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The C&TH Guide to Whisky


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The C&TH Guide to Whisky

Buying someone whisky for Christmas? Read this first

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Buying someone whisky for Christmas this year? Before you buy, read our guide so you’re sure to get it right…

Distilleries and Whiskies

Glenmorangie Distillery

Glenmorangie Single Malt Scotch Whisky originates in the Scottish Highlands where, at the Glenmorangie Distillery, it is distilled in the tallest malt whisky stills in Scotland for a purer spirit, expertly matured in the finest oak casks for great depth, and perfected by the Men of Tain.  The Distillery was founded in 1843 and is renowned as a pioneer in its field, uniting tradition with innovation.

Why not try …

Glenmorangie Midwinter Night’s Dram

Glenmorangie

An exclusive limited edition released for Christmas, inspired by the great Scottish winters, Glenmorangie’s Midwinter Night’s Dram 2017 is a marriage of spirits matured in superior casks which once held bourbon, Oloroso sherry and Pedro Ximénez sherry, creating a rich, spicy and warming single malt whisky.

Echoing the rich aromas of winter’s festivities, the whisky deliciously marries incense, sandalwood and milk chocolate raisins with notes of sherry and spices. It’s treacle textures give way to tastes of Seville orange marmalade and dried ginger. The Ultimate Christmas whisky!

Glenmorangie Midwinter Night’s Dram is available from Waitrose, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons for £40.

Why not try …

Glenmorangie Signet

Glenmorangie

Pure Christmas indulgence for the whisky connoisseur, Glenmorangie Signet is the richest whisky in Glenmorangie’s range. Released in 2009 as the world’s first single malt whisky made with dark roasted chocolate malt barley, it’s unique fusion of scarce and exceptional whiskies make it one of the most prestigious drams available. Perfect for pairing with chocolate over the festive season.

Glenmorangie Signet is available from the Glenmorangie website and Clos 19, £145.

Balcones Distillery

It all started with an old welding shop under a bridge in Waco, Texas. Since then, Balcones Distilling has released 12 unique products, many of which are now internationally renowned award winning whiskies.

100% of Balcones whisky is mashed, fermented and distilled at the distillery, to ensure the finest quality and craftsmanship can be found in every bottle. They never resell whisky from other distilleries or source aged whisky barrels for blending under the Balcones label. This is authentic craft whisky.  

Why not try …

Balcones Baby Blue

Baby Blue Balcones

Baby Blue is a true Texas original and the very first expression ever released by Balcones. Crafted from 100% roasted heirloom blue corn, this rich and oily maze was Texas’ first whisky on the market since Prohibition.

It is intentionally youthful with a round nuttiness, roasted overtones and refined complexity. Bottled at 46% ABV and non-chill filtered, it has a viscous mouth feel with a soft finish – a perfect dram for those who are new to whisky or looking for an American whisky that is totally unique!

This expression was created to showcase the interesting flavour and texture of Blue Corn, rather than just masking it with heavy wood flavours, that you might expect to find in Bourbon. A true taste of Texas using a special regional ingredient.

Available here for £72.95.

Why not try …

Balcones ‘1’ Texas Single Malt

For those looking for more of a single malt style of whisky, then look no further than ‘1’ Texas Single Malt.  It breathes new life into centuries of distilling tradition with classic techniques and ingredients. It is made using traditional Golden Promise malted barley from Scotland, that is brought to Texas – distilled and aged at Balcones Distillery in Waco.

It is a nod to how single malt is produced in Scotland, taking on a style similar to that of a Speyside single malt, but with a special Balcones Texas twist.

It has aromas of toffee and overripe fruits with layers of toasted malt and honey with mellow notes of baked pears and apples. Bottled at 53% ABV, it is also Balcones’ most awarded and celebrated whisky, having won over 70 awards internationally!

Available here for £94.95.

Ardbeg Distillery 

Ardbeg Distillery

Ardbeg is The Ultimate Islay Single Malt Whisky.  Established in 1815, Ardbeg is revered by connoisseurs around the world as the peatiest, smokiest and most complex of all the Islay malts.  Despite its smokiness, Ardbeg is renowned for its delicious sweetness, a phenomenon that has affectionately become known as ‘the peaty paradox’.

Why not try …

Ardbeg 10 Year Old Whisky

Ardbeg

A ‘cult malt’ and not for the faint-hearted whisky drinker, Ardbeg Ten Years Old from Islay is revered around the world as the peatiest, smokiest, most complex single malt of them all. New for Christmas 2017, the bottle is beautifully presented in an Ardbeg gift box representing the Ardbeg warehouse sea wall at this beautiful Islay distillery. 

Available at specialist retailers nationwide, £45.

Why not try …

Ardbeg An Oa

Ardbeg An Oa

An Oa, new to Ardbeg’s core range of whiskies, is named after the Mull of Oa in the south west of Islay where the distillery is situated. The whisky is singularly rounded due to time spent in the bespoke oak Gathering Vat where different parcels of whisky mingle unhurriedly. The richness of spirit matured in Pedro Ximénez casks, the spice of liquid aged in virgin oak, and all the hallmark intensity of Ardbeg matured in ex-bourbon barrels. The result is an untamed single malt – ideal for smoky malt whisky fans.

Available here for £49. 

Whiskey Thinkstock

Best Places to Drink Whisky:

Whisky Cocktails:

Glenmorangie – The Spirit of the Open Golf Championship this year at Royal Birkdale – has created a delicious thirst quenching whisky cocktail with a golf twist: The Tee Off.

How to make The Tee Off…

  1. Pour 50ml Glenmorangie Original into a highball glass.
  2. Muddle together 50ml cold earl grey tea with 20ml fresh lemon juice and 15ml sugar syrup. Add to the glass, along with 3 – 4 ice cubes.
  3. Top the glass up with Fever Tree bitter lemon and serve with a fresh orange peel twist garnish

MORE DRINKS: London’s Best Jazz BarsThe C&TH Guide to British Gin / Wine Trends 2017

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