irish whiskey lovers. Kevin O'Gorman of Irish Distillers shares the process of reviving this classic whiskey with us.
WhiskyCast Episode 370: May 20, 2012May 20, 2012 41:31
1964 was an iconic year at Scotland's Bowmore Distillery, though that fact wouldn't be known for decades. The casks laid down that year produced the legendary Black Bowmore, along with the Gold and White Bowmores that make up the Bowmore Trilogy series. Turns out there was one cask from 1964 left....a Fino Sherry cask that will be available later this year as the Bowmore 1964. Turns out it's also the same cask that Morrison Bowmore's Iain McCallum poured me a sample from during my visit to his blending lab in 2010...without telling me what it was.
WhiskyCast Episode 369: May 13, 2012May 13, 2012 39:57
Japanese whiskies have won numerous awards in whisky competitions over the last decade, yet many whisky lovers have yet to try them. Until now, very few whiskies have been exported outside Japan, and even fewer to the U.S. Hakushu 12-year-old single malt has been available in Europe and other regions for a while, but it's just now becoming available in America. Suntory's Mike Miyamoto is a former manager at Hakushu and Yamazaki, and he'll explain the differences between the two whiskies, Michael Jackson's role in developing Hakushu's style, and answer some of your questions as well. In the news, Maker's Mark wins another round in court, the matriarch of the William Grant family has passed away, and the Larks celebrate an anniversary in Australia.
WhiskyCast Episode 368: May 6, 2012May 6, 2012 30:56
It's festival week in Speyside, and the Spirit of Speyside Festival has become one of the region's largest events of the year. We'll talk with Festival chairman Jim Royan about this year's event, as well as growing up downwind from Glen Moray, life in Speyside, and the region's unique character. In the news, another Irish whiskey bottler is looking for a new distiller, new whiskies from The Dalmore, Highland Park, The Macallan, Buffalo Trace, and plans for a high-altitude whisky tasting...
WhiskyCast Episode 367: April 29, 2012Apr 29, 2012 32:16
Whisky can be one of the most versatile spirits for chefs as well as cocktail lovers. We'll talk about cooking with whisky for breakfast, lunch, and dinner on this week's episode with Stacy Laabs, one of the authors of "The Never Cook Sober Cookbook", and discuss how whiskies can complement and even enhance the flavors of your next meal. In the news, Heaven Hill announces plans for the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience on Louisville's downtown "Whiskey Row", and we'll have tasting notes for the first Clan Speyburn exclusive bottling.
WhiskyCast Episode 366: April 21, 2012Apr 22, 2012 35:51
Dave Pickerell left Maker's Mark as Master Distiller four years ago, and since then, he's been one of the leaders of the craft distilling movement. He's worked as a consultant for dozens of distilleries, and has just taken on the role of Master Distiller at the Hillrock Estate Distillery in New York. In this week's episode, Dave tells us why he's having more fun than ever, and just what new distillers need to have to make it in the whisky business.
WhiskyCast Episode 365: April 17, 2012Apr 18, 2012 37:16
This week's episode features highlights from Whisky Live New York, including interviews with distillers from two of the city's own craft distilleries. We'll also get the latest on Adelphi's plans for a new distillery on Scotland's Ardnamurchan Peninsula, Ardbeg in orbit, and plenty of new whiskies!
WhiskyCast Episode 364: April 8, 2012Apr 8, 2012 37:31
If you want evidence of the boom in craft distilling, all you need to do is look at registration numbers for the American Distilling Institute's annual conference each April. This year's event in Louisville had double the attendance of last year's...which had double the attendance of the previous year's...and so on. We'll hear from some of the craft distillers who have jumped into whisky making with both feet, as well as some of their role models...including Jimmy Russell of Wild Turkey.
WhiskyCast Episode 363: March 31, 2012Apr 1, 2012 13:15
This week's episode is a little different than most WhiskyCast episodes. My father passed away earlier this week, and my family and I have been in Indiana with the rest of our relatives. I considered taking the week off, but after thinking about my Dad's commitment to hard work, I decided that it would be best to produce an abbreviated episode focusing on the week's news, comments, and the Calendar of Events, along with some comments on life and love and a special version of the "What I'm Tasting This Week Department.
WhiskyCast Episode 362: March 24, 2012Mar 24, 2012 43:11
Four times each year, Woodford Reserve master distiller Chris Morris becomes the headmaster of the Woodford Reserve Bourbon Academy. His students get a one-day class on the intricacies of Bourbon, from the entire distilling process to nosing and tasting lessons. We'll listen as Professor Morris leads a recent class through some hands-on mashing experience as well. In the news, Whisky Magazine hands out the Icons of Whisky Awards and the World Whiskies Awards in London, and 192 years of whisky production comes to a close in the Scottish town of Kilmarnock.
WhiskyCast Episode 361: March 17, 2012Mar 18, 2012 40:31
It's St. Patrick's Day, and we're in Dublin for the annual Jameson Global Broadcast from the Old Jameson Distillery. Each year, radio stations from around the world broadcast their shows from the distillery, and you'll hear David Byrne of Irish Distillers lead them through a cask sampling of whisky from the Midleton Distillery. We'll also hear from Midleton distiller Liam Donegan and artist Paul Daly, who designed the special St. Patrick's Day Jameson bottle available only at the distillery.
WhiskyCast Episode 360: March 10, 2012Mar 11, 2012 48:16
Investment-grade Scotch. The very idea makes many whisky lovers furious...but there are those who see potential profits from their whisky collections. Andy Simpson is a former investment banker who now runs Whisky Highland, a business designed to help whisky investors make the most of their collections. Andy explains the potential he sees for whisky investing, and why it's not for everyone. In the news, Woodford Reserve Double Oaked reaches the market, Laphroaig and Auchentoshan expand their travel retail ranges, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 359: March 4, 2012Mar 4, 2012 53:51
Time to shatter some long-cherished myths and legends about Bourbon, and Michael Veach will serve as our myth-buster this week. He's the Bourbon historian at Louisville's Filson Historical Society, and is also a member of the Bourbon Hall of Fame. In the news, Knob Creek and Wild Turkey release new rye whiskies, Ian Logan of Chivas Brothers updates last week's story on Glen Keith's revival, and we'll catch up with Bill Samuels Jr. of Maker's Mark.
WhiskyCast Episode 358: February 26, 2012Feb 26, 2012 45:46
Each year, Glenmorangie releases a special edition finished in fine wine casks. This year's edition is Artein, and takes the flavors of Sassicaia wine casks from Italy's Tenuta San Guido in Tuscany. We'll hear from Ferdinando Fiori, an Italian whisky connoisseur who suggested Sassicaia casks to Glenmorangie's Bill Lumsden...and distillery manager Andy McDonald takes us to the Tarlogie Springs, the source of the distillery's precious water supply. In the news, Gillian Howell leaves Penderyn to join Bill Lumsden's team, Chivas Brothers plans to reopen Glen Keith for the first time since 1999, and Campari announces plans for a new Wild Turkey bottling plant in Kentucky.
WhiskyCast Episode 357: February 18, 2012Feb 18, 2012 46:16
Craft distillers make whisky as much out of passion as a desire to make money, and that gives them the freedom to try different things...just because. Darek Bell is one of the partners in Corsair Artisan Distillery, based in Nashville, Tennessee and Bowling Green, Kentucky, and he's written a new book for craft distillers...and those who would like to be. "Alt Whiskeys" outlines some really unusual whiskey recipes, including an 11-grain Bourbon and "Amarillo Aromatherapy Bourbon." In the news, Adelphi has applied for permits to build Scotland's newest distillery and Cutty Sark tries to reclaim a piece of its heritage.
WhiskyCast Episode 356: February 12, 2012Feb 12, 2012 40:16
Rob Cederlid of Stockholm isn't your typical Swedish whisky lover. For instance, you're likely to see him in a cowboy hat and boots that are more suited to cattle drives than cross-country skiing. Rob owns the Saddle & Sabre restaurant and bar, where the steaks, beer, and the whiskey come from the US. The Saddle & Sabre has arguably one of the best bourbon collections of any bar in Europe, and Rob explains his passion for cowboy culture in this week's episode. In the news, two special whiskies honor Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee and another rare Glenfiddich auction raises money for the UK's wounded warriors.
WhiskyCast Episode 355: February 5, 2012Feb 5, 2012 38:11
Whisky stories can make you smile, laugh, or even shed a tear once in a while, and we have stories to make you do all three in this episode. Some of whisky's best storytellers share their best family tales, jokes, and even an escapade or two...and those are just the ones we could get them to tell us on the record. In the news, Highland Park hammers the competition with Thor, new whisky sales and export numbers from the U.S., Glenfiddich rolls out the Cask of Dreams, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 354: January 29, 2012Jan 30, 2012 26:06
More from the Victoria Whisky Festival in this week's episode, including updates from Kilchoman, Gordon & MacPhail, Amrut, Edradour and Signatory, and two of British Columbia's local distilleries, Shelter Point and Victoria Spirits. In the news, there may soon be a truce in the trade dispute between India and the European Union that affects Scotch whisky exports...and Yale's offering an architecture class with a whiskey-related theme.
WhiskyCast Episode 353: January 22, 2012Jan 23, 2012 48:01
The end of January means many things, but in the whisky world, it means a trip to the Victoria Whisky Festival in British Columbia. The VWF is one of the world's best whisky festivals, and this week's episode features some of the highlights from this weekend's event. We'll get the latest on new whiskies from Cooley, Glenfarclas, Glenmorangie, and many more distillers, along with the results of the Canadian Whisky Awards and the newest chapter of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society.
WhiskyCast Episode 352: January 14, 2012Jan 14, 2012 29:01
A year ago, the owner of Glasgow's Pot Still Bar, Ken Storrie, passed away. At first, Glasgow whisky lovers were sad...but they quickly became mad after the Pot Still's landlord threw Ken's family and managers out. Now, they're happy...and going back to the Pot Still once again now that former manager Frank Murphy and his family have taken over one of Scotland's best whisky bars. Frank explains the whole sordid story and shares his memories of Ken and his hopes for the Pot Still in this week's episode.
WhiskyCast Episode 351: January 7, 2012Jan 7, 2012 44:41
Irish whiskey is enjoyed around the world, but perhaps not with as much passion as in Dublin. Leo Phelan is the president of Dublin's Irish Whiskey Society, and shares some of that passion with us in this week's episode. We'll hear his excitement about the revival of Pot Still Irish Whiskey, discuss some of Dublin's distilling history, and look at the future for Irish Whiskey. In the news, Redbreast 12 Cask Strength is on its way to the U.S., Masterson's Rye is headed home to Canada, and Whyte & Mackay isn't going up for sale any time soon.
WhiskyCast Episode 350: December 31, 2011Dec 31, 2011 32:24
Glen Grant's Dennis Malcolm marked 50 years at the distillery during 2011, and spent Christmas Day on a special mission. On Christmas Day in 1961, he filled a sherry hogshead with new make spirit, and three years ago, he moved that cask to a cave in the distillery's garden. On Christmas, he retrieved that cask, and what the angels (and Dennis) didn't get over the years will be bottled as a special anniversary edition of Glen Grant. Dennis shares some of his 50 years of stories with us, and helps quash a report out of Australia that Glen Grant was demolished years ago.
WhiskyCast Episode 349: December 24, 2011Dec 24, 2011 48:21
Mike Padlipsky had two loves...software and whisky. He also had one mission...to find what he thought of as the world's best single malt whisky. Sadly, his last act before his death was to find a bottle of that whisky...and he never got to open it. Bill Ricker is the keeper of Mike's dual legacies in computing and whisky. He'll tell us about his friend's passions in this week's episode, and exactly what that whisky was that Mike sought out until his dying day.
WhiskyCast Episode 348: December 17, 2011Dec 18, 2011 38:31
This is a big weekend for the eight founders of Sweden's Mackmyra Distillery. Their initial dream of building Sweden's first whisky distillery has been more successful than they dreamed...so much so that they've had to build a second distillery a couple of kilometers away to meet global demand. Rikard Lundborg was one of the founders, and now heads up global sales for the company. He'll tell us about the new distillery, which uses a unique design to minimize energy use and maximize efficiency...and he'll give us the real story behind the ski trip that was the genesis for Mackmyra. In the news, Beam acquires Ireland's Cooley Distillery, a 55-year-old Glenfiddich breaks auction records at Bonhams, and tasting notes for a 60-year-old single malt from The Macallan.
WhiskyCast Episode 347: December 11, 2011Dec 12, 2011 26:21
If you're trying to find a rare whisky, the easiest way to track it down may be through one of the many whisky auctions conducted by galleries like Bonhams and McTear's. Bonhams held its pre-Christmas whisky auction in New York City this past week, and we'll have exclusive coverage on this episode. You'll also find out how to put your own whiskies on the block, too. In the news, Johnnie Walker goes platinum, The Naked Grouse visits Dubai, and Buffalo Trace unleashes Bourbons made with rice and oats!
WhiskyCast Episode 346: December 4, 2011Dec 4, 2011 01:11:41
The arrival of December brings with it the annual announcement of the Malt Maniacs Whisky Awards. 171 whiskies from around the world were entered in this year's competition, and just eight won gold medals. Maniacs Keith Wood and Krishna Nukala join me from Germany and India to discuss this year's results on this week's episode. In the news, Woodford Reserve unveils Double Oaked Bourbon, the first permanent addition to the Woodford range since the debut of Distillers Select, and Chris Morris gives us the toasty details. We'll also have word on more new whiskies, and a new bourbon from West Virginia's Smooth Ambler Distillery.
WhiskyCast Episode 345: November 27, 2011Nov 27, 2011 46:46
The Stitzel-Weller Distillery in Louisville is holy ground for many bourbon lovers, even though it closed 20 years ago. Stitzel-Weller was the home of Pappy Van Winkle's legendary bourbons, and we'll look at the distillery's history and its future on this episode of WhiskyCast with historian Michael Veach and Julian Van Winkle. Tom Bulleit's Bulleit Bourbon is aged at Stitzel-Weller now, and he'll explain Diageo's plans to open at least part of the grounds to the public as The Bulleit Experience.
WhiskyCast Episode 344: November 19, 2011Nov 20, 2011 35:01
Irish Whiskey has been the fastest-growing segment of the whisky business for the last several years. William Grant & Sons acquired Tullamore Dew last year, and has been investing millions of Euros to build the brand. A new "Irish True" marketing campaign for Tullamore Dew debuted this week in New York City, and we'll hear more from John Quinn and Shane Hoyne about the brand's heritage and its future...which may include a new Tullamore Dew distillery at some point. In the news, the Kentucky Distillers Association and Sazerac settle their legal dispute over the Bourbon Trail, new whiskies from The Glenlivet, Kilchoman, and The Whisky Exchange, and WhiskyCast gets a boost from Hollywood!
WhiskyCast Episode 343: November 13, 2011Nov 14, 2011 47:01
Whisky Magazine announced its U.S. Icons of Whisky Awards this week in Louisville, and I was on hand for the ceremonies. Four Roses won Distiller of the Year honors for the second year in a row, and Balcones Distillery in Waco, Texas was named Craft Distiller of the Year. We'll hear from winners Jim Rutledge and Chip Tate. In the news, a French family-owned wine company has bought Tullibardine, ghost hunters search Buffalo Trace for spirits of the ethereal variety, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 342: November 6, 2011Nov 6, 2011 33:21
Ichiro Akuto is a maverick among Japanese whisky distillers, creating traditional whiskies with a style that's anything but traditional. When his family sold their Hanyu Distillery, he not only bought the remaining stocks of Hanyu, but built his own Chichibu Distillery next to the family's sake brewery. Ichiro shares his family history and his philosophy with us this week as we mark the end of WhiskyCast's 6th year.
WhiskyCast Episode 341: October 30, 2011Oct 30, 2011 35:21
Each autumn, Woodford Reserve releases its Masters Collection whiskey, a variation on one of the five elements of Bourbon defined by Oscar Pepper and James Christopher Crow 160 years ago. This year's edition is actually two 100% rye whiskies, with one aged in new oak barrels and the other in refill Woodford barrels. Master Distiller Chris Morris unveiled them this week, and explains them in this episode. In the news, they're cheering in Wick, a bit of rumor control with Laphroaig's Simon Brooking, and the annual Pappy Van Winkle whiskies are on the way.
WhiskyCast Episode 340: October 23, 2011Oct 23, 2011 42:46
Chuck Miller describes himself as "America's First Craft Distiller". He's been making moonshine legally at his Stillhouse Distillery in Culpeper, Virginia for 25 years, using the recipe and techniques he learned from his grandfather. Grandpa helped keep Washington wet during Prohibition and made moonshine illegally for decades, and despite frequent raids, never once got caught. Chuck shares his "shine" stories with us in this week's episode. In the news, the distillery that's helped many a craft distiller get started has been sold, The Balvenie Road Show winds up, and a listener sings the praises of Blended Scotches.
WhiskyCast Episode 339: October 16, 2011Oct 16, 2011 27:18
Adelphi's history dates back to 1826 and the old Adelphi Distillery in Glasgow. Descendants of the distillery's owners revived the name as an independent bottler, and we'll hear more about their unique whiskies and even more unique tasting notes in this week's episode. In the news, a vintage bottle of The Glenlivet sold for nearly $30,000 at the latest Bonhams auction in Edinburgh and Suntory's Mike Miyamoto gives us the details on the Hakushu single malt's arrival in North America.
WhiskyCast Episode 338: October 9, 2011Oct 9, 2011 39:13
Jim Beveridge is the master blender for Diageo's Johnnie Walker whiskies, which means he's responsible for some of the world's best-selling Scotch whiskies. It also means he doesn't have time to do interviews very often, and I've wanted to talk with him for several years...so when we had the chance to connect for a few minutes, I jumped at the chance. We'll discuss his latest creation, Johnnie Walker Double Black, which has jumped from travel retail into mainstream markets, along with the art and science of whisky blending. In the news, Suntory prepares to export Hakushu single malts to the U.S., the 2012 Malt Whisky Yearbook has been published, and more!
WhiskyCast Episode 337: October 2, 2011Oct 2, 2011 36:41
Back at home, but with Paris still on my mind, and plenty of news to catch up on! We'll catch up with more news on new releases from Whisky Live Paris, along with the latest headlines. Is United Spirits hot for Teacher's, Beam's Red Stag gets two more members in the herd, and Tim Forbes of The Whisky Exchange gives us a preview of this week's Whisky Show in London.
