Lately, it looks like all of the showiest limited-edition whiskies are bourbons and ryes. They take up probably the most house on liquor retailer cabinets and have closely on Instagram feeds and bar lists. Though loads of whiskey lovers drink scotch, the fabled spirit has misplaced a little bit of its luster of late. Toiling beneath a 25 p.c import tariff within the U.S. since October 2018, the scotch trade has largely been mendacity low. Distillers ran down the clock within the hopes of a change in commerce coverage. Provide chain points and manufacturing interruptions as a result of pandemic have additionally taken a toll on transatlantic whisky commerce. Fortunately, issues are leveling off for scotch producers, so you may get some unbelievable limited-edition scotches.
In June, U.S. Commerce Consultant Katherine Tai and UK Worldwide Commerce Secretary Liz Truss agreed to droop the tariffs on single malt scotch (and a bunch of different merchandise) for 5 years. Distilleries and bottling strains that closed throughout the lockdowns of 2020 are actually again up and working, churning out loads of the great things.
These are all nice causes to deal with your self to a few of the latest scotches to his the scene, if thirst for one thing new wasn’t sufficient. Search for these scrumptious single malts (and one knockout mix) from Islay, the Highlands, Campbeltown, and extra.
The Finest New Restricted-Version Scotches of 2021
1. Lagavulin Offerman Version: Guinness Cask End
Parks and Recreation star Nick Offerman made no secret of his IRL love for Lagavulin when in character as Ron Swanson; it was the prickly division director’s favourite scotch too. So when Offerman teamed up with the distillery to launch his personal 11-year-old single malt in 2019, TV and whisky followers alike embraced it. Now the collaborators are again with a brand new whisky. This one is completed for 4 months in beer barrels from Guinness’s Open Gate Brewery in Maryland. Take an in depth take a look at the entrance label and also you’ll see the well-known Guinness toucans. They’re flying over a tiny Offerman and his father, Ric, fishing in a wee rowboat.
2. Dewar’s 19-12 months-Outdated The Champion’s Version
This spring, Dewar’s introduced a three-year sponsorship of the U.S. Open golf event, and one part of that partnership is, in fact, whisky. The inaugural launch in Dewar’s particular U.S. Open sequence features a mix of malt and grain whiskies, all aged at the least 19 years. It was completed in ex-bourbon casks beneath the knowledgeable hand of grasp blender Stephanie Macleod. The bottle, in a modern silver field, hit cabinets in Might and might nonetheless be discovered at retail. Even higher: A portion of gross sales helps the USGA Basis.
3. Ardbeg Scorch
In the course of the annual Fèis Ìle, the Islay Pageant of Malt and Music, every of the island’s distilleries releases a limited-edition whisky. Not often do these bottlings make their manner stateside, besides within the case of Ardbeg. It presents each a cask-strength launch for its fan membership, the Ardbeg Committee, and a extra extensively accessible model at 46 p.c ABV. Impressed by dragon mythology, this yr’s whisky, Ardbeg Scorch, was aged in closely charred ex-bourbon casks. It yields an intensely oak-forward character that mingles properly with the distillery’s attribute oily, ashy peat.
4. Talisker 43-12 months-Outdated Xpedition Oak: The Atlantic Problem
The oldest launch ever to return from the Isle of Skye distillery, this whisky is appropriately pricy—although nonetheless a relative cut price in comparison with equally aged scotches from higher-profile producers. Xpedition Oak has all of the signature hallmarks of Talisker—candy smoke, sea salt, and peppery spice—and chances are you’ll style a little bit one thing further too: The whisky was completed in casks made with wooden staves that sailed alongside the route of the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Problem, an annual rowing competitors that raises cash for charity. Simply 1,830 bottles—an homage to the distillery’s founding yr—can be found, with bottle primary set to be auctioned to assist Parley for the Oceans later this yr.
5. Ardnamurchan Small Batch AD/03.21:02
Most new distilleries can’t afford to attend greater than the required three-year ageing interval to launch their first scotches, however Ardnamurchan—owned by unbiased bottler Adelphi Picks—doubled that timeframe for its debut. After opening in 2014, the distant Highland distillery, which sits on a slim, finger-like peninsula within the nation’s far west, has allowed this reasonably peated single malt to mature in sherry and bourbon casks for round six years earlier than bottling it at 46.8 p.c ABV. The primary batch of about 5,000 bottles simply hit the U.S. market, each traceable by way of blockchain. And when you’re searching for much more, there’s additionally a U.S.-only single cask of unpeated Ardnamurchan ($110) at a hefty cask energy of 59.4% ABV.
6. Glen Scotia Campbeltown Malts Pageant Bordeaux End
Tiny Campbeltown was as soon as the beating coronary heart of scotch whisky manufacturing, however at the moment has simply three distilleries—Springbank, Glengyle, and Glen Scotia. The latter creates a sturdy, oily spirit that takes effectively to only about any sort of cask. Although most maturation takes place in ex-bourbon barrels, the annual restricted version, bottled for the native whisky pageant, sometimes incorporates a particular end, together with rum, tawny port, and—this yr—pink wine casks from Médoc in Bordeaux. Bottled at a cask energy of 56.1% ABV, it tastes of fruit, honey, and the distillery’s signature saltwater be aware.
[$100; in stores and online at glenscotia.com]
7. Dalmore 12-12 months-Outdated Sherry Cask Choose
There’s an abundance of 12-year-old scotches in the marketplace, however when Dalmore releases a brand new providing, whisky followers concentrate. The luxe Highland distillery launched this single malt solely at Complete Wine & Extra shops within the U.S. earlier this yr, the place it can stay till at the least February 2022. Initially aged in ex-bourbon casks, the whisky—overseen by legendary grasp distiller Richard Paterson—spent a two-year ending interval in sherry casks that had been custom-designed for Dalmore by three cooperages (Paez, Tevasa, and Vasyma) and seasoned with a particular PX-oloroso mix.
For entry to unique gear movies, superstar interviews, and extra, subscribe on YouTube!