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Posts Tagged ‘Dufftown’

With the whisky industry grappling with the fast paced and ever evolving modern world in an increasingly ungainly and haphazard fashion – not unlike a drunken homeless man wrestling with a large angry pig – there are some fascinating and unusually difficult to believe developments afoot in 2015.

It's a visual metaphor.

It’s a visual metaphor.

January

Loch Lomond distillery releases long awaited Croftengea ‘Isotope’. A special radiation-themed NAS edition produced using barley grown at Sellafield. Distillery manager Edwin Custard said through one of his seven mouths “It’s a remarkable product and we’re all very proud. Kevin the distillery cat can leap directly through walls now. And it’s quite easy to find in the dark.”

First dedicated Ardbeg release of 2015 ‘Ardbrogue’ hits shelves in the Distillery’s bicentennial year. Ardbrogue comes in a dedicated shoebox presentation case with bespoke leather fixtures, a special Ardbeg-branded manure removal spike and brown glass nosing shoe. The release comes with the typically nauseating tagline: “Come take a smoky tip-toe through the peat beds with us in our historic year”. The whisky comes from the same random cask, age non-specific vat that they used to make Ardbog, Ardbeg Day, Kildalton, Rollercoaster, Auriverdes and Corryvreckan. Everyone complains about it while simultaneously desperately seeking a full case like Indiana Jones looking for the antidote in the opening scene from The Temple Of Doom.

Give me the ARDBEG!

Give me the ARDBEG!

February

Diageo releases a special app that allows angry single malt nerds to wake Nick Morgan up in the middle of the night with loud, self-righteous questions about caramel and why Haig Club isn’t a 1966 Glenlochy instead of a grain.

Whisky Magazine accidentally prints an article criticising Talisker Storm. The following issue is a 137 page apology.

Dangerous increase in number of novelty releases aimed at cashing in on Valentine’s Day is matched by annual rise in number of jokes on Malt Maniacs’ forum about ‘Valentin’s Day’.

March

Jeanette Krankie becomes new face of Auchentoshan leading to the sharpest drop in sales since Ian McGollum once drunkenly admitted to dipping his testicles into every 32nd cask to leave the filling store.

Noel Harrison and Joel Snedley launch new TV series on Sky Hipster. ‘New Age Statement’ follows Noel and Joel on their escapades as they travel the length and breadth of Shoreditch drinking traditional Diageo products and recounting tales of their days working as stunt doubles on the latter-day series of The Chuckle Brothers. Don’t miss episode three where Noel is devastated after he accidentally leaves home without his polkadot riding cravat and Joel, realising his best chum doesn’t possess the correct dress code, has to try and get them both into the new trendy nightclub – Twilight Moussakka – by sheer ingenuity. Eventually the doorman agrees to let them in if Joel will stop giving away free copies of their books to passers by. Directed by Darius from Pop Idol. Featuring music composed by Noel on his 1968 Mk IV Mellotron with additional whistling by Joel.

To me, to you. Noel and Joel back in their hey day.

To me, to you. Noel and Joel back in their hey day.

April

Jasper Clementine is exposed for accepting bribes from private collectors to publish low scores for old bottlings on whiskybling.com. Jaspergate carries on for several months involving seven lawsuits, thirty seven ticketed tastings and the publication of at least three tell-all biographies.

Owing to an increasing glut of single grain whiskies and diminishing amount of single malts on the market, the Malt Manaics change their name to the Cereal Killers.

Jude Law watches that advert for Johnnie Walker Blue Label that featured him gibbering on a yacht and dancing like a pillock and publicly commits suicide as a result.

It was the only honourable thing to do.

It was the only honourable thing to do.

