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WhiskyCast | Weekly Whisky, Scotch, & Bourbon Podcast | Discover Latest News, Tasting Notes, Ratings | Spirits to Drink & Buy





Published: Sun, 10 Dec 2017 22:43:55 +0000

Last Build Date: Fri, 15 Dec 2017 07:31:26 +0000

Copyright: 2005-2017, CaskStrength Media
 



Women in Whiskey, Sisters in Suds (WhiskyCast Episode 671: December 10, 2017)

Sun, 10 Dec 2017 22:43:55 +0000

This week, the New York Times marked the anniversary of the end of Prohibition with a special event at one of America's few women-owned distilleries, Republic Restoratives in Washington, DC. "Women in Whiskey, Sisters in Suds" featured a discussion of the role women play in distilling and brewing - both today and in history. We'll talk with Republic Restoratives co-founder Rachel Gardner and bring you the discussion on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the tentative Brexit deal between Great Britain and the European Union is being welcomed by Ireland's distillers and brewers on both sides of the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Brown-Forman's stock price jumped after a positive quarterly earnings report, and Pernod Ricard plans to start exporting whiskies made by its unit in India. We'll also look at a new English single malt whisky and compare two rye whiskies with port wine influences in this week's tasting notes. 


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171210.mp3?dest-id=35929




Snowflakes in the Forecast ... and Whiskey Lovers in Line (WhiskyCast Episode 670: December 3, 2017)

Mon, 04 Dec 2017 23:41:40 +0000

Colorado's ski resorts wish they had lift lines as long as the one that stretched down Kalamath Street in Denver Saturday morning, when hundreds of whiskey lovers lined up for the annual release of Stranahan's Snowflake single malt whiskey. The line actually started on Wednesday morning when three people arrived from Wisconsin to claim "first in line" honors - beating out the longtime "Strana-Fan" who traditionally claims that spot. We'll have all of the fun from Denver on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, another malt whisky distillery has opened in Scotland, and Glen Wyvis may well be the first distillery to open after a successful crowdfunding campaign. The controversial tax reform bill approved by the U.S. Senate this weekend includes tax breaks for distillers, and a new audit suggests Australia's Nant Distillery may have been insolvent for more than two years while the founders were selling casks of spirit to investors. We'll have those stories, along with the tale of a bourbon-slurping opossum, on this week's WhiskyCast!


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171203.mp3?dest-id=35929




Wick's Whisky Wizard: Pulteney's Malcolm Waring (WhiskyCast Episode 669: November 26, 2017)

Sun, 26 Nov 2017 19:29:22 +0000

Pulteney Distillery manager Malcolm Waring wasn't born in Wick, Scotland, but there's no place he'd rather be three decades after getting his first job at what was then the northernmost distillery on Scotland's mainland. There's plenty of rain, plenty of wind, and fortunately for Malcolm...plenty of whisky to keep track of at the distillery. He leaves Wick a few times a year to meet with whisky lovers around the world, and we caught up with him last week during a brief trip to New Brunswick for a chat and a dram of Old Pulteney. Our conversation's coming up on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Glasgow's newest distillery is on the banks of the River Clyde, and Clydeside Distillery has opened its doors to the public. Diageo is ending its Hilhaven Lodge Whiskey partnership with Hollywood producer Brett Ratner over sexual misconduct allegations, while taking former United Spirits chairman Vijay Mallya to court in London to recover $181 million. Country music's John Rich is launching the Redneck Riviera whiskey label with Portland's Eastside Distilling, and in this week's tasting notes, we'll look at a couple of whiskies featured in new Scotch Whisky Advent Calendars for the holidays.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171126.mp3?dest-id=35929




A Spirited Time in New Brunswick (WhiskyCast Episode 668: November 19, 2017)

Sun, 19 Nov 2017 02:01:02 +0000

This time around, we're on location at the New Brunswick Spirits Festival in Fredericton, New Brunswick...and if you think we get around a lot, spare some sympathy for Distell's Andy Watts. He spent 38 hours traveling to Fredericton from his base in South Africa, where he oversees production and quality control for Distell's whisky distilleries in South Africa and Scotland. Earlier this year, Andy stepped aside from his longtime role as distillery manager for Distell's James Sedgwick Distillery to take up his new position...and spend a lot more time traveling around the world. We'll catch up with him on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, police in Paris are trying to find the burglars who stole nearly $800,000 in rare whiskies during a break-in at La Maison du Whisky. Scotch Whisky producers lost their 5-year-long legal battle to stop the Scottish government from implementing minimum pricing for alcohol sales, and the government in Edinburgh has given the backers of a new malt distillery in Inverclyde more than a million dollars in grant funding. We'll also have details on a couple of rare Canadian whiskies that have some Canadians hip-checking each other in the aisles at retailers, along with the latest Irish Oak-finished whiskey from Midleton Distillery and much, much more...on this special episode from New Brunswick!


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171119.mp3?dest-id=35929




12 Years of Whisky Podcasts...and We're Still Here! (WhiskyCast Episode 667: November 12, 2017)

Sun, 12 Nov 2017 03:47:49 +0000

 

The very first episode of WhiskyCast was on November 12, 2005, and twelve years later, we've been around long enough to have an age statement! Back on that first episode, the idea that someone would invest $150 million to build a new Bourbon distillery in Bardstown, Kentucky probably would have been good for a few laughs, since the Bourbon boom was in its infancy. Now, that $150 million dollar distillery project isn't just a reality, but the third new distillery to be built in Bardstown. Stoli Group broke ground this week on its new Kentucky Owl Park in Bardstown, less than a year after buying the boutique Bourbon brand from Dixon Dedman. His great-great grandfather started making Kentucky Owl in 1879, and Prohibition killed the brand for nearly a century before Dixon Dedman revived it in 2014. Dedman joined Stoli Group as its master blender as part of the deal, and he'll share his family's story with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Dedman's new distillery is part of a much larger project that will reshape Bardstown's future, while part of Lexington's distilling past is about to come back to life. We'll also look at the week's new whiskies and taste one of the rarest single malts around to celebrate 12 years of WhiskyCast!


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171112.mp3?dest-id=35929




The Tale of "Uncle Nearest" and a Whiskey Legacy (WhiskyCast Episode 666: November 5, 2017)

Mon, 06 Nov 2017 01:53:01 +0000

 

In 2015, Brown-Forman acknowledged what had been an open secret around Lynchburg, Tennessee for generations - that Jack Daniel's distilling mentor was Nathan "Nearest" Green, a slave on the farm owned by Dan Coll until the end of the Civil War. After the war ended, Jack Daniel hired the newly-freed Nathan Green to be the head distiller at his new distillery in Lynchburg. Green's sons and grandsons worked for Jack Daniel later on, and even after 150 years, the distillery has always had at least one of Green's descendants working there. Fawn Weaver was fascinated by the 2015 New York Times story on the relationship between the Greens and Jack Daniel's, and is now devoting her life to researching that history and cementing Nearest Green's role in American history with, among many other things, a Tennessee whiskey that bears his name. We'll discuss the story of America's first African-American master distiller on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Scotch Whisky exports rose during the first half of 2017, but the statistics show some areas for concern. U.S. craft distilling is now a $3 billion annual business and growing, and a Swiss hotel has given a Chinese tourist a full refund after the $10,000 dram of whisky he bought there in August turned out to be a fake.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171105.mp3?dest-id=35929




Ten Years of Making Whiskey at Mount Vernon (WhiskyCast Episode 665: October 29, 2017)

Sun, 29 Oct 2017 22:52:43 +0000

Distillers from around the United States gathered at Virginia's Mount Vernon this week to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the restoration of George Washington's Distillery at his historic estate, and of course, they celebrated by making some whiskey. The restored distillery has been producing rye whiskey using Washington's original recipe to raise money for Mount Vernon's educational programs, including those on the slaves who worked in the distillery from 1797 until shortly after Washington's death in 1799. We'll look at the past ten years of distilling at Mount Vernon and Washington's legacy on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Buffalo Trace and the Van Winkle family have decided to skip a year...for one of the prized Van Winkle rye whiskies. Tullamore D.E.W. has added a new set of grain whiskey stills at its distillery in Ireland, and Beam has blended American and Canadian rye whiskies together again...this time for the new Basil Hayden's Dark Rye. We'll look at some travel tips for Bourbon Country and taste four Irish whiskeys for this week's tasting notes, too.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171029.mp3?dest-id=35929




Babysitting the Whisky Barrels (WhiskyCast Episode 664: October 22, 2017)

Sun, 22 Oct 2017 16:07:12 +0000

 

Managing a whisky warehouse is sort of like running a day care center...but a lot quieter. Corby's Donald Campbell is responsible for 1.3 million barrels of maturing whisky at the Hiram Walker Distillery's warehouse campus outside Windsor, Ontario. Just like the kids at a day care center, each of those whisky barrels is developing each day - and some tend to spring a leak every once in a while, too...just like the kids at a day care center. We'll visit the warehouses this week with Donald Campbell and Hiram Walker Master Blender Dr. Don Livermore on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Sazerac is expanding its global presence with a minority stake in India's John Distilleries, but is getting some pushback on its proposed plans for a second Tennessee distillery. New York distillers have joined forces to create the Empire Rye category, and we'll get the details from Christopher Williams of Coppersea Distilling. This year's Irish Whiskey Awards have been announced, and we'll have the results...along with this week's tasting notes and much more!


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171022.mp3?dest-id=35929




Silent Scotch Whisky Stills Coming Back to Life (WhiskyCast Episode 663: October 15, 2017)

Tue, 17 Oct 2017 01:12:22 +0000

 

Christmas came a couple of months early for some Scotch Whisky lovers with word that the iconic Port Ellen, Brora, and Rosebank distilleries will be reopened over the next couple of years. Diageo will invest $46 million to bring Port Ellen and Brora back to life, while Ian Macleod Distillers has acquired not only the old Rosebank site, but the rights to the Rosebank name and its remaining whisky inventory. We'll talk with Diageo's Dr. Nick Morgan and Gordon Doctor of Ian Macleod about the work that's ahead before the spirit starts flowing from the stills. Scott Watson of The Lost Distillery Company has been reviving historic distillery legacies in Scotland for the last decade, with extensive research to recreate the whiskies those long-lost distilleries might be making today, and he'll share some of that process with us as well. In the news, Heaven Hill completes a massive $25 million expansion at its Bernheim Distillery, while a Sonoma County craft distiller has managed to dodge the Northern California wildfires so far. We'll also have the week's tasting notes and some of your ideas on which heritage distillery should be revived next.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171015.mp3?dest-id=35929




Whisky, Whiskey...We've Got It All This Week! (WhiskyCast Episode 662: October 8, 2017)

Sat, 07 Oct 2017 21:47:13 +0000

This week, we're in Ireland for the annual release of Midleton Very Rare from Irish Distillers. There's something different about the 2017 edition, though...it's made with some of the oldest casks ever used in Midleton Very Rare. We'll talk with Midleton Master Distiller Brian Nation about this year's release and the new Midleton Cask Circle club, which will give collectors and investors the opportunity to buy their own casks straight from the distillery. Midleton's maturation guru, Kevin O'Gorman, will also tell us about the newly-released Green Spot Chateau Montelena edition, which is finished in Zinfandel wine casks from California's Napa Valley. In the news, Gordon & MacPhail has unveiled yet another cask of 70-year-old single malt Scotch Whisky, this one distilled at Glenlivet in 1943 during the peak of World War II. A much younger cask of Macallan has set an apparent world record at a Hong Kong auction, and we'll talk about the impact of Brexit on the whisky business from two sides - one who sees it as a plus, and another who says it's already cost him a lot of money.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171008.mp3?dest-id=35929