WhiskyCast Episode 336: September 26, 2011Sep 27, 2011 47:17
In our final episode from Whisky Live Paris, we'll get updates on the process of exporting Nikka's Japanese whiskies to the U.S. for the first time, along with the latest on new releases from Kilchoman, Compass Box, Glen Grant, Aberlour, and a host of other distillers. In the news, a 19th century bottle of The Glenlivet will go on the auction block at Bonham's next month, Vijay Mallya sets his sights on Beam, and much, much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 335: September 24, 2011Sep 25, 2011 24:17
This is the first of two episodes from Whisky Live Paris, and we'll hear from some of the distillers who have traveled from around the world for one of the world's top whisky festivals, including Japan's Ichiro Akuto and Mark Littler of Australia's Hellyers Road. In the news, the final bottle of The Dalmore 64 sells for a new record retail price, Redbreast 12 goes cask-strength, and WhiskyCast welcomes a new sponsor.
WhiskyCast Episode 334: September 18, 2011Sep 18, 2011 01:15:46
Glasgow has been the heart of Scotland's whisky industry for decades, and while it retains much of its gritty character, there's plenty to make whisky lovers feel welcome. This time around, we'll look at some of Glasgow's best places for whisky lovers to visit, including a special focus on McTear's, one of the world's top whisky auction houses. In the news, the Bourbon Hall of Fame welcomes the Class of 2011, new whiskies, and the latest on whisky exports.
WhiskyCast Episode 333: September 11, 2011Sep 11, 2011 49:43
Bruichladdich celebrates the 10th anniversary of its revival this weekend, and this week's episode comes from the distillery on the shores of Loch Indall on Islay! We'll look at how the distillery came back to life and brought a new spirit to the people of Islay, in the words of Head Distiller Jim McEwan, Managing Director Mark Reynier, and some of the people who have had their lives touched by the distillery.
WhiskyCast Episode 332: September 4, 2011Sep 4, 2011 37:01
Every September, whiskey lovers start prowling their favorite liquor stores for the arrival of the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection whiskies. This year's lineup of three Bourbons and two Ryes was unveiled this week, and Kris Comstock of Buffalo Trace joins me to discuss them. I'll also have tasting notes for all five, and compare this year's George T. Stagg Bourbon to previous years. In the news, birthdays, big bottles and a "tun" of news from The Balvenie's Sam Simmons.
WhiskyCast Episode 331: August 27, 2011Aug 28, 2011 25:16
The Kentucky Bourbon Festival celebrates its 20th anniversary three weeks from now, and we'll discuss this year's Festival and its history with Executive Director Linda Harrison. In the news, Four Roses unveils its 2011 Limited Edition Small Batch bourbon to be released at the Festival, the final remaining bottle of Dalmore Trinitas finds a home, and new single cask bottlings from BenRiach, GlenDronach, and Glenglassaugh.
WhiskyCast Episode 330: August 21, 2011Aug 21, 2011 27:31
One of the world's most unusual whisky festivals is coming up in a few weeks. Maltstock doesn't take place in a hotel or convention center, but at a former Scout camp in the Dutch woods. Maltstock co-founder Bob Wenting joins us on this week's episode to discuss what makes Maltstock unique. In the news, Abhainn Dearg releases its first official single malt, Catto's celebrates 150 years, and Buffalo Trace releases the second edition of Col. E.H. Taylor Bourbon.
WhiskyCast Episode 329: August 14, 2011Aug 14, 2011 35:51
It's the second weekend of the month, and they're raising dust on the dirt road leading to Atlantic City. Not the one in New Jersey, but the one in Wyoming. For the last 3 years, Bob and Barbara Townsend have been holding single malt tastings on the second Saturday of each month at their Miner's Delight Inn...and they've had guests from as far away as California! In the news, Japan's Karuizawa whiskies get a new home, Old Pulteney gets an award, and would you believe someone has created a bourbon-based "spa treatment"?
WhiskyCast Episode 328: August 7, 2011Aug 7, 2011 52:51
40 years ago, Dublin's Bow Street Distillery closed down after nearly 200 years of producing Jameson Irish Whiskey. In 1997, what survived of the old distillery reopened as the Old Jameson Distillery, a visitors center devoted to preserving the heritage of John Jameson's original distillery. Nearly 250,000 people visit the old distillery each year, and guide Christopher Goggins gives us a private tour in this week's episode...complete with drams at the end!
WhiskyCast Episode 327: July 31, 2011Jul 31, 2011 39:26
As the U.S. faces another debt crisis, this week marks the anniversary of a key event in another U.S. debt crisis...the Whiskey Rebellion of 1794. On August 1, 1794, 7,000 Americans gathered at Braddock's Field in Western Pennsylvania to protest President Washington's tax on whiskey production. The protest led to a declaration of insurrection, and Washington led an army into the area to quash the rebellion. Dr. Dennis Pogue of Mount Vernon explains the history of the Whiskey Rebellion in this episode. In the news, Glen Moray has its first new single malt release under new ownership, Crown Royal lends its name to NASCAR's Brickyard 400, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 326: July 23, 2011Jul 24, 2011 30:31
New Orleans certainly has a cocktail culture, and this weekend, it's the Mecca for cocktail enthusiasts and bartenders from all over the world. Tales of the Cocktail is in its 9th year, and co-founder Paul Tuennerman joins us to talk about the history of Tales and how it's survived along with New Orleans in the post-Katrina era. In the news, a Canadian distillery starts producing single malt spirit for the future, Auchentoshan wants to "switch" bartenders, and we'll have a sneak preview of an all-new WhiskyCast podcast!
WhiskyCast Episode 325: July 17, 2011Jul 17, 2011 50:53
The Scottish town of Oban celebrated its 200th anniversary this week, and the folks at Oban Distillery fired up a Time Machine to celebrate. They went back to 1823 and found a cousin of the distillery's founders to explain life as Oban was being settled. "Alan Stevenson" explains some of the history, along with Joanne McCutcher of the Diageo Archives and Oban visitors center manager Carol Bennett. We'll also hear from Glenmorangie/Ardbeg's David Blackmore and Knob Creek Whisky Professor Bernie Lubbers, and there's breaking news on plans to export Nikka whiskies to the U.S.!
WhiskyCast Episode 324: July 9, 2011Jul 10, 2011 42:16
As distilleries replace old equipment with new, the old stuff winds up on the scrap heap most of the time. Not so at Knockdhu Distillery in Scotland. Whether by coincidence, planning, or sheer luck, many of the distillery's artifacts have been preserved for decades after they were replaced by modern equipment. Knockdhu manager Gordon Bruce gives us a tour of his "museum" in this week's episode. In the news, plans for a new distillery in Louisville, management moves at Pernod Ricard, and plenty of new whiskies!
WhiskyCast Episode 323: July 3, 2011Jul 3, 2011 42:16
It's been a little over four months since a massive earthquake destroyed much of Christchurch, New Zealand and claimed 181 lives. Today, the city is trying to rebuild, despite occasional large aftershocks. One of those people trying to rebuild is Michael Fraser Milne of Whisky Galore, Christchurch's largest whisky shop. His store was destroyed in the earthquake, which came just three days before Whisky Galore's biennial DramFest festival. Michael tells us about the recovery in Christchurch, and what he calls a "humbling" outpouring of support from the whisky community. In the news, Ian Macleod Distillers has bought Tamdhu Distillery and will bring it back to life, Diageo plans to expand in Speyside, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 322: June 26, 2011Jun 26, 2011 43:51
Since 1869, Wild Turkey Bourbon has been made on Wild Turkey Hill, just east of Lawrenceburg, Kentucky. Jimmy and Eddie Russell saw a need to expand production to meet growing global demand for bourbon, but no room to grow on the Hill. Now, they're making Wild Turkey at a new $50 million distillery just up the road, and the dedication ceremony for the new distillery was held this week. The Russells tell us how they've gotten the new plant to make spirit that tastes just like the old place, and we'll hear Jimmy's entire speech during the ceremony.
WhiskyCast Episode 321: June 19, 2011Jun 19, 2011 01:07:36
Pulteney Distillery celebrates its 195th anniversary this year in the North Sea fishing town of Wick, Scotland. It's the home of Old Pulteney single malt whisky, and distillery manager Malcolm Waring takes us on a tour in this week's episode. In the news, new whiskies from Islay, Colorado, and the Lowlands of Scotland, an old whisky returns home to Islay, and the winners of the first WhiskyCast Father's Day competition.
WhiskyCast Episode 320: June 12, 2011Jun 12, 2011 27:11
It's a busy summer at Balblair Distillery in the Scottish Highlands. Not only are they making whisky, but the distillery is also a movie set this week, the site of a wedding next month, and two days after the wedding...construction starts on the distillery's first-ever visitors center. Distillery manager John MacDonald tells us about his hectic summer in this week's episode. In the news...plenty of new whiskies, including two charity bottlings, and dueling boycotts over the conflict in the Middle East.
WhiskyCast Episode 319: June 4, 2011Jun 4, 2011 45:01
In the last episode, I mentioned the Balcones Brimstone blue corn whiskey from Balcones Distillery in Waco, Texas...and how the corn was smoked over Texas scrub oak. Turns out I was wrong, and there's an even more interesting story behind this whiskey and the distillery. In the news, Jack Daniel's neighbors want to tax the distillery's whiskey barrels, Ireland could have a fourth distillery two years from now, new whiskies from Glen Garioch and The Macallan, and tasting notes for craft whiskies from Arkansas and Washington.
WhiskyCast Episode 318: May 29, 2011May 29, 2011 45:11
Chuck Cowdery was writing about Bourbon back in the days when few people were paying attention to America's Native Spirit, and his work has earned him a spot in the Bourbon Hall of Fame. The author of "Straight Bourbon" and "The Bourbon Country Reader" tells us about Kentucky's love-hate relationship with Bourbon, long-gone distilleries, and the rebirth of interest in Bourbons. In the news, new whiskies from Jim Beam, Bunnahabhain, and Laphroaig, the Islay weather report, and a chat with "Whisky Classified" author Dr. David Wishart.
WhiskyCast Episode 317: May 22, 2011May 22, 2011 01:04:41
This is a big weekend on Islay, and not only because it's the first weekend of the Islay Festival of Malt & Music. Bruichladdich is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its 2001 revival this weekend, and we'll look back at the last 10 years with managing director Mark Reynier and the Bard of Bruichladdich, singer-songwriter Robin Laing. Midleton Distillery cooper Ger Buckley tells us about the centuries-old art of making barrels by hand, and shows us in the debut of WhiskyCast HD, a new series of video podcasts. We'll also hear from the Spirit Journal's F. Paul Pacult and Euan Shand of Duncan Taylor.
WhiskyCast Episode 316: May 15, 2011May 15, 2011 42:46
The Powers family distilled whiskey for seven generations and two centuries on John's Lane in Dublin, and John Ryan is the seventh and final generation to carry on his family's tradition. While the Powers Distillery closed nearly 40 years ago, its legacy is now part of Irish Distillers, and John shares that history with us in this episode. In the news, plenty of new whiskies, awards, auctions, and a chance to buy a piece of Ponzi scheme history!
WhiskyCast Episode 315: May 8, 2011May 9, 2011 01:13:46
Irish whiskies once ruled the world, and Dublin was the center of Ireland's whisky industry. There are no distilleries left in Dublin, but there's plenty of whisky history to be found, along with a handful of good whisky shops and great pubs. We'll hear from Michael Hedigan, the latest in a long line of Hedigans to run the Brian Boru pub in Dublin's Glasnevin neighborhood. In the news, Irish Distillers unveils two new single pot still Irish whiskies from Midleton and a massive expansion plan for Ireland's largest distillery.
WhiskyCast Episode 314: May 1, 2011May 1, 2011 54:06
You've heard of single cask whiskies, but Buffalo Trace is taking the idea to an extreme with its Single Oak Project. There are 192 different bottles in the range, using wood from 96 different trees...and all of the wood in each cask comes from the same tree. It's just one way to control the variables that make the whisky from two barrels different, and there are nearly 1,400 possible combinations! We'll hear from the team behind this unique experiment, along with the week's news and the debut of a new feature -- in which you get to ask the questions!
WhiskyCast Episode 313: April 24, 2011Apr 24, 2011 30:46
Charles MacLean is one of the world's top whisky writers, and is marking 30 years of writing about the water of life this year. We'll hear from this Master of the Quaich about how he developed his love for whisky and his nosing skills, along with what he likes and doesn't like about whisky these days. In the news, Graham Eunson leaves Glenglassaugh to become distillery manager at Tomatin, Diageo's Scotch distilleries show an increase in visitor traffic, and the UK prepares to mix whisky with politics...in one polling place.
WhiskyCast Episode 312: April 17, 2011Apr 17, 2011 32:31
The last time we heard from Japanese whisky blogger and Malt Maniac Chris Bunting, he was in the middle of writing a book on Japan's drinking culture. "Drinking Japan" has just been published, and Chris joins us to discuss his book and the status of Japan's whisky distilleries after the recent earthquakes. Chris is also donating part of his royalties from the book to earthquake relief efforts. In the news, Bill Samuels Jr. of Maker's Mark is the toast of Kentucky after his retirement, whiskies for the Royal Wedding, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 311: April 10, 2011Apr 11, 2011 37:19
Belgium is known for its outstanding beers, but the country has three languages, three different cultures, and one sub-culture that unites them...a whisky culture! Belgian whisky writer Fernand Dacquin explains in this week's episode, which also includes highlights from Whisky Live New York. In the news, Scottish distillers team up to help Japan, Tomatin's Douglas Campbell celebrates 50 years of distilling, and Jim Beam gives the Devil his due.
WhiskyCast Episode 310: April 3, 2011Apr 4, 2011 46:01
This week's episode features one of the most mysterious single malt whiskies in the world. Taiwan's Kavalan whisky has received awards in worldwide competitions, even though the King Car Distillery has only been distilling whisky for six years and Kavalan is sold in only four Asian countries. We'll travel to Taiwan for an in-depth look at what makes this whisky unique. In the news, Decanter #1 of the Glenlivet 70 raises $24,000 for Japanese earthquake relief, new bourbons, and a new record for Scotch whisky exports.
WhiskyCast Episode 309: March 26, 2011Mar 27, 2011 43:54
Five generations of the William Grant family have been making Grant's Scotch whiskies, and we'll look at the entire Grant's range with Ludo DuCroq in this episode. In the news, Decanter #1 of Gordon & MacPhail's Glenlivet 70 goes on the auction block for Japanese earthquake relief, the UK government sticks whisky lovers with the annual tax increase, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 308: March 20, 2011Mar 20, 2011 51:04
More from Edinburgh on this edition, with a look at some of the key places whisky lovers seek out on a visit to Scotland's capital. We'll check out Royal Mile Whiskies, The Scotch Whisky Experience, and one of Edinburgh's best whisky bars. In the news, Whyte & MacKay is about to release a replica of Shackleton's whisky from Antarctica, Australian whisky comes to the US, an update on Japan's distilleries after the earthquake, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 307: March 13, 2011Mar 13, 2011 00
1940 was a crucial moment in world history, as World War II was breaking out in Europe. That February, Gordon & MacPhail arranged to have 15 casks filled with new make spirit at The Glenlivet in Speyside. 70 years later, the one remaining cask has been bottled as the second release in G&M's "Generations Series". The Glenlivet 70 was unveiled this past Tuesday in Edinburgh, along with 5 other single cask Glenlivets from 1954 through 1991, and you'll hear the highlights and reaction on this episode of WhiskyCast!
WhiskyCast Episode 306: March 5, 2011Mar 5, 2011 40:44
David Perkins has been getting a lot of attention for his High West whiskies. Malt Advocate just named him its Industry Pioneer of the Year, and two weeks ago, Matt Colglaizer sang the praises of High West in his WhiskyCast interview. This time around, David explains how he moved from biochemistry to making whisky in Utah. In the news, the winners of Whisky Magazine's World Whiskies Awards, a new Bulleit Rye whiskey hits the market, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 305: February 26, 2011Feb 27, 2011 48:29
Brown-Forman's cooperage in Louisville, Kentucky has an impact on whiskies all over the world. The cooperage makes all of the barrels for Jack Daniel's, Woodford Reserve, and Brown-Forman's other whiskies...and of course, those barrels are later sent to distilleries in Scotland and around the world for aging whiskies. It's also one of the few cooperages open for tours, and general manager Greg Roshkowski will give us a tour in this episode. In the news, the Christchurch earthquake and its connection to the whisky world, plenty of awards, and more new whiskies!
WhiskyCast Episode 304: February 19, 2011Feb 20, 2011 35:14
Still in Indiana, but that's giving me a chance to catch up with old friends. Matt Colglazier writes the American Craft Spirits blog, and also happens to be the marketing manager for Big Red Liquors in Bloomington, Indiana. That's where I spent four years getting my degree (in Bloomington, not at Big Red), and Big Red now boasts a selection of more than 200 whiskies. We'll hear from Matt about the growth in craft spirits and much more in this episode...
WhiskyCast Episode 303: February 13, 2011Feb 14, 2011 29:14
This week's episode comes from Edinburgh...no, not THAT Edinburgh. I'm actually in Edinburgh, Indiana on family business, but talked with Alistair Longwell of Ardmore and Ryan Maloney of Julio's Liquors in Westborough, Massachusetts before I headed west. They've been working on the first official single cask Ardmore bottling that will make its debut at Julio's later this month. In the news, Diageo has an eye on Beam Global's future, a Kentucky distilling family wants to return to its roots, and much more.
WhiskyCast Episode 302: February 6, 2011Feb 6, 2011 39:01
Jim Murray isn't one to hold his tongue when he doesn't like something, and the man behind the Whisky Bible shares some of the things that are bothering him these days in this episode, along with some of the whiskies that surprised him this year. We'll also hear from Andrew Ferguson of Calgary's Kensington Wine Market about his hotbed of whisky in the middle of the cold Canadian prairie, along with the rest of the week's news and much more.
WhiskyCast Episode 301: January 30, 2011Jan 30, 2011 01:12:08
Canadian whiskies seldom gets their fair share of credit, since many whisky drinkers perceive them as something best mixed into a cocktail. While that's certainly an acceptable way to drink them, there are many Canadian whiskies that can hold their own when compared to any whisky from around the world. Davin de Kergommeaux of Canadian Whisky.org shares some of the history behind these unique whiskies and a few recommendations in this episode. In the news, new whiskies from Cooley, Highland Park, Buffalo Trace, Bowmore, and much more...
WhiskyCast Episode 300: January 23, 2011Jan 24, 2011 39:52
Plenty of highlights at this year's Victoria Whisky Festival, and we'll have all of the details in this episode recorded on location in Victoria, British Columbia. In the news, Scotch whisky exports are on the rise, Glenfarclas marks an anniversary, Arran goes peaty, Compass Box goes Orangerie again...and we mourn the loss of longtime Buffalo Trace legend Jimmy Johnson.
