Refined Rum Revolution

Refined Rum Revolution

Yo ho ho and a cask of rum!

Rum

What is rum? Is it white, or clear, and the essential ingredient to a much-loved Mojito and Daiquiri cocktails? Is it spiced and perfect when paired with a mixer like ginger beer or coke? Or, is rum dark and best enjoyed neat?

Rum is all of these things. Its versatility is one of the reasons for huge market growth which is forecast to continue over the next five years and beyond.

Welcome to the rum revolution

Rewind 40 years or so to when the first whiskies were being put into single casks aged in different wood.

Rum is now being matured in much the same way as whisky and it’s all about the wood. Sherry butts, wine barrels and Sauternes casks are all being used to age rum. These are to be sold in individually numbered, limited edition bottles.

However, the exciting thing about rum is there is a much wider variety available from around the world. as opposed to the fantastic but small regions of Scotland. This means more choice, more flavours and much more variety; albeit cask rum is only available to buy in small quantities.

Rum is following in the footsteps of cask-strength whisky. we believe this will be an exciting journey for connoisseurs, enthusiasts and the rum-curious.

Rums roots

Rum is the oldest distilled spirit. It was first made in the Caribbean and South America, before New England, and now it’s being made and enjoyed worldwide. Craft rum is increasingly becoming a firm favourite of whisky and spirit connoisseurs. Distillers continue to drive experimentation in the category and propel premiumisation.

Independent bottlers are seeing a demand for aged rum. Consumers are getting a thirst for an exciting and extensive range of flavours and ages from around the world.

The next big thing

For more than a decade, rum has been seen by many experts as the spirit that hasn’t quite broken through. However, in the last couple of years this seems to have changed. As with whisky it takes a little time for its popularity to expand from the experts to the new cognoscenti. then in turn from them to the general public. For proof of this, one just has to look at the expansion of rum on our shop shelves.

The audience is already becoming established as more and more limited edition bottles come to market, regular rum tastings are being hosted and even auctions are taking place.

When Cask Trade started in 2018 cask rum didn’t feature on the stock list. but now it’s an important part of the portfolio because of the demand.

Investment-grade

With the ascendance of Scotch whisky well and truly established the question is, what’s next? It’s perhaps not a matter of what’s next, but rather what is going to join Scotch at the top table. With gin being a white spirit, although it is popular, there is no asset to invest in and, by nature, gin can be produced quickly and easily. There is no waiting time, and it is this waiting time that gives the opportunity for an investment.

There has been an even greater expansion in the specialist retailers. Small batch rums are frequently seen and single cask, cask strength offerings sell out very quickly in a manner very reminiscent of whisky. The difference at the moment is that there are fewer well-known rum distilleries than there are global whisky distilleries by quite some way. As the demand rises, production is going to take some time to catch up. Added to this there are, as with whisky, closed distilleries like Caroni, and cult distilleries like Hampden. The bottle auction prices of these rums have increased dramatically over the last couple of years. And so the investment opportunities become obvious. It’s not a matter of the possibility of rum being the next big thing, simply a matter of where on the curve will you get in? Welcome to the rum revolution!

So far this year, Cask Trade has invested more than £500,000 in single cask rum following a demand from independent bottlers as consumers get a taste for it.

Managing Director of Cask Trade, Simon Aron, is confident cask-strength rum will have investment value in time but, as yet, this is untested.

“If rum was to follow the same path as whisky as it gets older and rarer it should appreciate in value. It’s difficult to know if this will happen in the same way as we are really at the beginning of the market. I am confident it will appreciate with age, we just don’t know at what rate. It was the same as with whisky about 40 years ago,” says Simon, who explains Cask Trade has bought rum casks from 15 different countries. These include those in South America, Central America, the Caribbean and the Indian Ocean.

Wish you were here?

Top tip

Barbados is the birthplace of rum, and it’s also where you’ll find the world’s finest distillery, Foursquare. This artisanal, family-run distillery produces legendary rum with a dry, rich, spice-forward style that is simply extraordinary. Their beautiful rum is naturally more aligned with cask strength styles, so it could be an obvious investment choice.

Among the fine rum casks available on the current stock list, the 2007 barrel of Foursquare Barbados Rum stands out.

Like with everything sold by Cask Trade, all rum casks are re-gauged and tasted by our spirits masters. The rum casks purchased have traceable provenance and are stored in bonded warehouses in the UK and will finish their life aging in a more temperate climate.