Live at The Whisky Show in London (WhiskyCast Episode 661: October 1, 2017

Sun, 01 Oct 2017 22:47:01 +0000

This week, we're in London for the annual Whisky Show at Old Billingsgate on the banks of the River Thames! We'll catch up with a lot of friends from around the world, including Whyte & Mackay's Richard Paterson as he winds up his 50th anniversary tour of worldwide whisky tastings. We'll also look at plenty of new whiskies introduced over the last few days here in London and other shows in Europe. In the news, plans are being drawn up for what could be a $150 million dollar distillery project in Bardstown, Kentucky, and Scotland's Kilchoman Distillery is starting the first major expansion project for the Islay distillery.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20171001.mp3?dest-id=35929




There’s No Whisky Without the Barrels (WhiskyCast Episode 660: September 24, 2017)

Mon, 25 Sep 2017 00:43:25 +0000

It's often said that wood is responsible for most of a whisky's flavor, and if that's the case, then the people who make the barrels for maturing whisky have a major impact on the whiskies we drink. Independent Stave Company's cooperages dominate the market for new Bourbon barrels, and those barrels then get used for decades to mature other whiskies around the world. Brad Boswell's great-grandfather founded the company in 1912, and he took over for his father as Independent Stave's CEO earlier this year. We'll talk with him about the cooperage side of the whisky business, along with the potential impacts from climate change and government regulation, on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the ringleader of the "Pappygate" Bourbon thieves in Kentucky has pleaded guilty and faces 15 years in prison, while there's still no word on whether the stolen whiskey now sitting in a secured evidence locker will face the death penalty. We'll also have details on this year’s Buffalo Trace Antique Collection series and the new Northern Border Collection series of Canadian whiskies from Corby's Hiram Walker Distillery. In this week's tasting notes, we'll have details on a whisky fit for ringing in the New Year...Israeli style.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170924.mp3?dest-id=35929




On the Road in Bourbon Country (WhiskyCast Episode 659: September 17, 2017)

Mon, 18 Sep 2017 01:36:39 +0000

This week, we're on the road at the annual Kentucky Bourbon Festival in Bardstown, Kentucky! We'll have highlights from the festival throughout this week's show, including the presentation of the Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame's Parker Beam Lifetime Achievement Award to Bill Samuels Jr. of Maker's Mark and the induction of the Hall's Class of 2017. In the news, Brown-Forman will invest $45 million to upgrade its Louisville cooperage over the next two years, while planning to cut around 70 jobs once the project is completed. Local leaders in Bardstown are working on a new project to cement the town's place as the "Bourbon Capital of the World." We'll also catch up with old friends from Bourbon Country and look at the week's new whiskies from around the world.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170917.mp3?dest-id=35929




Making Sense(s) of Whisky (WhiskyCast Episode 658: September 10, 2017)

Mon, 11 Sep 2017 01:04:31 +0000

 

Flavor, aroma, and taste. We all know what they mean...or do we? Gerry Nichols isn't so sure. He's a veteran judge in beer and coffee competitions, and has been studying the research of neuroscientists into the way our brains process flavor, aroma and taste. His conclusion: science knows how we process sensory information, but scientists do a lousy job of explaining it - and what's worse...they don't always take one key factor into account. He'll tell us what that is on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, tourism is booming at whisky distilleries worldwide, Jack Daniel's expands its foray into Rye, we'll resolve the question of how Quebec's liquor regulators label Kavalan's Taiwanese single malts, and we'll take another trip to the ice cream store!


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170910.mp3?dest-id=35929




Whisky With a Place (WhiskyCast Episode 657: September 3, 2017)

Sun, 03 Sep 2017 22:06:54 +0000

The concept of terroir is frequently discussed among wine lovers, but the whisky world has been more reluctant to discuss whether the place where a whisky is made or matured contributes to its final flavor. That's largely because many distillers get their grain from farms that can be hundreds of miles away, and also because there's much less variety among the grains used in distilling whisky than there can be among wine grapes. Some distillers are experimenting with "heirloom" grains that offer a different flavor profile than those commonly used in distilling, and we'll hear from two of them on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. Meredith and Alex Grelli of Pittsburgh's Wigle Distillery will explain their experiments with rye grain grown in different regions of North America, while Scott Blackwell and Ann Marshall of High Wire Distilling in Charleston tell us about their work with one of South Carolina's native corns.

In the news, we'll have the details on this year's Four Roses Limited Edition Small Batch, along with more new whiskies from The Macallan, Spey, Loch Lomond, and Johnnie Walker. We'll also have a preview of this year's Kentucky Bourbon Festival and Louisville's new Bourbon & Beyond festival coming up later this month, along with some of your suggestions on what a "second-fill Virgin Oak" cask should be called.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170903.mp3?dest-id=35929




A Cask-Strength Celestial Spectacle (WhiskyCast Episode 656: August 27, 2017)

Mon, 28 Aug 2017 00:14:34 +0000

Around 6,000 people combined last Monday's total solar eclipse with whiskey - watching the celestial spectacle from the fields around MB Roland Distillery in Pembroke, Kentucky. WhiskyCast's Aria Gillespie-Smith was on hand, and we'll have her report on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also details on the celebration at Scotland's Teaninich Distillery as it marks its 200th anniversary this month. In the news, Tasmanian police have opened a fraud investigation into Nant Distillery's controversial barrel sales, and we'll compare the economics of craft distilling and craft brewing. We'll also have the story of MMA champion Conor McGregor's entry into the Irish Whiskey business, along with tasting notes for Ardbeg's newest single malt, too!


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170827.mp3?dest-id=35929




The World's Hottest Whisky? (WhiskyCast Episode 655: August 20, 2017)

Sun, 20 Aug 2017 21:16:46 +0000

 

Since our first visit to Taiwan's King Car Distillery in 2011, its Kavalan single malts have arguably become some of the most-acclaimed whiskies in the world, winning top awards in multiple whisky competitions. As the distillery enters its second decade, there have been many changes, including the addition of a complete second stillhouse. We'll discuss those changes on WhiskyCast In-Depth with Kavalan master blender Ian Chang, along with a future without his mentor, the late Dr. Jim Swan. In the news, union workers at a key Chivas Brothers facility in Scotland have agreed to a new contract and Scotch Whisky exports are up in 2017. We'll also have a special story of patience paying off for an Ohio family.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170820.mp3?dest-id=35929




Distilling Returns to the Birthplace of Scotch Whisky (WhiskyCast Episode 654: August 13, 2017)

Sat, 12 Aug 2017 14:01:17 +0000

Lindores Abbey has a unique place in Scottish history. In 1494, the abbey's Friar John Cor was responsible for the oldest known written reference to whisky distilling in Scotland when the Exchequer Roll listed him as receiving "8 bolls of malt" to make aqua vitae for the King. 523 years later, whisky distilling is returning to Lindores Abbey, and we'll take a look at the past, present, and future of Lindores Abbey's place in whisky history with Drew McKenzie Smith. His family has owned the farm in Fife where the abbey's ruins survive to this day, and he's the founder of the new Lindores Abbey Distillery. In the news, contract talks will resume this week between Chivas Brothers and its workers in Dumbarton, Scotland, and the union's plans for strikes this week have been called off. Blended Scotch sales may be poised for a comeback, and Bruichladdich is turning the peat volume up to 11 with one of its new Octomore single malts. We'll also have tasting notes for four cask-strength whoppers and a first - a web site that puts you on hold.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170813.mp3?dest-id=35929




Celebrating the World's Whiskies in Dublin (WhiskyCast Episode 653: August 6, 2017)

Sun, 06 Aug 2017 16:09:51 +0000

Whiskies are celebrated at festivals all over the world these days, but there's no place quite like Ireland when it comes to whisk(e)y. The inaugural Dublin Whiskey Festival kicks off this coming weekend with six days of tastings and events, and the organizers are planning to make it a nationwide event in 2018. John Burke is the festival's founder and the publisher of The Cask magazine, and he'll join us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth with some of the highlights of this year's festival - and the upcoming issue of The Cask. In the news, the owners of San Francisco's Anchor Brewing & Distilling see their future in distilling, and are selling their brewery to Sapporo Holdings. British officials are pledging to reduce tariffs on Scotch Whisky exports post-Brexit, and a family disagreement in Bourbon Country has gone public.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170806.mp3?dest-id=35929




All in the Whiskey Family (WhiskyCast Episode 652: July 30, 2017)

Sun, 30 Jul 2017 21:17:19 +0000

The Likarish family opened Ironroot Republic Distillery in Denison, Texas in 2013. Brothers Jonathan and Robert Likarish handle the distilling, while their mother Marcia serves as distillery manager. Even though they've only been open for four years, they've collaborated to make several award-winning whiskies, including the Texas Legation Bourbon for Berry Bros. & Rudd in London. We sat down for a chat in the tasting room at Reserve 101 in Houston for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Chivas Brothers workers in Scotland are preparing for a one-day strike next Monday after rejecting a second contract offer, while Douglas Laing & Co. has unveiled plans for a distillery of its own in Glasgow and Alltech's Dr. Pearse Lyons has finally opened his new distillery in Dublin. We'll have some of your whisky bucket list items and tasting notes for two Indian single malts, too!


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170730.mp3?dest-id=35929




Tales of a Retired Whisky Maker (WhiskyCast Episode 651: July 23, 2017)

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 06:25:02 +0000

Jim Boyko's career took him from the old Seagram's distillery in Waterloo, Ontario to the Canadian prairie in Gimli, Manitoba, and eventually around the world for Diageo. Once he got to Gimli, though, he and his family made the tiny town on the shore of Lake Winnipeg their home. Now retired, he shows up at the home of Crown Royal to lead the occasional tour for distillery guests. He'll share his stories with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, including the saddest day of his career when he was one of 210 Seagram's employees suddenly put out of work when the Waterloo distillery closed in 1992. In the news, there's talk yet again of reviving whisky production at the old Dallas Dhu Distillery in Scotland, while another spirits company is investing in Irish Whiskey. Heaven Hill is about to wrap up yet another expansion of its Bernheim Distillery in Louisville, and has also unveiled this year's special Parker's Heritage Collection whiskey. We'll also find out about next month's Bourbon Women "Sip-osium" in Louisville and put four Texas whiskies to the test in this week's tasting notes.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170723.mp3?dest-id=35929




I Spy a Bourbon (WhiskyCast Episode 650: July 16, 2017)

Sun, 16 Jul 2017 20:50:17 +0000

We've seen whisky and movie tie-ins before, but Old Forester's new Statesman Bourbon is a bit different. It's featured in the upcoming movie "Kingsman: The Golden Circle" with Jeff Bridges as the leader of Statesman, a secretive private espionage unit that just happens to make Bourbon in Kentucky and teams up with the London-based Kingsman to save the world. Old Forester President Campbell Brown and his team worked with director Matthew Vaughn during production, and Master Taster Jackie Zykan helped create Old Forester Statesman, which is featured in the film. Campbell Brown and Jackie Zykan join us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth with Statesman's origin story and updates on this year's Birthday Bourbon and the new Old Forester Distillery under construction on Louisville's Whiskey Row. We'll also discuss whisky and Cognac with fifth-generation Cognac maker Cyril Camus, along with the challenges of selling Scotch Whisky and Bourbon in China. In the news, Billy Walker is back in the distillery business after a deal to buy Scotland's Glenallachie Distillery from Chivas Brothers, and that deal also means changes at the top of Inver House as managing director Graham Stevenson departs to join Billy Walker and former BenRiach veteran Trisha Savage as partners in the Glenallachie Consortium. Möet Hennessy is entering the American whiskey market for the first time with a deal to buy the Woodinville Whiskey Company in Washington, and we'll have an exclusive interview with Woodinville co-founder Orlin Sorenson. We'll also update the saga of Australia's Nant Distillery, look at new whiskies from around the world, and debunk a myth that it's illegal to take Scotch Whisky out of Scotland!