WhiskyCast Episode 299: January 22, 2011Jan 23, 2011 51:33
This is the first live webcast of WhiskyCast, on location at the Victoria Whisky Festival in British Columbia. Our tasting panel and nosers from the audience went through five blind samples selected by Malt Maniac and Victoria Whisky Festival president Lawrence Graham, and you'll hear just how hard it is to guess just what a whisky could be without any clues. In the news, Shackleton's whisky gets first-class treatment, new expressions from The Dalmore and Old Pulteney, and whisky in a can?
WhiskyCast Episode 298: January 16, 2011Jan 16, 2011 01:07:43
Your boss wants you to take on a massive project...restoring a distillery that was abandoned for more than 20 years. Dave Scheurich of Brown-Forman took on that challenge with the old Labrot & Graham Distillery in Versailles, Kentucky. Today, it's the historic Woodford Reserve Distillery, and Dave has just retired as distillery manager. He'll share some of his stories with us in this episode. In the news, Shackleton's whisky is heading back to Scotland, Bill Samuels Jr. turns over Maker's Mark to the next generation, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 297: January 9, 2011Jan 9, 2011 35:53
Whisky lovers take their passion into all sorts of areas. Shai Gilboa decided to look into the history of a fairly obscure blended Scotch whisky after coming across an old bottle of Stewart's Cream of the Barley during a tasting in Israel. He not only studied the history, but tracked down a current bottle of Stewart's and sent samples of the old and new bottlings to friends around the world to compare. In the news, Ralph Erenzo's condition improves, Skye loses one of its champions, and Early Times brings out a new bourbon in the U.S.
WhiskyCast Episode 296: January 2, 2011Jan 2, 2011 30:58
We'll start off the New Year with a rare interview with Tim Morrison, managing director of A. Dewar Rattray and the son of Morrison Bowmore founder Stanley Morrison. Tim's career in the whisky business spans the acquisition of Bowmore by his family to today's independent bottlings he selects for A. Dewar Rattray. In the news, an update on Ralph Erenzo's condition and Whisky Magazine's U.S. Icons of Whisky winners.
WhiskyCast Episode 295: December 27, 2010Dec 27, 2010 58:10
In the final episode of 2010, we'll take a look back at some of the year's more memorable moments. In the news, Tuthilltown Spirits founder Ralph Erenzo is hospitalized in critical condition after a car accident, Stranahan's Colorado Whiskey has been sold, new whiskies from BenRiach and Glengoyne, and the real person in charge at Bruichladdich is retiring.
WhiskyCast Episode 294: December 19, 2010Dec 19, 2010 41:28
Dominic Roskow took on a tough challenge for his latest book - identifying the world's 750 best whiskies. We'll hear from the author of "The World's Best Whiskies: 750 Essential Drams from Tennessee to Tokyo" in this episode. In the news, Ken Storrie, the owner of Glasgow's legendary pub "The Pot Still" has died...and his Scrooge-like landlord evicted Ken's widow and family from the premises days before Christmas. We'll also hear about the retirement of Woodford Reserve manager Dave Schuerich, a milestone at Heaven Hill, and some of your "Dramcember" drams.
WhiskyCast Episode 293: December 12, 2010Dec 12, 2010 52:54
Canadian whisky has been celebrating a renaissance of sorts, with shows like "Mad Men" and "Boardwalk Empire" renewing interest in these often-overlooked whiskies. Davin de Kergommeaux is the publisher of CanadianWhisky.org, and this past week handed out the first Canadian Whisky Awards. Davin and I discuss the winners and other Canadian whiskies to watch for. In the news, Fortune Brands plans to shed divisions and focus on spirits, an interview with new Maker's Mark master distiller Greg Davis, and US regulators answer the "single malt whisky" question.
WhiskyCast Episode 292: December 5, 2010Dec 5, 2010 59:18
Each year, a dedicated group of maniacal whisky lovers takes on the challenge of tasting and judging the world's best whiskies. The Malt Maniacs Awards is one of the world's toughest whisky competitions, and the 2010 edition is no exception with just 12 gold medals...and 262 entries! Master Maniac Johannes van den Heuvel joins me from Amsterdam to discuss this year's winners on this week's episode. In the news, winter weather hits Scotland hard and Johnnie Walker gets a bar of its own in New York City.
WhiskyCast Episode 291: November 27, 2010Nov 27, 2010 41:23
The last time we heard from Jim McEwan, he was leading a toast at the end of his master class at Bruichladdich during Feis Ile in May. Jim's been a busy man since then, but he agreed to sit down for a few minutes and discuss his dalliance with distilling gin, the future of Bruichladdich as the 10th anniversay of its reopening nears, and his own approaching retirement to spend time with his grandchildren. In the news, repair work is underway at Springbank, auction results from Glasgow and Hong Kong, and the debut of the WhiskyCast Glencairn nosing glass!
WhiskyCast Episode 290: November 20, 2010Nov 21, 2010 40:09
Whisky truly is the "water of life", and as many as 60,000 people will benefit from the sale of one very special bottle of whisky this past week. The Macallan in Lalique Cire Perdue Decanter is the largest and heaviest Lalique decanter ever made, and holds the oldest Macallan whisky ever bottled. It sold Monday night at Sotheby's in New York for the highest price ever paid for a single bottle of whisky: $460,000. There's complete coverage of the auction in this week's episode, along with news from the Bonhams whisky auction in Edinburgh, several whisky competitions, and the Holiday Gift Guide has a Vegas flair.
WhiskyCast Episode 289: November 14, 2010Nov 14, 2010 56:54
Malt Advocate held its annual WhiskyFest New York this past week, and the microdistilling community was out in force. Some of the most creative experiments in distilling are being done at American microdistilleries, and you'll hear from some of the distillers in this episode. In the news, a boiler explosion shuts down Springbank, a $160,000 bottle of whisky is still on the market, and the Friends of Laphroaig visit the Statue of Liberty.
WhiskyCast Episode 288: November 7, 2010Nov 7, 2010 39:53
This episode marks a milestone...the fifth anniversary of the first WhiskyCast episode. Veteran bartender and author of "Bartending for Dummies" Ray Foley joins us to discuss the art of bartending, and don't dare refer to him as a "mixologist". In the news, Scotch whisky exports are on the rise, new bourbons are on the way, Caperdonich comes tumbling down, and the holiday gift guide looks at new whisky-specific glassware from Villeroy & Boch.
WhiskyCast Episode 287: October 31, 2010Oct 31, 2010 01:05:54
Serge Valentin takes whisky seriously...but not much else. His WhiskyFun.com website is among the world's most popular whisky web sites, with tasting notes for thousands of whiskies from all over the world, music reviews, and much more. Serge explains his philosophy of life in this episode, along with the latest news, this week's trivia question, and the holiday gift guide.
WhiskyCast Episode 286: October 24, 2010Oct 24, 2010 41:48
Ever wondered why the U.S. requires whisky to be sold in 750ml bottles, while most of the rest of the world sells 700ml bottles? We'll get the definitive answer to that and other federal red tape questions from former ATF and TTB agent William Earle, now president of the National Association of Beverage Importers. In the news, another ultra-premium Johnnie Walker whisky, new malts from The Glenrothes and Amrut, and the debut of the WhiskyCast Holiday Gift Guide.
WhiskyCast Episode 285: October 17, 2010Oct 17, 2010 01:18:25
Compass Box marks 10 years in the whisky business this week, and John Glaser is celebrating with retrospective tastings in New York and Edinburgh. We'll have highlights of the New York tasting on this week's episode. In the news, a rare bottle of Mortlach 70 is stolen at the Stockholm Beer & Whisky Festival, and two bottles of 64-year-old Dalmore have sold for about $160,000...each! We'll also remember Ronnie Eddins, the longtime Buffalo Trace warehouse manager who passed away this past week.
WhiskyCast Episode 284: October 10, 2010Oct 10, 2010 42:29
Every master has an apprentice learning the tricks of the trade and preparing to fill the master's shoes one day. Brian Kinsman served as David Stewart's protege at William Grant & Sons, and has now taken on David's role as Master Blender for Grant's and Glenfiddich Malt Master. David continues as Malt Master for The Balvenie, and we'll hear from both men in this episode. In the news, Dewar's completes the first phase of its expansion plans, two bottles of George Washington's Rye go on the auction block, and Woodford Reserve searches for the perfect Manhattan recipe.
WhiskyCast Episode 283: October 3, 2010Oct 4, 2010 01:32:19
No journalist has ever been allowed inside the Chivas Brothers blending lab in Kilmalid, Scotland...which means whisky lovers have never gotten a look inside...until now. Master Blender Sandy Hyslop directs the production of Ballantine's Scotch and other Chivas products from this lab, and that includes the entire range of single malt bottlings from the Chivas Brothers distilleries. We'll get a look at everything from new make grain spirit to Ballantine's 30-year-old Scotch, and there's a quiz at the end. You don't have to take it...I did. In the news, Highland Park unveils a 50-year-old expression, Diageo opens the massive Roseisle Distillery in Speyside, Old Pulteney's looking for an Arctic Explorer, and brace yourselves, Android users...there's an app coming your way soon.
WhiskyCast Episode 282: September 27, 2010Sep 28, 2010 57:47
This is the third and final episode from Whisky Live Paris, where I was honored to be a judge in the Nikka Perfect Serve competition for bartenders from 10 European countries. We'll also hear from David Robertson of Whyte & Mackay, Glann ar Mor's Jean Donnay, Glen Grant master distiller Dennis Malcolm, Doug McIvor of Berry Bros. & Rudd, Lisa Collins of Mackmyra, take a look at Blanton's bourbons that you'll never see in Kentucky and get a taste of absinthe!
WhiskyCast Episode 281: September 26, 2010Sep 27, 2010 58:20
More coverage from Whisky Live Paris on this special episode of WhiskyCast! We'll hear from Anthony Wills of Kilchoman, John MacDonald of Balblair, author Dave Broom, Bill Lumsden of Glenmorangie, Ann Miller of Aberlour, Compass Box's John Glaser, Luc Timmermans of Belgium's Lindores Whisky Society and much more...along with tasting notes for some of the whiskies I've tasted today in Paris!
WhiskyCast Episode 280: September 25, 2010Sep 26, 2010 01:01:17
I'm on the road this weekend at Whisky Live Paris, and it's a weekend full of new whiskies to taste! We'll hear from Thierry Benitah of La Maison du Whisky, along with Kerry White of GlenDronach, Amrut's Ashok Chokalingam, Michael Urquhart of Gordon & MacPhail, Marcin Miller of Number One Drinks Company, and three of Australia's leading distillers!
WhiskyCast Episode 279: September 19, 2010Sep 19, 2010 01:07:19
Ireland's Midleton Distillery features 5 pot stills, eight column stills, and literally dozens of possibilities for making Irish whiskey. It's home to Jameson, Power's, Midleton, Paddy, and many other Irish whiskeys. While the Old Midleton Distillery is now a visitors center, the main distillery is off-limits to visitors -- until now. You'll get an in-depth look inside one of the world's great distilleries on this episode. In the news, the Bourbon Hall of Fame welcomes the Class of 2010, a shake-up at Maker's Mark, the details on Amrut's new expression...and this week's trivia question.
WhiskyCast Episode 278: September 12, 2010Sep 13, 2010 35:55
This week's episode comes from the Scotch Whisky Experience in Edinburgh, Scotland, which has been completely renovated to provide state of the art whisky education for both consumers and professionals. We'll hear from the Experience's Julie Hunter on the changes, which include the addition of the Claive Vidiz Collection of whiskies to the exhibits on display. We'll also catch up with Alastair Day on the success of his Tweedale Blend whisky and Victor Brierley tells us about a new tour service for Glasgow's great whisky bars.
WhiskyCast Episode 277: September 5, 2010Sep 5, 2010 34:19
Women are discovering whisky and other brown spirits at record levels, and dispelling the old myth that whisky is a "man's drink." Meghan Leary is the author of "Whiskey for Women" and the website of the same name, and is on the forefront of teaching women about whisky. She'll share her insights with us on this week's episode. In the news, Scotland's government plans to impose minimum pricing over industry objections, Colum Egan of Bushmills picks his apprentice, and the "Water of Life Drive" reaches its goal for Charity: Water!
WhiskyCast Episode 276: August 29, 2010Aug 29, 2010 46:23
The Whisky Guild held its annual "Whisky on the Hudson" tasting and dinner cruise in New York City the other night, with more than 900 people on hand to taste dozens of whiskies. I'll have some of the highlights on this week's episode, including a visit to The Balvenie's Warehouse 24 room and chats with some of the U.S. microdistillers on hand. In the news, a new peated Glenmorangie, 10 single casks from BenRiach, a new Macallan 1824 Collection expression, and an update on the "Water of Life" Drive for Charity: Water.
WhiskyCast Episode 275: August 22, 2010Aug 22, 2010 01:08:08
Ever have one of those conversations that seems like just a few minutes, until you look at the clock and realize it's gone on for a long time? That sums up my chat this week with Robin Blackadder, the "nom du whisky" for Blackadder bottler Robin Toucek. We discussed everything from how he picks single casks to whisky festivals, politics, and small animals, and you'll hear our chat in this week's episode. In the news, Dr. Martin Tangney of Edinburgh Napier University explains his new technique for turning distillery waste into a usable biofuel, along with details on new whiskies and auction results for old ones.
WhiskyCast Episode 274: August 15, 2010Aug 15, 2010 50:08
There's no doubting that Kentucky makes great bourbons, but a single malt? That hasn't happened since 1919...until now. Dr. Pearse Lyons is the CEO of Alltech, which makes yeasts and animal feed supplements in Kentucky. He comes from generations of Irish coopers, and since Alltech already owns the Kentucky Brewing Company in Lexington, he decided to honor his heritage with a single malt. We'll also get the latest on Shackleton's whisky from Nigel Watson of the Antarctic Heritage Trust and learn more about Charity: Water from CEO Scott Harrison.
WhiskyCast Episode 273: August 8, 2010Aug 8, 2010 43:53
"Hammer Head" sounds like the name for a Caribbean rum, not a whisky. In this case, it's not a shark reference, but the name of a long-forgotten Czech single malt whisky just being released. Tony Roberts of Stock Spirits Group shepherded Hammer Head to market, and explains the origin of the whisky and its unusual name. Plenty of new whiskies to talk about this week, along with the start of the WhiskyCast "Water of Life" Drive.
WhiskyCast Episode 272: August 1, 2010Aug 1, 2010 34:38
Heather Greene works two jobs...as a singer and as one of the U.S. brand ambassadors for Glenfiddich. It's the second job that has made her a fixture at whisky festivals and helped her win Whisky Magazine's Icons of Whisky award as the best young whisky ambassador in the U.S. this year. Heather discusses balancing music and whisky in this week's episode, and in the news, new releases from Heaven Hill, The Balvenie, and tasting notes for the new Parker's Heritage Collection 2010 Wheated Bourbon and a vintage Glenfarclas.
WhiskyCast Episode 271: July 25, 2010Jul 25, 2010 55:13
I met up with Richard Paterson of Whyte & Mackay at Boston's Federal Wine & Spirits just as the news came from New Zealand that scientists will thaw out one of the cases of whisky found at Sir Ernest Shackleton's camp in Antarctica. Richard shares his hopes for the whisky inside that case, along with news on new bottlings from The Dalmore and Isle of Jura, and his unique tale of the history of Scotch whisky. We'll also touch base with Federal's Joe Howell on the business of selling whisky, and taste two Dalmores...one old and one new.
WhiskyCast Episode 270: July 18, 2010Jul 18, 2010 26:24
Laphroaig's stillhouse is a popular part of tours at the distillery, and the stillman you're most likely to meet is Allan Hyslop. Allan's been a fixture at Laphroaig for 30 years, and celebrated his anniversary during Feis Ile this year. He'll share some of his stories with us in this episode. In the news, the defending champion in the Australian Malt Whisky Tasting Championship has been dethroned, Heaven Hill expands its line of Evan Williams bourbon-based liqueurs, and an amazing find at the bottom of the sea between Sweden and Finland.
WhiskyCast Episode 269: July 11, 2010Jul 11, 2010 40:21
Tommy Smith worked at Strathisla Distillery in Speyside for 27 years before taking "early retirement." He's put in another eight years since then guiding visitors around the distillery and telling tales of the days when coal fired the stills, men ran the stills instead of computers, and "dramming" was part of the job. He'll share some of his stories with us in this episode. In the news, new releases from Ardbeg, Six Isles, Four Roses, charity events, and competitions, along with your e-mails and ways to keep cool in the summer's heat.
WhiskyCast Episode 268: July 4, 2010Jul 4, 2010 28:43
George Washington's estate at Mount Vernon is a unique part of American history, and for the first time since Washington's distillery burned down in 1814, whiskey distilled at Mount Vernon went on sale this week. Just 471 bottles of rye whiskey using the original Washington recipe sold out within two hours, and this episode includes some of the festivities as well as tasting notes for the whiskey.
WhiskyCast Episode 267: June 27, 2010Jun 27, 2010 35:53
Dave Pickerell has been keeping a low profile since leaving Maker's Mark in April of 2008. Turns out he was doing research into rye and microdistilling, and discovered a 10-year-old rye that just begged to be bottled. Dave and his partners are now selling WhistlePig Rye Whiskey, with plans to build a distillery on a farm in Vermont's Green Mountains. Dave explains his new whiskey and his research in this week's episode. In the news, George Washington's Rye goes on sale this week, results from the Bonhams auction in New York, and more new whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 266: June 20, 2010Jun 20, 2010 23:18
Glenfiddich will be releasing just 50 bottles of its 50-year-old single malt a year for the next 10 years, and opened one of the first 5 U.S. bottles Thursday at New York City's Mandarin Oriental Hotel. We'll hear from Caspar MacRae of William Grant & Sons, along with a Seattle whisky lover who won a trip to New York to taste the Glenfiddich 50. I'll have my tasting notes for this one of a kind whisky, too.
WhiskyCast Episode 265: June 13, 2010Jun 14, 2010 55:29
Time for another trip inside the blending lab, and Iain McCallum of Morrison Bowmore is our host. He'll take us through some old Auchentoshans and Glen Gariochs, along with a special surprise at the end. In the news, William Grant & Sons teams up with one of the top U.S. microdistillers, Glen Breton rubs it in, Glenmorangie's team of bloggers picks this year's Vintage Cask, and Glenmorangie says "L'Chaim."
