Mora’s X Kilchoman US East Coast Tour

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Kilchoman whisky is one of our favorite whiskys that we carry at the shop. They make a great selection of single-malt whiskys.

Kilchoman Whiskey on sale

Kilchoman Distillery is a small family run farm distillery based on the rugged west coast of Islay. The distillery was established by Anthony Wills in 2005: the idea was to build a new distillery which took whisky production back to its roots. Kilchoman produces its 100% Islay single malt from barley which is grown in fields surrounding the distillery and completes every stage of the whisky-making process at the distillery, including traditional floor malting. Kilchoman is the only distillery in Scotland to do this.

James and Peter Wills, sons of Kilchoman Founder Anthony Wills will travel from Boston to Washington DC in their custom Land Rover making stops along the way to share a few drams and a story or two of Kilchoman, Islay, and growing up in a distillery.

We’re very, very excited to be included as a stop on the Kilchoman East Coast tour! The Wills brothers will roll up to East Setauket in their custom Kilchoman Land Rover on September 30th, and will be at the shop for a Kilchoman whisky tasting from 1:30 to 2:30 PM. We encourage all of our whisky-loving fans to attend – and if you can’t be there, we’ll be streaming it on Facebook Live for you to watch later!

To get in the mood for this awesome event, shop our Kilchoman products here!

 

 

Ardbeg boldly goes where no Scotch has gone before…

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Except the bottles in Scottie’s locker. Experiments in effects of microgravity on terpene production in scotch whiskey yields impressive results!

Ardbeg – Award Winning Cult Malt Whisky’s Pioneering World First Space Experiment Reveals a New Taste Dimension – Scotch Whisky News

September 14th, 2015

AA Ardbeg

Award winning cult malt whisky’s pioneering world first space experiment reveals a new taste dimension 

— Ardbeg’s research may also signal a way for whisky industry experts to build a database of ageing whiskies –

The results of Ardbeg’s pioneering space mission, released this week, in which the Distillery became the first ever to send spirit into orbit, have far-reaching implications for the unorthodox single malt – and perhaps for the entire whisky industry, experts say.

Nearly four years ago, Ardbeg distillate was sent into space as part of an experiment to investigate how micro-gravity (near zero gravity) would affect the behaviour of terpenes, the building blocks of flavour for many foods and wines as well as whisky spirits.  This maturation experiment was undertaken as research into terpenes in micro-gravity was limited.  Its findings, [revealed this week], are groundbreaking.  They pave the way for unprecedented flavour profiles, particularly for Ardbeg, the world’s peatiest, smokiest, Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky.

The experiment began in October 2011, when vials containing Ardbeg new-make spirit distillate and shards of Ardbeg casks, were sent to the U.S. National Lab on the International Space Station by the Distillery’s partner, U.S. space research company NanoRacks LLC.  Some 200 miles above Earth, the vials orbited the planet at 17,227 miles per hour, for almost three years. Following their return to Earth, the samples were analysed alongside control samples that had been kept at the Ardbeg Distillery by Dr Bill Lumsden, Ardbeg’s Director of Distilling and Whisky Creation, independent whisky experts and scientists.

In three of the four stages of analysis, major differences were identified between the two sets of samples.  Dr Bill said: “The space samples were noticeably different. When I nosed and tasted the space samples, it became clear that much more of Ardbeg’s smoky, phenolic character shone through – to reveal a different set of smoky flavours which I have not encountered here on earth before.” Dr Bill added: “Ardbeg already has a complex character, but the results of our experiment show that there is potentially even more complexity that we can uncover, to reveal a different side to the whisky.”

Further analysis, looking at ratios of different types of wood extractive compounds, found significant differences between the two sets of samples – demonstrating that gravity has a very real effect on the maturation of spirit. Dr Bill commented “Our findings may also one day have significant implications for the whisky industry as a whole.  In the future, the altered range of wood extractions could lead scientists to be able to detail the ratios of compounds expected in whiskies of a certain age.”

Jeffrey Manber, CEO of NanoRacks who partnered with Ardbeg on this experiment, commented “”It’s hard to find companies willing to be pioneers… To have a partner like Ardbeg that is willing to make this sort of commitment augurs well for the future of commercial space research into flavourings and what it changes for consumer products in general.”

Ardbeg would like to thank NASA and the Space Station Program for allowing this experiment to be undertaken.