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170716.mp3?dest-id=35929




The Best Way to Combine Whisky and the Solar Eclipse (WhiskyCast Episode 649: July 9, 2017)

Sun, 09 Jul 2017 00:27:48 +0000

If you're looking for an excuse to take off from work and watch the total solar eclipse that will cross North America on August 21, there's no better place to observe it than at Kentucky's MB Roland Distillery. That's because Paul and Merry Beth Tomaszewski's distillery just happens to be located in Christian County, Kentucky, and astronomers calculated years ago that the total eclipse will last longest over Christian County. The Tomaszewskis are already reserving campsites for eclipse watchers in the open fields surrounding the distillery, and are planning a weekend whiskey festival leading up to that Monday's eclipse. Paul Tomaszewski joins us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth to explain how they've been preparing for the eclipse for years and what to expect on August 21. In the news, European Union leaders are considering Bourbon as a possible target in a growing trade dispute with the Trump Administration. Congress could vote this week on a 2018 Treasury Department budget that restores the administration's proposed cuts in funding for the TTB, which oversees the whisky industry. We'll also update the progress of Chip Tate's new distillery under construction in Waco, Texas, and look at Distell's plans to invest $14 million into renovations at Islay's Bunnahabhain Distillery.


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170709.mp3?dest-id=35929




Glencairn's Whisky Glasses Shatter Expectations (WhiskyCast Episode 648: July 2, 2017)

Sun, 02 Jul 2017 18:50:01 +0000

When Raymond Davidson and his sons started marketing the Glencairn Whisky Glass in 2001, they thought the target audience was whisky blenders and industry professionals, and never imagined much consumer demand. Last year, Glencairn Crystal sold more than three million of its iconic and often-copied whisky glasses worldwide - up 22 percent from the previous year. Scott Davidson is Glencairn Crystal's managing director now, and joins us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Bacardi is entering the Irish Whiskey market with a deal to acquire a minority stake and U.S. distribution rights for Teeling Whiskey. Sweden's Box Distillery is planning a major expansion, and a few bottles of the final cask of Black Bowmore 1964 are now available in the U.S. We'll also welcome another new Brand Partner to WhiskyCast and announce the winner of our latest giveaway, too!


Media Files:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/clean/whiskycast/WhiskyCast_20170702.mp3?dest-id=35929




Celebrating Canada's 150th Anniversary Whisky-Style (Episode 647: June 25, 2017)

Sun, 25 Jun 2017 03:18:03 +0000

July 1 is Canada Day, and this year it's even more of a holiday than usual. Canada celebrates its 150th anniversary this Saturday, and Hiram Walker Distillery master blender Dr. Don Livermore marked the occasion with a trip from coast to coast - and all the way from near the U.S. border to the Arctic Circle along the way. He led tastings of the new J.P. Wiser's One Fifty Commemorative Series whisky at each stop, ending in St. John's, Newfoundland. That's where we caught up with him for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also look at the impact of the Trump Administration's proposed 2018 federal budget on the whisky industry. That budget cuts funding for the key Treasury Department agency that regulates whisky and spirits distillers, and also eliminates funding for an Agriculture Department program that has helped boost U.S. whiskey exports worldwide. In the news, the owners of Vermont's WhistlePig Rye have confirmed reports that they're considering offers to sell the distillery and its whiskey stocks in what master distiller Dave Pickerell describes as a "feeding frenzy" market for craft distillers. Chivas Brothers workers at the company's main blending and bottling plant in Scotland have voted to go on strike after rejecting a contract offer, and the threat comes as Scotch Whisky exports during ther first three months of 2017 rose by ten percent over a year ago. We'll also look at the week's new whiskies and taste three Canadian whiskies, too!


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A Tale of Texas Whiskey at Balcones (WhiskyCast Episode 646: June 18, 2017)

Sun, 18 Jun 2017 19:31:41 +0000

Last year, Balcones Distilling left behind its original distillery - hand-built in an old welding shop underneath the 17th Street bridge in Waco, Texas - and moved into a state-of-the art distillery a few blocks away. In fact, the new distillery's boiler shed is about as big as the entire original distillery, and to replicate the original spirit stills on a much larger scale, Forsyth's had to come up with a coiled lyne arm unlike anything ever used before. Jared Himstedt has been at Balcones since the beginning in 2008, and became head distiller after the controversial divorce between founder Chip Tate and his investors in 2014. We'll sit down with Jared on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Buffalo Trace's move to patent a sour mash distilling process has left a sour taste in the mouths of some whisky makers, another Irish distillery is expanding, and there's one more World Series keepsake for Chicago Cubs fans. We'll also have details on the upcoming disappearance of two Old Pulteney expressions, answer a question about storing whiskies on their side, and welcome a new sponsor to WhiskyCast!


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Straight Shooting with Bulleit Bourbon Founder Tom Bulleit (WhiskyCast Episode 645: June 11, 2017)

Sun, 11 Jun 2017 04:37:08 +0000

Tom Bulleit wasn't born into the Bourbon business, but even as a successful Kentucky lawyer, he knew there was something calling him to whiskey. He eventually tracked down his great-great-grandfather's Civil War-era whiskey recipe, and in 1987, he launched Bulleit Bourbon. Thirty years later, Bulleit is viewed by many as an "overnight success," and is the flagship of Diageo's Bourbon portfolio. In March, Diageo opened the Bulleit Distilling Company distillery in Shelbyville, Kentucky, and this past week introduced Bulleit Barrel Strength Bourbon in New York City. That's where we sat down with Tom Bulleit for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, this week's election surprise in Great Britain sent whisky stocks rising and the British pound falling, Irish officials want the European Union to consider a ban on alcohol advertising, and German scientists have come up with a new way to tell counterfeit whiskies from the real thing. 


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Boom Days for Bourbon (WhiskyCast Episode 644: June 4, 2017)

Sun, 04 Jun 2017 18:42:08 +0000

Bourbon's growing global profile is at its highest in decades, and that's good news in Kentucky. Even though Bourbon can be made anywhere in the US, Kentucky's distillers still supply more than 90% of the world's Bourbon. At a time when many of the Commonwealth's industries are still recovering from the recession, the Bourbon industry has been one of Kentucky's brightest stars. Carla Carlton's new book "Barrel Strength Bourbon: The Explosive Growth of America's Whiskey" looks not only at the impact in Kentucky, but serves as a guide for those yet to explore the mysteries of Bourbon. In the news, Kentucky's governor has signed new Bourbon legislation into law as the Commonwealth celebrates its 225th anniversary of statehood. We'll look at the week's new whiskies and listen as Elton John and Jack White sing a new song about whiskey, too!


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Does The Nose Know For Sure? (Episode 643: May 28, 2017)

Sun, 28 May 2017 02:40:57 +0000

You may be able to tell different styles of whiskies apart by nosing them - when you know what you're nosing to begin with. When it comes to telling Bourbons and Rye whiskies apart in a blind nosing session, Dr. Jacob Lahne says your nose is more likely to focus on factors other than the mashbill, though. We'll discuss sensory science and whisky with the Drexel University food scientist on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Brown-Forman has given Constellation Brands the brush-off, while distillers and farmers in Scotland are watching the skies and hoping for more rain soon. There's plenty of rain in the forecast for Islay during this week's Islay Festival of Malt & Music. We'll have details on most of this year's Feis Ile whiskies and an update on construction at Ardnahoe, the island's newest distillery.


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A Trip Down the Rabbit Hole (Episode 642: May 21, 2017)

Sun, 21 May 2017 04:38:35 +0000

What would you think of someone who gives up a successful career to make Bourbon for a living? If you said they should seek professional help, Dr. Kaveh Zamanian might not disagree with you. Then again, that's just what this highly trained psychoanalyst did, setting aside his practice to form Rabbit Hole Distilling in Louisville. We'll talk with him on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth and get an update from Sweden with Mackmyra's Angela Forsgren D'Orazio. In the news, the saga of Australia's Nant Distillery is headed for court again, Tullibardine gets a new master blender, and John Glaser revives Compass Box's Double Single blend with a new edition.


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Malting Barley the Old School Way (WhiskyCast Episode 641: May 14, 2017)

Sun, 14 May 2017 23:06:22 +0000

Most Scotch Whisky distilleries source their malted barley from large commercial maltsters today, but a handful of distilleries still maintain their own floor maltings to supply at least some of their malt. This week, we'll visit one of the malting floors at Highland Park and hear how they still do things the old-fashioned way. In the news, Heaven Hill master distiller Denny Potter gets a promotion, Scotch Whisky industry leaders are keeping an eye on the candidates in next month's UK parliamentary elections, and we'll update the story of Glen Fargo American Malt Whisky's trademark battle.


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Making Whisky with Passion in Denmark (Episode 640: May 7, 2017)

Sun, 07 May 2017 20:17:39 +0000

Denmark is known for its beers and aquavit, but is starting to develop a reputation for whiskies as well with distilleries like Braunstein and Stauning winning awards for their rye and single malt whiskies. Nyborg Destillerie hopes to make its own mark when it releases its first single malts next month and opens its new distillery to the public after laying down casks since 2009. Kim Møller-Elshøj is Nyborg's chief blender, and sat down with Mark Gillespie in Copenhagen the other day to talk about making whisky with a unique Danish character and passion, and you'll hear our conversation on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Edrington has acquired The Glenrothes and reunited the Speyside distillery with its single malt brand. We'll also find out how making Scotch Whisky has made one Scottish family very wealthy, and Hollywood is coming to Bourbon Country as an upcoming new movie depicts a band of secret agents as...Bourbon distillers. The latest movie in the Kingsman saga may not get four stars from the critics, but we have a rare 98-point whisky in this week's tasting notes!


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Viking Soul & Whisky in Denmark (Episode 639: April 30, 2017)

Sat, 29 Apr 2017 21:23:15 +0000

This week, we're in Copenhagen, Denmark for the launch of Highland Park's new Valkyrie single malt and new packaging for its core range that doubles down on the Orkney distillery's Viking heritage. The Vikings ruled Scotland's Orkney Islands for around 800 years, and one out of three Orcadians today can still trace some of their lineage back to the Vikings. It's been ten years since Highland Park started embracing that lineage, and we'll discuss the thought processes behind a brand makeover with Highland Park's Jason Craig and Danish designer Jim Lyngvild, who created Valkyrie's unique look - and traces his own Viking heritage back to one of Orkney's early rulers. We'll also discuss the process of creating a new whisky from scratch with Highland Park's lead whisky maker, Gordon Motion. In the news, Scotch Whisky exports rose in 2015 on stronger sales overseas following the Brexit-induced freefall of the British pound. Environmental activists and the whisky industry are both criticizing a Scottish Government plan that could open up Scotland to fracking for shale gas with possible environmental impacts. Louisville now has its own official "Bourbon District" along Main Street's Whiskey Row, and a Speyside cooper set a new world record this weekend during the Spirit of Speyside Festival.