WhiskyCast Episode 264: June 4, 2010Jun 5, 2010 33:34
The Glenlivet is the world's #2 selling single malt, and is taking aim at the top spot with a new distillery expansion. Chivas Brothers celebrated the $15 million dollar project today with a Royal Salute...literally. Prince Charles was on hand for the dedication, and you'll get a taste of the festivities on this episode of WhiskyCast recorded on location at The Glenlivet.
WhiskyCast Episode 263: May 30, 2010May 31, 2010 01:13:37
The Port Ellen Maltings supplies malt for many of Islay's distilleries, and I'll wrap up the special series of Feis Ile episodes from Islay with a rare tour inside the Maltings led by native Ileach manager Graham Logie. There's music from Robin Laing and some final thoughts as I wind up coverage of the 25th Islay Festival of Malt & Music.
WhiskyCast Episode 262: May 29, 2010May 30, 2010 51:29
Ardbeg has the final distillery day of the annual Islay Festival of Malt & Music, and even though there wasn't a full-size roller coaster on hand for the carnival Ardbeg threw, there was a full-proof Rollercoaster -- the special bottling marking the 10th anniversary of the Ardbeg Committee. Today was also the official debut of the 2010 version of Supernova, and you'll get tasting notes in this episode, hear from some of the 300-plus people who started lining up last night to get the Ardbeg Feis Ile bottling, and listen as I get up close and personal with some peat.
WhiskyCast Episode 261: May 28, 2010May 29, 2010 37:35
The road to Bunnahabhain Distillery is four miles long, and full of twists and turns. The views are stunning, though...and the whisky's pretty good, too. This is Bunnahabhain's day during the Islay Festival of Malt and Music, and we'll hear from the new distillery manager, Andrew Brown, along with stillman Robin Morton. There's music from the Scottish band Skerryvore, and much more on this episode from Islay.
WhiskyCast Episode 260: May 27, 2010May 28, 2010 46:57
This is the second of Thursday's two episodes from the Islay Festival of Malt & Music, recorded on location at Isle of Jura Distillery on the island of Jura. It's easy to find the distillery...just get off the ferry, drive down the island's one road, and stop at the end. There's a treat waiting for you, as you'll find in this episode of WhiskyCast!
WhiskyCast Episode 259: May 27, 2010May 28, 2010 43:37
This is the first of two episodes today from the Islay Festival of Malt & Music. Kilchoman is Islay's first new distillery in more than 120 years, and even though it just released its first single malt a few months ago, it's receiving rave reviews from whisky critics. We'll hear from Kilchoman founder Anthony Wills, Dr. Jim Swan, and some of the dozens of people who lined up for Kilchoman's first official Feis Ile single malt release.
WhiskyCast Episode 258: May 26, 2010May 27, 2010 46:06
Bowmore is Islay's oldest distillery, and the second oldest in all of Scotland. It's at the heart of Islay's largest town, and plays a major role on the island. It's also the only distillery with two Feis Ile special bottlings, and distillery manager Eddie McAffer is making one available to a WhiskyCast listener! Details in this episode, along with a visit to Islay's best whisky bar and music from the Spirit of Islay Pipe Band.
WhiskyCast Episode 257: May 25, 2010May 26, 2010 55:53
Laphroaig is one of those whiskies that you're either going to love or loathe...with no middle ground. Today is Laphroaig's day at the Islay Festival of Malt and Music, and this episode was recorded at the distillery on a windy, but sunny and warm day. We'll hear from distillery manager John Campbell, master blender Robert Hicks, get a cooking lesson from Gordon Harvey, one of the authors of "The Scotch Whisky Cookbook," attend the Feis Ile whisky nosing competition, and hear music from Brigid Kaelin.
WhiskyCast Episode 256: May 24, 2010May 25, 2010 38:30
Caol Ila Distillery may have the most beautiful setting of any of Islay's distilleries. It sits on the Sound of Islay directly across from the Paps of Jura, and when the skies are clear, you can see the Isle of Mull on the horizon. This is Caol Ila'sfestival day during the Islay Festival of Malt and Music, and we'll hear from distillery manager Billy Stitchell, taste some Caol Ilas, and talk to a local lobsterman and a precocious 3-year-old.
WhiskyCast Episode 255: May 23, 2010May 24, 2010 47:08
Day two of the Islay Festival of Malt and Music is Bruichladdich's turn to shine, and the sun was shining once again as Ileachs and whisky lovers from all over the world gathered at the distillery. Distillery manager Duncan McGillivray joins me in this episode, along with highlights from Jim McEwan's master class, Islay beers, and a song from Robin Laing.
WhiskyCast Episode 254: May 22, 2010May 23, 2010 43:59
Here we go...with the first of many episodes from the Islay Festival of Malt and Music. It's opening day, and Lagavulin traditionally is the first distillery to have its festival day. We'll hear from distillery manager Peter Campbell, a native Ileach, along with many of the people who make Feis Ile special, and I'll have tasting notes on several Lagavulin expressions, including this year's sold-out Feis Ile bottling.
WhiskyCast Episode 253: May 16, 2010May 16, 2010 31:09
Annabel Meikle does double duty...serving as a sensory whisky expert and educator for Glenmorangie and also serving as a member of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society's tasting panel. We'll discuss everything from training one's nose to the role of women in the whisky industry in this week's episode. In the news, Supernova comes around faster than Halley's Comet, Forty Creek will release a rarity...a Canadian whisky using Canadian Oak, and a question about WhiskyCast advertising and conflicts of interest.
WhiskyCast Episode 252: May 9, 2010May 10, 2010 54:54
Dennis Hendry is one of the true characters of the whisky business. He manages the visitors center and leads tours at Aberlour, and is regarded as one of the top distillery tour guides in Scotland. You'll hear why in this week's episode, along with some of the behind-the-scenes stories that usually never see the light of day. In the news, a new lawsuit reveals the reason for Sazerac's split from the Kentucky Distillers Association, results of the latest McTear's whisky auction, and the cartoonists do it again...taking a swipe at Glenfiddich!
WhiskyCast Episode 251: May 3, 2010May 4, 2010 44:18
There's a locked door at the Glenrothes Distillery, which normally is not open to visitors. The sign above the door reads "I.S." -- and stands for "Inner Sanctum." Ronnie Cox has the key to that door, and his inner sanctum has samples of every Glenrothes single malt expression ever released. We'll go through a couple of very rare Glenrothes whiskies during a chat with Ronnie on this episode. In the news, William Grant & Sons buys the Tullamore Dew range of Irish whiskies and the results of the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival Awards.
WhiskyCast Episode 250: April 25, 2010Apr 26, 2010 46:28
Back from Scotland, and plenty to talk about. This episode features highlights from the World Whiskies Conference in Glasgow, as well as a rare interview with retired Suntory master blender Dr. Koichi Inatomi. In the news, Springbank's distillery manager heads north to take over Duncan Taylor's new distillery project in Huntly, along with a new 40-year-old single malt from Glenfarclas, Highland Park's plans to phase out two travel retail releases, and new travel retail expressions from The Balvenie and Grant's.
WhiskyCast Episode 249: April 19, 2009Apr 20, 2010 01:00:23
I had a great experience today, and decided it warranted a special mid-week episode recorded on board a First ScotRail train from Aberdeen to Glasgow. Michael Urquhart gave me a private tour of the Gordon & MacPhail warehouses and sample room in Elgin, along with a tasting of several G&M bottlings, including the new 70-year-old Mortlach! Along the way, we talked about the family's history in the whisky business, nosing and tasting, and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 248: April 17, 2009Apr 18, 2010 54:37
This episode comes from the Highlander Inn in Craigellachie, Scotland...the heart of Speyside! We'll hear from Highlander co-owner Duncan Elphick and the manager of the Highlander's world-class whisky bar, Tatsu Minagawa, about the Highlander's history and its whisky selection. In the news, Scotch whisky exports hit a new high despite the economy, a mothballed Speyside distillery will be sold and closed forever, new distillery tours, and a new GlenDronach. I'll also go to whisky school with Donald Renwick and the faculty at Royal Lochnagar!
WhiskyCast Episode 247: April 12, 2010Apr 13, 2010 39:23
The whisky business is in good shape despite the global recession. That's the view of Sir Gavin Hewitt, CEO of the Scotch Whisky Association. I sat down with Sir Gavin during his visit to New York for Whisky Live and a seminar for trade professionals to discuss whisky exports and the impact of the new Scotch Whisky Law. I'll also have highlights from Whisky Live New York, and word on new whiskies from Early Times, Caribou Crossing, an ultra-rare Macallan, and the results of the Alzheimer's Association Chocolate Symphony Scotland tour auction!
WhiskyCast Episode 246: April 4, 2010Apr 4, 2010 21:43
It's the start of the festival season in Scotland, which saw gains in tourism last year despite the global recession. Scottish Minister of Culture and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop joins me to discuss whisky's impact on Scotland's tourism and economy, and will help me announce a competition to win a trip for two to Glasgow for Whisky Week in September! In the news, the winners of the San Francisco World Spirits Competition have been announced, Maker's Mark wins a battle in court over its dripping red wax trademark, and the results of the WhiskyCast March listener pledge drive!
WhiskyCast Episode 245: March 28, 2010Mar 29, 2010 46:38
We know it by many names...White Lightning and Corn Liquor to name a couple. Moonshine whiskey has been a part of American culture for generations, and is still being produced today. Max Watman embraced the moonshine culture for his new book, "Chasing the White Dog," and shares some of that culture in this week's episode. We'll also hear from Kevin Smith of Maker's Mark about the official name for his new bourbon, "Maker's 46." I'll have tasting notes for it, the new Crown Royal Black, and the Four Roses 100th Anniversary Single Barrel bourbon in the "What I'm Tasting This Week" Department.
WhiskyCast Episode 244: March 21, 2010Mar 21, 2010 23:38
For some reason, I always wind up doing a show on Irish whiskies around St. Patrick's Day. Irish whiskies have the fastest-growing sales in many markets, and we'll get some ideas why from Abigeal Hendron of Michael Collins Irish Whiskey. Bushmills Master Distiller Colum Egan explains what he's looking for as Bushmills starts a competition to find someone to spend 30 days working at the distillery this autumn, and I'll compare two distillery bottlings with independent bottlings in the "What I'm Tasting This Week Department."
WhiskyCast Episode 243: March 14, 2010Mar 14, 2010 45:09
Michael Jackson passed away in 2007, leaving behind a legacy of excellence in whisky writing that includes his classic "Michael Jackson's Complete Guide to Single Malt Scotch." Now, an updated edition of his guide is being released, and fittingly, it took three men to do the job. Editors Dominic Roskrow, Gavin Smith, and William Meyers discuss the controversy over their work and how they worked together to create the new guide. In the news, Gordon & MacPhail unveils a 70-year-old Mortlach bottling, and the latest on new expressions from Four Roses, Glenfarclas, and The Whisky Exchange.
WhiskyCast Episode 242: March 7, 2010Mar 7, 2010 23:23
This week's episode includes highlights from the Whisky Guild's annual Whisky Classic event in Morristown, New Jersey. Ardbeg's Rollercoaster made its U.S. debut at the Whisky Classic, and we'll get some of the details from Dr. Bill Lumsden. We'll also hear about plans for the first U.S. Ardbeg Committee gathering this April in Chicago, and Rick Wassmund of Copper Fox will tell us about his latest single malt from Virginia. In the news, John MacLellan leaves Burn Stewart Distillers for Kilchoman, Texas gets its first-ever bourbon, Denmark gets a new single malt, and the WhiskyCast iPhone app is now available!
WhiskyCast Episode 241: February 28, 2010Feb 28, 2010 38:38
France is known more for wine and cognac than whisky, but Jean Donnay hopes to change that perception. Jean's Glann ar Mor Distillery on the Brittany Coast is already receiving high marks for its whisky, and was a runner-up for Distiller of the Year in Whisky Magazine's 2010 Icons of Whisky Awards. We'll hear from Jean in this week's episode, along with tasting notes for two Glann ar Mor expressions. In the news, Whisky Magazine announces its World Whiskies Awards, Maker's Mark makes a choice for its new bourbon, and comments on the last episode's interview with Ralfy Mitchell of Ralfy.com.
WhiskyCast Episode 240: February 21, 2010Feb 21, 2010 44:08
We've seen an explosion in the number of whisky bloggers over the past year, and one of the most popular is Ralfy Mitchell of Ralfy.com. His whisky rating videos have become a hit on YouTube, and we sat down to talk at the recent Victoria Whisky Festival. In the news, Compass Box has something special planned for the upcoming Whisky Live London, another new whisky from The Dalmore, Buffalo Trace goes Canadian, and Bonhams puts a Glenfiddich bottling of casks from 1937 and 1939 on the auction block next week.
WhiskyCast Episode 239: February 14, 2010Feb 14, 2010 22:37
English farmers send barley north to Scotland, and sooner or later, the Scots send it back as whisky. The Nelstrop family has been growing barley for decades, and decided to change that formula. The first English single malt whisky in more than a century is now available from the family's St. George's Distillery in Norfolk. In the news, the finalists have been selected in the Spirit of Speyside Festival Whisky Awards, Malt Advocate Magazine announces its 2009 award winners, and tasting notes for a rare Glenfiddich single cask bottling.
WhiskyCast Episode 238: February 7, 2010Feb 7, 2010 26:22
Call it beginner's luck if you want, but Peter Hart's first batch of single malt spirit received rave reviews at the recent Victoria Whisky Festival...even though it was only two months old. Peter's the distiller at Victoria Spirits, a converted British Columbia winery now producing highly-regarded gin and as we'll learn in this episode, plans to produce a 100% British Columbia single malt whisky. In the news, the first interview with Al Fastier of the Antarctic Heritage Trust on the successful recovery of not just two cases of Sir Ernest Shackleton's 100-year-old whisky, but a third case of whisky and two cases of brandy! Also, Edrington and Berry Brothers swap whisky assets...and reports of a new Ardbeg expression!
WhiskyCast Episode 237: January 30, 2010Jan 31, 2010 41:38
As I reported in the last episode, Maker's Mark is working on a new bourbon. This time around, Master Distiller Kevin Smith sits down with me to taste "Profile 51", which will be released this summer. That's the unofficial name for the new whiskey, which will be bottled at a higher proof than Maker's Mark and will have a completely different taste. In the news, new whiskies from Glenfiddich, Tullibardine, and The Glenrothes, support for Haitian earthquake relief, and Chivas may need years to recover from the damage caused by this winter's storms. Finally, there's a new contest for WhiskyCast newsletter subscribers!
WhiskyCast Episode 236: January 23, 2010Jan 24, 2010 43:09
This time around, I'm on location at the Victoria Whisky Festival in British Columbia, and I'm joined by a panel of whisky experts to discuss some of the issues facing whisky producers and drinkers alike. Jim Murray, Malt Maniac Davin De Kergommeaux, Ed Patrick of Canada's Companions of the Quaich, Stuart Nickerson of Glenglassaugh, Andrew Gray of Bruichladdich, and Dan Tullio of Canadian Club discuss the state of Canadian whisky, government regulation and taxes, premiumization, and their dream drams. In the news, Maker's Mark is experimenting with a new formula that may or may not make it to market, and Bruichladdich is experimenting with technology to turn its waste into fuel.
WhiskyCast Episode 235: January 16, 2010Jan 17, 2010 47:08
Dewar's is one of Scotland's iconic whiskies, thanks to the efforts of generations of the Dewar family. Ian Buxton has just released a new book, "The Enduring Legacy of Dewar's", in cooperation with Dewar's owner Bacardi, and he joins us via Skype from Edinburgh to share some of Dewar's history. In the news, whisky and politics, whisky and sports, and whisky with a smoky kick!
WhiskyCast Episode 234: January 10, 2010Jan 10, 2010 37:23
China may well become the world's largest whisky market over the next decade, and Ian Chang is hoping his Kavalan single malt becomes the choice of Chinese whisky lovers. Kavalan is the first single malt whisky distilled in Taiwan, and even though its first releases are only three years old, Kavalan has already won several medals in international whisky competitions. In the news, heavy snow damages 21 Chivas Brothers warehouses holding 100 million gallons of whisky, Diageo prepares for the second release in the Manager's Choice Series, and we'll hear from the editor of Australia's first whisky magazine, Tumbler's Kristy Booth.
WhiskyCast Episode 233: January 3, 2010Jan 3, 2010 29:05
The last decade could well be remembered for the emergence of Japanese single malt whiskies on the world stage. We'll discuss the malts from the Land of the Rising Sun with Chris Bunting, author of the Nonjatta.com blog. In the news, new whiskies from Gordon & MacPhail and The Glenrothes, and Whyte & MacKay's Richard Paterson can tell you where to go...if you have a TomTom GPS.
WhiskyCast Episode 232: December 27, 2009Dec 27, 2009 20:18
Description:We'll close out 2009 with a look at bourbon and beer. Devin Zell of Bourbon Drinker.com loves both. He'll share his dual passions with us in this episode, including how he and his friends aged a beer for 9 months in a barrel used for Pappy Van Winkle's 23-year-old bourbon. In the news, new expressions from Berry Brothers & Rudd, the BBC discovers a distillery on the Isle of Lewis, and tasting notes for three top-shelf bourbons in the "What I'm Tasting This Week Department."
WhiskyCast Episode 231: December 20, 2009Dec 20, 2009 28:38
Description:Distilleries have ghosts and secrets, as well as memories that live within those who work the stills, the malting floors, and the warehouses. Ian Macilwain has collected those stories in his new book "Bottled History" and joins us from Aberdeen for this week's episode. In the news, Bonhams completes a three-continent series of whisky auctions, Highland Park honors an Orkney legend, and Brown University researchers look at the cause of hangovers.
WhiskyCast Episode 230: December 12, 2009Dec 13, 2009 22:48
Description:Having a holiday party this season? Master mixologist Dale DeGroff gives us some tips on cocktails and entertaining in this episode. In the news, Diageo's Scottish workers call off their campaign against plant closings, Scotch whisky exports are up despite the recession, the latest word on new whisky releases, a Balvenie competition, and look for WhiskyCast soon on your iPhone!
WhiskyCast Episode 229: December 6, 2009Dec 6, 2009 41:38
Description:Tasting and scoring around 200 different whiskies over the course of a few weeks is tough work, but the Malt Maniacs make this sacrifice every autumn. The results of this year's Malt Maniacs Whisky Awards have been released, and with just 9 gold medal winners, represent the best of the best. Longtime Malt Maniac Davin de Kergommeaux puts this year's winners into perspective. In the news, whisky competitions anyone can win, Glenfiddich's plans to auction a bottle of 50-year-old whisky for charity, celebrating the Macallan, and a look at whisky from the philosophical point of view with Marcus Adams, one of the editors of the new book "Whisky and Philosophy."