Mora’s September Single Malt Scotch of the Month Club: Gordon & MacPhail’s Glentauchers 16 Year Old Single Malt Scotch (1991)

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Gordon & MacPhail
Glentauchers 16 Year Old Single Malt Scotch (1991), 86 Proof
Speyside, Scotland

glentauchers161991

Gordon & MacPhail: “In partnership with each respective distillery, all whiskies in Gordon & MacPhail’s Distillery Labels range are uniquely labeled. In years gone by, many of these unique designs were used ‘officially’ to bottle the whisky under license from the distillery. Today these trusted relationships with distillers enables Gordon & MacPhail to bottle whiskies at various ages, strengths and vintages—all with their unique distillery label.” –Gordon & MacPhail, independent bottlers

The Distillery: “The Glentauchers distillery was founded during the height of the ‘Pattison Crisis’ at the end of the 19th century. Unlike many other distilleries that were founded around the time, they have managed to survive until this day. Nevertheless, the ‘brand’ is fairly obscure; Glentauchers has always been used almost exclusively for blending.” –Malt Madness, online

“The Glentauchers is a Speyside Scottish whisky distillery founded in 1897 by James Buchanan (the creator of the ‘Black & White’ and ‘Buchanan’ blends, not the 1850s U.S. President) and whisky trader W. P. Lowrie of Glasgow. Lowrie didn’t last long in the mix but the distillery and its spirit continued, primarily for use in blends. It was mothballed by United Distillers in 1985, and then sold to Allied Distillers in 1989. Allied was later acquired by Pernod Ricard. Whisky from this distillery is rarely released in the single malt format, with the only recent example being an official bottling of a 15 Year Old released in 2000. Yet there are independent bottlings available, primarily a semi-official bottling released by Gordon & MacPhail in the 1990s, such as the 16 Year Old, 43% abv version described here.” -Whiskey Reviewer, online

The Whisky:  First Fill and Refill Sherry Casks. “The nose retains a good sweetness with juicy peels and chewy sultanas. Notes of stemmy hay and a greenness pertain a good freshness. There are notes of mocchaccino and a little nuttiness. The palate is rich and full with creamy vanilla fudge. A little toasted oak spice and cereal notes with sherried raisins. The finish is warm and malty with creamy fudge.” – Master of Malt
Tasting Notes from The Drink Shop, online
Undiluted
Nose:  Sweet, sherry with a hint of smokiness. Some herbal, leafy
notes also present with a sweet malty background.
Palate: Rich, cream sherry notes with a little drying peppery edge. Some toasted malt flavours present.

With Water
Nose: Leafy aromas with sherry, some chocolate and nutty notes with a hint of malt and oats.
Palate: Spices initially with the sherry slowly developing. A subtle smoky note.

 

 

 

Mora’s August Single Malt Scotch of the Month Club: Highland Park Dark Origins

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Highland Park Dark Origins
Single Malt Scotch, 93.6 Proof
Highlands, Scotland

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The Distillery: “Since being named The Best Spirit in the World (three times), we have also received World’s Best Single Malt for Highland Park 21 years old and the Ultimate Spirit in 2013 for Highland Park 25 years old. This is the first time a spirit has been awarded a full 100 point score in the Ultimate Spirits Challenge. The rich, succulent, complexity of this exceptional single malt inspires passion in single malt enthusiasts everywhere. It has balance, character and provenance and, in that, epitomises all that is great about single malt Scotch whisky.” —Highland Park

The Whiskey: “Highland Park Dark Origins is a new core bottling that celebrates the early days of Magnus Eunson’s illicit distilling on Orkney, back before the distillery was even founded in 1798. Magnus worked as a butcher and church official by day, but by night he was a legendary whisky smuggler and distiller outwitting the excisemen.

“To honour their hero (the Batman of the Orkney Islands, if you will), Highland Park have created a whisky with a suitably ‘dark’ character. Using 80% first-fill Sherry casks (20% refill) – 60% are first-fill European oak, with 20% being first-fill American oak – an exciting, spicy, chocolatey whisky has been produced.” —Master of Malt

Tasting Notes from The Chaps at Master of Malt:
Nose: Dusty baking spices and cocoa at first, cinnamon, vanilla, dates. Coffee cream Revels (possibly a couple of the orange ones too), a touch of blackcurrant/liquorice, plus butterscotch and an interplay between milk and dark chocolate.
Palate: Sweet, fragrant peat emerges with nutty melted milk chocolate and a little orange alongside some pastries.
Finish: Long and sweet, a little dry chocolate, just a hint of that heather smoke, then salivating.
Overall: Rounded first-fill Sherry notes come from both the European and American oak casks. This is a great, chocolate-y addition of a (teenage) no age statement release.