All the rums available are powerful and very high ABV and can be diluted in order to produce more bottles and add to the value of the cask.

The Cask Trade team are big believers in rum in terms of the taste, variety and quality and see rum casks as an extension of the portfolio moving forward.

Could cask rum add a little spice to your investment portfolio?

Tasting notes

Cask Trade’s Keeper of the Quaich and all-round spirits expert, Sir Colin Hampden-White, has had the pleasure of sampling some of our new cask rum. Like whisky, rum differs in style and so he has grouped these together as Fruity & Sweet, Complex & Aromatic, Funky and Estery.

Fruity & Sweet

Barbados Rum 2007 (Foursquare Distillery)

Nose: Orange marmalade, orchard fruits, wildflowers, coconut water

Palate: Orange chocolate, honeysuckle, apricot jam

Guyana Rum 2010 (Diamond Distillery)

Nose: Juicy white grape gummies, kumquats, candied ginger, banana fritters

Palate: Coconut shavings, grapefruit syrup, violet candies

Trinidad Rum 2010 (T.D.L. Distillery)

Nose: Banana cake, green mangoes, vanilla and creamy

Palate: Roasted almonds, pepper, chilli chocolate, hint of beeswax

Complex & Aromatic

Belize Rum 2006 (Travellers Distillery)

Nose: Vanilla sponge cake, roasted nuts, beef stock, tar

Palate: Sweet like marshmallow, accompanied with espresso coffee and honey-roasted nuts, stewed apples

Dominican Republic Rum 2010 (Acoholes Finos Dominicanos Distillery)

Nose: Cocoa, deep-roasted coffee beans, tangy syrup, eucalyptus ointment, nutmeg

Palate: Cigar box, tobacco, maple-smoked bacon, crème brûlée

Nicaragua Rum 2000 (Compania Licorera de Nicaragua Distillery)

Nose: Warm spices, cinnamon bun, pencil shavings, old wooden furniture, meringue

Palate: Chewing tobacco, aniseed, bonfire smoke, demerara sugar

Funky & Estery

Guyana Rum 2002 (Diamond Distillery)

Nose: Fermented fruits, rosehip wine, violets, lambic beer

Palate: Candied pineapple, sugar frosting, cherry liqueur, ripe melons

Jamaica Rum 2007 (Clarendon Estate Distillery)

Nose: Floral, white grapes, bandages, ink, fresh cane juice

Palate: Dampened cloth, musty, banana fritters, quince jelly

Line 'em up...

Newsflash

New to the price list:

 2010 Mauritius Rum from La Bourdonnaise Distillery in sherry butt

2013 Reunion Rum from Savanna Distillery in red wine barrels

2006 and 2010 Barbados Rum from Foursquare Distillery in Sauternes barrels

To find out more about Rum Cask Investment, contact The Masters today!

There’s Something About a Secret Speyside…

There’s Something About a Secret Speyside…

Secret Speyside samples

Psst!…Can you keep a secret?

Would you like to get your hands on secret Speyside 12-year-old whisky?

We are very excited to be able to offer a parcel of limited-edition casks from an unnamed Speyside distillery.

Secret Speyside 12-year-old

From December 2008, this special Speyside 12-year-old comes from an unnamed Speyside distillery.

What we can tell you is the cask influence on the whisky has been magnificent and it could come from any number of well-known distilleries in the region. The spirit is very good quality and really epitomizes Speyside malt whisky.

As the colour shows, it has spent 12 years in bourbon hogsheads and it has taken on a great nose and flavour.

Ready for drinking now, it will only get better with age!

Three varieties

The beauty of this whisky is the hard part is done for you. Matured in bourbon hogsheads for 12 years it has now been re-casked into three varieties. All 82 casks are now filled to the brim because the angels have already had their share.

Ideal for bottlers as well as investors who can opt to take it to 15 years (three-year hold) or an 18 years old (six-year hold). In fact, we believe it can go longer to 21 years because of the reset at 12 years.

Cask of whisky

Three cask varietals:

  1. Refill oak (hogsheads & barrels) – This will give the least oak influence, retaining the style and flavour for some time and continuing maturation much as it would have done had the casks not been vatted. It could be kept for several years and allowed to further mature. Because the whisky is ready now for drinking it can be bottled now or at any point in the future.