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WhiskyCast Episode 638: April 23, 2017

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 05:32:33 +0000

The end of April has grain farmers in North America and Europe poised to get into the fields and start planting this year's crops - and some of that grain will eventually wind up as whisky. Historically, many farmers distilled some of their grain into whiskey - both to prevent it from spoiling and to create something that could be sold or bartered. While those days are many decades in the past, a number of farmers have jumped back into distilling as a way to cultivate more profits than they get from selling grain to commodities brokers. We'll meet the farmers behind the Whiskey Acres Distilling Company in Illinois and Far North Spirits in Minnesota on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, one of the pioneers in craft distilling has been sold, as William Grant & Sons acquired New York's Tuthilltown Spirits this week. Tuthilltown co-founder Ralph Erenzo and Grant's Jonathan Yusen join us to explain a deal seven years in the making. We'll also try to answer a listener's question about whether it's safe to drink Bourbon from vintage ceramic decanters because of the possibility of lead contamination. 

 


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WhiskyCast Episode 637: April 16, 2017

Sun, 16 Apr 2017 22:55:44 +0000

This week, we'll talk with two people who have turned their passion for whisky into careers. Tracie Franklin is one of the newest brand ambassadors for Glenfiddich, but worked her way up through the ranks for many years before joining William Grant & Sons several months ago. Blair Bowman started a whisky club at his Scottish university, then founded World Whisky Day before becoming a writer and whisky consultant. Next month, he'll try to set a world record by visiting 60 Scotch Whisky distilleries in a single day...just a few days before his first whisky book is published. We'll meet them both on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Lagavulin's 200th anniversary charity bottling raised more than $730,000 for Islay charities, while 200 bottles of Buffalo Trace's O.F.C Vintage Bourbons raised almost $1.2 million dollars for non-profit groups in the U.S. We'll also have details on the week's new whiskies and an update on construction work at The Macallan's new $245 million distillery in Scotland.


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WhiskyCast Episode 636: April 9, 2017

Sun, 09 Apr 2017 18:37:48 +0000

Scotland's Bladnoch Distillery celebrates its 200th anniversary this year, but the Lowlands distillery almost never made it to that milestone. When Bladnoch owner David Prior bought the distillery out of administration two years ago and hired veteran distiller and blender Ian MacMillan to revive it, the stills had been silent for years and almost everything inside had to be scrapped. Now, almost all that remains of the old Bladnoch is the building, and the stills will be fired up for the first time later this month. We'll talk with Ian MacMillan about the revival and Bladnoch's first series of new releases in many years on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and we'll also look at the upcoming Brexit negotiations between Great Britain and the European Union with former Scotland Secretary Michael Moore of PriceWaterhouse Coopers in Edinburgh. In the news, a rare set of The Macallan's Six Pillars series brought a high bid of nearly $1 million at Sotheby's in Hong Kong, and we'll have the latest details on new distilleries in England and the USA.


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WhiskyCast Episode 635: April 2, 2017

Sun, 02 Apr 2017 18:36:23 +0000

There will be music, food, and of course, plenty of whisky on hand during the Spirit of Speyside Festival coming up at the end of this month in Scotland. Ticket sales have already set a new record for this year's festival, and we'll get a preview from festival chairman James Campbell on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also look at the revival of Kansas City's historic J. Rieger & Co. Monogram whiskey brand with Andy Rieger, the great-great-great grandson of Jacob Rieger. In the news, Scotch Whisky industry leaders will be watching the UK's upcoming Brexit negotiations with both benefits and risks in mind, Ireland's craft distillers are hoping for help from a bill pending in that country's Parliament, and we'll have the story of a British man's personal cask of Kilchoman single malt that disappeared after it was accidentally delivered to the wrong address.


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WhiskyCast Episode 634: March 26, 2017

Sun, 26 Mar 2017 19:49:52 +0000

This week's American Whiskey Convention at Philadelphia's Citizens Bank Park featured an air of generational change. At one end, legendary master distiller Jimmy Russell of Wild Turkey with 63 years of distilling experience - and at the other end, a crop of young distillers hoping to follow in his footsteps while creating their own unique whiskies. We'll talk with both generations on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll have the latest on the ongoing Nant Distillery saga in Australia, along with the launch of two more luxury whiskies from Tamdhu and Glenmorangie and the details on a new whiskey that honors a candidate who came in second. We'll also update distillery projects in Scotland, Ireland, and the U.S. while and helping a listener with the answer to his question about whether Canadian Whisky is kosher or not on this week's Your Voice.


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WhiskyCast Episode 633: March 19, 2017

Sun, 19 Mar 2017 19:38:20 +0000

For years, whisky connoisseurs whispered about a mysterious Irish whiskey called Green Spot and begged friends traveling to Ireland to track down a bottle for them. While Green Spot nearly disappeared from the market years ago along with the other "Spot Whiskeys" from Dublin's Mitchell & Son, the Mitchell family and Irish Distillers kept the brand alive through some of Irish Whiskey's darkest days.  We'll talk with Robert Jonathan Mitchell and Robert Mitchell of Mitchell & Son about the history - and the future - of the Spots on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth.


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WhiskyCast Episode 632: March 12, 2017

Sun, 12 Mar 2017 05:41:54 +0000

Whisky was historically thought of as a "man's drink" - but today, not only are more women drinking whisky, but women make up around 40% of the Scotch Whisky industry's work force. Diageo's Maureen Robinson is one of the industry's pioneering women, and is celebrating her 40th anniversary in the whisky business this month. She's the first woman to hold the title of Master Blender in Scotland, and joins us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll talk not only about the changes she's seen over the last four decades, but the subtle art and science that goes into blending whiskies, too. In the news, the fight for control of Australia's Nant Distillery is getting uglier as Nant's founders and its would-be buyer fire charges of mismanagement and more at each other. The UK's government is raising taxes on domestic whisky and spirits sales this week in a move that caught the Scotch Whisky Association and other drinks industry groups by surprise, and the global boom in Irish Whiskey sales is leading to more expansion plans at Bushmills. We'll also have details on the week's new whiskies and tasting notes for whiskies from Balblair, Woodford Reserve, and Ardbeg.


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WhiskyCast Episode 631: March 5, 2017

Sun, 05 Mar 2017 06:30:38 +0000

Mickey Heads grew up about three miles from Islay's Ardbeg Distillery, but the third-generation whisky maker never thought he'd wind up as the manager at Ardbeg. This week, he's celebrating his tenth anniversary as Ardbeg's manager and joins us on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also hear from Isabel Graham-Youll of Whisky.Auction, who helped police in London catch an alleged counterfeiter specializing in antique whiskies after spotting fakes the suspect tried to sell through her company's online auction site. There's plenty of news to report this week, including an update on the dispute over the future of Australia's Nant Distillery and hundreds of barrels of whisky owned by investors. We'll also update the progress of the new Slane Distillery in Ireland, meet some of the winners of Whisky Magazine's U.S. Icons of Whisky Awards, and catch up with Jane Maher of Tullamore D.E.W. as she nears the end of a cross-country bus tour across the United States.


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WhiskyCast Episode 630: February 26, 2017

Sun, 26 Feb 2017 14:34:52 +0000

This week, we're in Ireland for the debut of the new Method And Madness range of Irish Whiskies from Irish Distillers. The name comes from the collaboration between Midleton's veteran masters and their apprentices, and it gives us a chance to catch up on Killian O'Mahony's story. In September of 2013, we first met Killian shortly after he became Ireland's first apprentice cooper in decades under the tutelage of Midleton Master Cooper Ger Buckley. Nearly four years later, his training is nearly complete, and we'll hear from both apprentice and master on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Scotch Whisky exports rose in 2016 after three years of declines, with single malt exports reaching an all-time record. One of Scotland's largest trade unions is worried about the future of those exports after Brexit, and is demanding the British government protect the whisky industry's jobs after the UK leaves the European Union. We'll also have a sneak preview of the Old Jameson Distillery in Dublin, which is about to reopen after months of renovation with a new focus...and a new name.


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WhiskyCast Episode 629: February 19, 2017

Sun, 19 Feb 2017 19:09:48 +0000

Camden, New Jersey has a long manufacturing heritage dating back decades, but the city's glory days ended decades ago - leaving behind empty buildings, crime, and many other problems. James Yoakum is one of the entrepreneurs trying to bring back some of that faded glory with Cooper River Distillers in the heart of downtown Camden. He's been making whiskies and rums for the last couple of years, and stopped by our studio the other day with a sample of his first batch of Cooper River Bourbon. The Kentucky native tells us why he gave up on the real estate business to open an urban microdistillery on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. The whisky world lost two of its leaders this week, and we'll honor the legacies of Silvano Samaroli and Dr. Jim Swan. While we never had the chance to interview Silvano Samaroli, Jim Swan was a frequent guest on WhiskyCast, and we'll listen to part of a 2007 interview with him in the news. We'll also have details on master blender Rachel Barrie's decision to leave Beam Suntory to join BenRiach as its lead whisky maker, along with details on what the new trade deal between Canada and the European Union means for whisky lovers.


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WhiskyCast Episode 628: February 12, 2017

Sun, 12 Feb 2017 04:48:11 +0000

This week, we'll be talking about money and politics along with whisky, and of course, there are connections between all three. With the world's attention focused on the transition to the Trump Administration in the U.S., the spirits industry is hoping to benefit from what it sees as a pro-business atmosphere in Washington. We'll discuss the political climate with Distilled Spirits Council CEO Kraig Naasz, and we'll get Wall Street's perspective with David Bolton of Spirited Funds and Alex Gordon of ETF Managers Group. They're behind a new exchange-traded fund that gives investors the ability to buy into the global whisky industry on the stock market. In the news, Beam Suntory plans to close its Canadian Club brand home in Windsor, Ontario next month, and the city's mayor will meet with company executives in Chicago this week to make the case for keeping it open. Bourbon has become Kentucky's fastest-growing industry, with an $8.5 billion economic impact on the state's economy each year...while the wider U.S. spirits industry also showed significant growth in 2016. We'll have details on the week's new whiskies, and this week's tasting notes include single malts from Scotland, India, and Ireland!


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WhiskyCast Episode 627: February 5, 2017

Sun, 05 Feb 2017 04:24:47 +0000

It's hard for some people to retire. Jim McEwan says he was pacing around his home on Islay "like a tiger" after retiring from Bruichladdich a year and a half ago...so when Stewart Laing offered him the chance to help build his family's new Ardnahoe Distillery on Islay from the ground up, Jim pounced on the offer. Stewart and his sons recently broke ground on the Hunter Laing & Co.-owned distillery overlooking Port Askaig, with plans to start distilling whisky next year. Jim shares the reasons behind his decision with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also get some historical perspective from Irish Whiskey historian Fionnán O'Connor on Diageo's plans to revive the legendary Roe & Co. whiskey brand and build a new distillery at its Guinness St. James's Gate complex in Dublin. In the news, Distell plans to spend the next two years reworking its Tobermory Distillery and single malt brand, while another distillery project has been approved in Northern Ireland...and we'll also take a look at the week's new whiskies.