May

Ardbeg and Laphroaig celebrate their Bicentenaries at the 2015 Feis Queue on Islay. Laphroaig unveil a brand new visitor experience where visitors to the distillery can be locked in an active kiln without breathing apparatus and not be allowed out unit they have eaten a large bowl of the drying malt and three whole bricks of peat. Anyone that makes it out without pleading and banging on the kiln door like a spluttering ball of cancer will be given the opportunity to buy a bottle of the special festival edition Laphroaig Carcinogen. Meanwhile Professor Jill Bumsden appears on the Graham Norton chat show and unveils jokes that many in the media describe as ‘older and more offensive than Prince Philip’.

Queue watchers beginning to appear at Islay Festival.

The new queuing system at Lagavulin in operation.

The new queuing system at Lagavulin in operation.

June

Glenlivet distillery begins exponential expansion of production which is matched by exponential decline in visitor centre hospitality. The skill of making whisky that tastes like depressed grass is honed to a fine art.

Ailing micro-distillery Abhainn Dearg on the Isle Of Lewis attempts to boost its fortunes with the launch of officially branded selfie-sticks.

Jim Sweep is hospitalised after attempting to operate an espresso machine while under the influence of several gallons of  Pina Colada.

July

M$rcin Mi$$er, head of Number One Drinks sells his last cask of Karuizawa and reveals from a massive cage full of money on board his all powerful sky blimp that there never was such a whisky as Karuizawa and all the casks he’s been selling for gazillions over the past decade have been cask strength Bovril he’s been re-distilling in his shed in Norfolk.

‘Tropicana’, an epic four hour long biopic of Bessie Williamson is released in cinemas world wide. Tropicana is directed by Peter Jackson with an estimated budget of $250 million and featuring an incredible motion capture performance from Andy Serkis in the lead role of Bessie. Described by Peter Bradshaw in the Guardian as “…a completely unashamed orgie of direct fired distilling, deep cut peat burning on explicitly shot traditional floor maltings with glaringly naked wooden washbacks slowly fermenting throughout. I exited the cinema feeling as though I had been swathed in Umbongo and Lilt by a hebridean chemical wizard.” The Daily Mail described the summer blockbuster as “…better than that communist, pinko filth The Angels Share but not as good as Taken 3.” Tropicana also stars Hayley Joel Osment as a young John Campbell and Samuel L Jackson as Marcel Van Gills.

That is a TASTY Laphroaig!

That is a TASTY Laphroaig!

August

To celebrate over 600 videos and reviews posted online, a special back to back screening of all Ralfy’s vlogs is arranged by Scottish Screen. A plaque is erected three weeks later to commemorate those who died during the event.

Jan Birch, Speyburn’s inter-galactic brand soothsayer and gatekeeper of the world renowned Drumnadrochit Gay Highland Resort, is finally promoted to distillery manager. He immediately marshals his workforce and begins an aggressive military campaign against all other distilleries in the Speyside area. Within a fortnight Glen Grant, Glenrothes, Macallan and Strathisla have all fallen, been renamed Speyburn and have quadrupled their production capacity. The Spey Hordes are eventually driven back by the Allied Distillers who unite to defeat Jan Birch’s unquenchable thirst for Speyrian Supremacy. He receives a written disciplinary from Inver House Distillers the following week.

September

Dominique Miraclegrow accidentally becomes leader of UKIP.

All Scottish ‘craft distilleries’ decide that their production processes are so identical that they can safely have a nice game of musical distilleries.

Whyte & MacKay is finally sold to Monsanto provided that Dalmore not be included in the sale on ethical grounds.

October

All the bottlings of Hanyu and Karuizawa bottled in those comedy neckless decanters that people were paying over £1000 a bottle for throughout the past two years are starting to evaporate at an alarming rate.

BIlly Walker confirms he fucking hates Benriach as the latest batch of single casks once again reveals perfectly delicious mature single malts that have been mercilessly butchered to death in some fetid and pointless wine casks like unwanted, mewing kittens tossed into a lake in a stone laden cloth sack. This latest batch of once beautiful whiskies features Shiraz, Tobasco, Irn Bru, Ice Wine, Chardonnay, Vodka and Smoked Twiglet finishes.