  2. First fill bourbon barrels – These will perhaps have the greatest influence on flavour, the bourbon barrels will add a lot of oak and vanilla flavourings. The fudge and oak spice qualities will grow with the distillate fading a little. These barrels would be great bottled anytime from 6 months – to 9 years into the future.

  3. Second fill sherry hogsheads – Having been used in the finishing process previously these casks will retain much of their ability to give flavour and colour, without completely overwhelming the spirit. We would expect these to begin to mature after 12-18 months and continue for 9+ years.

Samples of the original whisky are available to taste. These samples won’t have changed much as they were only filled in the first two weeks of March 2021.

Originally distilled at 63% ABV, now at 57.6% ABV. This is cask strength typical, classic Speyside single malt.

Available from £4,000 per cask (£37.50 per RLA).

Interested to hear more about the secret Speyside? Get back to us soon before word gets out. Shhh!

Tasting Notes

Nose:
Sweet at first with a cereal note mixed with vanilla fudge and red apple. Touches of apple skin and honeysuckle come through after a short while and sweet oak. There is very little nose prickle, and the whisky is smooth and well balanced. With a little air, there are hints of dried apricot and the vanilla fudge is joined by sponge cake. There are more savoury aromas of gorse flowers and a touch of oiliness when left to air for a while.

Palate:
Very smooth and rich on the palate for a high strength whisky. Viscous and mouth-filling with a lovely mix of sweeter vanilla, honey and floral notes with spice and a touch of chilli heat. The oak comes through towards the back of the palate and is sweet and well balanced. Some baked fruit sits through the mid-palate bringing all the components together.

Finish:
This whisky has a very long finish for a 13-year-old. Predominantly spicy with sweet toasty oak. The chilli heat persists right the way through the finish which has waves of sweet and savoury flavours until it becomes dry at the very end.

Conclusion:
A complex, rich and balanced whisky already, especially for a 12-year-old Speyside. It has a great mouthfeel and a very satisfying palate and finish. It could be bottled now and will only gain complexity in cask.

Tasting Notes by Sir Colin Hampden-White.

 

Meet the Masters – John Wong

Meet the Masters – John Wong

John and his dram

Friendship and bar-hopping with whisky nerds in his hometown in Hong Kong are the two things that first ignited Sales & Marketing Executive John’s passion for whisky…

How long have you worked for Cask Trade?

“I started in September 2020.”

What first ignited your passion for Whisky?
“Friendship. It all started a few years ago; I use to go bar-hopping almost every other day back in Hong Kong. Gradually became very good friends with some local whisky lovers and bar owners. Some of them have later become mentors of my whisky journey, and I am always grateful for that. Whisky is our common language and it is simply an inseparable part of my life now.”

What are your top three favourite Scotch whiskies and why?
“Bowmore “Bicentenary”, #315, 56.2%, bottled for Federico Minetti.
To me, this bottle represents the pinnacle of whisky-making – unrivalled distillate from 1960s Bowmore, perfect balance of age and cask influence. It was also a pioneering move to bottle this at cask strength single cask at that time (1979). A truly captivating liquid gem, powerful and explosive, a symphony of phenolic fatty peat, exotic fruit bomb, quince jelly, brine, with an oily body like an ointment that cures everything.”

“Ledaig 2008/2018 53.3%.
This is the first cask I have ever bottled myself – sentimental value, and of course really good liquid as well!”

“Port Charlotte 2011 Single Cask.
Also a first – the first cask I bought from my boss Simon Aron! This cask is still maturing gracefully in Scotland, I truly believe Port Charlotte is producing very promising whisky, that could potentially become legendary malts. There are often malty notes, dry hay, oiliness, farmy hints accompanied by ashy peat smoke in Port Charlotte – no wonder some connoisseurs call Port Charlotte “mini-Brora’!”

What are your top three favourite World whiskies and why?
‘Hanyu’ 131.2″ ‘Magic carpet in a sweetie shop’ bottled by the SMWS.
A magical whisky indeed, you either love it or hate it. It is very heavily sherried which I am normally not particularly fond of, but this bottle presents waves after waves of savory sherry notes: leather, tobacco, liquorice, plum jam, dried dates… the list goes on and on!”

“Teeling 1991 49.8% bottled for The Whisky Exchange.
This is fruit punch and liquid dessert – pure fruitiness and happiness.”

