New Booze News: Johnnie Walker, BenRiach, Jameson IPA Caskmates and More!By Stephanie Moreno
It’s official, we are in the final month of 2017. This year plans to go out with a bang of whiskey releases. For starters, this week’s news includes a brand new series from Johnnie Walker featuring closed or ghost distilleries. For you peat heads, BenRiach has just released their oldest Authenticus bottling to date. Jameson has something for you hop heads; a whiskey finished in IPA casks. We’ve got all the details for you on these and other whiskeys in the booze news for the week of November 27, 2017!
This blend from Diageo marks the first in the Ghost and Rare series. Each of these releases will highlight “one incredible whisky at its heart”, which for this bottling is Brora. Created by Master Blender Dr. Jim Beveridge, this Blue Label blend includes malt and grain whiskies from eight distilleries, three of which are ghost or closed.
In addition to the aforementioned Brora, the other two closed distilleries are Pittyvaich and Cambus. Whiskies from Clynelish, Royal Lochnagar, Glenkinchie, Glenlossie and Cameronbridge are also featured in this blend.
Beveridge explains, “Whiskies from these ghost distilleries are becoming increasingly rare. From our library of irreplaceable casks that we keep exclusively for Johnnie Walker Blue Label, I’ve chosen a few uniquely full-bodied expressions of these precious malts and grains to let people explore, in a new way, the extraordinary richness found in our pinnacle whisky.”
Bottled at 46% ABV with a suggested retail price of $399.99.
This bottling marks the first ever private label product from Flaviar, a members only spirits club. A peated blended malt, it consists of eight single malts from three different regions: Islay, Islands and Speyside. Only 1,500 bottles are available of this batch. Bottled at 96.6 proof.
Flaviar co-founder Grisa Soba explains how the release came about: “Based on member feedback, we wanted to create something approachable both in style as well as price. It’s made for people who love peated scotch, but also for those who are just entering the world of Peatlandia.”
Suggested retail price $60.
Released November 2017, this bottling marks the oldest peated expression from BenRiach to date. Authenticus is BenRiach’s heavily-peated line of whiskies. The peat used here hails from northeast Scotland where the peat includes ancient trees, heather and bracken. Aged 30 years, this Speyside single malt is not chill filtered and comes in at 92 proof.
Suggested retail price £400 ($560).
Released at the end of November 2017, this is the latest Orphan Barrel release from Diageo. This bottling marks the first Canadian whisky release for this series. The whisky was distilled at Crown Royal’s Gimli distillery in 1992 and was originally intended for their DeLuxe bottling. It is made from a mash of 97% corn. Bottled at 41% ABV in Tennessee.
Suggested retail price $149.99.
This IPA Caskmates is the second edition of this line of whiskeys aged in former beer casks following the Stout edition. This one features an Irish India pale ale from Franciscan Well Brewery in Cork, Ireland. The brewery ages their beer in former Jameson whiskey casks then sends these barrels back to Jameson. These beer barrels are used to finish aging the whiskey.
The initial release included 2000 bottles in Ireland, but now a larger rollout has followed with a nationwide US release in late 2017. Suggested retail price $29.99.
Announced in November 2017, this bottling along with their 18 Year Straight Rye comprise the new Ancients collection from Redemption. Distilled at the former Old Seagram’s Distillery (now MGP) in Indiana, the bourbon is bottled at cask strength of 97.6 proof.
Four barrels were filled in 1978 which yielded 18 bottles, 94% lost to evaporation otherwise known as the angel’s share. Hand painted and finished with leather cording, each bottle has a penny from 1978, the year of distillation, embedded in the wood stopper. Availability highly limited to in select US markets.
Suggested retail price $1200.