November

Dark Molesty performs an eighteen hour live version of Whiskyshaft direct from his bedroom featuring interviews with fictional whisky characters in his head and a thirty seven minute segment of him screaming furiously at an old snow globe demanding it answer his questions about the merits of wheat in the Buffalo Trace mashbill. The episode features at least five instances of Dark rendering himself accidentally unconscious, one of hour of live weaving and a particularly sinister segment where Dark simply eats his way through forty eight old Ardbeg Committee newsletters while providing live tasting notes. The March 2004 issue scores 94/100. The programme is listened to by almost nine people.

Diageo announces the 2015 Special Releases and their accompanying price tags:

Lagavulin 12 year old : £90

Caol Ila Bawsack Unpeated NAS : £85

Brora 37 year old : £1950

Port Ellen 35 year old 15th Release : £2300

Mannochmore 22 year old rejuvenated european oak hogsheads : £350

Talisker Hurricane NAS 63.8% : £675

Glenkinchie 28 year old Cognac double matured : £480

Singleton Of Dufftown 12 year old finished in the empty casks of 1960 Malt Mill that were accidentally drowned in a batch of Johnnie Walker Premier five years ago : £13,000.

December

Jim Murray announces his number one whisky in the world for 2016 as a direct tie between a 1965 single cask Laphroaig and a 3 year old Luxembourgian single maize whisky matured in a 12 litre heavily charred Retsina cask in a lockup on the outskirts of Junglinster.

Oliver Kermit takes an annual trip to the UK and publishes a 37,000 word blog post about everything that is wrong with British food before completely fucking loosing it and going on a rampage with a crossbow in a Luton branch of Marks & Spencer wearing nothing but a hastily constructed Bratwurst sporran.

He didn't even wait for them to cool down before putting them on!

He didn’t even wait for them to cool down before putting them on!

That’s it for 2015!

Whiskysponge hopes that you all enjoy yourselves over the New Year and don’t forget to make audible your disdain for any of that ‘drink responsibly’ shit. Please also make sure you remember that whisky is a pleasant and rightly passion inspiring drink but in no way should you fall into the trap of believing this somehow gives you the right to spout ill conceived, opinion inseminated drivel on facebook or twitter about it.

If in doubt just remember that ultimately your existence and the existence of all those you have ever known or loved – all humans that will ever exist and all that they achieve – is destined to slowly fragment into an unimaginably thin scraping of photons, positrons, neutrinos and electrons across the vast universal toast of eternity.

So stop getting all worked up about NAS and just enjoy a cuddle or a log fire.

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There's a danger that everything may just be pretty similar whatever happens.

There’s a danger that everything may just be pretty similar whatever happens.

Whisky, Scotland’s national malt-based, distilled beverage has declared its support for a yes vote after seventeen burly coopers transported it in a large marrying tun to a polling booth in Dufftown in order for it to cask its vote. Its announcement today has come as a shock to many campaigners on both sides who expected Whisky to maintain its long standing impartiality in the debate. Indeed it has long been used for voter leverage by both sides of the referendum campaign. In a final, tear-stained speech to voters yesterday evening, Alistair Darling, the haggard monochrome chipmunk in charge of the No campaign said:

“We all need to wake up to the fact that if we vote yes there will be no going back. The economic situation will be so bad that all whisky will have to be made at Loch Lomond distillery and the best you can hope for will be a 7 year old Croftengea for your Hogmanay tipple this year. Not only that, but in desperation to create more jobs many massive new caramel mines will need to be dug all over Scotland so the nationalists can simply bury the unemployed in massive job pits. All this caramel will have to be used for something; with deeply bitter No campaigners almost certainly bombing the Tunnock’s factory out of spite, Whisky will be the only option. So just vote no for fuck’s sake, please. I will literally hand out free blow jobs!” 

We're Dooomed!

We’re Dooomed!

