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Scotch Whisky

Scotch Whisky

Scotch Whisky 1
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Scotch Whisky is the new annual publication from the team behind Whisky Magazine. Scotch Whisky contains a selection of Whisky Magazine’s in-depth features and interviews from the year, with a catalogue of 100 new tasting reviews to help guide your next purchase.

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Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Paragraph Publishing
Frequency:
One-off
BUY ISSUE
$11.25

in this issue

2 min.
for the love of scotch

Welcome to the first edition of Scotch Whisky, the new annual publication from the team behind Whisky Magazine. While our regular periodical takes a global view of the world of whisky, this title focuses exclusively on the world’s most revered spirit. We are currently in the midst of boom time for the Scotch whisky industry and hardly a week passess without a new expression hitting the shelves, a whisky festival being held or, indeed, a new distillery project hitting the headlines. Whereas, once upon a time, a whisky enthusiast could be reasonably expected to have a good knowledge of the full range of whiskies from their favourite distilleries, now there are enough country-specific releases, limited editions, and distilleryexclusive bottlings to keep anyone occupied for the forseeable future. While this is undoubtedly…

1 min.
titans of scotch

Ask anyone working in the Scotch whisky industry, ‘what is the best thing about the business?’, and you are sure to receive one particular answer over and over. Pose that question to whisky fans the around the globe or visitors on a tour at any distillery, and you are almost certainly guaranteed to hear the same thing: it’s the people. The Scotch whisky industry has, over the years, famously developed a degree of inter-company camaraderie that some might find unbelievable. Though there is fierce competition out in the market, on home soil there is a degree of solidarity between distillers that transcends all else. Meanwhile, the relationships they maintain with suppliers, especially the cooperages, are far more than transactional: they are friendships spanning generations. This culture is surely facilitated by the fact…

9 min.
creativity in focus

One meeting with Ken Grier is enough to tell you that he’s not the kind of guy who sits on an idea. Exuding a restless energy, he speaks with such a degree of knowledge and conviction that one can’t help but pay attention. Ken has a seemingly insatiable appetite for data, opinion, art, side projects and risk-taking. In the course of our short interview, he mentions attending two conferences in as many months (one on how AI will disrupt retail and another focussed on how to pitch luxury to millennials); how he casually read a copy of Annie Leibovitz’s 247-page Women, gifted to him by the author, in one night so he could talk to her about it the next morning; and how the Macallan M decanter was the result…

5 min.
king of trees

The first time I see Gregg, he’s just parked outside Jura Distillery and is manhandling a cask from the boot of his car. Inside, I can see all manner of whisky-related paraphernalia – a bung flogger, a valinch, a pile of staves, some hoops, a crate of sample bottles – and a few more unusual items – heavy duty gloves; small bags marked ‘Voges’, ‘Limousin’ and ‘Tronçais’; a copy of The Hidden Life of Trees (Peter Wohlleben, 2015); protective goggles and… is that a blowtorch? I have a feeling that we’re going to have a lot to talk about. Gregg has worked in the whisky industry for 20 years, having started as a tour guide at Glen Ord. This led him to Compass Box, where he joined as sales, marketing and…

8 min.
culture club

Innovation has become something of a buzzword of late. Whether it be blasting maturing whisky with sound, ‘double double’ ageing, field-specific barley provenance, Scottish rye spirit, or imbuing whisky with ‘punk attitude’, it seems distillers are rushing to one-up each other in their pursuit of newness. This penchant for pushing boundaries, whether real or perceived, is, of course, not restricted to the whisky industry. However, while the fast-paced world of electronics can rely on Moore’s law to double processing power every two years and thus propel each fresh batch of product offerings to new technological heights, whisky-making innovation quite simply can’t happen overnight. Though out-of-the-box thinking can take distillers down all sorts of weird and wonderful paths, the guiding handrails of industry regulation and the necessary maturation X-factor of ‘time in…

4 min.
james and the staves

When he was just 23, James MacTaggart was offered a role at Bowmore Distillery on Islay after he applied for a job in its office. However, as fate would have it, the then manager Harry Cockburn decided that the young man would be better utilised as a member of the production team. James didn’t know it, but his career in the whisky industry had begun. During the following decades, he mastered every aspect of the production process, from peat cutting to floor malting, mashing to warehousing. Working at Bowmore was, in his words, ‘the complete experience’. Then, in 2007, the born and bred Ileach received word that Isle of Arran Distillers were looking for a new distillery manager to replace Gordon Mitchell, who was retiring. Just a phone call and a…