Aberlour Casg Annamh

Casg Annamh Scotch Whisky
Batch release 0001.

Translating as ‘Rare Cask’ in Gaelic, Casg Annamh is created from a limited number of carefully selected casks. These Spanish oak Oloroso Sherry casks/butts have a significant influence on the non-chill filtered liquid and perfectly complement Aberlour’s distillate flavour, bringing sweet and rich notes. Casg Annamh is a distinctively rich Single Malt providing adventurous malt lovers with the ideal introduction to Sherry cask matured whiskies.

Nestling in the heart of Speyside is the village of Aberlour where a source of exceptionally pure spring water known as St Drostan’s Well inspired James Fleming to build his distillery in 1879. The richness of the natural environment combined with the soft and pure water creates Aberlour single malt, a distinctive whisky of generous character.

Casg Annamh means ‘rare cask’ in Gaelic. This expression is significantly influenced by the finest quality, hand-selected Oloroso Sherry casks. Casg Annamh has been matured three types of cask, the European oak Sherry casks and two different types of American oak casks, resulting in a rich and intense whisky. The fruity flavours are balanced perfectly with spicy notes of liquorice, ginger and cinnamon.

Tasting Notes:

Colour: Golden Amber

Nose: Rich and sweet with fruity notes of tangy orange, glazed cherries, raisins and a hint of ginger.

Palate: Sweet and fruity flavours of apple and cinnamon crumble and ripe peaches balanced with spicy notes of liquorice and cloves.

Finish: Long and rich. Fruity with a touch of dry spice.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.aberlour.com

*Info taken from bottle and website

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Penderyn Icons of Wales series 8/50 : Hiraeth

The 8th in the ‘Icons of Wales’ series was launched in December 2021 and commemorates the wonderful Welsh word, ‘Hiraeth’. Difficult to translate into English, some say ‘yearning’ or ‘homesickness’, but the BBC’s Roy Noble summed it up very nicely as: “a longing for your homeland, your heritage and your very being”.

This whisky is an ex-Bourbon cask finish and is bottled at 46% abv, and is the first time Penderyn have released a core range single malt using mainly spirit from the pot stills, which were introduced in 2014.  

The Welsh language is one of the oldest in Europe and one of the most evocative Welsh words is ‘Hiraeth’, which Penderyn celebrate with this Icon of Wales edition, which is number 8 in the series.

So what does this word ‘Hiraeth’ mean? Well, it’s not easy to translate into English, which means it has a sort of magical quality. Some definitions include, ‘belonging’, ‘homesickness’, ‘regret’, ‘nostalgia’, ‘wistfulness’ or a ‘yearning for a home to which you cannot return’, or indeed ‘for a home which may have never been’. Another definition is ‘A sense of loss for an ancient land,’ as Wales was a dynamic and flourishing country in medieval times. Penderyn are proud to be a Welsh company and part of the renaissance in Welsh manufacturing in a country which is increasingly becoming more optimistic.

Hiraeth is a powerful word, especially to the Welsh people around the world, and as Penderyn is now in over 48 countries it seemed a perfect ‘Icon’ to celebrate Wales and ‘Welshness.’

(Watch Sir Bryn Terfel, Aaron Ramsey, Bonnie Tyler and more describing what ‘Hiraeth’ means to them by going to www.hiraeth.live. (Penderyn have over £6000 to two Welsh charities – Llamau and Hafal – from the sales of Hiraeth.)

Tasting Notes

Nose: Elegant and floral with light oak notes, vanilla, raisins, toffee apples, citrus peel and a hint of lime.

Palate: A delicate smooth single malt with honeyed fruits, vanilla, cinnamon spice and a hint of nutmeg.

Finish: Soft honey and vanilla notes fade to a malty finish.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: https://www.penderyn.wales/

* Info taken from website

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Penderyn Club Members Whisky – Rich Madeira Finish (50% abv)

Penderyn Club members are very important to the Distillery. They form the foundation of our business and often act as ambassadors, spreading the word about our award-winning Welsh whiskies and spirits far and wide.