In a ruddy-joweled riposte delivered while personally throwing armfuls of special rose-tinted commemorative independence goggles into the thronging crows on Largs pier. Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond, the result of a genetic experiment gone awry when a box of shortbread was accidentally crossed with a fino-sherry puncheon, said:

“This is typical of the scaremongering that we’ve come to expect from Team Mordor, as was stated in the Beige Paper all the way back in November, there are contingency plans afoot for Speyburn to become Scotland’s national distillery. Every household in Scotland will be entitled to a free magnum of Speyburn Bradan-Orach once a month under the NHS, two bushels of North Sea Oil and family pass to Loch Fyne. As soon as we’ve turned it into a jacuzzi that is. All this will be paid for by the undercutting of UK corporation tax and the revenue generated by all these wind turbines which will soon be going into overdrive given the amount of hot air this whole debate has generated.” 

YES!

YES!

Speaking while quietly reclining in a variety of casks all over Scotland, Whisky said:

“It’s been an arduous and soul-searching process for me to come to a decision. Obviously I could have voted no and just continued down the path I’m already on, I mean I’m doing pretty well lets be honest. But I can’t escape the face that I dream of a world with slightly longer fermentations, a world where production is no longer led by marketing but by the people that actually enjoy and make whisky. I dream of a time when the importance of maturity is properly understood, where NAS isn’t a byword for pure shite, where whisky is made properly rather than fixed with some dodgy cask tinkering at the end. Why should I settle for being Loch Dhu, Inchmoan, Drumguish and that new Glen Scotia packaging when I can be 1960s Laphroaig, old style Strathisla, Springbank and Speyburn. If we can imagine it and dream it then chances are we can make it happen. Apart from that dream I had last night after someone finished me in an ex-Chateau Musar cask. Jill Bumsden as an extra-dimensional super-being materialises in Scotland with Glenmorangie swan neck stills for arms and does battle with the forces of the Scotch Whisky Arseociation for possession of the great yeast chalice of esterification. Total mental shit like! Still voted yes mind you.” 

 

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Today an unexpected tasting has landed at Whiskysponge HQ from Giuseppe Linguini.

Grazie mille to my great friend Jasper Clementine of whiskybling.com for this very special sample. He sends me almost 1.5cl in the post. We are big friends, often I go to his special whisky cave for tasting and he lets Giuseppe taste any bottle he likes.

Grazie mille to my great friend Jasper Clementine of whiskybling.com for this very special sample. He sends me almost 1.5cl in the post. We are big friends, often I go to his special whisky cave for tasting and he lets Giuseppe taste any bottle he likes. Especially nice old Rosebank 1910 for Lidl. 

Colours: Very pale, like albino who work in old fish mine. Strange for 97 year old whisky.

Noses: Big nostrils of fruit. Like big man trying to push plums up nose while you are tied to a chair. Also with almonds but not as far up nose as plums. Also with little baby lemon aroma, like when you think there is lemon cheesecake left in fridge but is just empty dish with crumbs and so you just eat yoghurt and have fight with children. Now big smells of wet dogs, but not big shaggy dog from pond, more like little Dachshund from Scottish drizzle.

Tastings: Holy fucking Mussolini! Similar at first to time first wife puts old four star petrol in Giuseppe’s espresso because she thinks that bruises on neck are love bites and not from stray golf ball like I tell her. Big sharpness in mouth, like shaving tongue with big cornflake. Now come more big fruit, like fat gogo dancer who sit on you with pineapple hat (is not fun). More big power, very punchy for whisky of such age, like old kickboxer.

Finishings: Leave some blood in mouth, maybe Giuseppe’s gums are bleeding now.

Thinkings: Amazing whisky, more like French Eau De Vie in many fashions. Difficult to drink but maybe is because was hard to get consistency in Scotland 2000 years ago. Probably all people who made this were have to paying poll tax and shop at co-op for Tennent’s Super Lager, many years before could buy Peroni in Dufftown.