WhiskyCast Episode 228: November 28, 2009Nov 28, 2009 33:17
Description:The Scotch Whisky industry is operating under new rules for the first time in 20 years. A complete re-write of the Scotch Whisky Law went into effect this week, and David Williamson of the Scotch Whisky Association explains the new law in this episode. In the news, if someone offers you a bottle of Tactical Nuclear Penguin beer, sip it...don't chug it...along with Bonham's auction results from Hong Kong...Power's sends a new Irish whiskey to the US, and tasting notes for something spicy, something blue, and something bluegrass.
WhiskyCast Episode 227: November 22, 2009Nov 22, 2009 39:18
Description:McKinlay's Rare Old Scotch Whisky was one of the many brands destined to be part of the history books...until two cases of McKinlay's were discovered in 2006 beneath a hut used by Sir Ernest Shackleton's Antarctic expedition from 1907 to 1909. Now, whisky lovers all over the world want to know what a whisky stored in ice for a century would taste like. We'll hear from Al Fastier of the New Zealand Antarctic Heritage Trust and Richard Paterson of Whyte & Mackay on plans to recover the whisky from its icy home in February...and what should happen to it. In the news, Edrington Group plans to mothball Tamdhu Distillery, a new master distiller for The Glenlivet, and Whisky Magazine presents its U.S. Icons of Whisky Awards.
WhiskyCast Episode 226: November 14, 2009Nov 15, 2009 38:08
Description:The whisky world gathers every November for Malt Advocate's WhiskyFest in New York. The 12th annual edition featured new whiskies and longtime favorites. We'll cover the entire show in this episode, including Lifetime Achievement awards for retired Edrington Group master blender John Ramsay and Beam Global's Robert Hicks. In the news, Louisville's Urban Bourbon Trail adds two stops, Woodford Reserve releases a Seasoned Oak version, and details on a new competition for WhiskyCast listeners!
WhiskyCast Episode 225: November 8, 2009Nov 8, 2009 36:38
Description:America is in the forefront of a global micro-distilling boom, with more than 200 licensed artisanal distilleries. 42 of them are producing whisky, and many have received guidance from Bill Owens of the American Distilling Institute. Bill shares some of the benefits and potential pitfalls of starting a distillery in this episode. In the news, new Scotch whisky regulations will take effect later this month, Diageo changes course in the Canadian market, Glen Grant prepares for a U.S. debut, and if you missed out on tickets for Malt Advocate's WhiskyFest New York, there's a preview of this week's Philadelphia Whiskey Festival.
WhiskyCast Episode 224: October 31, 2009Oct 31, 2009 35:33
Description:Whisky is a treat for many of us, but the trick is finding the right one (obligatory Halloween reference). Keith Law is one of the master blenders for Diageo, and suggests that a blended Scotch may be the way to go for some people. In the news, English Whisky is just a few weeks away, the Knob Creek drought of 2009 is over, The Balvenie's coppersmith celebrates his 50th anniversary, and tasting notes for several rare Islays and the 2000 Vintage Evan Williams Single Barrel Bourbon.
WhiskyCast Episode 223: October 25, 2009Oct 26, 2009 39:55
Description:This week, I'm on the road at Proof on Main in Louisville! Heaven Hill is celebrating Parker Beam's 50th anniversary as a distiller this weekend, and you'll share in the fun as we hear from Parker and some of his many friends and colleagues. In the news, David Stewart scales back his duties at William Grant & Sons, new travel retail releases, and tasting notes for the Gold Bowmore! We'll also hear from noted chef Charlie Palmer and more about one of Louisville's best bourbon bars.
WhiskyCast Episode 222: October 17, 2009Oct 18, 2009 33:32
Description:Time for the annual question and answer episode, as experts answer your questions about whisky. This year's panel includes Dr. Bill Lumsden of Glenmorangie, Chris Morris of Woodford Reserve, and Diageo master blender Keith Law. In the news, Wild Turkey unveils a new bourbon, Mark Andrews of Castle Brands discusses growing bourbon and Irish whiskey sales, and thieves steal a rare collection of Springbank whiskies!
WhiskyCast Episode 221: October 10, 2009Oct 10, 2009 58:58
Description:Jim Murray's 2010 Whisky Bible is out, and let the second-guessing begin. Jim's annual guide to the world's whiskies generates controversy every year, and he'll answer his critics and discuss his choices for the year's best new whiskies in this episode. In the news, new releases from The Dalmore, Glengoyne and The Glenrothes...Buffalo Trace releases more experimental bourbons, results of the International Wine & Spirits Competitions whisky awards, and Charles Maclean becomes a Master of the Quaich.
WhiskyCast Episode 220: October 3, 2009Oct 4, 2009 53:08
Description:Johnnie Walker sells more Scotch whisky than anyone in the world, and Diageo is celebrating the 100th anniversary of Johnnie Walker Black Label in 2009. Andrew Ford is a member of the team of master blenders that watches over the Johnnie Walker blends, and he'll tell us about the art of blending in this episode. He'll also answer questions submitted by listeners like you through Facebook and Twitter! In the news, Glengoyne adds a new expression, and we'll hear from Michael Urquhart of Gordon & MacPhail, John Glaser of Compass Box, and Ethan Kelley of the Brandy Library.
WhiskyCast Episode 219: September 26, 2009Sep 27, 2009 46:08
Description:A double feature this week...the latest issue of Malt Advocate is out. John Hansell will give us a preview, and we'll also talk about next month's WhiskyFest in San Francisco. Mikael Mossvall of Mackmyra will give us an update on Sweden's only single malt whisky and plans to export it to the U.S. in 2010. In the news, Jack and Jim pull out of NASCAR, new whiskies from Compass Box, Benromach, and Douglas Laing, and tasting notes for 10 different whiskies!
WhiskyCast Episode 218: September 19, 2009Sep 20, 2009 32:47
Description:The Macallan folks like to do things big...like the new $15,000 Macallan Lalique expression: 57-year-old Macallan in a Lalique decanter! Ken Grier is the director of malts for Macallan parent Edrington Group, and he'll update us on the latest from the Macallan and Highland Park, including the 1824 Collection series of travel retail expressions and the upcoming Highland Park 1964 and 1968 vintage releases. In the news, the Bourbon Hall of Fame welcomes 7 new members, $20,000 gets you your own whisky from Whyte and Mackay, and a look at the science of the cocktail.
WhiskyCast Episode 217: September 12, 2009Sep 13, 2009 43:43
Description:This time around, we'll have highlights from the Whisky Guild's "Whisky on the Hudson" cruise, including the US debuts of the Balvenie Madeira Cask, Suntory's Hibiki blended whisky, and Laphroaig's new 18-year-old Scotch. In the news, Bowmore comes out with another edition of its legendary 1964 whiskies, Kilchoman debuts its first single malt, and bureaucrats on the loose!
WhiskyCast Episode 216: September 6, 2009Sep 6, 2009 35:08
Description:For the first time, Diageo is releasing single cask bottlings from all 27 of its malt distilleries in Scotland. Diageo's master of malt, Dr. Nick Morgan, explains how the Manager's Choice malts were selected, and also previews this year's Distiller's Edition series of single malts. Graeme Wallace will preview the first Whisky Show in London coming up in November, and we'll listen in on the first (ri)1 Iron Bartender Competition held in New York this past week. In the news, new single malts from Ardbeg, Bowmore, Edradour, and Glen Garioch, and I taste a 30-year-old Lagavulin!
WhiskyCast Episode 215: August 28, 2009Aug 28, 2009 18:18
Description:A bit of Irish distilling history is being brought back to life this weekend, if only for one day. Commercial shipping along Ireland's Grand Canal ended 50 years ago this year...shortly after the closing of the Locke's Distillery in Kilbeggan. Cooley brought the Old Kilbeggan Distillery back to life two years ago, and now, whisky and history buffs are recreating the shipping of whiskey casks from Kilbeggan to Dublin to honor the surviving men who sailed up and down the Canal. In the news, more political problems for Diageo, an anniversary bottling for Johnnie Walker, new whiskies from Connemara and Bruichladdich...and much more!
WhiskyCast Episode 214: August 22, 2009Aug 22, 2009 25:58
Description:Last time around, I mentioned the Laing Brothers and their vatting of casks from Laphroaig and Macallan to create the "Double Barrel." It was so intriguing that I decided to get Stewart Laing on the phone to explain it...and their plans to bring together casks from other distilleries with opposing taste profiles. In the news, the results of this week's Bonhams whisky auction, Arran names a whisky after the distillery peacock...who promptly takes off, Jefferson's Bourbon goes Presidential, and tasting notes on the new 25-year-old Rittenhouse Rye coming soon from Heaven Hill!
WhiskyCast Episode 213: August 15, 2009Aug 16, 2009 27:40
Description:Today marks the birthday of a legend in the bourbon business. Buffalo Trace Master Distiller Emeritus Elmer T. Lee turns 90 today, and his friends marked the milestone with a party at the distillery. I had the chance to interview Elmer in the fall of 2006, and he'll share some of his stories with us in that interview. In the news, Buffalo Trace unveils this year's Antique Collection, Chris Morris tells us about this year's Old Forester Birthday Bourbon, The Whisky Exchange unveils a new line of single cask bottlings, and the Laing Brothers put Macallan and Laphroaig together.
WhiskyCast Episode 212: August 9, 2009Aug 9, 2009 24:23
Description:This time around, we'll focus on two upcoming whisky festivals in Europe. Maltstock will bring together whisky clubs and individuals from around Europe for a weekend in the Netherlands, and Teun van Wel will tell us how the event came together. Chris Maybin of La Maison du Whisky will preview next month's Whisky Live Paris for us as well. In the news, the whisky world is mourning the death of longtime Jack Daniel's master distiller Jimmy Bedford, Four Roses unveils the second release in its Mariage Collection series of bourbons...and more layoffs in Scotland.
WhiskyCast Episode 211: August 2, 2009Aug 2, 2009 28:07
Description:If you've never had a chance to attend a master class with Whyte & MacKay's Richard Paterson, you're missing out on an education...and a great time. In this week's episode, you'll get to listen in as the master blender teaches a group of New York City bartenders about The Dalmore. In the news, Glenfiddich confirms its new 50-year-old single malt, Suntory does the same with Hibiki and surprises the U.S. with a rare Yamazaki release, Park Avenue Liquors has a bunch of new single cask releases coming in...and Parker Beam's done it again!
WhiskyCast Episode 210: July 25, 2009Jul 26, 2009 27:37
Description:It's been a busy year at GlenDronach and BenRiach distilleries...the investor group led by Billy Walker added GlenDronach to their portfolio less than a year ago, and are already revamping the entire range. Their BenRiach malts have won 17 medals in competitions over the last few weeks...and Alastair Walker brings us up to date in this episode. In the news, the Scottish Government may offer Diageo public funding to keep the Johnnie Walker bottling plant in Kilmarnock open, Heaven Hill unveils the latest release in Parker Beam's Heritage Collection of bourbons...and tasting notes for some new spirits.
WhiskyCast Episode 209: July 18, 2009Jul 19, 2009 22:58
Description:On the road in Michigan this week, but had the chance to sneak across the Detroit River to Windsor, Ontario...where Canadian Club has been produced for 151 years at the Hiram Walker & Sons Distillery in the Walkerville neighborhood of Windsor. Hiram Walker's headquarters building is now the Canadian Club Heritage Center, and this classic building patterned on a 16th century Italian palace will appeal to whisky lovers, art lovers, and architecture fans alike. CC's Tish Harcus tells us about the building's history over a dram or two. Plenty of new releases in the news, including a 50-year-old Glenfiddich, the coming debut of Suntory's Hibiki blended whisky in the U.S., and a dozen single-cask bottlings!
WhiskyCast Episode 208: July 12, 2009Jul 13, 2009 23:22
Description:Glenfiddich is the world's most popular single malt Scotch, and Hans-Henrik Hansen knows more about Glenfiddich's history than almost anyone. In fact, he has what may be the world's largest collection of Glenfiddich malts. He'll tell us about what prompted him to start collecting Glenfiddich expressions in this week's episode. In the news, more fallout over Diageo's plan to close plants and cut jobs in Scotland, a Canadian province rolls back its spirits tax increase, Bruichladdich plans to close its Whisky Academy, and new whiskies from Old Forester and Berry Bros. & Rudd.
WhiskyCast Episode 207: July 4, 2009Jul 4, 2009 28:22
Description:It may be a summer holiday weekend in the U.S., but it's the middle of winter in Australia. The inaugural Whisky Live Sydney will be held the week of August 31 through September 6, and organizer Doug van Tienen explains the emphasis on events for bar and restaurant staff as well as whisky lovers. He'll also update us on the growing number of Australian whisky distilleries. In the news, Diageo announces major cuts in Scotland, more details on the John Ramsay Glenrothes release, and word on limited-edition releases from The Balvenie and Old Pulteney.
WhiskyCast Episode 206: June 28, 2009Jun 29, 2009 23:38
Description:Jim Murray's 2009 Whisky Bible named a hard-to-find rye whiskey as the Best Rye Whiskey in the World Under 10 Years Old. That whiskey is Templeton Rye, produced illegally for generations by farmers in Templeton, Iowa -- but now legally available in Iowa and Illinois. Scott Bush and Keith Karkhoff started bottling the legal version of Templeton Rye in 2006, and it's become a cult favorite among rye whiskey lovers. Scott updates us on Templeton's success and future in this episode. In the news, Old Taylor Bourbon is back home at Buffalo Trace, the SWA wins a battle against an Italian imitator, and another distillery is in the works for the area around St. Andrew's in Scotland.
WhiskyCast Episode 205: June 21, 2009Jun 22, 2009 33:23
Description:John Ramsay has turned over the duties of Master Blender for The Glenrothes and the Edrington Group's other whiskies to Gordon Motion after 43 years in the whisky business. He'll share his insights with us in this episode, along with the plans for one final malt that he's working on. In the news, William Grant & Sons gets a new CEO, a 1919 Springbank sells for nearly $2500 (for a mini!), and Knob Creek runs dry for a few months.
WhiskyCast Episode 204: June 14, 2009Jun 14, 2009 20:07
Description:Kate Hopkins's new book "99 Drams of Whiskey: The Accidental Hedonist's Quest for the Perfect Shot and the History of the Drink" is getting a lot of attention from whisky lovers...and with good reason. She's been blogging as the Accidental Hedonist since 2004, and I think it's one of the best whisky books of the year. We'll hear from Kate in this episode...and in the news, the legal fight over Glen Breton Rare Single Malt Canadian Whisky may be over after a Canadian Supreme Court ruling, Isle of Jura shuts down because of ferry problems, and new whiskies from The Glenrothes and Douglas Laing.
WhiskyCast Episode 203: June 7, 2009Jun 7, 2009 16:47
Description:Harlen Wheatley of Buffalo Trace usually comes out with something unusual every summer when he unleashes his latest Experimental Collection releases on the world. This year, he's releasing one of the distillery's older experiments -- bourbon aged in two different types of oak casks for 15 years. One batch was aged in coarse-grained oak from fast-growth forests, and the other was aged in fine-grain oak from slow-growth forests. He'll tell us what he found in this week's episode.
WhiskyCast Episode 202: May 30, 2009May 30, 2009 19:08
Description:It's hard enough just to keep track of whiskies, but F. Paul Pacult does just that...and rums, tequilas, gins...you name it. Paul names his top spirits of 2009 in the latest edition of the Spirit Journal, and he'll share some of his favorites in this episode. In the news, Campari closes on the purchase of Wild Turkey, Isle of Jura goes elemental, Buffalo Trace gets experimental, and the results of Kilchoman's charity auction are astronomical...
WhiskyCast Episode 201: May 24, 2009May 24, 2009 22:53
Description:It's festival week on Islay, and thousands of people are on the island for this year's Islay Festival of Malt & Music. The festival is more than just a celebration of the island's 8 distilleries...it celebrates a unique cultural heritage as well and Feis Ile chairman Kevin Murphy will explain. In the news, U.S. Senators are eyeing whisky and other alcoholic beverages with an eye to raising taxes, there are new 40-year-old malts from Glengoyne and it's sister label Chieftain's, Suntory releases a new 12-year-old Hibiki in the U.K., and we'll get an update on the revival of Glenglassaugh from Stuart Nickerson.
WhiskyCast Episode 200: May 16, 2009May 16, 2009 32:53
Description:It's a milestone episode of WhiskyCast, and we'll hear from veteran whisky writer and Malt Maniac Dave Broom of Whisky Magazine in this week's episode. In the news, there's a controversy developing over whisky tastings at The Gathering in Edinburgh in July...Regis LeMaitre has two new bottlings to go mad over, and Willie Tait tells us about the return of The Dalmore to the U.S.
WhiskyCast Episode 199: May 10, 2009May 11, 2009 15:26
Description:It's another road trip for WhiskyCast...this time to the Spirit of Toronto festival! The festival is in its fifth year, and better than ever. We'll hear from Dan Tullio of Canadian Club about the debut of CC's 20-year-old expression in North America, Mike Harrison of Berry Bros. & Rudd gives us a sneak preview of the first-ever kosher expression of The Glenrothes and new expressions from Cutty Sark, and John Hall of Kittling Ridge tells us about the upcoming port wood version of Forty Creek!
WhiskyCast Episode 198: May 3, 2009May 4, 2009 12:22
Description:The judges at Whisky Magazine gave Highland Park's 21-year-old Scotch the title of World's Best Singe Malt in this year's World Whisky Awards, and that has the guys on Orkney jumping for joy...except for one little problem. They're in the process of tweaking it because of supplies...and Jason Craig will explain in this episode. In the news...no news on the merger front, the Spirit of Speyside Festival kicks off Whisky Month in Scotland...and Benromach honors a sailing legend.
WhiskyCast Episode 197: April 26, 2009Apr 26, 2009 39:37
Description:Last week, Scotland...this week, Kentucky! We'll look at plenty of vacation options in and around Louisville in the heart of Bourbon Country. Stacey Yates of the Louisville Convention & Visitors Bureau's Bourbon Country project will be our guide. Dave Broom of Whisky Magazine will give us the winners of this year's World Whisky Awards, and we'll talk whisky taxes in the UK, consolidation rumors within the industry, horses with Chris Morris of Woodford Reserve, and David Mair of The Balvenie updates us on the latest release of the Signature 12-year-old single malt.
