A Week in Whisky: Home delivery continues

Peter Ranscombe rounds-up what’s been going down in the whisky scene in Scotland and beyond.

Holyrood Distillery in Edinburgh may be having to shut its courtyard bar in line with the latest coronavirus restrictions, but its collection and home delivery service is continuing.

Offers include its picnic gin package

It’s also still offering socially-distanced tours around the distillery.

Holyrood opened last year and is the first single malt distillery in Edinburgh’s city centre for almost 100 years.

The distillery is also continuing with its designer barrel programme, through which customers can specify every aspect of their cask, from its size and type of oak, down to the yeast and barley used.

Decanter smashes estimate

A decanter of Macallan Lalique 50 year old, the first release of the famous Lalique Six Pillars Collection, sold for £79,300 at Bonhams’ whisky sale in Edinburgh this week.

The whisky smashed its pre-sale estimate of between £60,000 and £80,000.

The sale made a total of £346,517, with 90% of the lots being sold.

Martin Green, Bonhams’ whisky specialist in Edinburgh, said: “The Macallan Lalique 50 year old is a very special bottle indeed, which rarely appears at auction, and I am not surprised there was so much interest from collectors nor that it sold for such an impressive sum.”

The decanter was part of a collection of Macallan bottles, the second part of which will be sold at Bonhams in Edinburgh on 9 December.

Stirling distillery plans revealed

Plans have been unveiled for a £15 million distillery in Stirling.

Michael Lunn, former chairman and chief executive of Whyte & Mackay, is the driving force behind the Wolfcraig project, alongside fellow directors Jamie Lunn and John Moore.

Alan Rutherford, former production director at Diageo, former Bacardi UK operations director Iain Lochhead, and master distiller Ian Macmillan are also involved in the project.

Lunn said: “Our distillery will encourage visitors and tourists to spend more time in and around Stirling, helping to boost both the local and national economies.

“Our research indicates the distillery could attract around 90,000 visitors in its first year given its proximity to Glasgow and Edinburgh.”

Oak odyssey

In “new releases” news this week, The GlenAllachie has unveiled its virgin oak series, featuring French, Spanish and Missouri’s Chinquapin wood.

Aye, I’ll admit it, I had to look up “Chinquapin” too.

Tomatin has opted for fino dry sherry butts for its latest release, a 2006 that spent 13 years maturing before being finished in the special casks.

Smokehead has also lifted the lid on its gift tin, containing three 50ml bottles – Smokehead Original, High Voltage and Rum Rebel.

News from further afield too, with Bordeaux-based drinks distributor BBC Spirits entering the UK market with its range of Japanese whiskies – and the company’s first Japanese gin, Etsu.

And finally…

The British Honey Company is fair buzzin’ after unveiling its limited-edition Warminster rye whiskey, made by The London Distillery Company.

Not entirely sure why it’s a “whiskey” and not a “whisky” – maybe it’s to make us do a double-take at the label and notice it’s made from rye?

The cask was laid down on 31 October, 2014.

Bottles, priced at £350 each, go on sale today from Master of Malt, as well as through the honey company’s website. Sweet.

Read more stories on Scottish Field’s whisky pages.