WhiskyCast
The cask-strength whisky podcast from the charming, yet regrettably dry town of Haddonfield, New Jersey.
WhiskyCast Episode 295: December 27, 2010

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101227.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:28am EDT

WhiskyCast Episode 294: December 19, 2010

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.

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101219.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:03am EDT

WhiskyCast Episode 293: December 12, 2010

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101212.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:39am EDT

WhiskyCast Episode 292: December 5, 2010

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101205.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:43am EDT

WhiskyCast Episode 291: November 27, 2010

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!

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101127.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:05am EDT

WhiskyCast Episode 290: November 20, 2010

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101120.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:22pm EDT

WhiskyCast Episode 289: November 14, 2010

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101114.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:06am EDT

WhiskyCast Episode 288: November 7, 2010

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101107.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:32am EDT

WhiskyCast Episode 287: October 31, 2010

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101031.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:47am EDT

WhiskyCast Episode 286: October 24, 2010

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101024.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:39am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101017.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:07am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101010.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:57am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20101003.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:54am EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100927.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:11pm EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100926.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:16pm EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100925.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:20pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100919.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:25pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100912.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:37pm EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100905.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:48pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100829.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:46am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100822.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:00am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100815.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:43am EDT

"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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100808.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:15am EDT

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.

 

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100801.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:01am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100725.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:27am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100718.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:29am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100711.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:40pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100704.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:55am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100627.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:15pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100620.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:46pm EDT

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."

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100613.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:19pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100604.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:22pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100530.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:33pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100529.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:38pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100528.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:47pm EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100527b.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:15pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100527a.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:34pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100526.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:59pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100525.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:52pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100524.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:36pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100523.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:17pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100522.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:31pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100516.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:52am EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100509.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:37pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100503.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:43pm EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100425.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:37pm EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100419.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:53pm EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100417.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:08pm EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100412.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:44am EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100404.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100328.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:54pm EDT

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."

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100321.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:19pm EDT

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.

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100314.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:09pm EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100307.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:29am EDT

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.

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100228.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:58pm EDT

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.

 

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100221.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:01am EDT

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.

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100214.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:15am EDT

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!

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100207.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:20pm EDT

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!

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100130.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:13pm EDT

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.

 

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100123.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:22pm EDT

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!

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100116.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:50pm EDT

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.

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100110.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:14am EDT

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.

 

 

Direct download: WhiskyCast_20100103.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:20am EDT