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WhiskyCast Episode 626: January 29, 2017

Sun, 29 Jan 2017 03:44:52 +0000

Marcio Ramos started his whisky journey as a bartender in his hometown of Lisbon, Portugal...but thought he'd left the whisky business behind when he moved to Canada a couple of years ago. That didn't last long, as he wound up becoming Beam Suntory's Canadian brand ambassador for Bowmore, Laphroaig, and Suntory's whiskies. Now, he spends his time traveling all over Canada, expanding his horizons and those of the people who attend his tastings. He'll share his story with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll catch up on new Kentucky Bourbons with a vintage heritage, the tourism boom along the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, a distillery project in England that's being criticized by neighbors as "too Scottish," and the announcement Bourbon and ice cream lovers have been waiting for from Ben & Jerry's.


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 625: January 22, 2017

Sun, 22 Jan 2017 23:04:34 +0000

This week, we're on location at the Victoria Whisky Festival in British Columbia! We'll discuss a new range of premium Canadian whiskies coming this fall from the Hiram Walker Distillery with master blender Dr. Don Livermore, and sit down for a dram with veteran whisky writer Dave Broom to solve some of the whisky world's problems. In the news, there's a new Canadian Whisky of the Year, and we'll have highlights from the 2017 Canadian Whisky Awards, along with another expansion at Ireland's Midleton Distillery and a rare sighting of a "unicorn" whisky - believe it or not...a peated Balvenie!


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WhiskyCast Episode 624: January 15, 2017

Sun, 15 Jan 2017 18:39:18 +0000

This week, we'll tell you about two upcoming opportunities to taste rare whiskies in Scotland and Kentucky. David Faughn and Brian Shemwell will have the story behind a collaboration of several Bourbon clubs in Kentucky and Tennessee to organize the "Rare Bourbon for Rare Disease" charity tasting event on February 25 in Louisville. David's young daughter suffers from a rare genetic disorder, and his NUBPL Foundation received a bottle of Buffalo Trace's new O.F.C. Vintage Series Bourbon to use for fundraising. Brian heads up the Paducah Bourbon Society, and brought the Bourbon clubs together for the event. We'll also get details from Angus MacRaild on The Whisky Show: Old & Rare February 18 and 19 in Glasgow, which is being billed as the "whisky bar of a lifetime" with a chance to taste rare and vintage whiskies. In the news, we'll honor the legacy of Heaven Hill's Parker Beam, who lost his four-year-long battle with ALS this week. We'll also have news of new whiskies, update our story on Ben and Jerry's plans for a new Bourbon-flavored ice cream that's being welcomed along Louisville's Urban Bourbon Trail, and look at a uniquely Scottish whisky cocktail to be served in Edinburgh on Burns Night January 25. 


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WhiskyCast Episode 623: January 8, 2017

Sun, 08 Jan 2017 20:18:59 +0000

The controversy over Beam Suntory's sudden decision to change its plans for a Booker's Bourbon price hike during the New Year's holiday weekend left both retailers and consumers confused. We'll look at whisky pricing from the retailer's perspective with Ryan Maloney of Julio's Liquors in the Boston suburb of Westborough, Massachusetts, and he'll explain how retailers set their prices and work with whisky makers and distributors. We'll also catch up with Ben Bowers as he winds up his "A Dram a Day" campaign to raise money for a British children's hospital on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Constellation Brands is still expanding its craft distilling portfolio with a deal announced this week for a stake in Virginia's Catoctin Creek Distillery, frequent fliers will find a new Bourbon bar in Louisville's airport, and with the inauguration of Donald Trump closing in, a signed bottle of the Scotch Whisky bottled for his first Scottish golf course is going on the auction block.


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 622: January 1, 2017

Sun, 01 Jan 2017 04:10:36 +0000

Blending is part art and part science, and unless you're drinking a single cask whisky, every dram you try has been tweaked by the nose of an experienced blender. Nancy Fraley describes herself as a "ghost blender," but it's fair to call her and other blending consultants "noses for hire" - working in the background to create whiskies for distillers large and small. Nancy's client list is shrouded in the secrecy of non-disclosure agreements, but she can talk about some of her work and shares some of her secrets with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll look at a couple of whiskies raising serious money for charities, along with a new chapter of the Red Tape Follies. We'll also have some of your final drams of 2016 and the first drams of 2017 as we kick off a new year.


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 621: December 25, 2016

Sun, 25 Dec 2016 01:37:13 +0000

The founders of Baltimore's Sagamore Spirits could have chosen to buy a distillery anywhere they wanted to, but they wanted to help revive Baltimore's heritage of making Rye whiskey - and help bring a long-suffering waterfront neighborhood back to life. Sagamore Spirit's new distillery will open next month, and this week, a new cask-strength version of Sagamore Spirit Rye was unveiled to go along with the original version that made its debut earlier this year. We'll talk with Sagamore Spirit's Brian Treacy on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, along with Sazerac CEO Mark Brown, who finished off his year with more acquisitions. Sazerac has bought the Tennessee distillery built to make Popcorn Sutton moonshine, and will begin a long-term project to enter the Tennessee Whiskey business. In the news, yet another distillery has been sold, with Australia's Tasmania Distillery changing hands - and name. It'll share the name of its award-winning Sullivan's Cove single malt whisky, and distillery manager Patrick Maguire will explain the reasons behind the sale and why he's staying on under the new ownership.


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WhiskyCast Episode 620: December 18, 2016

Sun, 18 Dec 2016 17:46:22 +0000

What do oysters have to do with making whisky? You might not think there's much in common, but Glenmorangie is working with Scotland's Heriot-Watt University on a project to restore the European Flat oyster population to Scotland's Dornoch Firth. The oyster beds were wiped out by overfishing a century ago, but a healthy oyster population in the firth would help the overall ecosystem in the area around the distillery. We'll talk about the project with Glenmorangie's Dr. Bill Lumsden and Louise Schiavone, who recently wrote about the project for National Geographic. We'll also have an exclusive interview with Pernod Ricard chairman and CEO Alexandre Ricard on his recent deal to return the company to American whiskey production with West Virginia's Smooth Ambler Spirits, along with his outlook for the whisky business in what's shaping up to be a period of economic uncertainty.


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WhiskyCast Episode 619: December 11, 2016

Sun, 11 Dec 2016 17:34:59 +0000

A couple of weeks ago, we credited San Francisco's Anchor Distilling with being the birthplace of the American craft distilling movement in 1993. While Anchor was one of the early pioneers, the real birthplace was just across the bay at St. George Spirits, where Jörg Rupf started making eau de vie, whiskey, and other spirits in his Holstein still in 1982. Jörg retired several years ago, and his protégé Lance Winters is now the president and head distiller at St. George. We'll talk craft distilling history with Lance Winters on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and how he aced his job interview with Jörg with a bottle of homemade whiskey. In the news, yet another craft distiller has been sold as Pernod Ricard takes a majority stake in West Virginia's Smooth Ambler Spirits, and the deal marks Pernod Ricard's return to the American whiskey market. Beam Suntory is raising prices and cutting availability for Booker's Bourbon, and we'll have reaction from angry Bourbon fans. Irish distillers are hoping to become a major force in the country's tourism industry, and we'll explain why it's not a good idea to get health advice from a guy named "Booger."


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 618: December 3, 2016

Sun, 04 Dec 2016 02:58:08 +0000

Earlier this year, we reported on the Scotch Malt Whisky Society's changes in the US, with marketing and promotion for the global whisky club and independent bottler changing from the Shayne family, which founded the US chapter in 1993, to a firm led by longtime industry veteran Arnaud Brachet. It's been several months, and we'll sit down with Brachet for an update on the Society's progress on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also take a look at the science of whisky, as Buffalo Trace's Harlen Wheatley shares the findings of his first "Warehouse X" experiments. In the news, Rémy Cointreau is making another move to expand its whisky business with the acquisition of Seattle's Westland Distillery. Master Blender Matt Hofmann is one of Westland's co-founders, and explains why Rémy's bid persuaded him where others had previously fallen short. We'll also check the police blotter in Kentucky, where a delivery driver faces prison time after trying to sell whiskey and other spirits stolen from Beam Suntory's Frankfort warehouse and another "Pappygate" suspect has taken a plea deal.


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WhiskyCast Episode 617: November 27, 2016

Mon, 28 Nov 2016 04:51:15 +0000

What we think of today as the boom in craft distilling started 20 years ago this year, when San Francisco brewer Fritz Maytag bottled the first batch of Old Potrero Single Malt Straight Rye Whiskey at Anchor Brewing in the city's Potrero Hill neighborhood. In 1993, Maytag and his staff cobbled together parts to build a distillery inside the brewery, long known for its Anchor Steam beer, and Bruce Joseph was put in charge of running the still. Today, Bruce Joseph is still Anchor's head distiller, and he'll join us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the results of this year's International Wine & Spirits Competition are in, with William Grant & Sons taking top honors. Two more estate distilleries are being proposed in Scotland, and while North Dakota is known for its barley...it's never been known for its whiskey...until now. Glen Fargo American Malt Whiskey was unveiled this week in Fargo, and we'll find out how its creator avoided a costly legal battle over the name. We'll also have details on this week's new whiskies, along with a way to count down the days - or drams - until Christmas. 


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WhiskyCast Episode 616: November 20, 2016

Sun, 20 Nov 2016 23:46:13 +0000

Bourbon's history is as murky as a fermenter full of mash, and questions about the origins of Bourbon have led to more than a few arguments over the years. Now, author Fred Minnick is wading right into the middle of those debates with his latest book, "Bourbon: The Rise, Fall, and Rebirth of an American Whiskey." He's researched everything from Bourbon's early days to the role slavery played in its development and why the Bourbon industry crashed in the 70's and 80's in the face of competition from vodka, rum, and other spirits, and you can hear our conversation with Fred Minnick on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the Scotch Whisky Association is betting on one final appeal in its bid to block Scotland's minimum unit pricing plan for alcohol sales, while US Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy's new report on substance abuse calls for higher alcohol taxes to reduce consumption. For those who can afford a $5,000 bottle of Bourbon, Michter's figures no amount of taxes will make any difference in sales of its new Celebration Sour Mash, and that's just one of the new whiskies we'll have details on. Finally, why are some Manhattans great and others made with the same ingredients...not so great? We'll try to help a listener solve her problem with bad bartending.


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WhiskyCast Episode 615: November 12, 2016

Mon, 14 Nov 2016 00:27:22 +0000

This week, we're celebrating the 11th anniversary of WhiskyCast with a potpourri of sorts, as we catch up with people from all over the world of whisky. We'll hear from Beam Suntory CEO Matt Shattock on his hopes for the incoming Trump Administration's policy goals related to the whisky industry, which can be affected by everything from taxes and trade treaties to agricultural policy.  We'll talk with Paul Hletko of FEW Spirits about his new collaboration with Mike Miller and the folks from Delilah's in Chicago, and Dave Scheurich tells us about Boondocks - the whiskey that lured him out of retirement. Dave Pickerell shares details on the latest Boss Hog release from WhistlePig Rye, and Sam Mead explains the story behind Wyoming Whiskey's Outryder.  In the news, MGP is expanding its footprint in whisky with the purchase of the Cincinnati-based George Remus line of whiskies, and farther down the Ohio River, Angel's Envy is ready to open the doors of its new distillery on Louisville's Whiskey Row to the public. Alexander Murray & Co. has teamed up with the brewers at Firestone Walker on a new single malt, and we'll finally get the answer on where Costco gets its Kirkland-branded whiskies from!