About Penderyn…

‘Distilling in Wales was a lost art…’

…but in the late 1990s, in a pub in
Hirwaun, a small post-industrial Welsh
valley town, a group of friends drank and
chatted about establishing the first whisky
distillery in Wales in over a century. They
dreamt of creating a whisky as pure and
precious as Welsh gold, represented
today by Penderyn’s ‘gold seam’.

The friends had a location in the historic
village of Penderyn on the southern
foothills of the Brecon Beacons. They also
had a unique copper single-pot still
designed by Dr David Faraday, a relative
of the great 19th-century scientist Michael
Faraday. Penderyn Whisky was launched
on St David’s Day (March 1st) 2004.

With investment, inspiration, hard work,
attention to detail, the finest barley, expert
distillers and the best American oak
ex-bourbon casks (as well as the finest
ex-Madeira, port, sherry, peated and
other casks for finishing), Penderyn
Whisky has quickly gained a worldwide
reputation, winning multiple awards en
route, and has recently found new
markets in countries such as China,
Russia, USA and Australia.

‘A lost art no more.’

The Penderyn Club Whisky

This rich Madeira whisky, bottled at
50% abv, has a luxurious fruitiness and
a subtle complexity. Our unique stills
produce a spirit of extraordinary strength
and purity. This spirit is married with water
from the Brecon Beacons, matured in the
finest ex-Bourbon barrels and finished in
specially selected ex-Madeira casks.

Tasting Notes

Nose: Stewed mixed fruits, sultanas, red
apples and toffee

Taste: A caramel sweetness; fresh plums
with hints of dry oak and spicy cinnamon
notes emerging

Finish: A long warm finish with sweet
marmalade notes

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.penderyn-distillery.co.uk

*Info taken from bottle

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Penderyn Rich Oak (46% abv)

Penderyn produce award-winning single malt whiskies and spirits at our distillery in the foothills of the magnificent Brecon Beacons in
South Wales.

Welsh Gold is extremely rare and precious and was worn by legendary Welsh princes. These qualities are shared by our Gold range of premium strength whiskies.

Penderyn Single Malt has a light fruitiness, generous flavour and a subtle complexity. Our
unique stills produce a spirit of extraordinary strength and purity. This is married with water from the Brecon Beacons National Park and matured in the finest rejuvenated European ex-wine casks.

This whisky is matured in in a range of specially selected ex-bourbon and rejuvenated oak casks. It is bottled at 46% abv. This whisky has a Kosher certificate.

Tasting Notes

Nose: Dark chocolate fudge with cinnamon and pepper spices, followed by lush fruit – green apples, mango, banana and guavas

Palate: Rich and complex. A creamy texture with hints of vanilla, oak and cinnamon, and a hint of nutty toffee

Finish: A creamy-vanilla flavour which is in no rush to ebb away

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.penderyn-distillery.co.uk

*Info taken from bottle

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Dewar’s 8 Year Old Blended – Japanese Smooth

Dewar’s Cask Series No. 4 – Dewar’s blended Scotch Whisky aged for 8 Years in Japanese Mizunara Oak Casks.

Doubled aged for extra smoothness and then finished in Japanese Mizunara Oak Casks. With delicious honey and floral notes, warm spices and a dry finish.

Dewar’s brings together Scotland and Japan for an amazing flavour experience highlighting a distinctive and harmonious blend of cinnamon, sandalwood and floral notes. Dewar’s Japanese Smooth is an 8-year-old Blended Scotch Whisky finished in Japanese (Mizunara) Oak Casks and is the fourth in an innovative cask series line-up. This rich and full-bodied whisky brings a unique finishing process to the double-aged Dewar’s blend, creating an approachable and smooth whisky with an extraordinary difference.