WhiskyCast Episode 196: April 19, 2009Apr 20, 2009 31:18
Description:We're getting into the start of the vacation season, and there are plenty of whisky-related places to see in Scotland. Chris Conway heads up the tourism initiative Scotland Whisky, and will give us a few highlights in this week's episode. In the news, Pernod Ricard may put more whisky brands and distilleries up for sale, Buffalo Trace goes Mongolian, and U.S. whisky lovers will get to try two world whiskies later this year. Jonathan Bray tells us about the impending arrival of India's Amrut and Australia's Sullivan's Cove.
WhiskyCast Episode 195: April 11, 209Apr 11, 2009 34:48
Description:Colin Scott has been the Master Blender at Chivas Brothers for years, overseeing the consistency of Chivas Regal Scotch. He's also created the Chivas Regal 18 and 25-year-old blends, and works closely with the distillers at The Glenlivet, Strathisla, and Longmorn on their single malts. Colin shares his experiences of more than 4 decades in the whisky business in this week's episode. In the news, Campari buys Wild Turkey for $575 million, China may crack down on counterfeit whiskies, and Glencairn's classic whisky glass gets an upgrade!
WhiskyCast Episode 194: April 4, 2009Apr 5, 2009 33:23
Description:This has been a busy week for whisky lovers, with three major festivals in the past week. This week's episode features special coverage from Whisky Live New York, including interviews with Duncan Taylor's Euan Shand, Ardmore & Laphroaig brand ambassador Simon Brooking, and many more...and Ardbeg's Dr. Bill Lumsden helps answer a listener question, too!
WhiskyCast Episode 193: March 28, 2009Mar 29, 2009 33:07
Description:55 years ago, Jimmy Russell got a job at the Wild Turkey Distillery in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky...and it was the best hire the distillery ever made. He's been the Master Distiller since 1967, and has no plans to retire any time soon. Jimmy shares his history and the Wild Turkey legend with us in this week's episode. In the news, the winners of the San Francisco World Spirits Competition have been announced, Highland Park uncovers a treasure from the past, and Buffalo Trace is now selling its "white dog" spirit at the distillery.
WhiskyCast Episode 192: March 22, 2009Mar 22, 2009 31:58
Description:It's been about a year and a half since we lost Michael Jackson, and his friends are honoring the best whisky and beer writer of all time with a new book being released this week on what would have been Michael's 67th birthday. We'll hear from Ian Buxton of Classic Expressions about "Beer Hunter, Whisky Chaser" and plans to donate the proceeds to charity. We'll also hear from Doug McIvor of Berry Bros. & Rudd about the one-of-a-kind blended whisky he created from the opened bottles Michael left behind. We'll also wind up St. Patrick's Day with the annual update from Colum Egan of Bushmills, and John McDougall will tell us about a new distillery he's consulting on along the Irish coast.
WhiskyCast Episode 191: March 15, 2009Mar 15, 2009 36:08
Description:It wouldn't be March without a look at Irish whiskies, and Heidi Donelon gives us a look at the history of Irish distilling. Her new Ireland Whiskey Trail website is a guide to distilleries past and present, as well as some of the island's best whiskey bars. In the news, Vijay Mallya's United Spirits is putting Whyte & Mackay up for sale, and Burn Stewart Distillers is up for sale as well. Ardbeg's annual single cask is now available at the distillery, Jack Daniel's releases its annual Scenes of Lynchburg bottle, and there's a new charity blend made from the whiskies in Michael Jackson's collection!
WhiskyCast Episode 190: March 7, 2009Mar 8, 2009 21:21
Description:This week's episode features special coverage from the Whisky Classic festival in Morristown, New Jersey. We'll hear from Wild Turkey Master Distiller Jimmy Russell about his recent venture into political activism, and Wild Scotsman Jeff Topping will tell us about his new whiskies. We'll also hear from Whisky Guild guru and Whisky Life magazine publisher Jeff Karlovitch, Rick Wassmund of Copper Fox Distillery, Pat McCarthy of Bayway's World of Liquors, and Dorothy Bakker Lee of Ardbeg has details on the U.S. arrival of Supernova! We'll close things out with a tune to make you feel a little better about the economy...even if it means some self-medication...
WhiskyCast Episode 189: February 28, 2009Feb 28, 2009 20:23
Description:This is Whisky Live London weekend, and one of the highlights is the annual Icons of Whisky Awards. Whisky Magazine editor Rob Allanson gives us the overall winners, as well as the winners for the world category (Scotland and U.S. regional winners were announced recently). John Glaser of Compass Box is bottling a special whisky at the festival this weekend...in hopes of making people feel more "optimistic" about the state of the world these days. In the news, the politicians run amok, and a new Irish whiskey website hits the Internet!
WhiskyCast Episode 188: February 22, 2009Feb 22, 2009 21:32
Description:Mike Nicolson spent 36 years working at some of Scotland's leading distilleries before retiring to British Columbia a few years ago. He's managed Lagavulin, Royal Lochnagar, and Blair Athol...just to name a few, and he'll share some of his memories with us in this week's episode. In the news, the finalists have been announced in the Spirit of Speyside Festival Whisky Awards, the Famous Grouse has plans to migrate to India, and Malt Advocate cuts the cost of tickets for WhiskyFest Chicago.
WhiskyCast Episode 187: February 16, 2009Feb 16, 2009 33:07
Description:This week...the winner of the "Pick the Interview" poll on the WhiskyCast Facebook page! We'll hear from Fred Laing of Douglas Laing & Co. about working with both blends and single cask bottlings, his family's history in the whisky business...his stories about Richard Paterson and Jim McEwan...and how he was almost traded for a distillery! In the news, Diageo and Pernod Ricard cope with the recession, Kentucky distillers protest a tax increase by dumping bourbon on the steps of the State Capitol...and Mount Vernon marks Presidents' Day by firing up the stills at George Washington's Distillery...
WhiskyCast Episode 186: February 8, 2009Feb 8, 2009 26:42
Description:A double feature this time around! If you've ever wanted to make your own whisky, the folks at New York's Tuthilltown Spirits are willing to teach you...and let you use their distillery! We'll also get some tips for surviving your first whisky festival from some veterans, and Facebook users can help decide the topic of the next episode of WhiskyCast!
WhiskyCast Episode 185: February 1, 2009Feb 1, 2009 22:38
Description:Marcel Van Gils has been collecting Laphroaig expressions since 1997, and the Dutch dentist has what is likely the world's largest collection of Laphroaigs. His collection even includes the empty cask Prince Charles signed during a visit to the distillery in 1994! Marcel will tell us about his collection in this episode, and in the news, more on the Glen Breton controversy, U.S. whisky sales are being affected by the recession, and we'll hear from James Robertson of Tullibardine and Frances DuPuy of A. Dewar Rattray.
WhiskyCast Episode 184: January 26, 2009Jan 26, 2009 12:54
Description:Bonus coverage from the Victoria Whisky Festival, as the local Scottish community gathered to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the birth of Robert Burns. We'll hear from Euan Mitchell of Isle of Arran, the only distiller authorized to use the Burns name on Scotch whisky. Warning: This episode contains bagpipe music! ;)
WhiskyCast Episode 183: January 25, 2009Jan 26, 2009 35:53
Description:This week, WhiskyCast is in British Columbia for the Victoria Whisky Festival! It may be the only whisky festival with ticket scalpers because of the many whisky lovers in the area, and distilleries came from all over the world to show off their whiskies. We'll hear from Andrew Currie, who's building Vancouver Island's first single malt distillery...along with Ron Stothers of Alberta's Highwood Distillers, Peter Currie of Springbank, Andrew Gray of Bruichladdich, and Ashok Chokalingam of Amrut. There's also news about thieves hitting the old Rosebank Distillery...and stealing the stills!
WhiskyCast Episode 182: January 19, 2009Jan 19, 2009 22:22
Description:The Spirit of Speyside Festival is still a few months away, but it's not too soon to start making your travel plans. In fact, tickets for the Festival events go on sale starting today! We'll get a preview of the biggest Spirit of Speyside Festival yet from director Ros Lewis. In the news, Sazerac buys a second Kentucky distillery to go along with Buffalo Trace, Jack Daniel's celebrates the Obama inauguration, Glenmorangie releases Astar to the world, and the peatiest Ardbeg ever!
WhiskyCast Episode 181: January 10, 2009Jan 10, 2009 24:17
Description:Glen Grant has been producing whisky along the River Spey since 1840, and in that time, there have been only eight distillery managers. Dennis Malcolm was born at the distillery, and is in his second stint as manager. We'll hear from Dennis about the history and the future of Glen Grant, which includes exporting its malts to the United States. In the news, new whiskies from The Balvenie and Wemyss Vintage Malts, Woodford Reserve prepares for its annual whiskey schools, and a look at the start of Homecoming in Scotland to mark the 250th anniversary of Robert Burns' birth.
WhiskyCast Episode 180: January 3, 2009Jan 3, 2009 20:07
Description:Many of the microdistillers producing whisky got their inspiration from the craft brewing boom of the last 15 years, and more craft brewers are being inspired to use whisky barrels to age their beers. Greg Hall of Chicago's Goose Island Beer Company has been making bourbon barrel-aged stout for years, while newcomers like James Watt of Scotland's Brewdog Brewery and Christopher Bird of the Lexington Brewing Company are producing their own variations on the concept. In the news, GlenDronach outlines its plans for 2009 under Billy Walker's leadership and Kilchoman starts teasing us with plans to release its first single malt.
WhiskyCast Episode 179: December 27, 2008Dec 27, 2008 23:07
Description:Marko Karakasevic is the latest in a long family line of distillers, and like many other sons who go into the family business, his goal is to out-do his father. Marko's taking an unusual tack with whisky at his family's Charbay Distillery in California's Napa Valley, and he'll explain in Part 2 of our look at microdistillers. In the news, Scotch whisky exports fell during the first three quarters of 2008, and Inver House is giving U.K. whisky lovers a chance to win their own cask of An Cnoc single malt.
WhiskyCast Episode 178: December 20, 2008Dec 20, 2008 30:02
Description:A double feature this time around: William Wemyss shares his family's Scottish heritage with a line of single cask and blended malts named to describe what the whiskies inside taste like. We'll also start a two-part series looking at the growth of microdistillers in the U.S., featuring Jess Graber of Stranahan's Colorado Whiskey, Jay Harman of The Notch, and Brian Ellison of Death's Door Spirits. In the news, Bruichladdich unleashes the Octomore peat monster and the X4 quadruple-distilled spirit on the world.
WhiskyCast Episode 177: December 14, 2008Dec 14, 2008 23:23
Description:Time for another visit to the library...Ian Buxton joins us with details on the newest release in the Classic Expressions series of vintage whisky books. "Truths About Whiskey" dates back to 1878, and was produced by 4 Dublin distillers arguing for regulations to protect Irish whiskeys from what they perceived as inferior Scotch whiskies. In the news, more awards from Whisky Magazine and The Whisky Shop, the Tom Moore Distillery in Bardstown opens its doors to the public, and a chemistry lesson on whisky science that's actually easy to understand!
WhiskyCast Episode 176: December 7, 2008Dec 8, 2008 30:01
Description:Orkney's Scapa Distillery has been relatively quiet since it was acquired by the Chivas Brothers unit of Pernod Ricard in 2005, but that's about to change. Scapa is releasing its first new bottling since the Chivas acquisition -- a 16-year-old malt that's available only in France now, but will be available in many markets early in 2009. Neil Macdonald of Chivas tells us what's been going on behind the scenes at Scapa for the last three years. In the news, the latest Evan Williams Single Barrel is heading to retailers, Old Pulteney is going through renovations, and you could win a bottle of the rare White Bowmore...plus more on the 75th anniversary of the repeal of Prohibition!
WhiskyCast Episode 175: November 30, 2008Nov 30, 2008 43:02
Description:It's time to announce the winners of the 2008 Malt Maniacs Awards, and Serge Valentin will join us with this year's selections from his home in France! In the news, the U.K. flip-flops on a whisky tax increase, we'll take a look at the upcoming 75th anniversary of the end of Prohibition on Friday, Auchentoshan releases a second cask of 50-year-old single malt, and Glenlivet celebrates Founder's Day this weekend.
WhiskyCast Episode 174: November 23, 2008Nov 24, 2008 27:48
Description:Willie Tait has been a fixture at Whyte and Mackay for 34 years, and is most known for his work at Isle of Jura Distillery. He's the third of this year's Lifetime Achievement Award winners at the Malt Advocate Magazine Awards, and shares some of his stories with us in this episode...including how he and his family wound up on Jura in the first place. We'll also hear from Chris Morris of Woodford Reserve, John Hall of Forty Creek, and John Glaser of Compass Box on their new whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 173: November 16, 2008Nov 16, 2008 32:22
Description:Malt Advocate Magazine handed out its annual awards at this week's WhiskyFest New York, and you'll hear from some of this year's winners in this episode, including Jim Rutledge of Distillery of the Year Winner Four Roses and two of the three Lifetime Achievement Award winners: Kenny Gray of Oban and veteran Buffalo Trace warehouse manager Ronnie Eddens (next time, we'll hear from Isle of Jura's Willie Tait). In the news, the latest on Springbank, The Macallan gets artsy, and Jeff Arnett's having a ball as the new master distiller at Jack Daniels.
WhiskyCast Episode 172: November 9, 2008Nov 9, 2008 36:52
Description:Robert Hicks tried to retire a couple of years ago as the Master Blender at Teacher's, Laphroaig, and Ardmore...but he's busier than ever these days. 2009 will mark his 45th year in the whisky business, and he'll share his memories in this episode of WhiskyCast! In the news, Diageo taketh away from Canada and giveth to developing markets...new (old) whiskies from Glenglassaugh, the PC7 from Bruichladdich, and (ri)1 takes rye whiskey to the trend-setters...
WhiskyCast Episode 171: November 2, 2008Nov 3, 2008 27:07
Description:We'll go inside the laboratory this time around, and our guides are the lead chemist at Buffalo Trace, Truman Cox, and one of the leaders of the distillery's tasting panel, Dendress Ennis. Buffalo Trace was just honored by Whisky Magazine as Innovator of the Year in the US round of its 2009 Icons of Whisky Awards, so these guys are the perfect guides to explain what happens behind the scenes. In the news, the rest of the Icons winners from the US and Scotland rounds, a new independent bottler from South Africa, and more new whiskies from all over the world!
WhiskyCast Episode 170: October 26, 2008Oct 27, 2008 25:22
Description:Balblair Distillery sits on the Dornoch Firth in Edderton, and it's been getting a lot of attention these days. Distillery manager John MacDonald was instrumental in helping re-launch the Balblair range from age-dated expressions to vintages, and the Balblair 1989 was recently picked by Scotch lovers as the best whisky at the Whisky Fringe in Edinburgh. We'll hear from John about what went into the redevelopment of Balblair. In the news, Laphroaig's John Campbell tells us about plans to harmonize the distillery's range worldwide, and we'll get updates on this fall's new Classic Malts releases, new malts from Glengoyne and Auchentoshan, and how you can help support prostate cancer research during "Movember."
WhiskyCast Episode 169: October 18, 2008Oct 19, 2008 32:45
Description:Many of us think of ourselves as whisky collectors, but Giuseppe Begnoni is in a league of his own. Begnoni is regarded as one of the world's leading whisky collectors, and his spirits collection numbers more than 40,000 bottles. He'll tell us about his nearly 40 years of collecting whisky in this episode, and we'll also hear from Richard Paterson of Whyte & Mackay about the major changes to The Dalmore's single malt range. In the news, a belated Birthday Bourbon from Old Forester, a "Sweet 16" from Bruichladdich, and a 250th Anniversary Robert Burns single malt from Arran, along with the latest on Jim Murray's 2009 Whisky Bible.
WhiskyCast Episode 168: October 12, 2008Oct 13, 2008 36:58
Description:Glenmorangie's Dr. Bill Lumsden is regarded as one of the leading innovators in the whisky business. He's credited with creating an industry-leading wood management program and developing the distillery's series of award-winning "finished" whiskies over the years. In this episode, we'll hear from Bill about his work with Glenmorangie and Ardbeg. In the news, Crown Royal re-launches its Reserve Edition, the world's largest whisky collection will go on public display, the 2009 Malt Whisky Yearbook is out, and Mackmyra celebrates 10 years of making whisky the Swedish way.
WhiskyCast Episode 167: October 5, 2008Oct 6, 2008 42:32
Description:Bourbon's big, baby! So big that we've crammed four of Kentucky's best distilleries into one big episode of WhiskyCast. We'll get the first look at this year's Buffalo Trace Antique Collection, along with the new Mariage Series from Four Roses, a whopper from Heaven Hill, and a special election bottling from Maker's Mark. In the news, India's Supreme Court strikes a blow against globalism, a look at new Irish whiskies and the latest Blue Hanger, and trying to beat the angels out of their share!
WhiskyCast Episode 166: September 27, 2008Sep 28, 2008 20:06
Description:This week, WhiskyCast is in Lebanon, Kentucky for the Marion County Country Ham Days Festival. This year's festival honors Independent Stave's Kentucky Cooperage, the local cooperage that supplies barrels for every one of Kentucky's bourbon distilleries, and you'll get a rare insider's tour in this special episode of WhiskyCast. In fact, the cooperage supplies 9 out of every 10 casks for the county's only distillery, Maker's Mark in nearby Loretto, and we'll also hear from master distiller Kevin Smith.
WhiskyCast Episode 165: September 22, 2008Sep 23, 2008 26:32
Description:Here's a special bonus episode from Whisky Live Paris...on location at one of the world's great bars. Hemingway drank at Harry's, Parisians drink at Harry's...and now, WhiskyCast goes to Harry's New York Bar. Thierry Benitah of La Maison du Whisky joins us for this special episode...his family has been supplying whisky to Harry's for 52 years, and he'll share some of the history of Harry's and La Maison du Whisky with us. We'll also hear from Suntory's Mike Miyamoto and Kamiguchi Naofumi of Nikka about their latest and most unusual whiskies that have the French going "incroyable!"