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WhiskyCast Episode 614: November 6, 2016

Sun, 06 Nov 2016 20:05:56 +0000

This Monday marks the 20th anniversary of the fire that destroyed Heaven Hill's distillery and 90,000 barrels of whiskey in Bardstown, Kentucky. Not a single employee lost their job after the fire, even though it took the family-owned company several years to resume full production at the Bernheim Distillery in Louisville. Then as now, Max Shapira was president of Heaven Hill, and even though three members of the Shapira family's next generation are in senior management roles at Heaven Hill, he's not ready to step aside and let them run the company just yet. We'll talk with Max Shapira about the fire, managing a family-owned business, and planning for future whiskey demand on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We have plenty of new whiskies to talk about this week, along with millions of dollars in new investment to expand whisky production in Scotland and Kentucky. The annual search to find rare bottles of Pappy Van Winkle is underway, along with Bruichladdich's biggest batch of new single malts in several years. Highland Park is playing with fire, Midleton's Brian Nation is putting his own stamp on the annual release of Midleton Very Rare, and Corby's Dr. Don Livermore dug deep into his warehouse to come up with vintage Scotch Whisky for a new Wiser's release that links Scotland and Canada. We'll also look at how one member of the World Series champion Chicago Cubs chose to celebrate the team's victory this week with gifts for his teammates.


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 613: October 29, 2016

Sun, 30 Oct 2016 02:53:18 +0000

Distillery managers come and go at Lagavulin, but Iain McArthur is a fixture at the legendary Islay distillery. McArthur's something of a legend himself after 44 years as the warehouseman at Lagavulin and previously at Port Ellen, and the native Ileach followed his father and grandfather into the whisky business. We'll go peat cutting with Iain at his family's bog and sit down with him for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. Back in August, Scotch Whisky Association chief executive David Frost told us it would take "a pretty good offer" to lure him back into government service. The offer came, and Frost's sudden resignation to become a special adviser to British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson tops our news this week. We'll also have details on Rémy Cointreau's latest move in the whisky business, Templeton Rye's commitment to distilling in Iowa, and a "write-in" ticket that could bring unity to this year's US presidential race.


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 612: October 23, 2016

Mon, 24 Oct 2016 01:10:13 +0000

Lagavulin Distillery is celebrating its 200th anniversary this year, and the Islay distillery hasn't changed all that much over the years - at least on the outside. Inside, Lagavulin's team has found new ways to produce more whisky each year without adding new equipment by combining classic distilling heritage with modern technology. We'll talk about the history and future of Lagavulin with distillery manager Georgie Crawford, longtime warehouseman Iain McArthur, and Diageo's in-house historian and director of whisky outreach, Dr. Nick Morgan. We'll also have tasting notes for the 200th anniversary Lagavulin 25-year-old single malt and this year's highly sought-after Feis Ile bottling. In the news, the week-long strike at Jim Beam's two Kentucky distilleries is over after workers ratified a new contract Friday. We'll have the details on that new contract along with another whiskey acquisition for Constellation Brands, another legal setback for the Scotch whisky industry's attempt to block a minimum pricing scheme in Scotland, the results of the 2016 Irish Whiskey Awards, and more new whiskies on the way for the holidays. 


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WhiskyCast Episode 611: October 16, 2016

Sun, 16 Oct 2016 03:54:49 +0000

Charles Maclean is arguably one of the most prolific Scotch whisky writers around, and his years of research and writing have given him a unique historical perspective on whisky. He's working on the latest edition of "Whiskypedia" and shares some of his thoughts with us on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, workers at Jim Beam's two Kentucky distilleries have gone on strike after rejecting two proposed contract offers this past week. We'll also have the details on Chivas Brothers's plans to make Longmorn a luxury single malt, Woodford Reserve's annual Masters Collection release, and a unique tie between London and Texas that's led to a new Bourbon.


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WhiskyCast Episode 610: October 9, 2016

Sun, 09 Oct 2016 03:59:57 +0000

Japanese whiskies have become harder to find as worldwide demand grows for them, but books about them are even harder to find. Longtime whisky writer Dominic Roskrow has been studying Japanese whisky for his latest book, "Whisky Japan", and Roskrow joins us with his perspective on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Constellation Brands is paying $160 million for Utah's High West Distillery, and plans to use it as the foundation for a high-end spirits business. We'll discuss the deal with High West co-founder David Perkins and Constellation's Bill Newlands. There are also details on new whiskies from The Macallan and Chivas Regal, a 1937 Glenfiddich goes for almost $85,000 at auction, and a Colorado distillery is telling voters to #GrabWhiskey instead of something else...


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 609: October 2, 2016

Sun, 02 Oct 2016 04:51:47 +0000

Transparency in Scotch Whisky isn't a new issue, and it's one that's likely to last a lot longer now that John Glaser of Compass Box is giving up his campaign to change the laws limiting what whisky makers can disclose about the whiskies that go into their blends. Glaser's decision came after industry leaders refused to push for changes in UK and European Union laws. We'll talk with John Glaser and Ian Buxton, who's releasing a new edition of Aeneas Macdonald's classic book "Whisky" - in which he made the argument for transparency nearly nine decades ago. In the news, The Glenlivet is releasing the second edition in the Winchester Collection series of 50-year-old single malts, and we'll have tasting notes for this $25,000 whisky. We'll also update our story on the end of Diageo's Masters of Whisky education program and bring you up to date on new whiskies from around the world.


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 608: September 25, 2016

Sun, 25 Sep 2016 15:20:01 +0000

We're at a unique point in whisky history when it's not unusual to see people celebrating 40, 45, or even 50 years of working in whisky and still have a lot left to contribute. For Duncan Taylor chairman Euan Shand, this week was the right time to announce his retirement from the Scotch Whisky maker's day-to-day operations - though he'll still be involved in selecting casks for bottling. Former Springbank distillery manager Frank McHardy seems even busier than ever in his retirement, and Colin Scott is not quite ready to step aside yet after 43 years, but last week's move to a new role as Custodian Master Blender for Chivas Regal eases the transition to a new generation of blenders. We'll talk with all three of them on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Knob Creek is losing its age statement, Islay's latest distillery has the green light to begin construction, and another distillery has been hit by thieves.


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WhiskyCast Episode 607: September 17, 2016

Sun, 18 Sep 2016 02:12:33 +0000

This week, Ardbeg unveiled its first single malt with an age statement since the original debut of the 10-year-old edition many years ago. The Ardbeg 21 will be available in limited amounts starting October 1. We'll get the back story behind this whisky from Dr. Bill Lumsden on WhiskyCast In-Depth, and along with tasting notes for it as well. There's plenty of news out of Bourbon Country during Kentucky Bourbon Festival week, including the start of production at the first new distillery to open in Bardstown since 2012 as the Bardstown Bourbon Company fired up its stills. We'll have the details on that, along with an update on Luxco's new Bardstown distillery slated to open late next year and the reason why Wild Turkey's Jimmy Russell needs to clear some more space on the shelf for another award!


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 606: September 11, 2016

Sun, 11 Sep 2016 15:52:32 +0000

Eddie Russell has been working in the shadow of his father, Wild Turkey's legendary master distiller Jimmy Russell, for the last 35 years. Now, Eddie's taking on more of the responsibility for developing new Wild Turkey and Russell's Reserve whiskies, just as his own son enters the family business. We'll talk with Eddie Russell and find out more about his latest project - the upcoming Master's Keep Decades Bourbon - on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Utah's High West Distillery could fetch $100 million at auction, Angel's Envy has fired up the still at its new distillery in Louisville, and the Red Tape Follies return with an Irish tale that has a happy ending. 


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WhiskyCast Episode 605: September 4, 2016

Sun, 04 Sep 2016 16:15:04 +0000

This week, we'll visit the Sherry capital of the world...Jerez de la Frontera in Spain. The sherry casks that many whisky makers depend on come from Jerez, and we'll tour one of the city's cooperages - or to use the Spanish word: tonelería. The A. Páez Tonelería gets most of its business now from whisky makers, and Francisco Lozano "Paco" Romero will explain the process to us on WhiskyCast In-Depth. This week, Irish Distillers unveiled the Redbreast Lustau Edition in Jerez, which uses A. Páez casks that were first filled with Bodegas Lustau's Oloroso Sherry. We'll have that story in the news, along with more of the week's new whiskies and troubling signs of slowing whisky sales in key global markets.


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WhiskyCast Episode 604: August 28, 2016

Sun, 28 Aug 2016 13:45:14 +0000

This week, we're in Sweden visiting Box Distillery for a follow-up to our 2014 visit, and Box is making some big changes six years after it opened in a former steam plant. The first permanent expression from Box is coming this fall, and exports are making up a larger share of the distillery's sales. We'll talk with distillery manager Roger Melander and managing director Thomas Larsson about the changes on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, construction is underway on a new distillery in Glasgow and we'll have word on new whiskies from Scotland, the US, Australia, and more. Finally, this week marks the debut of our new feature on regulatory overreach...The Red Tape Follies!


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 603: August 21, 2016

Sun, 21 Aug 2016 03:38:09 +0000

After years of working with supermodels and high-strung art directors in New York City, Michael Myers lives a much simpler - and more rewarding life in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Myers gave up his career as one of New York's top photographers to move to Colorado, and next month will be the fifth anniversary of his first still run at Distillery 291. We'll talk with Myers about his career and life changes, and how he maintains a connection to his past career in his new one. In the news, there are plenty of new whiskies to talk about this week, and plans for Edinburgh's first malt whisky distillery in nearly a century are a step closer to reality now that local leaders have signed off on the project.


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WhiskyCast Episode 602: August 14, 2016

Sun, 14 Aug 2016 04:20:07 +0000

Diageo has faced criticism on social media for its decision to shut down the long-running Masters of Whisky program, a US-based education program aimed primarily at bars and restaurants along with whisky festivals. The program's 24 ambassadors work for an agency that is losing its contract with Diageo to operate the program, and the ambassadors will lose their jobs at the end of September. Now, the drinks giant has pledged to meet with all of those affected by the shutdown and discuss their future options with a new program that will replace the Masters of Whisky. We'll look at the program and its impact on the whisky world with longtime Master of Whisky Steve Beal on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Isle of Arran has received planning permission to build a second distillery on the Scottish island, one of Ireland's most popular whisky attractions is closing for a six-month-long facelift, and we'll have details on this year's Parker's Heritage Collection and Old Forester Birthday Bourbons!


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WhiskyCast Episode 601: August 7, 2016

Sun, 07 Aug 2016 02:31:51 +0000

We've packed this week's WhiskyCast full of cask-strength conversation from around the world! Texas distillers Amanda and Nick Swift will explain why they decided to make Scottish-style single malt whiskey in the heart of Texas, and why they both gave up successful careers to pursue their shared passion. We'll also discuss the outlook for the Scotch Whisky industry in the post-Brexit environment with Scotch Whisky Association chief executive David Frost, and why he's not interested in returning to Her Majesty's diplomatic corps anytime soon. We'll also honor three whisky industry leaders who passed away this past week and look at the week's new whiskies, along with the old distilleries you'd use a time machine to save!


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WhiskyCast Episode 600: July 31, 2016

Sun, 31 Jul 2016 02:07:37 +0000

Philadelphia has a long history of whisky distilling dating back to Colonial days, and craft distillers are reviving some of that history that died out several decades ago. During this week's Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, the Distilled Spirits Council arranged a tour of local craft distilleries for reporters covering the convention. We'll take a non-partisan tour with them on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth.

