Diageo Special Releases 2021 Announced

Diageo has announced the lineup for this fall’s Special Releases, and they look exciting! This year’s releases, for the first time, are featuring artwork from a popular illustrator.

Each bottle will feature a different ‘Legend’’ that the master blender felt best represented the core characteristics of each chosen distillery. Theses legends being the mythical creatures that inhabit the lands surrounding each distillery. Each bottle will contain a QR code for an auditory tasting experience that will mix the mythical world.

The stories and Legends will be revealed later this autumn during their release! Until then, here’s the quick breakdown of what’s being released.

Singleton of Glendullan 19 Years Old

ABV: 54.6%

Region: Speyside

Cask: Refill American oak casks, finished in Cognac casks

Talisker 8 Years Old

ABV: 59.7%

Region: Island/ Isle of Skye

Cask: Heavily peated refill casks

Oban 12 Years Old

ABV: 56.2%

Region: Coastal Highland

Cask: Freshly charred American oak casks

Royal Lochnagar 16 Years Old

ABV: 57.5%

Region: Highland

Cask: American oak and European oak refill casks

Cardhu 14 Years Old

ABV: 55.5%

Region: Speyside

Casks: Refill American oak casks, finished in red wine casks

Mortlach 13 Years Old

ABV: 55.9%

Region: Speyside

Cask: Virgin and refill American oak casks

Lagavulin 12 Years Old

ABV: 56.5% ABV

Region: Islay

Cask: Refill American oak casks

Lagavulin 26 Years Old

ABV: 44.2%

Region: Islay

Cask: PX/oloroso-seasoned first-fill casks

Until these amazing looking releases come out, go check out some of the previous Diageo releases HERE.

Be Well. -Andrew

World Gin Award Winners

It’s that time of year again! Gin awards time!

I really enjoy going through the winners, seeing what ones I have tried and making notes of winners I have yet to try. There are so many categories that my list at the end is always big enough to keep me busy for a while! So many good looking gins this year. Sweden sweeping the London Dry category was very cool to see.

I thought I’d make a list of 2021 winners we currently have in stock. Maybe you can grab one that you have not had!

Edinburgh Gin coming in hot and taking multiple awards!

Edinburgh Gin – Rhubarb & Ginger

SILVER – Flavoured Gin

Bottled at 40%, this perfectly balanced juniper-forward gin is full of natural flavour. Aromas of rhubarb are complemented by a lift of spice, leading to a smooth, full finish.

Edinburgh Gin – Gooseberry & Elderflower

SILVER – Flavoured Gin

A deliciously refreshing and aromatic gin that harmonises tangy Gooseberry with sweet Elderflower creating a refreshing and balanced gin.

Edinburgh Gin – Raspberry

BRONZE – Flavoured Gin

It is distilled with five traditional gin botanicals and a combination of fresh Scottish raspberries and raspberry leaves to a create a perfectly balanced gin with an incredible depth of flavour.

Rock Rose Gin – Navy Strength

BEST IN SCOTLAND – Navy Strength

The higher ABV version of Rock Rose gives a strong warm pine release at the front of the drink with notes of lemon sherbet. The heart of the drink is very bold berries from the blaeberries, rowan and hawthorn. These give way to the deeper earthier notes that are hidden in the original Rock Rose, such as angelica and orris.

Hernö Gin – London Dry

GOLD – London Dry

Crafted from natural and carefully selected organic botanicals, Hernö Dry Gin is a round and smooth London dry gin diluted to 40,5% ABV. Hernö Dry Gin is awarded with IWSC World’s best London Dry Gin and World’s best Gin & Tonic but is also very enjoyable on its own.

Edinburgh Gin – Classic

SILVER – London Dry

Our classic London Dry style gin. A clean, zesty, juniper-forward gin which balances softness with bright citrus. Launched in 2010, this is our modern London Dry gin, with a nod to Scotland in its recipe including native plants and botanicals.