WhiskyCast Episode 164: September 21, 2008Sep 22, 2008 23:51
Description:Time now for part two of WhiskyCast's special coverage of Whisky Live Paris! We'll get an update on Islay's newest distillery, Kilchoman...where the first spirit reaches legal age later this year, and the new boss at Glendronach, Billy Walker of BenRiach fame, has plans to turn his team's new acquisition loose and let the spirit go free! We'll also hear from Dennis Malcolm of Glen Grant, Steven Teeling of Cooley, and Michael Urquhart of Gordon & MacPhail...and in the author's corner...Hans Offringa tells us about his new books on the history of Laphroaig and "A Taste of Whisky," and Ulf Buxrud shares details of his new book on Japanese whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 163: September 20, 2008Sep 21, 2008 21:38
Description:It's Whisky Live weekend in Paris, and this is Part 1 of special coverage of an amazing weekend! We'll find out why the French are so passionate about whisky, and not just drinking it, but distilling it as well! Aberlour's Ann Miller weighs in, along with Jean Metzger of Uberach Distillery, Jean Donnay of Glann Ar Mor, and Whisky Magazine France editor Martine Nouet. Andrew Symington updates us on new releases from Edradour and Signatory, and I'll have details on the sale of Glen Moray to a French company and the new members of the Bourbon Hall of Fame.
WhiskyCast Episode 162: September 14, 2008Sep 14, 2008 31:08
Description:Canadian Club celebrates its 150th anniversary starting this month, and we'll discuss the distillery's history with long-time ambassador brand ambassador Dan Tullio. We'll also taste the new Canadian Club 30-year-old whiskey being released to celebrate the anniversary. In the news, we'll also hear from Glenmorangie's Dr. Bill Lumsden about the new Glenmorangie Signet and an update on the sale of Glen Moray, along with new duty-free Glenrothes and Balvenie expressions.
WhiskyCast Episode 161: September 6, 2008Sep 7, 2008 15:58
Description:We're just a week or so away from a week that may make Derby Week look almost boring in Louisville...the combination of Ryder Cup week and Kentucky Bourbon Festival Week! Knob Creek Whiskey Professor and Louisville native Bernie Lubbers gives us some ideas of how to spend time in Louisville when you're in the area to visit the bourbon distilleries. In the news...an update from New Orleans and our friends at the Museum of the American Cocktail after Hurricane Gustav.
WhiskyCast Episode 160: August 30, 2008Aug 31, 2008 18:27
Description:Three years ago this weekend, New Orleans and much of the Gulf Coast were in ruins after Hurricane Katrina. It's only been in the last couple of months that The Museum of the American Cocktail was able to return to its home in New Orleans, just in time for the arrival of Hurricane Gustav. Museum co-founder Dale DeGroff brings us up to date on the Museum's journey to Las Vegas and back home over the past three years, along with an update on New Orleans's reconstruction. Of course, we couldn't let this master mixologist get away without his favorite cocktail recipe...and he'll share his method for the perfect Sazerac.
WhiskyCast Episode 159: August 24, 2008Aug 25, 2008 32:38
Description:Unless you work in the whisky industry, you've probably never heard of James Espey or Tom Jago. However, I'll bet that you've had one of the whisky brands they've been responsible for creating over their decades in the business. Now, they've teamed up with Peter Fleck for The Last Drop, an ultra-premium blend with whiskies blended in 1972 and left in the corner of a warehouse ever since. It's the first of what they promise will be a series of "gob-smacking" whiskies from The Last Drop. In the news, the final still is installed at Roseisle, Bruichladdich turns down bidders, and who tips better, Republicans or Democrats?
WhiskyCast Episode 158: August 17, 2008Aug 18, 2008 19:22
Description:A double feature with two (actually, three) great whiskies to talk about this week! Glenlivet's breaking the age barrier with its first 25-year-old single malt, and we'll taste it with Ian Logan. David Mair of The Balvenie will tell us more about the new Balvenie Signature, along with a special distillery-only bottling he snuck out of Speyside for a trip to New York...the Balvenie Rose. In the news, China gives Scotch Whisky trademark protection status, the Famous Grouse releases a new duty-free expression, and Bruichladdich asks us to compare and contrast.
WhiskyCast Episode 157: August 10, 2008Aug 10, 2008 18:47
Description:When the temperature's approaching 90 (32), sometimes a cold beer just sounds better than a glass of whisky. Northing wrong with that....especially when the beer has whisky in its DNA. More brewers are experimenting with aging their beers in whisky casks, and one of the most unusual comes from Scotland's Harviestoun Brewery. Ola Dubh is aged in casks from Highland Park's 12, 16, and 30-year-old malts, and each beer bears the special characteristics of its corresponding malt. We'll hear from Harviestoun's master brewer Stuart Cail in this week's episode. In the news, an update on Auchentoshan's new line of malts from new distillery manager Iain McCallum and a preview of some of the fall's new whiskies.
WhiskyCast Episode 156: August 3, 2008Aug 4, 2008 26:42
Description:Night and Day, Positive and Negative, Black and White. There are opposites all around us, which means that if there is a Black Bowmore, there must be a White Bowmore. There is...it's the fraternal twin to the legendary Black Bowmores -- both the original and the newly released version. This one was aged in bourbon casks, while the Black Bowmores were aged in brown walnut sherry casks. We'll learn more about the White Bowmore and a new 1992 Bordeaux cask-aged Bowmore from chief blender Andrew Rankin. In the news, a new Macallan for duty-free and Mount Vernon celebrates the Whiskey Rebellion of 1794.
WhiskyCast Episode 155: July 27, 2008Jul 28, 2008 31:07
Description:It may be seen as a sacrilege in Scotland, but imagine a single malt whisky from India that can compete with the best of Scotland's malts in many ways. That's the case with Amrut's single malts, which draw their water from the snow melt of the Himalayas and their barley from local farmers in northern India -- and their intense maturation from the heat of Bangalore. Askok Chokalingam of Amrut gives us the details, and Thierry Benitah of La Maison du Whisky previews September's Whisky Live Paris. In the news, an update on the reopening of Braeval, more charity whiskies for WhiskyFest San Francisco, and the "Whisky Bus" hits Glasgow.
WhiskyCast Episode 154: July 20, 2008Jul 21, 2008 17:23
Description:Almost every whisky lover has dreamed of getting the call from a distillery to serve on an exclusive tasting panel to select a special release. Jimmy Bradley got that call...and the owner/chef of two New York City restaurants tells about his experience helping to select this year's Glenfiddich Vintage Reserve bottling, In the news, another distillery may be up for sale, Braeval comes back to life, and construction begins on a new distillery in Canada.
WhiskyCast Episode 153: July 13, 2008Jul 13, 2008 27:37
Description:It's not too soon to start making travel plans for the fall whisky festival season, and Malt Advocate's WhiskyFest San Francisco on October 10th is shaping up to be something really special. Editor and Publisher John Hansell gives us a preview, along with details on the new summer issue of the magazine that's just hitting the newsstands now. In the news, another distillery may be on the market, Glen Moray may not be on the market for long, and Chivas opens up two of its usually private distilleries for a rare series of visitor tours.
WhiskyCast Episode 152:: July 6, 2008Jul 7, 2008 16:08
Description:Last fall, I mentioned The Balvenie's search for a brand ambassador to represent the single malt in the US. Now, the lucky person has been chosen, and you'll meet the new "Balvenie Guy" in this week's episode. Sam Simmons is the whisky lover behind the "Dr. Whisky" blog, and now, he's bringing his considerable knowledge of whisky to The Balvenie. In the news, an update on Springbank's now-temporary shutdown for six months, Glenmorangie puts its Glen Moray distillery on the block and announces plans to move its headquarters from Broxburn to Edinburgh, and Bruichladdich comes up with a simpler name for its peated malt..."Bruichladdich Peat."
WhiskyCast Episode 151: June 29, 2008Jun 29, 2008 13:17
Description:Compass Box produces some of the more unusual whiskies on the market, and John Glaser gives us the details on two new limited releases coming out later this year. In the news, the official word from Springbank on plans to temporarily stop producing new spirit because of commodities costs, Nikka's plans to start exporting to Russia, and plans for new UK alcohol laws that may or may not mean the end of distillery tour drams.
WhiskyCast Episode 150: June 22, 2008Jun 22, 2008 28:23
Description:If you're looking for buddy trip ideas, a distillery school might be just the thing. Fellow Malt Maniac Lawrence Graham just finished up a buddy trip to the Springbank Distillery Whisky School, and he'll tell us what he learned. On a sadder note, the Speyside Whisky Museum may be forced to close its doors next spring, and we'll find out why. In the news, Glenfiddich honors Michael Jackson, we'll hear from the winner of the Australian Malt Whisky Nosing Championship, and Macallan lovers will want to be at WhiskyFest San Francisco in October.
WhiskyCast Episode 149: June 16, 2008Jun 16, 2008 22:37
Description:What distillery produces so many different expressions of whisky that one could probably drink a different one each day for a month with no repeats? The answer is simple...Bruichladdich. Jim McEwan and his team come up with a malt for every occasion, and he'll bring us up to date in this episode. In the news, Glengoyne celebrates a special anniversary with a special malt, Tullamore Dew comes up with a 10-year-old Irish whiskey, and Glenfiddich picks a vintage cask.
WhiskyCast Episode 148: June 8, 2008Jun 8, 2008 28:23
Description:The best single malts in the world come from Scotland, right? Not any more, and the winner of Whisky Magazine's World Whiskies Award as the world's best single malt is proof. Nikka's Yoichi 20-year-old took top honors this year, and it's the latest honor for a distillery that remains a mystery to many whisky lovers. Japanese whisky expert Ken Noma helps us clear up some of the mystery about Nikka. In the news, new whiskies from Auchentoshan, Balvenie, and Benromach, along with a preview of Scotland's 2009 year-long tribute to Robert Burns.
WhiskyCast Episode 147: June 1, 2008Jun 1, 2008 13:37
Description:While it's the start of summer in Scotland, it's the start of a winter of whisky in Australia. Later this month, the Scotch Malt Whisky Society's Australian chapter will revive an old tradition: the Australian Malt Whisky Tasting Championship. The Society's Andrew Derbidge gives us the details. In the news, word of a hedonistic new whisky from Compass Box and a rare chance to learn whisky blending from John Glaser, new distillery expansions in Kentucky, and another legal battle in India.
WhiskyCast Episode 146: May 25, 2008May 25, 2008 19:07
Description:It's festival week on Islay, and we'll hear about the plans for this week's Islay Festival of Malt and Music from Laphroaig's John Campbell, Ardbeg's Michael Heads, and Jim McEwan of Bruichladdich. Every distillery on Islay and Jura has a special bottling for this week's festival, and the guys will give us details on theirs. In the news, skyrocketing prices for crops and energy mean we'll be paying more for whisky in the future, Constellation Brands sells a Quebec distillery to Diageo, and updates on new whiskies planned for later this year.
WhiskyCast Episode 145: May 18, 2008May 18, 2008 18:14
Description:One of the world's great whisky bars sits in between a stationery store and a restaurant in Toronto's Beaches neighborhood. Ian Innes has owned The Feathers since 1981, and his selection of single malts is amazing. There are 460 different expressions from almost every distillery in Scotland (and he probably had those at one time or another)! We'll hear about Ian's amazing collection...the most expensive of which is just $35 a dram -- amazing in itself. In the news, a milestone at Buffalo Trace, new whiskies on the market, including a new 40-year-old Springbank, and much, much more...
WhiskyCast Episode 144: May 10, 2008May 12, 2008 08:43
Description:On the road again, and back in one of my favorite cities...Toronto. This time around, it's for the Spirit of Toronto Festival. We'll have some of the highlights, including the first public tasting of Highland Park's new 40-year-old single malt...more from John Hall of Kittling Ridge on his upcoming new release of Forty Creek Canadian whisky, and a chat with festival organizer Johanna Ngoh.
WhiskyCast Episode 143: May 4, 2007May 4, 2008 20:07
Description:Good things take time, and after 109 years, Ardmore is finally being released as a single malt. Until now, all of the Aberdeenshire distillery's output has been used for blending, but after Beam Global acquired Ardmore a couple of years ago and realized just what it had...plans were quickly made to release the Ardmore Traditional single malt. We'll hear from Ardmore master distiller Alistair Longwell about the distillery's history and his new pride and joy. In the news, winners of the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Awards, Glen Grant opens a new visitors center, and Scotch whisky exports set a new record.
WhiskyCast Episode 142: April 27, 2008Apr 27, 2008 26:52
Description:This is Kentucky Derby week in Louisville, and that makes it a perfectly good time to focus on bourbon. We'll hear from Ron Givens, author of the new book "Bourbon at its Best." Ron's book covers everything from bourbon history to travel tips and cocktail recipes. One of the recipes is for the Seelbach Cocktail, named for the legendary Old Seelbach Bar at the Seelbach Hilton in Louisville. Jerry Slater tells us about the Old Seelbach's century of history with bourbon.
WhiskyCast Episode 141: April 20, 2008Apr 20, 2008 20:08
Description:Running a distillery is a tough job...but Ian MacMillan runs three. Oh, he serves as the master blender, too. Ian's in charge of Burn Stewart's three distilleries: Bunnahabhain, Deanston, and Tobermory...and he is also responsible for the Black Bottle blended Scotch. Ian tells us about his 36 years in the whisky business in this episode. In the news, a major -- and unexpected -- change at Maker's Mark, as Kevin Smith replaces Dave Pickerell as master distiller. We'll also have the World Whisky Awards winners, the new 40-year-old Highland Park, and much more...
WhiskyCast Episode 140: April 12, 2008Apr 13, 2008 18:50
Description:Time for a road trip...this time to the spiritual home of Bourbon...Kentucky. This week's episode comes from DeSha's Restaurant and Bar in Lexington, which tied for top honors as Best Whisky Bar in the World in Whisky Magazine's recent Icons of Whisky Awards. It's about an hour away from another Icon award winner...the Maker's Mark Distillery in Loretto, which was named Best Visitor Attraction by Whisky Magazine. Assistant Master Distiller Kevin Smith and Rob Samuels, grandson of Maker's Mark founder William Samuels Sr. will guide us through the distillery and its new visitors center.
WhiskyCast Episode 139: April 6, 2008Apr 6, 2008 18:22
Description:It's been a busy week for whisky festivals from coast to coast in the US, with events in San Francisco, New York, and Chicago. In this episode, we'll get some of the highlights from Whisky Live New York. Ronnie Cox of The Glenrothes talks about a rare 1975 vintage, Duncan Taylor's Euan Shand updates us on his construction plans for a new distillery and a new website offering cask whisky purchases, new selections from Scott's Selection, and wider US distribution for The Singleton of Glendullan.
WhiskyCast Episode 138: March 30, 2008Mar 30, 2008 53:49
Description:In the last episode, I mentioned the growing controversy over proposed UK legislation that would set specific labeling standards for Scotch Whisky, including a new name for what have been known as "vatted malts". Trouble is, support for "blended malts" is not unanimous, and critics are speaking out. Mark Reynier of Bruichladdich is one of the most outspoken critics of the legislation and the influence of the Scotch Whisky Association in preparing it. We'll hear from Mark, along with SWA spokesman David Williamson.
WhiskyCast Episode 137: March 23, 2008Mar 23, 2008 26:04
Description:Inver House was recently named Distiller of the Year in Whisky Magazine's annual Icons of Whisky Awards for its work in re-launching the Balblair single malt, along with Old Pulteney and An Cnoc. We'll hear from master blender Stuart Harvey about the behind-the-scenes work that earned Inver House its honors, and he also spills the beans about some new single malts coming later this year.
WhiskyCast Episode 136: March 16, 2008Mar 17, 2008 19:09
Description:In Part 2 of our series on Irish Whiskeys, we'll hear from Bushmills master distiller Colum Egan. Colum was under pressure to come up with a special whiskey to celebrate the 400th anniversary of distilling in the area around Bushmills, and he met the challenge with Bushmills 1608. We'll also look at Knappogue Castle and Clontarf with Kelley Spillane of Castle Brands, who predicts a new distillery will be built in Ireland in the next few years because of the worldwide demand for Irish whiskey. In the news, Alastair's no Darling as far as whisky distillers are concerned, someone pinches a rare malt from Gordon & MacPhail, and Harlen Wheatley of Buffalo Trace is back from his laboratory lair with something special.
WhiskyCast Episode 135: March 9, 2008Mar 9, 2008 32:19
Description:With St. Patrick's Day just around the horizon, it's time for Part 1 of a 2-part series on Irish whiskies, In this episode, we'll hear from the Master of Whiskey Science at Irish Distillers' Middleton Distillery, David Quinn. He'll explain the basic difference that makes Irish whiskies unique, and tell us about the new Jameson Rarest Vintage Reserve. In the news, distilling veteran Stuart Nickerson unveils the plans to revive the mothballed Glenglassaugh Distillery, and we'll hear about two new Balvenie limited editions...and why drinking whisky can save the Earth.
WhiskyCast Episode 134: March 2, 2008Mar 2, 2008 17:39
Dominic Roskrow is the former editor of Whisky Magazine, and he's written a new book on whiskies from around the world. "From Confused to Connoisseur" is designed for the novice, and includes distillery details, tasting notes, and Dominic's 50 favorite whiskies. We'll get a preview from Dominic in this episode...in the news, Whisky Magazine's Icons of Whisky award-winners are announced...the first -- and only -- Kininvie single malt will be available at London's Heathrow Airport, a new Singleton of Glen Ord is headed for retailers, and a look at this past week's Kosher Whisky Festival in New York City.
WhiskyCast Episode 133: February 24, 2008Feb 24, 2008 16:39
Description:There's a new generation of whisky makers coming into their own, and we'll hear from one of them in this episode. Iain McCallum told us about the Black Bowmore in Episode 131, and now he shares his story of nearly half a lifetime at Morrison Bowmore. Of course, he's only 32! In the news, Ardmore Traditional comes to the US, the Classic Malts Cruise is looking for a few good sailors, and the winners of this year's Drammie Awards have been announced.
WhiskyCast Episode 132: February 17, 2008Feb 17, 2008 24:09
Description:The new issue of Malt Advocate magazine is out, and the cover story focuses on cask ownership programs. We'll talk with writer Jonny McCormick, who has a cask of his own aging at Bruichladdich. In the news, you'll be able to get Bushmills for a fiver in Ireland...at least a fiver with Bushmills on it, Clontarf gets new packaging honoring its own place in Irish history, and the tax man may have something to say about UK whisky prices soon.
WhiskyCast Episode 131: February 10, 2008Feb 11, 2008 16:38
Description:The Black Bowmore is one of Islay's legendary whiskies, and sells for thousands of dollars...when you can find it. Now, Bowmore is releasing a new Black Bowmore, and it's not a copy. It's the same as the original, just a few years older. We'll get the details from Bowmore blender Iain McCallum, and I'll share my tasting notes on this amazing whisky. In the news, changes are coming at Whyte and MacKay, a mothballed distillery in Kentucky is coming back to life, and honors for Gordon and MacPhail and George Washington's Distillery.