In the news, Diageo's CEO wants UK politicians to protect Scotch Whisky interests during Brexit negotiations, and we'll find out who won this year's Australian Malt Whisky Tasting Championship. We'll also help a listener draw up his whisky shopping list for a friend visiting Tokyo, find out what whisky William Shatner last tried, and taste whiskies from Japan, Islay, and Minnesota!


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WhiskyCast Episode 599: July 24, 2016

Sun, 24 Jul 2016 02:28:46 +0000

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society is not only an independent bottler of Scotch whiskies, but also the world's largest whisky club - and it's looking to grow under new ownership. The SMWS has worked out a major change with its US chapter, and a marketing firm has been brought in to help increase membership. We'll discuss that and other changes with the Society's Paul Skipworth and Kai Ivalo, along with Gabby Shayne of the SMWS US chapter. In the news, another Dickel distiller has left to join Popcorn Sutton in Tennessee...a Scottish politician wants Diageo to give the old Dallas Dhu distillery to the government, and the original home of Scotch whisky will soon be home to a distillery once again.


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WhiskyCast Episode 598: July 17, 2016

Sun, 17 Jul 2016 03:41:35 +0000

There are lots of whiskies to choose from, and there's a story behind each one. This time around, we'll talk with the entrepreneurs behind two vastly different whiskies: Florian Passera's Vicomte French single malt and Frank Maestri's Throttle to Bottle - an all-American Canadian whisky. We'll also taste three whiskies from entrepreneurial craft distillers for this week's tasting notes. In this week's news...the UK's new government won't seek an immediate hike in post-Brexit whisky taxes, while attendees at the US political conventions are vying for spots on the guest lists at the Distilled Spirits Council's parties in Cleveland and Philadelphia over the next two weeks.  


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WhiskyCast Episode 597: July 10, 2016

Sun, 10 Jul 2016 04:05:58 +0000

The push by distillers for US Government recognition of an "American Single Malt Whisky" definition would also have an impact on single malt whiskies from so-called "non-traditional" whisky-producing countries around the world. India's Amrut fought for more than a year to get approval to sell its single malts matured in used oak barrels in the US - before giving in and producing special whiskies matured in new oak just for the US market. Raj Sabharwal of PVI Global is Amrut's US importer and fought those battles not only for Amrut, but on behalf of clients in England and Australia, and explains the impact a "single malt" definition could have for American whisky lovers. In the news, the results of this year's International Spirits Challenge are in, South African distiller Andy Watts gets a promotion, and The Balvenie's David Stewart gets his date with the Queen!


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 596: July 3, 2016

Mon, 04 Jul 2016 00:44:14 +0000

Single malt whiskies have been sold in the US for decades, but technically, there's no official definition for "single malt" in the federal government's regulations for whiskies. Rob Dietrich of Stranahan's Distillery in Denver wants to change that, and he's trying to rally other distillers behind his cause. We'll talk with the master distiller of Stranahan's, which is back in nationwide distribution across the US after supply shortages several years ago forced Proximo Spirits to pull back and sell Stranahan's only in Colorado. In the news, the UK's "Brexit" vote is starting to affect whisky sales as consumers take advantage of the weak British pound, but two UK distillery projects managed to make their crowdfunding goals despite economic uncertainty following the vote. We'll also have details on the week's new whisky releases and help a listener teach his bartender how to make a proper Manhattan!


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WhiskyCast Episode 595: June 25, 2016

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 02:37:46 +0000

Willie Cochrane retired last month after 39 years at Jura Distillery, and spent the last 11 of them as the manager of the Isle of Jura's largest business (and only distillery) before turning over the keys to his hand-picked successor, Graham Logan. He's spent most of the last few weeks away from the island traveling with his wife and spending time with their three children and grandchildren - but Willie slowed down enough to spend some time with us for this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. The UK's Brexit vote and its potential impact on the whisky industry dominates the news this week, and we'll also have some of your comments on this week's Your Voice. We'll also kick off a contest with our newest sponsor...listen for details on how you could win one of five Speyburn goodie bags!


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 594: June 18, 2016

Sun, 19 Jun 2016 04:11:00 +0000

Moving is one of those things that no one really enjoys...let alone when one has to move hundreds of rare whisky samples to a new home. Whyte & Mackay's Richard Paterson faced that challenge recently when the company moved to its new headquarters in Glasgow, and he'll discuss how he and his team handled the move on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, construction has started on Scotland's latest distillery project - while another new distillery is ready to open in Virginia. We'll find out what it's like to go barrel-picking at Wild Turkey, and learn more about a new bar in Zurich that may just set the standards for airport whisky bars worldwide.


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 593: June 12, 2016

Sun, 12 Jun 2016 21:16:40 +0000

Many factors go into the decision to give a whisky brand a shakeup, and we'll look at the factors behind two major facelifts announced in the last few weeks. Both Glen Grant and Jameson unveiled major changes to their whisky lineups with new expressions and packaging. We'll talk with Glen Grant's Dennis Malcolm and Jameson's Billy Leighton and Dan Lundberg about the thinking behind their moves on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. Meanwhile, Dennis Malcolm is in the news for another reason as well this week...he turned up on Queen Elizabeth's annual Birthday Honours List as a newly-minted Officer of the Order of the British Empire! We'll also have more on a battle royal brewing in Canada over a politician's pick in whiskies, as well as details on the week's new whiskies. 


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 592: June 4, 2016

Sun, 05 Jun 2016 03:50:24 +0000

Penderyn is the only whisky distillery in Wales, but may soon spin off a second distillery under its name in nearby Swansea. Local leaders want a second Penderyn Distillery as part of their revitalization plan for a former copper works along the River Tawe, and the idea fits with Penderyn's plans for future expansion. We'll discuss the project with Welsh Whisky Company managing director Stephen Davies and look at Penderyn's long-term future on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, BenRiach's sale to Brown-Forman is complete - and that leaves just one of every four Scotch Whisky distilleries in Scottish hands. We'll also look at new whiskies from around the world, and find out why Bruce Springsteen keeps coming back to his favorite Dublin pub!


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 591: May 28, 2016

Sun, 29 May 2016 01:54:06 +0000

This weekend usually marks the beginning of summer, and many people will be heading for the beach - either for real or in their dreams. The entrepreneurs behind the new Beach Whiskey have those people in mind...people who want a dram at the beach, but think a heavy, spicy Bourbon or Single Malt might be too overpowering on a hot day. We'll talk about building a new whiskey brand with Smoke Wallin, Andrew McGinnis, country music star Jake Owen, and television's Billy Bush on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll have the latest on the WhistlePig Rye standoff in the news, along with details on new whiskies from Glen Grant and The Glenlivet, and more on the US debuts of new single malts from India. Finally, this week's tasting notes include three cask-strength whoppers...including the $300 Booker's Rye!


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WhiskyCast Episode 590: May 22, 2016

Mon, 23 May 2016 01:13:04 +0000

One of Scotland's newest distilleries opened its doors for the first time to visitors this week, though opportunities to visit InchDairnie Distillery in Fife will be few and far between. The state-of-the-art distillery will produce two different styles of malt whiskies - one for blending and one for use in its own single malts that won't be bottled until at least 2029, if founder Ian Palmer has his way. We'll take a tour of InchDairnie with Ian Palmer on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth and uncover more of InchDairnie's mysteries. In the news, WhistlePig Farm is in the middle of a dispute as founder Raj Bhakta is asking a Delaware court to block a vote by dissident investors to remove him. We'll have the details, along with your responses to last week's question - what's the most you've ever spent on a bottle of whisky?


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 589: May 14, 2016

Sun, 15 May 2016 02:52:52 +0000

Booker Noe passed away in 2004, but some of the whiskey he laid down shortly before his death is adding a new chapter to his legacy. This past week, Booker's son Fred filled the first bottle of Booker's Rye, an experimental whiskey only Booker and a handful of people at Jim Beam knew about for many years - and discovered long after his passing. It's one of two new whiskies that help make up what we're unofficially calling the "Booker Noe Trilogy" along with the 25th Anniversary edition of Booker's from 2014, and we'll talk about it with Fred Noe on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we'll have the latest on new whiskies from around the world, and one of the whiskies in this week's tasting notes may "enlighten" you a bit...


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WhiskyCast Episode 588: May 7, 2016

Sun, 08 May 2016 03:43:01 +0000

Jonathan Drew wants to take his success in the cigar business and expand into the spirits industry, and he plans to do it with the same unique style and drive that turned Drew Estate into a cult favorite among cigar lovers - including fans of the Pappy Van Winkle-branded cigars. His John Drew Brands range is heading to market with a Canadian Rye whisky, a rum, and his Brixton Mash Destroyer - a blend of Bourbon and rum. We'll meet Jonathan Drew on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, along with tasting notes for his rye whisky. In the news, Jim Rutledge and his partners have pulled the plug on the crowdfunding campaign for their new distillery after just five days, and he'll explain the reasons why. Another historic Kentucky distillery is being earmarked for restoration, while one of Ireland's historic whiskey brands is about to be sold and a distillery strike in Canada has come to an end.


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 587: April 30, 2016

Sun, 01 May 2016 19:21:59 +0000

The other night, one of the whiskey bars in Louisville held a "Jim Rutledge Tribute Night" to honor the retired Four Roses master distiller. Less than 24 hours later, Jim announced his plans to come out of retirement and start a $2 million crowdfunding campaign to build a new distillery near Louisville. We'll talk with Jim about his new project on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Brown-Forman is back in the Scotch Whisky business after 11 years with a $416 million deal to buy the BenRiach Distillery Company from Billy Walker and his partners, Compass Box is hoping to "enlighten" those who oppose transparency in Scotch whisky with two new bottlings, and Cleveland Whiskey's Tom Lix is using his "magic" maturation machine for a new range of finished whiskies.


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WhiskyCast Episode 586: April 23, 2016

Mon, 25 Apr 2016 02:17:17 +0000

Paul Hletlko is one of the leaders in North America's craft distilling movement, and the founder of FEW Spirits is in the middle of a distillery expansion that will triple his annual spirits production - in the heart of what was once the capital of America's temperance movement. We'll talk with Paul Hletko on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, and look at some of the highlights from this week's Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America convention and Independent Spirits Expo in Las Vegas during the news. Finally, we'll listen as one of today's hottest country music stars - and a budding whisky entrepreneur - pays tribute to Prince shortly after the music icon's death this week.


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WhiskyCast Episode 585: April 17, 2016

Sun, 17 Apr 2016 23:40:22 +0000

Japan's Hombo Shizu has been making whiskies off and on since 1949, and the company's whisky heritage claims a critical link to Masataka Taketsuru, the "father of Japanese whisky." Now, Hombo Shizu's Mars whiskies are back for good, and the company is beginning construction of a new distillery on the site of its original Kagoshima distillery on the southern tip of Japan while producing whisky full-time at its Shinshu distillery near Nagano. Mars whiskies are now starting to reach the US market, and will be available soon in Europe ... we'll discuss these developments with Hombo Shizu's Saki Umemara and Eric Swanson of Tokiwa Imports on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Kentucky's governor has signed a new law that loosens up some of the limits on the state's distillery visitor centers, Diageo is releasing several new North American whiskies, and there's no Canadian content in a Canadian celebrity's new whisky! We'll also share a special moment with you as a new Keeper of the Quaich finds out about his nomination!