Mora’s July Single Malt Scotch of the Month Club: Edradour 10 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whiskey

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edradour10

Edradour
10 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whiskey, 86 proof
Highland Region, Scotland

The Distillery: “Edradour, Scotland’s smallest distillery is the last original ‘farm’ distillery in Perthshire and nestled within a pocket glen in the hills above Pitlochry in the Southern Highlands on the banks of the Edradour Burn. It was built in the early nineteenth century, and seems hardly to have changed in the last 170 years. Looking at the distillery from the breath-taking surrounding landscapes, it is not unlike stepping back into a scene from Brigadoon. The stream is so ancient that its name is thought to be derived from the Gaelic Edred dodhar, ‘the stream of King Edred’. The little wooden bridge which straddles the Edradour burn offers a picturesque view of the distillery, taking in the quaint white-washed buildings of the distillery, the mash and still house, and the old malt barn.” –The Distillery

The Process: “On the inside, precious little has changed either. There’s the same wooden equipment which is used to mash and ferment the whisky in the same time-honored ways. There are the smallest copper stills in Scotland – the smallest permissible by law. The tiny copper stills, the smallest legally allowed, are responsible for the authentic character of the spirit and in the background, the original spirit safe is where the heart of the run is selected for maturation. The curved necks of the copper stills are so important to the character of the spirit that they remain the same today as they have always been. Our Morton refrigerator used in the distilling process was new-fangled in its day, of course, but is now the only working model of its kind left in the industry.”

“Edradour is hand made today as it was over 150 years ago by just three men who are devoted to the time-honored methods of whisky making. Using skills handed down over the generations, the men of Edradour distillery follow the standards of those who have gone before. Indeed equipment used at the distillery has remained unchanged since the day the distillery opened and is only just capable of producing commercial quantities. Only 12 casks of whisky are produced a week, making Edradour single malt a rare pleasure for a fortunate few.” -The Distillery

The Whiskey: “Edradour is one of Scotland’s smallest distilleries and at the heart of the range, this 10 year old Eastern Highlander is a rather unique single malt, a decidedly rum-like dram with a thick mouthfeel.” -Master of Malt

Tasting Notes

One of Scotland’s most endearingly different malts! Golden in the glass. Delicious honey notes with sugared almonds and a hint of oloroso. A decidedly rum-like dram with a thick and creamy, slightly oily mouthfeel and a really stylish finish.

Nose: Wet seaweed, roasted peanuts, dried fruits – cranberries, stale
Christmas cake, sea salt, pork scratching, sugared almonds, stewed apples, oven-baked meringue.
Palate: Salted peanuts, salted syrup, very sickly tree sap, crab apples, Demerara sugar, apple strudel. Sweetens with water.
Finish: Very short, still really sweet, grilled banana fritter.
Comments: Very sweet, deep with a nice touch of oak.

Mora’s June Single Malt Scotch of the Month Club: Arran Sauternes Cask Finish Single Malt Scotch

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The Arran Malt
Sauternes Cask Finish Single Malt Scotch, 100 Proof
Isle of Arran, Highlands, Scotland

arransauternescask

The Distillery & Methods: “A dynamic new force in the Scotch whisky industry, Isle of Arran Distillers is one of the few remaining independent distilleries in Scotland. Based at Lochranza on the Isle of Arran, one of the most beautiful and famous in Scotland which lies off the West Coast between Ayrshire and Kintyre, Arran is a unique island known as ‘Scotland in Miniature’, for it has all of the scenery of Scotland, with mountains and lowlands, glens, lochs and royal castles (including one at Lochranza). Early in the 19th century, there were more than 50 whisky distilleries on Arran, most of them illegal and carefully hidden from the eyes of the taxmen. The malt from Arran was shipped to the mainland and enjoyed by the gentry who regularly ‘took the Arran waters’. It was acclaimed at the time as the best in Scotland, rivaled only by those from the ‘Glen of Livet’.” –The Distillery

The Process: “Arran Single Malt Whisky is made exclusively from unpeated Scottish barley, which is malted and then fermented using a proprietary strain of yeast. Once the barley has been fermented, the wash is distilled twice – first through Arran’s copper-pot wash still and then again through Arran’s copper-pot spirit still. The stills were custom designed, says MacTaggart, and “shaped to allow the lighter vapors to come up through the stills.” As a result, Arran Single Malt Scotch Whisky has an appreciably softer and more delicate flavor profile as compared to other Scotch whiskies.” –Caskers, online