Nikka – Coffey Gin

SILVER – Contemporary Style Gin

Coffey Gin’s complexity is achieved through the perfect balance between 11 selected botanicals and the silky texture of Coffey distillates. The bright and zesty aroma originating from four kinds of Japanese citruses, Yuzu, Kabosu, Amanatsu and Shequasar, compliments the traditional gin botanicals of juniper berries, angelica, coriander seeds, lemon and orange peels.

Foragers – Yellow Label

BRONZE – Contemporary Style Gin

Starting with soft juniper tones, Foragers gently takes you to fresh, semi-sweetness of apple and elderberry, before giving way to incredible, subtle, unmistakable floral notes from gorse and heather flowers. This truly is an authentic expression of Britain and the terrior of North Wales.

Grab one of these or any other one of our many gins! Find your new G&T gin!

Til next time.


New Springbank and Longrow Releases

We are very excited to be receiving the new shipment of the Springbank 17y/o Madeira and Longrow 21. Springbank is easily one of our favourite distilleries, so to say we are a little excited would be an understatement! As one of the few family run distilleries, and one that does every step of the process in house, just makes them that more special.

We will have these available online for purchase shortly, so keep an eye out for that announcement. Until then, here is a breakdown of the two new releases.

Springbank 17 y/o Madeira – 47.8% – Limited to 9,200 bottles. 


Casks: 14 years Bourbon & Rum
3 years Fresh Madeira

Sweet and jammy. There are aromas of
parma violets, boiled sweets and buttery
tablet with a note of fennel. Sticky ginger
cake, strawberry jam with a tang of
grapefruit and lemon sherbet. There is a
familiar coastal saltiness on the nose.

The briny, maritime characteristics follow
through with light peat smoke. Sticky
toffee pudding, caramelised sugar and a
spicy, herbal hint of black cracked pepper
and tea leaves.

The finish is nutty, smooth and slightly
woody. Notes of walnuts and pecans with
subtle peat smoke to the end.

Longrow 21 y/o 2020 – 46% – 3,600 Bottles.


A sweet yet meaty dram with aromas
of glazed cherries and cured meats.
Stewed dark plum notes and chewy
black wine gums. Maple syrup and
crispy bacon with a medicinal influence
from the robust peat smoke. A vibrant
nose with a touch of zesty orange peel.

Sweet, smoky and waxy with a twist of
citrus. Caramel shortbread with
marzipan, lemon zest and a dusting of
icing sugar. Wax crayons and rich dried
fruits with a touch of clove spice.

Rich and plummy with flavours of black
forest gateaux, bitter chocolate and
soft dark fruits. There is a recognisable
cereal, earthy, farmyard characteristic
in the finish.

Have a look at our selection of other Campbeltown whiskies in the meantime!

Untamed Peat

Last week the peat powerhouse unveiled a new bottling to be added to their core range. Wee Beastie is bringing a new flare to the Ardbeg lineup.

The most notable change to the new bottling is the very different red foil top as opposed to normal less flashy dark top. In addition to that, Wee Beastie will wear it’s young age of 5 years old as a badge of honour! Not many whiskies out there have such a young whisky as part of their core range, let alone have the number printed on the label! While most companies usually try to hide their young age statement whiskies, Ardbeg is making it known that they are very proud of that 5 years.

They have definitely geared this one to the peat fanatics out there! Traditionally these heavily peated spirits are aged to tone down the intensity of the peat and medicinal flavours. That’s not the case with Wee Beastie. They are really turning those intense flavours up a few notches, noting that this bottling is intended to be “untamed by age”.

“I am sure that many Ardbeg fans will love this tongue tingling expression. The selected casks create a bottling that can be enjoyed neat or is a delicious main ingredient in a powerfully smoky cocktail.”

Ardbeg’s Director of Whisky Creation, Bill Lumsden.

The availability will be sometime in May and we will let you all know when we are to receive our stock. It will definitely be a welcomed distraction from the craziness of the outside world. We will for sure be experimenting with what super smoky cocktails we are able to come up with.

Images from Moet-Hennessy

International Wine and Spirits Competition Winners

All of us here are super pleased and proud that a few of our bottlings have taken home awards at this years IWSC!