“Smögen 2011/2019, 62.2%, OB single cask for Sweden.
An intriguing young whisky from Sweden. It surprisingly resembles an aged Highland malt – gentle smoke, oily, minerals, sandalwood, and hints of yellow fruits. Very interesting!”

What are your favourite flavours? Which aspects of whisky are the most important for you?
“There are a few flavour profiles that hit the sweet spot for me: guava and ripe mangoes for fruity whiskies; lapsang souchong (woodfire-smoked black tea), kippers and tar for sherried peaty drams; I also particularly enjoy whiskies which I describe as having “old-school” Highland genes: beeswax, dry hay, minerals and a hint of smoke. I can be annoyingly picky when it comes to whisky!”

Your favourite whisky cocktail?
“A Talisker 10 yo Mint Julep – if you’re putting up with Hong Kong’s heat and humidity you probably would have picked the same. I prefer using Talisker to the traditional bourbon, the extra maritime and peppery twist makes it a perfect summer cocktail.”

Whisky with water or straight cask strength?
“Why not both?”

What do you like most about Cask Trade?
“The people! Before I joined Cask Trade I was actually a customer, and I was deeply impressed by the team’s ethos, expertise, and most importantly an unparalleled passion for whisky! I still remember the first time I visited Cask Trade’s office as a customer. I spent the whole afternoon there having really geeky chats over great drams with the team – I guess this would be the best testimonial ever?”

Why should people invest in Whisky Casks?
“We live in an ever-changing world now; more and more people are considering investing in whisky casks as an alternative to more traditional investments. Whisky cask investment has coupled an enjoyable hobby with promising expected returns. Most importantly it is truly an unforgettable experience – being able to taste, sample, or even bottle your investment!”

To find out more about what Cask Trade can do for you, don’t hesitate to contact the team today and let’s talk whisky!

Meet the Masters – Jack Crozier

Meet the Masters – Jack Crozier

Jack Crozier

Understanding the effort and pure passion that goes into making single malt scotch, coupled with the taste of a vintage 18-year-old expression was what lured our new Sales and Marketing Executive Manager Jack into the exciting world of whisky!

How long have you worked for Cask Trade?
I’ve just joined the team here at Cask Trade within the last month after spending the last few years working for whisky brands at Edrington-Beam Suntory and Pernod Ricard.

What first ignited your passion for Whisky?
I spent about 5 years working in hospitality whilst at University, working predominantly in cocktail bars back home in Scotland where we got to play around with some incredible whiskies. I remember one particular whisky tasting up in Dundee where I first heard about all the effort and passion that goes into making a single malt scotch and got to try my first 18-year-old whisky, after that I was hooked!

What are your top three favourite Scotch whiskies and why?
My favourite whiskies change with whichever way the wind is blowing but I’ve tried to pick out a few of my favourite distilleries:
Bowmore – There hasn’t been a whisky that I’ve tried from Bowmore that I haven’t loved. Their 15yo is the perfect balance between salted Islay peat and rich, chewy spice.
Highland Park – Another peated whisky but a completely different style of peat to Islay whiskies. The heather, honey sweetness of the 12yo is perfect for mixing while their 18yo is my favourite bottle that I have at home.
Arran – A much younger distillery in the grand scheme of things, they have released some interesting finishes over the last few years. The Amarone finish in particular is well worth searching for.

What are your top three favourite World whiskies and why?
Midleton – The Spot range of Irish Pot Still Whiskeys from Midleton in Cork are incredible. The apple notes from Green Spot make the PERFECT whiskey highball.
Suntory – We can’t really mention world whiskies without talking about Japan. Suntory make some of the most exclusive whiskies in the world but their Chita Single Grain which you can pick up in lots of British supermarkets is one of my favourites. Super creamy, buttery and far too easy to drink.
Starward – Australian and Whisky aren’t two words that you’d normally stick together but Starward are changing that. Their whisky is young, usually only a few years old but being matured in wine barrels in the heat of Melbourne makes their whisky so enjoyable already. Really interested to see what they come out with in the next few years.

What are your favourite flavours? Which aspects of whisky are the most important for you?
I’ve been really enjoying trying peated whiskies from different regions of Scotland and seeing the effect that the different peats used in the malting process have on flavour. One of the best things about whisky is that once you’ve found a particular flavour or style that you like, there will be countless other whiskies out there around that style that you can explore.