The Whisky: “Arran Single Malt Whisky Sauternes Cask Finish was matured for approximately eight years in traditional oak casks. Following its initial beauty rest, the whisky was finished in used Sauternes casks sourced from an artisan producer of the iconic Bordeaux sweet white wine.” –Caskers, online

Tasting Notes by The Chaps at Master of Malt
Nose: Initially acacia honey but then opening up to apricots, bananas and pears. With time a floral elegance presents itself.
Palate: Sweet but cut with warm spice. Lemon zest announces itself with the addition of water and a slight saltiness plays with this dram’s sweet character.
Finish: Seville orange, Sauternes and an once of honey in a crisp finish.

 

Mora’s May Single Malt Scotch of the Month Club: Craigellachie 13 Year Old Single Malt Scotch

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Craigellachie
13 Year Old Single Malt Scotch, 92 Proof
Speyside, Scotland

craigellachie13

The Distillery: “The Craigellachie distillery was built in 1891 by Craigellachie Distillery Co. Limited, a group of blenders and merchants led by Alexander Edward… During the years that followed ownership passed to Peter Mackie (in 1916), the Distillery Company Limited (in 1927) and SMD (in 1930). The transfer to SMD marked the beginning of a period of stability for Craigellachie; apart from a reconstruction in 1964-65 during which the number of pot stills was doubled, relatively little happened at the distillery. Then, in 1998, the Craigellachie distillery was sold to John Dewar & Sons – owners of MacDuff and Aberfeldy and themselves part of the Bacardi drinks conglomerate… Craigellachie produces quite some whisky, but it isn’t a ‘high profile’ distillery by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, the nearby town of Craigellachie and the Craigellachie Hotel are probably more famous than the distillery.”

“…The location of the town in the heart of the Speyside region (where the rivers Fiddich and Spey meet) makes it an excellent location for a ‘base camp’ for whisky hunters. The Craigellachie distillery itself (most of it fairly ‘functional’ as it was refurbushed in the 1960’s) does not have a visitor centre, but most whisky tourists will most likely be more interested in that other distillery in Craigellachie anyway; Macallan.” -Caskers, online

The Whisky:  Not your typical Speyside! Some say it’s Craigellachie’s insistence on using “worm tubs” for the cooling, condensing process that contributes to its slightly-left of typical Speyside profile—they’re one of the only distilleries left in Scotland who do. Others say that’s mostly bluster. We say it’s worth trying and deciding for yourself!

Bottling Note: “One of the three official Craigellachie bottlings released in 2014, their 13 year old single malt Scotch whisky handsomely shows off the bold, robust character of the distillery’s output. Oodles of dynamic fruit notes with a distinctive current of smoke running through the middle. Single malt Craigellachie hasn’t been seen much outside of indie bottlings recently, so this is an ace return to our glasses from the distillery!” – Master of Malt, online

Tasting Notes from Whisky Gospel, online
Nose: First thing that comes to mind is that it’s very meaty and chewy, some nuts and cream, struck matches air & fire, light and fresh sulphur – it’s not that harsh sulphur that we often encounter (like in some Glen Scotia for example) and it’s iintertwined with apples and light fruits sweetness and overall a very fresh and gentle nose. With time, the suplhur and fireworks/matches get stronger but still mild and sweet.
Palate: Nuts, malt, sulphur and sweet apples
Finish: Mild burning sensation, sweet apples (and bit of cloves) at first which turns to gentle sweetness.

 

Mora’s April Single Malt Scotch of the Month Club: Aberlour 16 Year Old Double Cask Single Malt Scotch

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Aberlour
16 Year Old Double Cask Single Malt Scotch, 86 Proof
Speyside, Scotland

aberlour16doublecask

The Distillery: “The Aberlour Distillery is at the heart of Speyside, the country’s premier whisky-making region. No fewer than half of Scotland’s malt distilleries are located in Speyside, which is renowned for producing whiskies of subtle depth and elegance. Situated at the junction of the rivers Lour and Spey, the distillery is surrounded by glorious scenery, dominated by the rugged peaks of Ben Rinnes a short distance away. Pure spring water for making the whisky is drawn from the Lour, and the maturing spirit in the warehouse beneficially inhales the moist Speyside air. Aberlour is an ancient place as well as a beautiful one. For more than 1,400 years there has been a community there and signs of its long heritage are all around, from the age-old oak trees above Linn Falls to the mysterious standing stones on Fairy Hill. At the distillery, nature, tradition and local craftsmanship combine to create a great malt whisky—the spirit of Aberlour…” –The Distillery