Stars out of 100  –  95 (like when put torch into eyes and switch on and off very fast then blink many times)

Now for make special comparison with other bottle from great friend of Giuseppe, Jasper Clementine. He is very smart, he comes to Giuseppe to buy Aston Martin, I give him very good price.

Special bottle from Mr Clementine. He leave for me six cases in boot of old Mercedes outside Basel Airport. Lucky I take before police arrive, but is long story...

Special bottle from Mr Clementine. He leave for me six cases in boot of old Mercedes outside Basel Airport. Lucky I take before police arrive, but is long story…

Big Bastard. Millésime 2007. 

Colours: Interesting…is almost identical colour as other whisky…

Noses: Very curious to Giuseppe, same big nostrils of fruit, same man, same plums…same dog.

Tastings: Still makes to think of first wife petrol and kickboxers. Giuseppe’s tongue now fully shaved!

Finishings: Also same finish, change name to ‘Bleeding Gums Giuseppe’.

Thinkings: Perhaps this is funny joke by Mr Clementine, but Giuseppe has last laugh, Aston Martin have engine of old Lada.

Starts out of 100  –  85 (lose points for being dodgy = smaller torch)

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Buy 2 save £10

Buy 2 save £10

Multi-billion pound, profit guzzling global drinks behemoth Diageo have shocked the whisky world with the prices for this year’s special releases. Herbert Crumb, a pimple ridden, work experience spokes-worm for Diageo announced the following prices yesterday afternoon:

Brora 1977 35yo: £100

Caol Ila NAS Unpeated: £30

Cardhu 1991 21yo: £48

Convalmore 1977 36yo: £90

Lagavulin 12yo: £40

Lagavulin 1976 37yo: £120

Oban 21yo: £70

Port Ellen 1978 34yo: £100

Dufftown 1985 28yo: £70

Talisker 1985 27yo: £90

Diageo’s Chief Head Of Things Dr Ebenezer Plinth said in a statement:

“As those who know me will attest, I’m a long-time fan of goodwill marketing strategies. My feeling is that as we are such a huge company, who’s profit relies far more on the bulk sales of our core ranges in the whisky market, that we would be better served to sell these few thousand bottles of higher-end releases at a price that breeds goodwill amongst the more serious whisky community. At these prices the bottles will be more widely opened and consumed which is what we want, at Diageo we want people to open and enjoy these whiskies. We want them to be available to people who are at the lower end of the income scale who will no doubt be more likely to spend consistently with us as a company as a result of tasting these high quality products that they identify with excellent value and character. Also the target audience for these malts are people with a lot of influence in their wider social and drinking circles, if they feel positive about us and our brands then the knock on effect in sales amongst them, and their friends who seek and value their opinion, is likely to be far more beneficial to us as a company than simply attempting to cash in on a tiny proportion of our aged stock each year. I mean if we released these bottles at silly prices we’d just look like greedy idiots right..?

This one's still a bit overpriced though.

This one’s still a bit overpriced though.

Jon Beach, a midnight cowboy from Drumnadrochit, said of the announcement:

“That’s awfully nice of them, I mean it would have been so easy for them to release these whiskies at a completely silly price. I can’t tell you how worried I was for a while, as a Port Ellen collector myself I heard a rumour at one point that this year’s Port Ellen was going to be £1500, I mean £1500, can you imagine that. I suppose it’s understandable in some ways, if there are people in the far east willing to pay those sorts of prices then you could argue why not take advantage but £1500, thank God it was just some kind of sick joke. I think I’ll buy a pallet of the Classic Malts for my bar.” 

Last seen wearing a flak jacket while heading to Shetland.

Last seen wearing a flak jacket and heading to Shetland.

Speaking from a cupboard under the stairs somewhere Nick Morgan, Diageo’s human shield against whisky enthusiasts said:

“Oh God, please no, please tell me they put out the proper price list and not the joke one that we made last night after a few too many drams of the Lagavulin 37yo. Please dear God!” 

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