A new whisky inspired by outlaws has been designed to challenge the £4bn whisky industry.
Peatreekers is an innovative new whisky brand, which is set to challenge the traditional market by drawing on the spirit’s rebellious history, has been unveiled by an entrepreneurial young Scot.
Peatreekers whisky, a secret blend of premium Islay malts, pays tribute to the renegade Scots of centuries past who distilled their own magical ‘water of life’ in hidden glens and woodland, leaving their clothes ‘reeking’ from the smoke of their peat fires.
Hunted down by excise-men intent on cracking down on their illicit trade – and usually in search of a few bottles of their own in return for turning a blind eye – the outlaw distillers became known as ‘peatreekers’.
Now Edinburgh-based whisky enthusiast Calum Leslie has revived their memory and unique place in Scottish history, and launched Peatreekers Double Standard, a brand new blended malt scotch whisky (40% vol) that tips its hat to the ‘double standards’ of the old tax men.
Inspired by the independent and unorthodox distillers of the 18th century, the new ‘upstart’ brand challenges the sometimes stuffy image of the modern whisky industry by returning the spirit to its disruptive roots as a drink for all to enjoy.
Commenting on the launch of Peatreekers, Mr Leslie, Calum said: ‘For far too long whisky has been seen as a little bit ‘closed off’ from many, to be enjoyed by those with an often encyclopaedic knowledge and dare I say it a degree of superiority.
‘But rewind time, and whisky wasn’t at all like that. It was enjoyed by all, from all walks of life. In fact, it was quite rebellious.
‘The authorities certainly didn’t like it, but those renegade distillers – the peatreekers – often produced the finest whisky in the land.
‘Our aim is to bring the stories that reflect the darker side of whisky to life and remind today’s whisky drinkers of its roots. I believe that Peatreekers will appeal to a younger drinker and help open them up to the world of whisky in an engaging way.’
Peatreekers celebrates the spirit’s heritage; lovingly prepared at illicit stills using crisp, clear water and amid unspoiled Highland and Islands scenery by rebels who thumbed their noses at the establishment.
According to Scottish Field’s whisky specialistBlair Bowman, founder of World Whisky Day, the blend is the colour of antique brass, with a peaty nose that conjures up fresh wood shavings, honeysuckle and dried apricots with dusty leather books.
Spicy, smoky and warming, Peatreekers unique blend takes drinkers on a journey of boiled sweets mixed with chocolate, vanilla and warm peat fires, back to a rebellious age when whisky was the drink of the people.
Peakreekers is being launched in time for the festive market, with the first batch of 250 bottles containing a handwritten bottle number and signed by Calum to confirm authenticity.
These first 250 bottles also come with a Double Standard tasting miniature, so enthusiasts can savour the taste without cracking the seal on that potentially valuable Double Standard First Batch bottle.
He added: ‘Our burning passion is to bring the stories of the darker side of whisky back to life, to celebrate the rogues, the everyday man.
‘That means walking a different path, standing out and being different – just like the original peatreekers.’
Peatreekers is available online and in selected independents. RRP £42.00. For more information, visit www.peatreekers.com or alternatively email Calum@peatreekers.com call (confirm preferred contact number).