Distiller’s Friday Roundup – November 6, 2020

November 6, 2020

This week’s new releases feature whiskeys from around the world. One that will be of interest to Japanese whisky fans is the new Taketsuru Pure Malt from Nikka. The Japanese brand has reformulated its blended malt to have more of a smoky impact. Also in the new release column is the latest Black Art Edition from Bruichladdich. Despite how transparent the Islay whisky distillery is, for this release the distillery keeps the barrels used in maturation a secret.

And if you’re looking for a more high-end spirit to add to your wish lists, Ferrand Cognac’s Légendaire fits the bill. Even if the cognac doesn’t initially pique your interest, the bottle itself is sure to catch your eye. We’ve got the details on all these spirits below in Distiller’s Friday Roundup for November 6, 2020.

New Taketsuru Pure Malt Released from Nikka

The original version of Taketsuru Pure Malt was first introduced in summer 2015 as a no-age-statement blended malt release. Named for Nikka’s founder, Masataka Taketsuru, the brand features single malts from Nikka’s Yoichi and Miyagikyo distilleries. This week Nikka released a reformulated version of this whisky. Notably, it includes more single malt from Yoichi which adds more smoke to the blend. Like the initial release, the new Taketsuru Pure Malt also features whiskey aged in ex-sherry casks. This new blend has a new label to go with its reformulation.

“The refined Taketsuru Pure Malt is an exciting evolution of our founder’s namesake blend,” says Emiko Kaji, Nikka Whisky international business development manager. “We have refined the formula and design to represent both sides of Masataka’s personality, being a disciplined craftsman and a person of curiosity and open-mindedness. We hope this expression will be enjoyed by connoisseurs and storytellers seeking high quality whiskies with rich stories behind.”

The new Taketsuru Pure Malt is available this month with an SRP of $79.99.

Taketsuru Pure MaltTaketsuru Pure Malt /Photo Credit: Nikka

Bruichladdich Launched Latest Black Art Edition

Bruichladdich Black Art 1994 08.1 Edition is the eighth Black Art release and the fourth by current Master Distiller Adam Hannett. Distilled in 1994, this unpeated single malt aged for 26 years in a variety of undisclosed casks. Only Hannett knows the exact recipe. Matured entirely on Islay, it is bottled at a cask strength of 45.1% ABV without added color or chill filtration. This is a limited release of 12,000 bottles worldwide. It has an SRP of $449.99.

Taketsuru Pure Malt: Bruichladdich Black Art 1994 08.1 EditionBruichladdich Black Art 1994 08.1 Edition

Ferrand Cognac Introduces Légendaire in the US

Ferrand Légendaire is a limited-edition cognac release. The blend features Ferrand’s oldest cognacs, some of which date back 100 years. These cognacs were placed into glass demi-johns after they had reached their desired maturation lengths. Master Blender Alexandre Gabriel created the blend and then placed it into a zebra cask to finish aging. This zebra cask was made by progressively removing several staves and replacing them with new ones, thus creating a zebra-like pattern.

Légendaire is the first of an expected annual release. Only 500 bottles were produced and US availability begins in November 2020. It carries an SRP of $2,800.

Taketsuru Pure Malt: Ferrand LégendaireFerrand Légendaire /Photo Credit: Ferrand

Teeling Announces Ginger Beer Cask Finished Whiskey

This whiskey from Teeling Distillery is made in collaboration with brewery and cidery, Umbrella London. The distillery ships used Teeling barrels (formerly ex-bourbon hogsheads) to Umbrella to be filled with ginger beer for two years. Then those ginger-beer-seasoned barrels get sent back to Teeling to be filled with its small batch whiskey to finish the aging process for nine months. The limited-edition whiskey is bottled without chill filtration at 46% ABV.

Teeling Umbrella Brewing Ginger Beer Cask is available online only beginning November 2, 2020 for £45/$60. In addition to the whiskey, you can also purchase the ginger beer which is aged for two years in Teeling’s whiskey barrels or in a gift set featuring the two products (£80/$105).

Taketsuru Pure Malt: Teeling Umbrella Brewing Ginger Beer CaskTeeling Umbrella Brewing Ginger Beer Cask /Photo Credit: Teeling

Gordon & MacPhail Unveils Cairn Distillery

This week, family-owned spirits company Gordon & MacPhail unveiled the brand for its new distillery being built in the Cairngorms National Park. Named Cairn Distillery, work started on the site in July of this year. Scheduled to open in spring 2022, The Cairn Distillery will include a visitor experience, tasting rooms, retail space and a coffee shop.

“We have put the consumer right at the heart of the process of creating the brand, as we have with the design of the distillery itself,” said Brands Director Ian Chapman while unveiling the new brand. “We wanted to make sure it was clearly Scottish, but easy for consumers to pronounce and to spell. This will be particularly important for our international markets when English is not the first language.

“We also had to be mindful of Benromach, our other distillery,” he continued. “We wanted the new brand to complement, not compete.”

Taketsuru Pure Malt: Cairn Distillery concept drawingCairn Distillery concept drawing /Photo Credit: Gordon & MacPhail


It’s time to take a quick look at what else is going on around the world this week …

Roe & Co. Cask Strength 2020

This is the second cask strength release from Diageo’s Roe & Co. Irish Whiskey brand. This 2020 edition is a single malt, the brand’s first, which has been aged for 13 years exclusively in port casks. It is bottled at a cask strength of 58% ABV and has an SRP of €74/$88.

Taketsuru Pure Malt: Roe & Co. Cask Strength 2020Roe & Co. Cask Strength 2020 /Photo Credit: Roe & Co.

Dingle Single Pot Still Batch No. 4

The fourth batch of Dingle Distillery’s Single Pot Still is made up of 25 ex-bourbon and ex-oloroso sherry casks producing 8,000 bottles. Half of these bottles will be sold in Ireland with the other half going to international markets including the US, UK, France and Germany. It’s bottled without chill filtration at 46.5% ABV.

The distillery has also released a cask strength single pot still whiskey from this batch, a first for the brand. However, only 500 bottles were produced. Both are available in November 2020. There’s no word on the SRP for the cask strength version, but the standard bottling is €95/$112.

Taketsuru Pure Malt: Dingle Single Pot Still Batch No. 4 & Cask StrengthDingle Single Pot Still Batch No. 4 & Cask Strength /Photo Credit: Dingle

Catoctin Creek Peach Barrel Select Rye

Catoctin Creek Peach Barrel Select Rye is a limited edition release of 540 bottles. It’s made by taking Catoctin Creek’s 100% Virginia rye whiskey which is aged in new, charred American oak barrels. Then the whiskey is transferred to barrels, which formerly held the distillery’s Short Hill Mountain Peach Brandy, to finish for an additional year. Available on November 16, 2020, it has an SRP of $45.90.

Barrell Bourbon Batch 026

Barrell Bourbon Batch 026 is made from a blend of straight bourbon whiskeys that were distilled and aged in Tennessee, Kentucky, and Indiana. The bourbon barrels used in the blend were aged 9, 10, 11, 13 and 15 years with the 9-year-old portion being a high-rye bourbon. It was bottled at a cask strength of 112.64 proof and has an SRP of $90.

Taketsuru Pure Malt: Barrell Bourbon Batch 026Barrell Bourbon Batch 026 /Photo Credit: Barrell Bourbon

Ready to grab a bottle of the new Taketsuru Pure Malt?

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