Double Casking:  “It is during the maturation process that the developing whisky takes on its individual characteristics. Much of this depends on the length of time the whisky is allowed to mature and the type of casks used. The whisky is matured separately in specially selected ex-bourbon casks and ex-sherry butts. When it has come to age, the whisky from the two sets of casks is brought together for the first time, and the different flavours and textures are subtly merged. The American bourbon casks produce a sweet vanilla-like aroma and golden color, which varies in intensity according to the length of period of maturation. Whisky matured in ex-sherry casks is more full-bodied, with sweeter, spicier Oloroso overtones and a rich, amber hue. From this intricate process of double casking emerges a single malt of rewarding complexity and character.” -The Distillery

IWSC-Silver-Outstanding-Medal

Silver Medal, Outstanding
Scotch Single Malt – Speyside – 2014
International Wine & Spirit Competition

sfmedalgold

Gold Medal
Single Malt Scotch – 13 to 19 Yrs – 2013
San Francisco World Spirits Competition

The Whisky: “With the depth and complexity that comes from being matured for 16 years in a combination of first fill oak Bourbon casks and the finest Sherry butts, this expression’s warm fruity notes are enriched by an engagingly spicy sweetness.” –The Distillery

90-95 Points Wine Enthusiast December 2009
“The bouquet is austere and leathery with curious aromas of beeswax, vegetable oil and oaky resin. Palate entry is focused on the resin; midpalate is splendidly multilayered and offers elements of black pepper, dried orange blossom, honeysuckle, dried fruit, sage, fennel and confections. Aftertaste is deep and unabashedly sweet and honeyed.”

 

 

Mora’s March Single Malt Scotch of the Month Club: Gordon & MacPhail’s Ardmore 15 Year

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Gordon & MacPhail
Ardmore 15 Year Old Single Malt Scotch, 86 Proof
Speyside, Scotland

ardmoregm

Gordon & MacPhail: “In partnership with each respective distillery, all whiskies in Gordon & MacPhail’s Distillery Labels range are uniquely labeled. In years gone by, many of these unique designs were used ‘officially’ to bottle the whisky under license from the distillery. Today these trusted relationships with distillers enables Gordon & MacPhail to bottle whiskies at various ages, strengths and vintages—all with their unique distillery label.” –Gordon & MacPhail, independent bottlers

The History: “Built in 1898, Adam Teacher established the distillery to ensure a good supply of whisky for Teachers blended whisky. The build followed a surge of demand for Teachers products and was part of an extensive expansion of the company, including an international marketing campaign. Lying just below Knockandy Hill, alongside the railway line between Inverness and Aberdeen, Ardmore was one of the last remaining distilleries to rely on coal powered fires to heat its stills and did not convert to steam ’til 2003… In 2005, Beam Global became the new owners after buying twenty wine and spirit companies from Allied Domecq, for five billion dollars. Shortly after the acquisition, Ardmore’s capacity was increased from 3 to 5.1 million litres and in 2007 its own bottling was, at last, released, namely Ardmore Traditional… One of the largest distilleries in Scotland, Ardmore is also the site for large scientific research laboratories. The whisky is mostly quite peated, but a small amount of un-peated whisky is released during a few weeks yearly in the shape of Ardmore Ardlair, though this is used exclusively in various blends.” —Master of Malt

Tasting Notes from Gordon & MacPhail
Color: Dark straw.
Body: Light.
Finish: Long, sweet and a hint of peat smoke.
Cask Type: First fill Bourbon barrels.
Style: Light, yet easy drinking.

Without Water: Aroma— Light and fresh – some freshly cut grass. A delicate peat note emerges and a pronounced hint of menthol. Taste— Some spice – mouth warming. A delicate sweet cured edge develops. A subtle ashy edge becomes apparent.

With Water: Aroma— Light estery notes – fresh and fruity. With some Sherry influences and hints of lemon zest. Taste— Subtle spices – ground pepper. Creamy with a subtle sweetness. Defined malty influences and a very subtle hint of ash.
–Gordon & MacPhail