A specialised whisky company is looking to reach a wider pool of drinkers, with continuous liquid releases rather than small batch and single cask expressions for the first time in the company’s history
Atom Brands has launched two whisky brands with their rebrand of Darkness, formerly only limited edition releases, and the introduction of The Character of Islay Whisky Company.
Atom Brands owns, creates and produces innovative and high-growth multi-award-winning brands in the drinks industry, many of which have quickly become favourites of spirits enthusiasts and bartenders alike.
Sam Simmons, Head of Whisky at Atom Brands, said: ‘Atom Brands has built a global reputation as one of the world’s most adventurous independent bottlers and award-winning blenders. The challenge however has been that the single cask and micro batch nature of each release caused demand to always far out-strip supply.
‘Off the back of the success we’ve had with brands like That Boutique-y Whisky Company, we’ve had the confidence to lay down larger parcels of stock and now with Darkness 8yo and Aerolite Lyndsay 10yo we have been able to scale up our batches from micro to small batch and will be able to offer in-your-face sherry bomb whisky and elegant moreish peated style malt on an ongoing basis for the first time.’
The Character of Islay Whisky Company has launched with their inaugural expression, Aerolite Lyndsay, a 10 year old Islay peated single malt. Sourced from an undisclosed distillery on Islay, this complex whisky is matured in 70% ex-bourbon barrels and 25% Spanish oak sherry quarter casks, with the final 5% coming from specially selected ‘character’ casks from the same distillery.
Aerolite Lyndsay, is the first in a range of whiskies from The Character of Islay Whisky Company, that pay homage to the dual legacy of Islay; the spirit of the place and the spirit itself. Turning the romantic notions of Islay on their head each expression is a tongue in cheek take on the mythical legends and poetic licence brands take with their storytelling in whisky marketing, and instead shifts the focus firmly to the liquid itself.
The Character of Islay Whisky Company explores multifaceted fictional personalities found on the island and each release will have a unique personality based on stories, legends and experiences associated with Islay and its people. As the collection grows, other ages and ‘characters’ will be introduced into the range.
Aerolite Lyndsay is set to be available in 27 markets worldwide including Australia, the US and Europe. It will be officially launched to the trade at Whisky Live Paris on the weekend of 5-7 October.
In an effort to shake up the sherry cask whisky market with craft credentials, Darkness has been reimagined with a brand refresh marked by the launch of the new 8-year-old single malt. Originally available only as limited edition releases, this launch is the first continuous whisky from the Darkness brand.
The new range aims to ignite the world of Scotch whisky, bringing passion, craft and style to the forefront with an intensely indulgent flavour experience. In a market dominated by the major players in the spirits industry, Darkness will bring a craft offering, responding to both consumer demand for unique and carefully made spirits and offering a new spin on the growing trend for Sherry cask whisky which has seen 36% growth year on year.
The Darkness range is characterised by bold intensity, heavily influenced by the unique sherry cask finish. The 8-year-old single malt has first been matured in ex-bourbon barrels for eight years before spending no less than three months in specially-coopered Oloroso sherry octaves. These small bespoke casks allow for more interaction with the liquid than much larger sherry butts, leading to a much more heavily cask-influenced, intensely sherried and deeply coloured whisky.
Aimed at sherry cask whisky drinkers around the globe, the brand plans to launch the new range in 14 markets including the UK, Taiwan, China and Australia. Darkness will also be appearing at TWE Whisky Show 28th – 29th September in London.
Both releases are available now from Maverick Drinks in the UK and Atom Brands worldwide.
The Character of Islay Whisky Company launched in 2019 with Aerolite Lyndsay 10 year old single malt. The brand releases Islay whiskies that play on the mythical notions of the island, with tongue in cheek names and exceptional peat-forward liquid. Each expression explores legends and myths associated with the island and embodies a different fictional ‘character’.
Darkness launched in 2014, and was created to release highly sought-after, limited edition sherry cask whiskies from Scotland’s most loved distilleries. Each whisky in the range is matured for at least three months in specially-coopered sherry octave casks to impart maximum flavour. Following the brand redesign, the range has grown to include continuous craft whisky as well as limited edition releases.