Your favourite whisky cocktail?
Highballs all day every day. I also love anything that pairs super smoky whiskies with fresh red berry flavours. Try sticking Laphroaig in a French martini…

Whisky with water or straight cask strength?
Totally depends on the whisky, most cask strength whiskies will benefit from adding a couple of drops of water in to open them up but always worth trying them neat first.

What do you like most about Cask Trade?
Whisky investment is completely new territory to the vast majority of investors out there so you need to work with a company that is both knowledgeable and transparent. Cask Trade will guide you through the entire process of cask investment, from selecting the perfect casks based on your goals, to managing your portfolio for you through its entire lifespan. Being totally transparent on pricing between private clients and our network of independent bottlers means that you know you’re getting a fair price.

Why should people invest in Whisky Casks?
There’s a real thrill to owning your own cask of whisky. You’re not just sticking your money into a stocks and shares ISA and hoping the numbers on the screen go in the right direction, you’re buying something tangible that has been made with real craft and passion. It helps that the value of whisky has been improving dramatically over the last 10 years!

To find out more about what Cask Trade can do for you, don’t hesitate to contact the team today and let’s talk whisky!

Rum Appreciation

Rum Appreciation

Rum casks

In recent years, single cask rum has been favoured by many a whisky connoisseur as a “malternative“. Rum is produced by a process of fermentation and distillation, followed by aging in oak casks. You may notice this is comparable to whisky to a large extent. The raw material of rum typically comes from sugarcane by-products, such as molasses, or directly from fresh sugarcane juice (rhum agricole). This highly depends on the region of production.

The Caribbean and Latin America have a long history of being recognised as the cradle of famed rum producers. Although in the modern age, great rums are produced just about everywhere in the world.

Many whisky-lovers have encountered a common problem when they first dive into the world of rum, as there is little to no universal standards or classifications in rum. For example, Jamaican rum has different tiers of ester levels in their liquid and Guyana rum uses various usage of stills; pot stills, column stills, or even wooden stills…

Fortunately, our knowledgeable team at Cask Trade are on hand to answer any queries you may have surrounding rum and rum cask investment. What’s more, we can help you to understand which casks to buy for whatever purpose suits you. Be it for investment, bottling or purely for your enjoyment, get in touch with us. We will embark on the journey of rum with you!

To find out more about Rum Cask Investment, contact The Masters today!

Meet The Masters – Lee Tomlinson

Meet The Masters – Lee Tomlinson

Meet the Masters - Lee Tomlinson

Cask Trade Director Lee welcomed the world of whisky after being put through a vigorous tasting induction of some cask strength scotch; from that moment he never looked back, and this experience alone was enough to convince him to diverge his career path from wine to whisky…

How long have you worked for Cask Trade?
From the beginning!

What first ignited your passion for Whisky?
I was working in the wine industry, with a retailer who also owned a famous whisky store. As part of the training, I spent a day at our whisky store, and after being put through a vigorous tasting induction of cask strength whiskies, I asked to move to work in that store…

What are your top three favourite Scotch whiskies and why?
Not necessarily the best three I have tasted, but three that linger in my memory. In no particular order:
Auchentoshan 1979, 32-year-old. A whisky with possibly one of the best noses I’ve had the pleasure to try.

Glen Ord 25 years old. If I were to give one whisky that describes my perfect style of whisky this would be it. Heather, honey a hint of peat.
Talisker 57 degrees North. This comes to mind as I know they have recently discontinued it. For me this was one of my go-to whiskies, Talisker is perhaps one of my favourite distilleries, at high strength and affordable, winner!

What are your top three favourite World whiskies and why?
Again in no order and I’ll limit to just the distilleries –
– Paul John based in India
– Mackmyra from Sweden 
– Finally, I’ll go with an English distillery, though I’m torn between St Georges in Norfolk and the Cotswolds Distillery – although, I’m more excited by my local distillery White Peak in Derbyshire.

What are your favourite flavours? Which aspects of whisky are the most important for you?
Probably flavours most people would associate with the Highlands and coastal regions, so light peat, salt, honey, wax. I’m not a fan of overly cask-influenced whisky, and although the trend at the moment is towards dark, heavily sherried whisky, I would rather drink a whisky matured in a refill sherry cask with more of the distillery character.

