Cheers to 5 Years - Our 5th Anniversary Tasting Evenings

Cask Trade

Since the very start of my time with Cask Trade, it was clear that this is a company that aims to support the whisky industry. Our founder – Simon Aron - truly believes that all whisky should end up in a bottle and drunk, with our customers reflecting this. To this day around half of the casks we sell are to independent bottlers.

We started with four of us in one office, which doubled up as our tasting room in Linen Hall on Regent Street a little over five years ago. Now we have 25 of us across four offices, including Hong Kong.

Five years on, having sold over 10,000 casks from around 170 different distilleries, we wanted to share a liquid story of Cask Trade by delving into our enormous library of cask samples and inviting some friends to join us.

The Story of Five Years

The main stay of Cask Trade’s business has been whiskies aged 5 to 15 years of age, this trip down memory lane showcased the best of these. Younger casks from the likes of Mortlach and Bunnahabhain were tasted alongside old and rares, such as a 1997 Aldunie (non naming rights Kininvie) and a 1997 cask from the closed Caperdonich distillery.

Our guests on the first evening, Lucy Britner from Agile publishing and Clinton Cawood, particularly liked the Speyside Distillery 2015. They thought it truly lived up to its name as a quintessential Speyside single malt with plenty of fruit and honey.

Our second tasting welcomed compliance guru Richard Legg, who having worked for nearly ten years for Atom Brands, has his own consultancy - Distilled Knowledge. It was the 1997 Springbank sold through our Auction Your Cask platform that stood out for him. In contrast, he felt the 1993 Springbank was a little tired, a perfect example of how choosing the right time to bottle a cask requires the appropriate expertise. Towards the end of the tasting we discovered Richard had a penchant for Armagnac, so we were thrilled to share a sample from a 1989 cask we sold to a bottler last year.

On an evening for journalists; Matt Chambers, David Pierce and Steve May all came in together to taste alongside Matt Mackay from Dunphail distillery. As well as with being astonished by the breadth of samples Cask Trade had dealt with over the years, it was the quality and rarity of some of the more unusual samples which really stood out to them. From a delicate floral Littlemill, to a big rich 1992 Uitvlugt rum from Guyana. Matt was particularly impressed by a North of Scotland sample from his birth year in the early 1970’s.

A Few Special Samples

Our founder Simon has one distillery he favours beyond all others, and Cask Trade has been lucky enough to care for several fabulous Springbank casks over the years. A few choice samples, which were Simon’s favourites, were added to the end of the tasting giving people a clear taste of what drives Simon within this special industry of ours. The best of the Springbank samples was a green, mucky looking dram which tasted sublime - lots of sweetness and complexity and of course that Campbeltown maritime salinity.

Thank you to all who attended the tastings, if the casks are as varied and exciting as those we’ve managed in the first five years we are in for a great future.