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 584: April 10, 2016

Sun, 10 Apr 2016 05:28:09 +0000

The Whisky Sponge has been puncturing egos and tweaking the Scotch Whisky industry with impunity - and relative anonymity - for nearly three years, but on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, the Sponge publicly reveals his true identity for the first time. We don't want to spoil the surprise, but it's not "Jill Bumsden" and especially not "Dark Mollesty"! In the news, Luxco's plans for another Bourbon distillery in Bardstown, Kentucky have been confirmed as the longtime blender and bottler tries to lock in whiskey supplies for the future ... Crown Royal's distillery strike could last well into the summer ... and we'll look at the results of two recent whisky competitions.


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WhiskyCast Episode 583: April 3, 2016

Sun, 03 Apr 2016 17:05:00 +0000

A lot of trends come out of Portland, Oregon...and while the craft distilling movement didn't originate there, Portland's House Spirits helped jump-start the industry when Christian Krogstad started making gin, aquavit, and whisky in 2004. Last November, House Spirits moved into an all-new distillery with a goal of making its Westward Oregon Straight Malt Whisky a leader in the emerging American Single Malt category. Tom Mooney is president of House Spirits, and is also wrapping up a year as president of the American Craft Spirits Association. We'll talk with him on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Islay is mourning the passing of Kilchoman Distillery's John MacLellan, legislation to ease some of the restrictions on visitors centers at Kentucky's distilleries is headed for the Governor's desk, and we'll have details on a single malt matured in a cask first used for chili pepper sauce. No, it's not an April Fool's joke!


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 582: March 26, 2016

Sun, 27 Mar 2016 21:14:09 +0000

You'll see a lot of businesses with the "& Son" as part of the name, but rarely do we see businesses with "& Daughter" - let alone "& Daughters." The Last Drop doesn't have that in its name, but it has something more...Beanie Espey and Rebecca Jago have taken over the day-to-day management of the company from their fathers, longtime Scotch Whisky industry figures James Espey and Tom Jago. We'll talk with Beanie Espey about that transition and the latest Last Drop release - a 50-year-old double-matured blended Scotch - on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also look at the resurgence of Rye whiskey among Pennsylvania's craft distillers as they reclaim the state's distilling heritage that dates back to Colonial times, along with the details on Whistlepig Farm's newest release, a 15-year-old Rye finished in casks made from oak trees that came from the farm in Vermont. We'll also have the story of one man's goal to taste 366 drams in 366 days - on video, and for a good cause. 


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 581: March 19, 2016

Sun, 20 Mar 2016 04:59:27 +0000

After two years of victories for Pacific Rim whiskies, a single malt Scotch is back on top of the World Whiskies Awards. Old Pulteney's 1989 Vintage was named "World's Best Single Malt Whisky" in Whisky Magazine's annual World Whiskies Awards. Thursday night's announcement caused celebrations at the distillery in Wick and Inver House's main offices near Edinburgh. We'll discuss the results of this year's competition with judging panel chairman Neil Ridley, along with his plans to launch a new line of independent bottlings at the end of this month with his business partner under the "Exile Casks" brand. In the news, Heaven Hill takes "Distiller of the Year" in the Icons of Whisky Awards, Ardbeg shines some light on its new Dark Cove malt, and High West releases a "light" whiskey.


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 580: March 12, 2016

Sun, 13 Mar 2016 07:42:40 +0000

There was once a time when Ireland's single pot still whiskies were among the world's most popular drams, but a combination of changing tastes, politics, and other factors nearly destroyed the Irish Whiskey industry decades ago. Now, whisky lovers are rediscovering the heavier, oilier flavor of single pot still Irish whiskies, and one Irish historian has researched the origins and development of those whiskies. We'll talk with Fionnán O'Connor on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, along with a look at one of Ireland's newest distilleries, the William Grant & Sons-owned Tullamore Distillery. In the news, Scotch Whisky Association lawyers have won a battle in India, while Indian banks and opposition politicians are trying to keep Vijay Mallya from collecting his $75 million exit package from United Spirits. We'll also look at the week's new whiskies and a new place for tourists to learn more about Irish Whiskey in Killarney.


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WhiskyCast Episode 579: March 5, 2016

Sun, 06 Mar 2016 04:13:33 +0000

Adam Hannett has a tough job, though he wouldn't trade places with anyone for the world! He took over for the legendary Jim McEwan as head distiller at Bruichladdich following Jim's retirement last summer, and has just released his first bottling: Octomore 7.4 Virgin Oak. We'll talk with Adam about the future at Bruichladdich, what it's like to have your mentor living right next door to the distillery, and Bruichladdich's plans to make its recipes for the "Classic Laddie" more transparent starting next month. In the news, the Scotch Whisky Association has warned Bruichladdich to run those plans by UK regulators first, while nearby Lagavulin has unveiled its 200th anniversary bottling with a nod to the distant past. Teeling Whiskey is sending 12 different single barrel Irish whiskies to the US in time for St. Patrick's Day, Scotland's northernmost mainland distillery is releasing its first whisky, and we now know the new name for the restored Old Taylor Distillery in Kentucky.


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 578: February 28, 2016

Sun, 28 Feb 2016 21:00:34 +0000

There's been a lot of attention paid recently to women working in the whisky industry, but when Allisa Henley was promoted to Head Distiller at Tennessee's George Dickel Distillery last March, she just took over for John Lunn without even so much as a news release. While most people thought of her as being in charge of the distillery's visitor center, she had quietly been Lunn's understudy for a decade and stepped right into the role she had been training for - at the distillery just a few miles from where she grew up. We'll talk with Allisa on WhiskyCast In-Depth about the transition and the challenges of being a whiskey maker in the heart of the Bible Belt, especially since the Dickel distillery is located in a dry county. In the news, a new report projects American whiskey could outsell single malt Scotch worldwide as soon as 2020, with much of that demand for Bourbon and Tennessee whiskies. Whisky Magazine has announced the North American winners in the 2016 World Whisky Awards, and there's a surprise winner in the battle for "World's Best Bourbon" honors. Balcones Distilling in Texas fired up the stills at its new Waco distillery for the first time this week after taking home three Whisky Magazine awards, and we'll have your reaction to last week's interview with Balcones founder and former master distiller Chip Tate as he prepares to begin making whisky again at his new distillery. We'll also have more of your reaction to the Compass Box transparency campaign, along with tasting notes for two unique craft whiskies from Washi[...]


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WhiskyCast Episode 577: February 20, 2016

Sun, 21 Feb 2016 04:51:45 +0000

Chip Tate is about to get back into the whisky business, about 15 months after his acrimonious departure from Balcones Distilling, the Texas distillery he built from the ground up only to be forced out following a dispute with his business partners that led to restraining orders, lawsuits, and ultimately a settlement with a non-compete clause banning him from making whisky until March 5, 2016. Tate took the money from his Balcones buyout and is about to open his new Tate & Co. distillery in Waco, and is also building custom stills for other craft distillers. We'll talk with Chip Tate about his enforced hiatus from whisky-making, what he learned from the experience, and what he plans to do as soon as he can start firing up his new hand-made stills on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Compass Box has launched an online petition drive to persuade European Union regulators to allow more transparency in whisky labeling, and John Glaser is getting support from another Scotch whisky maverick distiller as Bruichladdich plans to test the limits of what it can disclose about one of its whiskies. Bushmills is releasing its first new whisky in eight years...a year after new owners acquired the Irish distillery, and we'll taste four new Irish whiskies in this week's tasting notes.


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WhiskyCast Episode 576: February 14, 2016

Sun, 14 Feb 2016 21:53:19 +0000

With oil prices in the doldrums, stocks sagging, and other forms of investments losing value, a number of investors are turning to rare whiskies as a viable investment option. Rare Whisky 101's tracking of UK whisky auctions shows the value of whiskies sold during 2015 gained 25% over 2014's auction results, and we'll discuss both the trend and the outlook with Andy Simpson of Rare Whisky 101 on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we have details on new whiskies from Tennessee, Scotland, and around the world, along with a new role for one of the whisky industry's leading ambassadors.


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WhiskyCast Episode 575: February 6, 2016

Sun, 07 Feb 2016 04:00:34 +0000

One of the Southern Hemisphere's biggest whisky festivals is coming up later this month, and DramFest 2016 caps off a busy few weeks for Michael Fraser Milne and the folks at the Whisky Galore shop in Christchurch, New Zealand. Last month, they finally moved into their new store - just down the street from the original shop condemned after the 2011 earthquake that caused widespread damage in Christchurch. This year's DramFest comes as whisky distilling is being revived in New Zealand two decades after the country's biggest distillery shut down, and we'll discuss DramFest, post-earthquake recovery, and New Zealand's whisky scene with Michael Fraser Milne on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, US whisky sales grew again during 2015 while the strong dollar kept a lid on exports of Bourbon and Tennessee Whiskey, while Suntory's early challenger for the most talked-about new whisky of 2016 reached the US. We'll have tasting notes for the Yamazaki Sherry Cask 2016 Edition and other world whiskies, too!


Media Files:
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WhiskyCast Episode 574: January 30, 2016

Sun, 31 Jan 2016 04:50:04 +0000

The debate over age statements on whiskies shows no sign of going away, but how does a brand decide to remove the age statement from its whiskey? Earlier this month, Heaven Hill announced that it would remove the 12-year-old age statement from its Elijah Craig Small Batch Bourbon and start making the whiskey with casks 8 to 12 years old. We'll discuss the reasons behind that move with Heaven Hill co-master distiller Denny Potter and longtime Heaven Hill executive Larry Kass on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth, along with the company's latest plans for expanding its Bernheim Distillery in Louisville to meet demand. In the news, Diageo plans to start focusing on more affordable whiskies in emerging markets because of currency exchange rates, Scotland's government is giving a boost to two distillery projects, and Whisky Magazine announces its Icons of Whisky Awards world whisky winners.


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WhiskyCast Episode 573: January 23, 2016

Sun, 24 Jan 2016 05:29:28 +0000

Drew Mayville's 36 years in the whisky business include stints as the final master blender at Seagram's and as Sazerac's master blender for Buffalo Trace and its other whiskies, as well as the Pappy Van Winkle whiskies. He was one of the featured presenters at the Victoria Whisky Festival, and joins us to discuss his career on this week's WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Stewart Laing and his sons have unveiled their plans for Islay's newest distillery...we'll have the latest on new whiskies from Kilchoman, Glenmorangie, GlenDronach, and Highland Queen, bid the Elijah Craig Small Batch's age statement farewell, and pay tribute to a unique craft distiller.


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WhiskyCast Episode 572: January 17, 2016

Mon, 18 Jan 2016 07:53:17 +0000

One of the most-discussed topics at this weekend's Victoria Whisky Festival was a National Post feature on whisky questioning the future of vintage whiskies, and whether the whisky boom has already reached its peak. One of the whiskies mentioned in the story was The Glenlivet's Founders Reserve, which is replacing The Glenlivet 12 in many markets around the world. We'll get the reaction from The Glenlivet's Ian Logan to that article, and what his colleagues at Chivas Brothers are doing to fight that perception on WhiskyCast In-Depth. We'll also look at the impact of international trade deals on whisky exports, new whiskies, and while they're not the same as the ones stolen last September during a New York City whisky show, Simon Brooking of Laphroaig has his green wellies back!


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