WhiskyCast Episode 130: February 3, 2008Feb 3, 2008 16:24
Description:With Valentine's Day almost here, thoughts of chocolate will certainly be on the minds of some whisky lovers...whether it's for themselves or for that special person. We'll get some tips on pairing whiskies with chocolates from Sage Friedman of Chocolat Michel Kluizel in New York City. In the news, Irish distillers go to court over a Russian whiskey deal, The Glenrothes releases a new vintage, Duncan Taylor adds a new version of Auld Reekie, and if the Mutter Bowmore isn't the world's oldest whisky...a bottle in a New Zealand museum just might be.
WhiskyCast Episode 129: January 27, 2008Jan 27, 2008 26:24
Description:There's always at least two sides to a story, and in the case of the "Mutter Bowmore" controversy, there are many more. This time around, we'll get the third side of the story behind the bottle of Bowmore said to be from 1851 that was auctioned at McTears in Glasgow last month. Glen Moore of Morrison Bowmore tried to win the auction for the distillery, and refutes rumors that the so-called "Russian collector" who won the bottle doesn't exist. In the news, a new An Cnoc, a headless Johnnie Walker, and answers to some of your whisky questions.
WhiskyCast Episode 128: January 20, 2008Jan 20, 2008 31:04
Description:It's time to celebrate Burns Night this week! Whisky lovers around the world will honor the bard of Scotland, the legendary Robert Burns, on the 249th anniversary of his birth January 25th. In what's becoming an annual tradition, we'll take a look at Burns' life and his works on this episode. Joann Gilmartin performs Burns' songs and poetry, as well as teaching young people about those works, and she'll share her love of Burns with us. In the news, modern-day gaugers break up a bootlegging operation in the Black Country, a new Laphroaig is duty-free bound, and Diageo apologizes for stuffing the ballot box in this year's Drammies.
WhiskyCast Episode 127: January 13, 2008Jan 13, 2008 24:54
Description:This time around, we'll get the other side of the debate over the rare Bowmore that sold for more than $50,000 at McTear's in Glasgow last month, despite questions over its exact age. Martin Green is the whisky consultant for McTear's, and was responsible for verifying its provenance. Martin states his case in this episode. In the news, Bowmore's releasing a new Black Bowmore -- and giving one away in a web contest...a new chairman for the Scotch Whisky Association, and details on a special deal for WhiskyCast listeners!
WhiskyCast Episode 126: January 6, 2008Jan 6, 2008 24:54
Description:The debate over whisky auctions and the provenance of some of the whiskies sold at those auctions continues with the saga of a Bowmore said to have been bottled in 1850. It sold at McTear's in Glasgow last month for more than $50,000, even though historians questioned whether the whisky was as old as advertised. Scotch Whisky Review editor Dave Broom's update of the story appears on the WhiskyCast web site, and we'll hear from Dave on this episode. In the news, a new Talisker, potential buyers for Glenglassaugh, honours for Edrington's chairman, and another tale of sadness...and sharing...at airport security.
WhiskyCast Episode 125: December 29, 2007Dec 30, 2007 20:09
Description:We'll close out the year with a look at a man fulfilling almost every guy's dream. Keith Wood is a transplanted Englishman in the heart of Munich, Germany, where beer is a passion. Earlier this year, Keith bought a bar in Munich's Schwabing neighborhood, and now The Arc has become one of Munich's best whisky bars. Also...an update on the experiment with a Whisky Works kit from Ontario's Premium Bottlers.
WhiskyCast Episode 124: December 23, 2007Dec 23, 2007 22:24
Description:Jim McEwan and the guys at Bruichladdich don't really care what the rest of the whisky industry thinks of them. They do care greatly what whisky drinkers think, though...and the passion they share for great whisky leads them to try the unusual. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't...but there's no denying the passion in each bottle. Jim shares his outspoken views with us in this episode, and in the news, Whyte & Mackay buys back The Dalmore's US rights, Euan Shand gets the permits for his new distillery in Huntly, and we get a lesson on how not to beat the airport security guards.
WhiskyCast Episode 123: December 16, 2007Dec 16, 2007 23:24
Description:Single malt scotches and Japan's single malts are a world apart in geography, and some might say the same applies to taste as well. This time around, we'll hear from the man behind Suntory's award-winning Yamazaki single malts, distillery manager Hiroyoshi "Mike" Miyamoto. Mike also has a history in Scotland, where he worked at Morrison Bowmore after Suntory purchased it in 1994. That gives him a unique perspective that few have on whiskies of the world. In the news, new whiskies and more on the "Macallan 1856" saga.
WhiskyCast Episode 122: December 9, 2007Dec 9, 2007 20:24
Description:You may want to introduce your non-whisky drinking friends to the water of life during the holidays, but sometimes it takes a little something extra to get them to try it. We'll take a look at whisky-based cocktails in this episode with veteran mixologist Bobby Gleason and the winner of Whisky Live Toronto's bar chefs competition, Shona Jensen. In the news, 10,000 bottles of Bowmore have been stolen in England, Dewar's starts a year-long celebration of the 75th anniversary of Prohibition's repeal, and the Christie's auction of rare whiskies and spirits in New York brings in more than $300,000.
WhiskyCast Episode 121: December 2, 2007Dec 2, 2007 20:09
Description:The results are in from this year's Malt Maniacs Whisky Awards, and we'll get a rundown on the top award-winners from Malt Maniac Davin de Kergommeaux at the Maniacs' celebration in Turckheim, France. In the news, Isle of Jura is phasing out its 21-year-old single malt, Ian Macleod strikes a deal to export Chieftain's Choice malts to the US, Christie's pulls a suspect 1856 Macallan from next week's auction in New York, and Ian Buxton debuts the Whisky Channel online community.
WhiskyCast Episode 120: November 25, 2007Nov 25, 2007 26:09
Description:Last month, Malt Advocate Magazine honored David Stewart of William Grant & Sons with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his 45 years in the whisky business. Stewart is the Malt Master for Grant's, and is responsible for both Glenfiddich and The Balvenie single malts, as well as Grant's blended Scotch. David shares his story with us in this episode...in the news, we'll get word of a new nautical-themed Benromach, an update on Euan Shand's plans for a distillery in Huntly, and more Icons of Whisky regional awards from Whisky Magazine.
WhiskyCast Episode 119: November 18, 2007Nov 18, 2007 25:39
Description:Only one distillery can claim to have the world's best selling whiskey, and it's not in Scotland or Kentucky. Jack Daniels in Lynchburg, Tennessee sells more than 10 million cases of its Black Label whiskey every year...and 2008 will mark 40 consecutive years of service for master distiller Jimmy Bedford. We'll hear from Jimmy, along with the latest on a rare Glenfiddich single cask, Ardmore's pending arrival in the US, and how to make it as a whisky ambassador.
WhiskyCast Episode 118: November 11, 2007Nov 11, 2007 28:54
Description:John Hall of Canada's Kittling Ridge Distillery makes his whiskies the hard way, distilling and maturing his grains separately, then blending them years later to make Forty Creek Canadian Whiskey. He's won numerous awards for his whiskies over the last several years, and we'll hear his story in this week's episode. In the news, a $12,000 Macallan, the guys who work at Glengoyne select three single-cask bottlings, a new Highland Park hits duty-free, and if you've ever dreamed of working in the whisky business, The Balvenie is looking for two serious whisky lovers.
WhiskyCast Episode 117: November 3, 2007Nov 4, 2007 41:27
Description:On the road again...this time at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas for the Maker's Mark "When in Rome Weekend". Nearly 1500 Maker's Mark Ambassadors descended on Caesars for the distillery's first major event outside Kentucky, with bourbon tastings, cooking classes, and a toga party. We'll hear from some of the Ambassadors, along with master chef Bryan Ogden of Bradley Ogden's restaurant in Las Vegas, and a lesson on bourbon history from Bill Samuels, Jr. in the biggest episode of WhiskyCast yet!
WhiskyCast Episode 116: October 31, 2007Nov 1, 2007 17:09
Description:This is a special episode of WhiskyCast with highlights from Tuesday night's Malt Advocate WhiskyFest in New York City. It's the 10th anniversary of WhiskyFest New York, and we'll hear from the winners of this year's Malt Advocate Whisky Awards, including Alastair Walker of Distillery of the Year BenRiach, along with Lifetime Achievement Award winners David Stewart of William Grant & Sons and Jim Rutledge of Four Rosesr. We'll also get updates on several new whiskies, including a couple of powerhouse ryes and a single grain from Ireland.
WhiskyCast Episode 115: October 29, 2007Oct 30, 2007 16:09
Description:What's a $700 whisky like? When it's a special edition of Johnnie Walker Blue Label, expect it to be something unique (and have a pretty good story behind it). We'll find out more about the new King George V edition of Blue Label, along with new whiskies from the Balvenie and changes for Auchentoshan and Ballantine's on this episode of WhiskyCast.
WhiskyCast Episode 114: October 21, 2007Oct 23, 2007 16:39
Description:Willie Nelson made "On the Road Again" famous, and it's time to hit the road for a series of special episodes. Thie time around, it's Whisky Live in Toronto, and while technical problems kept me from recording the show live on-site, we'll get the latest on a new edition of Wiser's Canadian whiskey, along with a bunch of changes at Whyte & Mackay, and we'll check on two old friends. Last year, we met Barry Stein and Barry Bernstein, who gave up their successful careers to become independent whisky bottlers. We'll get the update from Barry, Barry...and their wives.
WhiskyCast Episode 113: October 14, 2007Oct 14, 2007 21:24
Description:It's a good time to be in the whisky business. Scotch whisky exports are growing by 4 percent a year, and added up to $5 billion last year worldwide. We'll talk with Scotch Whisky Association chief executive Gavin Hewitt about the political and business issues facing the industry. In the news...more new whiskies this week, a preview of the Christie's whisky auction this December in New York City, and John Hansell gives us the details on the fall edition of Malt Advocate Magazine...along with a preview of WhiskyFest events in San Francisco and New York City.
WhiskyCast Episode 112: October 7, 2007Oct 7, 2007 23:39
Description:Jim Murray's Whisky Bible is almost required reading for serious whisky lovers, and the 2008 edition of the Bible is on its way to booksellers now. We'll get a preview from Jim in this episode, along with his thoughts on the passing of Michael Jackson. In the news, more new whiskies are on the way -- including the annual Buffalo Trace Antique Collection, a duty-free Highland Park, new Macallans, and a small batch Forty Creek. Also...a bottle of George Washington's rye whiskey brings $35,000 at a charity auction, and a full schedule of whisky events around the world.
WhiskyCast Episode 111: September 30, 2007Sep 30, 2007 21:09
Description:Ever wondered whether the CEO's of whisky companies get any special perks? In this week's episode, we'll get the answer from Tom Flocco, CEO of Beam Global Spirits & Wine. On a more serious note, we'll find out how the two-year-long process of integrating Laphroaig and other former Allied Domecq brands into Beam's portfolio is going, along with his view of the global whisky market. In other news, the 2008 edition of the Malt Whisky Yearbook is out, and we'll get a preview from editor Ingvar Ronde...along with word on new rare -- and expensive malts from the Classic Malts series.
WhiskyCast Episode 110: September 23, 2007Sep 24, 2007 14:54
Description:For the first time, we'll talk about something other than whiskies on WhiskyCast! There's a new trend toward single-estate Cognacs and Armagnacs from France that compare very favorably with many single malts...and can often be a fraction of the price! Veteran spirits writer F. Paul Pacult led a tasting of rare Cognacs and Armagnacs this past week in New York, and he'll help guide us on a journey through the French countryside. In the news, a $30,000 Balvenie hits the market, new whiskies from Compass Box, and Mallya does motorsports as well as whisky...
WhiskyCast Episode 109: September 16, 2007Sep 16, 2007 28:39
Description:The Beams are the First Family of Bourbon, and the torch has officially been passed at Jim Beam. Each bottle has pictures of the six generations of Beam family members who have led the distillery. This week, a new label was unveiled with the latest patriarch of the Beams, Fred Noe...who joins his late father, Booker Noe, and the rest of the family. We'll hear from Fred and more as Kentucky celebrates Bourbon Festival week in Bardstown.
WhiskyCast Episode 108: September 9, 2007Sep 9, 2007 21:54
Description:George Washington...founding father of the United States, and a man who knew how to capitalize on an opportunity. When he heard that merchants near his Mount Vernon estate couldn't meet the demand for whiskey, he built one of the fledgling nation's biggest distilleries. The restored distillery is now producing rye whiskey from George's original recipe, and you'll hear the details in this episode. In the news, we'll hear from Springbank's Frank McHardy about his distillery's whisky schools this fall...and much, much more...
WhiskyCast Episode 107: September 2, 2007Sep 2, 2007 22:09
Description:The world of whisky lost its greatest ambassador this week. Through his books, Michael Jackson gave us a vocabulary, and set words to our passion for the water of life. Michael passed away at his home Thursday morning (August 30) after a long fight with Parkinson's Disease and other health problems. In March, I had the chance to talk with Michael, and you'll hear part of that interview on this episode, along with memories of Michael from Martine Nouet. Raise a glass if you will...to a man who now sips from the angel's share.
WhiskyCast Episode 106: August 26, 2007Aug 26, 2007 16:54
Description:The Famous Grouse is Scotland's #1 blended Scotch, but the newest version of the Grouse won't be available there. The Black Grouse is a new blend that takes the best of the Grouse and adds in a touch of Islay for a peatier, smokier blend. It's been on the market all year in Sweden, where Edrington's Helen Potter got the inspiration to create the Black Grouse. Helen is the innovation and development manager for The Famous Grouse, and she'll give us the details on the Black Grouse. In the news, new whiskies from Benriach and Old Forester, and they'll fire up the still at George Washington's Distillery this week.
WhiskyCast Episode 105: August 19, 2007Aug 19, 2007 14:10
Description:The rumors of change at Glenmorangie are true, and we'll get the details on the new Extra Matured range from Glenmorangie whisky maker and blender Rachel Barrie. In the news, Heaven Hill announced the details for a new collection honoring master distiller Parker Beam, the International Wine and Spirits Competition honors whiskies from around the world, New York ends its ban on whisky auctions...and what exactly is a Flanscargle single malt?
WhiskyCast Episode 104: August 12, 2007Aug 12, 2007 27:24
Description:It's time for the first question and answer episode of WhiskyCast, as we'll get answers to your e-mailed questions from John Glaser of Compass Box, John Hansell of Malt Advocate magazine, and Steve Fox of Preiss Imports. In the news, is Glenmorangie going Gallic...new whiskies from Laphroaig and Arran, Templeton Rye goes back home to Chicago...and a collector's item sure to make the most devoted Robert Burns fan weep with joy goes on the auction block at Bonham's later this month.
WhiskyCast Episode 103: August 5, 2007Aug 6, 2007 16:09
Nick Morgan of Diageo has the job most of us would love...next to running a distillery of our own. As Global Marketing Director for Diageo's premium malts and the Classic Malts series, he has access to whiskies most of us only dream of being able to taste. We'll find out about his personal favorites, as well as what goes into selecting malts for the Classic Malts range. In the news, Dewars gets a $250 million investment to expand its whisky production...Jim Beam releases a special bourbon to benefit the children of New York City firefighters, the Westin Turnberry Resort has a few bottles of a rare Glenfiddich private release left, and Bruichladdich keeps the golf theme going with two new releases in its Links series.
WhiskyCast Episode 102: July 29, 2007Jul 29, 2007 25:54
Description:The Grant family bought Speyside's Glenfarclas distillery in 1865, and six generations of Grants have worked at the distillery since then. George Grant is following the path led by his great-great-great grandfather, and he'll lead us through a vertical tasting of four single malts from the family distillery. In the news, profits and losses in the business, Glengoyne gives a nod to its past, Heaven Hill gives Parker Beam a well-deserved honor, and an update on the calendar of events.
WhiskyCast Episode 101: July 22, 2007Jul 23, 2007 23:09
Description:Iain Henderson's CV includes everything from sailing the seas as an engineer on oil tankers to managing the stills at Laphroaig, Bladnoch, and Edradour (among others). His latest venture, though, has created some controversy in Scotland -- he's helping a single malt distillery in England get off the ground! In the news, Benromach's organic single malt is on its way to the U.S., Woodford Reserve isn't the only one experimenting with bourbon and chardonnay barrels, and Diageo submits its plans for a new malt distillery in Roseisle.
WhiskyCast Episode 100: July 15, 2007Jul 16, 2007 15:53
Description:It's a milestone episode for WhiskyCast, and to mark the occasion, I've selected a few of my favorite moments from the first 99 episodes. You'll hear from Jim McEwan, John MacDougall, Jim Cryle, Jim Murray, Tom Bulleit, and others during this special episode. In the news, the other shoe has dropped in India's whisky tax war, there are new releases from Whyte & Mackay and Bruichladdich, and the Classic Malts Cruise gets underway in Oban.
WhiskyCast Episode 99: July 8, 2007Jul 8, 2007 23:08
Description:There's no shortage of Scotch whiskies with wine finishes, but until now, finished Bourbons have been just an academic idea. Chris Morris of Woodford Reserve worked with his corporate siblings at Sonoma-Cutrer Vineyards to create a chardonnay-finished version of Woodford Reserve. We'll get a preview from Chris, along with a look at next week's Classic Malts Cruise along the Scottish coast from Diageo's Nick Morgan. In the news, India has lowered its whisky tariffs, Whyte and Mackay's managing director leaves, and details on a "double-barrel" Ardbeg.
WhiskyCast Episode 98: July 1, 2007Jul 1, 2007 21:09
Description:Last September, Ian Buxton gave us a preview of his "Classic Expressions" series of vintage whisky books, lovingly re-printed under the guidance of Ian and publisher Neil Wilson. Back then, Ian was looking for founding subscribers to support the printing of the first two books in the series. Now, "Reminiscenses of a Gauger" by Joseph Pacy and Ian MacDonald's "Smuggling in the Highlands" are available for a new generation of whisky lovers to enjoy. Ian and Neil have three more classics in the pipeline, and we'll get an update from Ian in this episode. In the news, Talisker gets a new manager, Canadian Club celebrates Dario Franchitti's Indy 500 victory, and the Indian spirits tariff dispute may have a resolution soon.
WhiskyCast Episode 97: June 24, 2007Jun 24, 2007 10:09
John Glaser of Compass Box is one of the whisky industry's leading innovators, and in this episode of WhiskyCast, we'll find out what he's working on in his blending laboratory. There's also new spirits legislation in Europe that should clarify some of the rules about whisky production, a road race for bourbon-loving runners in Kentucky, and an update on what may really be the Southern Hemisphere's first peated whisky after all...