September’s Whisky News

The biggest whisky news of the month was the return of Ardbeg’s test sample of whisky from the International Space Station.  I’d usually point you in the direction of another website about this, but you can find my blog on the project here.

Continuing the science-y theme, a company which uses waste products from the whisky industry to produce bio-fuel has received £11m in government funding (from The Telegraph).

In the same week that work began to expand the production facilities at The Glenlivet (from The Whisky Business), it was announced that production is expected to restart at Dallas Dhu distillery (from the Press & Journal).

William Grant – which owns both the Glenfiddich and Balvenie brands – announced record profits, despite a 16% dip in turnover (from the Daily Record).  Hopefully profits like this will increase in future years thank to the work of the Scotch Whisky Association, which has secured top legal protection of the drink across 17 African countries (from The Scotsman), as well as winning a counterfeiting case in China (also from The Scotsman).

And after many years of planning, the Isle of Harris Distillery has finally opened (from STV).

New Releases
The headline release of the month was Gordon & McPhail’s 75 Year Old Mortlach, which has an RRP of £20,000 (from Drinks International ).  Benromach – Gordon & McPhail’s flagship single malt – also launched two new limited edition wine cask finished single malts (from The Whisky Business).

Another headline grabber was Speyside Distillery’s Beinn Dubh, which was unveiled at Europe’s biggest Harley Davidson motorcycle rally (from The Spirits Business).

After a successful launch last year, Burn Stewart announced a second batch release of award winning single malts, which includes Bunnahabhain Ceòbanach, Deanston 18 Year Old and Ledaig 18 Year Old (from The Whisky Business).

Going back to basics, Glenfiddich unveiled The Original, which is inspired by its single malt of 1963, which helped to build at single malt category at a time when blends when dominant (from Bar Magazine).  Isle of Arran is also calling on its heritage with a new series inspired by smuggling in the 18th and 19th centuries (from Bar Magazine).

Amongst the independent bottlers, Compass Box marked its 15th anniversary with a new release (from The Spirits Business), Wemyss Malts had added a limited edition peated blend to its range (from The Whisky Business) and Ian Macleod Distillers has unveiled a new range of travel retail exclusive bottling (from The Drinks Report).

And south of the border, The Lakes Distillery has launched a limited edition sherry cask variant of its ‘The One British blended whisky (from The Whisky Business).

And finally
With the festive season just round the corner, distillers are cranking up their brand campaigns.  Diageo have gone all out, with its “Joy Will Take Your Further” campaign, which features both Jude Law and Jenson Button (from The Spirits Business), with The Famous Grouse launching its “Famous For A Reason” campaign (from FoodBev Media).  How either of these campaigns will help to sell whisky is anyone’s guess!!