Flavour Notes:

  • Floral
  • Honey
  • Cinnamon and Sandlewood

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.dewars.com

*Info taken from bottle

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Tamnavulin Red Wine Cask No. 3 – German Pinot Noir

On the southern edge of Speyside, in the foothills of the Cairngorm Mountains, lie Tamnavulin Distillery. The distillery was opened in 1966. Tucked away on the banks of the River Livet the small group of skilled, time-served craftsmen at Tamnavulin create a classic Speyside whisky.

Matured in American oak barrels and finished in German Pinot Noir red wine cask to complement the sweet, mellow and smooth taste of Tamnavulin.

Tasting Notes

Colour: Golden rosewood

Nose: Soft aromas of Turkish delight, caramelled peaches and Seville oranges with hints of red cherries and apple pie.

Palate: Flavours of vanilla, peach flan and ginger spice slowly yield to reveal glace cherries, succulent figs and liquorice.

Finish: Enduring and decadent

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.tamnavulinwhisky.com

*Info taken from bottle

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Bunnahabhain Stiuireadair

As the most northerly of the Islay distilleries, situated in the north-eastern tip of the island and overlooking the Sound of Islay, we have a strong affinity with the sea. So please join me in raising a glass to the ancient mariners who helped launch our distillery.

Andrew Brown – Distillery Manager

As any sailor will tell you, making the right decisions and battling the elements is part of getting where you want to be. Building our distillery in such as remote location wasn’t the easy choice, but it was the right one. Chosen for the gentle coastal climate, abundance of clear spring water and natural harbour, the mouth of the river – or Bunnahabhain – became home to a unique, unpeated Islay whisky.

Making the right choices is also pivotal in Stiuireadair. Our blender has spent a lot of time carefully selecting casks with spirit of varying ages from the corners of our shore side warehouses to create this distinctive dram, with its rich characterful heart, typical of Bunnahabhain, thanks to the high proportion of sherry casks we use. And we avoid chillfiltering so you can enjoy its full flavour as nature intended.

Tasting Notes

Colour: Amber gold

Nose: Dried fruit, caramel and sweet vanilla

Palate: Creamy and smooth with hints of nuts, gentle spice and coastal sea salt

Finish: Long and lingering with hints of rich,dried fruit.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.bunnahabhain.com

*Info taken from bottle

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Penderyn Icons of Wales series 9/50 : The Headliner

The 9th in Penderyn’s Icons of Wales Edition whiskies is called The Headliner.

Do you know a Welshman created the “3 years & one day” whisky maturation rule?

This social reformer also became a symbol of the national reawakening of Wales. This Icons of Wales bottle celebrates the only Welsh Prime Minister, and a man who created more headlines than any other 20th century statesman – David Lloyd George.

During the First World War, David Lloyd George, MP for Caernarfon Borough and Chancellor of the Exchequer, realised that heavy drinking was doing more damage to the population than all the enemy submarines put together. His Immature Spirits Act of 1915 attempted to raise taxation, and created ‘opening ours’, in an attempt to limit the amount of drinking open to workers.

Reputable whisky producers were already maturing their whisky in oak barrels, but some rogue distillers were selling immature spirits straight from the still.

Whilst this legislation would have placed financial burdens on distilleries, the “3 years and one day” rule it introduced – meaning that whisky had to be in a cask for this period – helped create a premium product. As the reputation of new, mature whiskies gradually spread, the industry revived.

Today whisky exports generate billions for the UK economy, Penderyn Distillery is now in over 50 countries, and we are proud to be part of the premium whisky industry which David Lloyd George accidentally helped to create.

The only Welsh Prime Minister, David Lloyd George (1863-1945), was a social reformer, created the premium whisky industry, became a symbol of the national reawakening of Wales, and created more headlines than any other 20th century statesman.

This 70cl bottle has an abv of 46%, and is matured in Jamaican Rum & Ruby Port Casks.

Tasting Notes

Nose: Red berries, strawberries and cream; a hint of cranberries, light oak and vanilla. Nutmeg and cinnamon spice.

Palate: Rich sweet flavours of dried fruits, salted caramel, floral honey and a spicy kick of black pepper with a tannin dryness.