Your favourite whisky cocktail?
A good Rob Roy!

Whisky with water or straight cask strength?
Depends very much on the whisky; some cask strength whiskies benefit from water others really don’t. I’d always try neat to begin.

What do you like most about Cask Trade?
The team we have is fantastic, everyone is passionate about whisky and most buy casks themselves, so they are invested emotionally and financially much like our clients.

Why should people invest in Whisky Casks?
The ease of purchase and subsequent sale cannot be overestimated in terms of importance to any buyer. We make the process as inclusive as the client wants, whether a whisky expert or complete novice.

To find out more about what Cask Trade can do for you, don’t hesitate to contact the team today and let’s talk whisky!

Meet The Masters – Jessica Simmons

Meet The Masters – Jessica Simmons

 

Meet the Masters - Jessica Simmons

Working in the alcohol business runs in the family for our new Sales & Marketing Executive Manager Jessica; her father’s background in the Beer Industry is what spurred her on to pursue a career in spirits and more importantly, whisky!

How long have you worked for Cask Trade?
About a month now!

What first ignited your passion for Whisky?
I have always been interested in the alcohol industry as my father is in the Beer Industry. But, my love for whisky really ignited when I started working for Master of Malt five years ago. I was able to discover there is a lot more to whisky than just heavy peat! Once I started tasting I never looked back!

What are your top three favourite Scotch whiskies and why?
Glenfarclas 25-year-old – great winter dram, love all the chocolate, nutty and Christmas cake flavours.
Glenkinchie 12-year-old – lovely summer evening dram with lots of honey and apple notes, easy light drinking.
Auchentoshan 18-year-old – another Lowland with zesty and floral notes, alongside some vanilla. 

What are your top three favourite World whiskies and why?
Nikka from the Barrel is my all-time favourite, so easy to enjoy in the evening over a good film. 
Milk and Honey Single Malt from Israel – love the honey and chocolate notes.
Cotswolds Single Malt – another of my favourites, fruity, floral, citrusy, a breakfast whisky! 

What are your favourite flavours? Which aspects of whisky are the most important for you?
I love the fruity and zesty flavours, as well as honey and vanilla, but also in the winter enjoy the sherry cask finishes and more of a heavier dram. I like exploring all different flavours and picking up on the cask influence, I look to alternative casks that whisky has been matured in.

Your favourite whisky cocktail?
A Rob Roy or an Old Fashioned!

Whisky with water or straight cask strength?
Always taste first straight, but I do like to add a drop of water to just fully open the flavours.

What do you like most about Cask Trade?
The honesty and transparency in which we deal with our customers. Being genuine in our processes and helping people enjoy the world of whisky and investing. The team are great, all of us bringing together our knowledge and love of whisky from different points of view and past experiences.  

Why should people invest in Whisky Casks?
It is one of the alternative assets which does appreciate with age and therefore why not! It is a keen market at the moment, and a fun way of investing, being able to taste and see your investment and watch it mature is something that is very special.

To find out more about what Cask Trade can do for you, don’t hesitate to contact the team today and let’s talk whisky!

Meet the Masters – Conor Strang

Meet the Masters – Conor Strang

Conor enjoying a festive dram

It all started with a Glengoyne Whisky and Chocolate tour for our Operations Manager Conor, and from then he’s never looked back…

How long have you worked for Cask Trade?
I’ve been with the company since June 2020.

What first ignited your passion for Whisky?
I’m actually half Scottish and tend to head back to my roots most years. One summer I went to visit Glengoyne and took the Whisky and Chocolate tasting tour. It was marvellous; from then on, my passion for whisky was well and truly ignited! When I got home, I straight away went online to purchase a few bottles, and my collection thus grew from there.

What are your top three favourite whiskies and why?
1. Clynelish – I like the fact that it bears plenty of orchard fruit plus loads of waxiness, which is my favourite flavour in whisky. Also, it’s from a coastal Highland distillery which I usually enjoy.
2. Springbank – They’re traditional and still do everything the old fashion way. They make three different types of whisky and all are fantastic!
3. Ben Nevis – Rich and fruity, they are one of the most distinctive and characterful whiskies currently being made in Scotland.