As a company, we take great pride in bringing our customers the best products we can. So when we are sampling different casks to potentially be able to mature and bottle, we take great care in choosing something special! To be able to enter our carefully chosen whiskies in these competitions and take home awards just motivates us to bring our customers more! It makes us extremely happy when the outside world tastes and enjoys our offerings!

As much as we love our bottlings…we don’t want to be the only ones drinking them!! Please, share a glass with us!

Bellow is a bit about our Stalla Dhu range if you are not familiar:


A rare collection of small batch and single cask malts from Scotland’s finest distilleries.

First and second generation members of our family of independent bottlers carefully select the whiskies showing particular promise.

We begin by managing the wood and continue by housing the environment and casks that best affect the ageing to achieve the unique results we strive for.

We let the whisky slumber till the time is right and then select the correct ABV to bring a very special wee dram to you.

The following took home awards :

Stalla Dhu Speyside 40% – Silver 2019

Stalla Dhu Single Cask Saorsa Single Malt – Bronze 2019

Stalla Dhu Auchroisk 1997 19 YO 47% Single Malt – Bronze 2019

Stalla Dhu Single Cask Ardmore 60.5% Single Malt – Silver 2019

Many thanks to all of you whisky lovers out there! Click on the photos to purchase any of the bottles or just peruse through our huge selection of other spirits!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Diageo’s 2019 Special Releases Teased

Diageo will be releasing their 2019 Special Releases collection later this fall. A collection selected by Diageo master blender Dr Craig Wilson. ‘Rare by Nature’ is this years theme and will be a collection of 8 rare bottlings from the company’s different distilleries.

Even though they are not released yet and no prices available, Diageo have released what whiskies are on the list. Definitely some really exciting ones on the list that we can’t wait to try! None from Cao Ila or any blended malts this year, but we’re not complaining! Have a look and see what you think.

“Each transports you to its heartland, connecting you to that particular part of Scotland and the very people who shaped each dram.”

  • Dalwhinnie 30 Years Old – “An extra matured and unusual older expression which retains its undeniably gentle character.”
  • Lagavulin 12 Years Old – “A truly spirited, yet youthful expression from our iconic islay distillery, our home for over 200 years.”
  • Mortlach 26 Years Old – “The beast of Dufftown at its most impressive.”
  • Pittyvaich 29 Years Old – “A rare sighting from this ghost distillery that delivers a mature and smooth single malt.”
  • Talisker 15 Years Old – “A sweet, yet deep and spicy bottling layer with unmistakeable maritime flavors.
  • Cardhu 14 Years Old – “A supremely elegant and unique expression of our warm-hearted speyside scotch.”
  • Cragganmore 12 Years Old – “A complex and intriguing bottling that combines Speyside elegance with a touch of spice and smoke.”
  • The Singleton of Glen Ord 18 Years Old – “A different and delicious spicier expression previously never bottled.”

We will let you know later when more is released. Until then, happy drinking! 🙂

New Edinburgh Distillery!

The Holyrood distillery will be the first single malt whisky distillery in operation, in the centre of Edinburgh, since 1925!

Nestled in a 180 year old railway building at the edge of Holyrood Park, the distillery is set to officially launch on the 30th of July. Just in time for the festival. The distillery will offer guided tours and will house a visitor centre/shop. Currently they are producing a small range of gins that will be for sale in their shop, along with a selection of gifts and a private collection of vintage whiskies. The tours on offer at the moment range from a basic distillery tour, whisky/gin experiences to a whisky masterclass with their head distiller.

Holyrood Distillery is the outcome of the vision from Rob & Kelly Carpenter, who started the Canadian branch of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society, along with David Robertson, former Master Distiller at The Macallan! Together they wanted to bring back a distillery to the city they love and produce some top notch spirits along the way.

If you will be up in Edinburgh after the 30th try and pop in for a tour! Tell them whiskymerchant.com sent you!

Tickets can be booked at www.holyrooddistillery.co.uk