Finish: Sweetness, fading into a dry-yet-fruity finish.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.penderyn-distillery.co.uk

* Info taken from bottle

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Penderyn Icons of Wales series 10/50 : Yma O Hyd

1958 was the last time Wales played in the World Cup, and one of the greatest footballers of all, Pele, scored the Brazil goal that knocked Wales out in the quarter-finals.

A long sixty-four years have passed since then, and despite near misses in 1978, 1986 and 1994, Wales have successfully qualified for the FIFA World Cup 2022.

The Red Wall of football fans passionately cheered the team through the qualifiers, bonding under the slogan – #TOGETHERSTRONGER – and adopting Yma O Hyd as their patriotic anthem, with its poetry and its epic chorus. The song was then adopted as a motivating anthem by the Wales Players.

The Song

The song was written in 1981 by legendary folk singer, Dafydd Iwan. It reflects on the darkness that engulfed Wales after being a ‘whole nation’ under the Roman Emperor Macsen Wledig in 383AD. However, despite the melancholy, the metaphorical storms, the faint of heart and politicians, Wales will be here until the end of time and the Welsh language will live on.

The chorus rings out:

Ry’n ni Yma O Hyd / Er gwaetha pawb a phopeth / Ry’n ni Yma O Hyd‘.

and translated into English:

We are still here / In spite of everyone and everyting / We are still here‘.

We are.

Ry’n ni Yma O Hyd
Ry’n ni Yma O Hyd
Er gwaetha pawb a phopeth
Er gwaetha pawb a phopeth
Er gwaetha pawb a phopeth
Ry’n ni Yma O Hyd

Tasting Notes

Nose: Fragrant, floral with baking spices, toffee, caramel, baked apples and pears.

Palate: Smooth with notes of sweet caramel, sultanas, baked apples with cinnamon; pepper & oak spices with a hint of ginger & cloves.

Finish: A caramel sweetness with herbal notes and peppery spices.

The 10th in Penderyn’s Icons Of Wales Edition whiskies is called YMA O HYD. This is a patriotic anthem, written by Dafydd Iwan, and has been adopted by the Red Wall (Welsh football supporters). This whisky is produced in partnership with FA Wales as their official whisky for the Wales campaign at the World Cup in 2022.

Stephen Davies (Penderyn’s CEO) said, ‘Wales getting to the World Cup for the first time since 1958 was an incredible achievement, and Dafydd Iwan’s song is a great patriotic anthem which has been picked up by Welsh football supporters. So it was fitting that we celebrated Wales’ achievement by naming this Icons of Wales Edition #10 after this wonderful and emotional song.’

BBC Radio Wales’ Roy Noble interviewed Dafydd Iwan at our Penderyn Llandudno Distillery. You can see the interview in English here, and in Welsh here. You can watch Dafydd Iwan singing with the Welsh crowd before the Austria game here, and a version with English subtitles here.

This 70cl bottle has an abv of 43% and is matured in American Rye Casks. 

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.penderyn-distillery.co.uk

* Info taken from bottle

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Highland Park – Spirit of the Bear

…his men rushed forwards without armour… and were strong as bears… but neither fire nor iron told upon themselves. These were called berserker.

The Ynglinga Saga, Chapter 6, of Odin’s Accomplishments

Spirit of the Bear

Resilient and self-sufficient, with a highly developed instinct for survival, the natural characteristics of the bear were much admired by our viking ancestors.

According to legend, many Viking warriors believed they could channel the spirit of the Great Forest Bear by assuming its form. So, preparing for battle, they harnessed its mighty power and stamina as their own by wrapping themselves in bear skins. These fearless warriors came to be known as Berserkers, their name derived from the Old Norse word ber-sekr or bear skin.

Our island home on Orkney was under Viking rule for over 600 years and their myths and legends have become our own. Intensely smoky with a bold spiciness, Spirit of the Bear is inspired by the resilient nature and fierce independence of our Viking ancestors – characteristics that sit at the heart of our whisky-making today.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.highlandparkwhisky.com

*Info taken from bottle and website

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