Quite a few cool whisky features today. First off and, okay so I know it’s not technically whisky, and I know it’s not even technically about the spirit within the bottle, but Creative Review has a wonderful feature on the very sexy labels used by “Dodd’s Gin” a new, brand from The London Distillery Company (which will eventually make some whisky). Check out the feature.

Onto whisky. Communist whisky, in fact, in which Salon takes a visit to the Pradlo Distillery. A very good piece, well worth absorbing:

“The Scottish peat was put on trucks and trains. The destination was Communist-era Czechoslovakia. The recipient: apparatchiks desperate for a decent whisky. The journey beyond the Iron Curtain during the Cold War turned out to be the easy part. When the batch arrived, the Czech distillers had only a faint idea how to make whisky — and it took years to get things right.

The whisky bottles that inspired Whisky Galore, the famous Compton Mackenzie novel (and later a film), are being auctioned:

The collectors’ items were part of the cargo on the 8,000-tonne SS Politician, which sank off the shores of Eriskay, in the outer Hebrides, in 1941… Glasgow auction website, Scotch Whisky Auctions, will take bids for the bottles until 5 May.

The Wall Street Journal catches up with the rest of the world, and takes a look at the ascent of Japanese whisky:

‘Despite these delightful diversions, time and again I came back to the Hakushu I had first tried at Kanga-an. There is something indefinably Japanese about it—a meticulousness, a clarity of palate and a fanatical purity. “Why all this effort,” White says, “the extreme range in wood influences, the wide variety of spirit styles? Because this is whisky for the Japanese people; it must fit into the Japanese lifestyle and sensibility.”‘

Finally, heard of Annandale whisky distillery? Didn’t think so. But it’s about to reopen after 90 years:

“It was built in the early 1830s and was later run by Johnnie Walker, but closed down in 1919. Restoration work got under way two years ago and is due for completion this month, with an opening in early 2014 planned. In 2007, the site, which was on the buildings at risk register, was bought by Prof David Thomson and his wife Theresa.”

Always a good day when a distillery rises from the grave. Go zombie distilleries!


I've written about (and reviewed) whisky for Whisky Magazine, among other publications, and have been a whisky judge for competitions including the World Whiskies Awards. I've done other writing too: several mass market genre novels, a few short stories, including for BBC Radio 4. For my day job (I know, I don't get out much) I work in digital content. Follow me on Instagram.com/maltreview/ or Twitter.com/MaltReview. Generally, my tastes lean towards ex-sherry cask and ex-wine cask influences on the spirit, but I'm not so fussed as long as the whisky's gone into good wood.

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