A pair of antique single cask whisky releases

An independent Scotch whisky firm has unveiled two antique single cask releases under its Xtra Old Particular Black Series.

Award-winning family business Douglas Laing & Co, which recently announced its acquisition of Strathearn Distillery in Perthshire, sas the two latest XOP Black bottlings ‘represent perhaps the two most iconic whisky regions – Islay and Speyside – and are amongst the finest single casks bottled in our 71-year history.’

The first, a single cask distilled at Islay’s Caol Ila Distillery in 1979, is said to be ‘exceptionally herbal, pelagic and mouth-puckeringly salted.’

The hogshead cask yielded just 160 bottles, at a natural cask strength of 51.2%.

Alongside the Caol Ila 40 Years Old offering is a hogshead from the Macallan Distillery, distilled in 1989 and bottled at 30 Years Old. Just 230 bottles of this XOP Black bottling are available, with tasting notes including ‘muscovado sugar, marzipan and oranges’.

Offered at natural cask strength of 46% and without colouring or chill-filtration, Douglas Laing & Co proclaim that these new releases are ‘as close as some will come to experiencing that rarest of pleasures – sampling a dram, straight from its cask, in the hallowed surroundings of a distillery warehouse.’

Chris Leggat, CEO, said: ‘This is an exceptional duo unveiled at an incredibly exciting time for Douglas Laing & Co. From two of Scotland’s best known and loved distilleries, our new XOP Black Series releases represent the absolute pinnacle of antique Scotch Whiskies, from casks selected at their peak of perfection by Fred Laing himself.

‘Only a tiny percentage of the whisky-loving community will experience the decades of maturation and impact of quality wood on these two rare gems, and we truly hope those individuals savour every last drop.’

The latest XOP Black Series bottlings – Caol Ila Vintage 1979 and Macallan Vintage 1989 – are expected to retail at £1500 and £4000 respectively at specialist spirits retailers globally.

For further details visit www.douglaslaing.com.