Gordon & MacPhail is celebrating winning gold in the Scotch whisky category of The Spirits Design Masters 2017, one of the most respected and high profile trade competitions in the industry.
The design was conceived for the company’s exceptionally rare wartime single cask bottling which was released as part of the company’s Private Collection range.
Every detail of Private Collection Glenlivet 1943 by Gordon & MacPhail alludes to the decades of experience and patience poured into nurturing the whisky to maturation. Launched in October 2017, it is one of the oldest and most exclusive single malt whiskies in the world.
Designed by Gordon & MacPhail, the whisky is presented in a bespoke handcrafted wooden box. The unique closure, a section of the meandering River Spey, represents both the journey through time and the physical journey of the cask from its place of birth at The Glenlivet Distillery to its final resting place in Gordon & MacPhail’s Elgin warehouses.
A four-tier oak wooden base is also dually symbolic. Four elements are used to create the whisky: water, barley, yeast, and wood. Four generations of the Urquhart family, owners of Gordon & MacPhail, nurtured this special cask for seven decades.
Taking centre stage inside the presentation box, atop the wooden base that also serves as an elevated plinth, sits the hand-blown bespoke decanter. Each individually numbered bottle is engraved and infilled with gold. The gold base and stopper have been engraved with the contour lines of the hills and glens surrounding The Glenlivet Distillery.
The inside of the box is lined with a plush lining, also engraved with contours.
Nestled within is an eloquent and visually atmospheric commemorative book written by whisky author Jonny McCormick. Opposite lies a traditionally printed certificate of authenticity signed and numbered by Stephen Rankin, director and member of the Urquhart family.
Margaret Ho, designer at Gordon & MacPhail, said: ‘We wanted to communicate the rarity and exclusivity of this incredible whisky through the packaging’s touchpoints.
‘We also created an immersive and sensory experience before the consumer took their first long-anticipated taste. From the touch of the engraved contour lines to the sound of the decanter closure releasing the first delicious notes of the whisky inside, the packaging excites the full range of senses.’
Ian Chapman, director of marketing for Gordon & MacPhail, added: ‘This award is testament to the skills and dedication of our in-house design and wider team who worked incredibly hard to capture the unique essence and heritage of this rare single malt whisky.
‘Laid down by the first and second generation of the Urquhart family and bottled by the fourth generation, this spirit has an incredible story to tell. Distilled when the world was in the midst of rationing and divided in conflict, whisky today is a wonderfully unifying drink and we wanted the packaging to communicate not only its exclusivity but also its journey through the past 70 years.’