What are your favourite flavours? Which aspects of whisky are the most important for you?
As I said I love waxy whiskies, which can usually be found in older whiskies from the early ‘80s and even older, but are also in Clynelish and Springbank as well as some Speysides like Glenlossie. I also enjoy notes of tropical fruit that can be discovered in older Irish whisky and some Islays, particularly Bowmore.
I have a penchant for rich, baked fruits flavours like apple crumble which you can often find in bourbon-matured Speyside, or Highland whiskies like Braevel and Clynelish.

 Your favourite whisky cocktail?
I am partial to either a Bobby Burns or a Sazerac.

Whisky with water or straight cask strength?
If it’s young or the ABV is over 50% I will often add water, whereas if it’s older or below 50% I will drink neat. I nearly always try water with every whisky as in the end it always depends on the whisky and how it changes with water.

What do you like most about Cask Trade?
I love being the interface between the whisky trade and private investors. I enjoy being able to deal with bottlers that I already buy bottles from, so now I can buy bottles from casks I’ve sold. It’s a delight to work with passionate whisky fans and investors, and being able to assist them in buying casks from their favourite distilleries.

Why should people invest in Whisky Casks?
Apart from the fact that it is the best performing alternative asset, you can’t visit and taste your stocks and shares… Why invest in something that makes money behind the scenes, when you can invest in something that makes more money and also gives you pleasure?

To find out more about what Cask Trade can do for you, don’t hesitate to contact the team today and let’s talk whisky!

We Know Our Way Around a Blend…

We Know Our Way Around a Blend…

Enjoying a blended whisky

Blended Whisky accounts for over 90% of Scotch. Almost every Scotch whisky distillery, including most of your favourite malts, sends the majority of their spirit for blending. Many single malt enthusiasts associate blended whisky with popular brands such as Famous Grouse, Bells and Grants. There’s a whole world of interesting blended Scotch out there waiting to be discovered!

The blends we have to offer are available in single casks. Comprised of a base of delicate sweet grain whisky with dressings of single malts, they are chosen for their distillery flavour profiles in order to create the most rounded and balanced spirit possible. After over 20 years of these complex single malts and grain maturing together, the flavours become far more unified than they would in a normal blend.

While the focus over the last few years has been on single malts, the industry is starting to see a rise in the popularity of independent blends. Whisky enthusiasts across the world have welcomed the return of a quality blended Scotch. The shift away from single malts, their artisanal nature and value for money has given blends a following among the younger generations. A famous name can’t sell a blend, only quality can.

These casks are now fully mature and ready for bottling. They’re ideal for an independent bottler who’s looking to do something different. Or, simply for someone who wants to bottle and outstanding whisky.

To find out more about what blended whiskies we have in stock, contact the team today and let’s talk whisky!

Meet the Masters – Sir Colin Hampden-White ‘The Keeper’

Meet the Masters – Sir Colin Hampden-White ‘The Keeper’

Colin headshot

The Three Drinkers star, Cask Trade’s Non-Executive Director and fellow Whisky enthusiast Sir Colin Hampden-White sits down for a dram to discuss his love for all things Scotch.

How long have you worked for Cask Trade?
Since January 2019.

What first kick-started your passion for Whisky?
I vividly remember being given a dram by a gamekeeper on a freezing cold shoot in Scotland when I was about 15 or so. 

What are your top three favourite whiskies and why?
1. Johnnie Walker black label: The great all-rounder.
2. Mortlach 75 -year-old. The best whisky experience I have had at Edinburgh Castle.
3. At the moment I am enjoying 100% rye whiskey from all over the world. Especially Kyro from Finland.

What are your favourite flavours? Which aspects of whisky are the most important for you?
I really like a little linseed oil, dried apricots and fresh tropical fruits.

Which is your “holy grail” whisky? What’s THE bottle you want to own in your lifetime?
A bottle of Malt Mill.

Your favourite whisky cocktail?
It has to be the classic Old Fashioned.

Whisky with water or straight cask strength?
Honestly, it depends on the whisky. For something old and delicate probably without, young, cask strength and vivacious probably with.

What do you like most about Cask Trade?
My two favorite things about Cask Trade are the people and the transparency. What you see is what you get with us, there’s no smoke and mirrors. This is important when it comes to whisky investment.

Why should people invest in Whisky Casks?
Whisky casks are able to take you on an emotional journey as well as a profitable one.

To find out more about what Cask Trade can do for you, don’t hesitate to contact the team today and let’s talk whisky!