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Posts Tagged ‘Strathisla’

Today Whiskysponge is pleased to offer an exclusive guide to whisky investment by Jasper Clementine, the beloved Brora hoarder, convicted moustache nurturer and writer of award-repelling personal online whisky stream of consciousness: whiskybling.com.

Jasper as a young pineapple at Umbongo University.

Jasper as a young pineapple at Umbongo University in 1978.

Wow. Thanks to Whiskysponge for such a great opportunity to write something I had always been meaning to witter on about on whiskybling but just never found time and also the general crappyness of the website is an obvious hinderance which really says long. Anyway (cut to the chase Jasper!) here is my kind of crappy guide to whisky investment which I’m sure someone who is a professional and not just some total amateur such as yours truly will really be able to come along and do a much better job of (Japer it’s really time to leave that poor bush alone). Here we go…

Jasper’s Guide To Whisky Investment

Step 1… First thing you need to do is get interested in whisky in about 1998.

Step 2… Be intelligent.

Step 3… Start two internationally successful marketing companies in the early 1990s.

Step 4… Buy a lot of bottles of Brora, Clynelish, Lagavulin, Bowmore, Talisker, Laphroaig, Caol Ila, Port Ellen, some Macallan, many old blends such as Mackies and White Horse, some Longmorn, Highland Park and numerous other excellent Speysiders and Islays.

Step 5… Put them in an underground bunker next to some old Joni Mitchell CDs, a Ducatti, a VHS of Frank Zappa in concert from 1974 and more broken watches than is strictly necessary.

Step 6… Hide everything amongst about 3800 half empty sample bottles.

Step 7… Avoid inviting Scottish people to any birthdays/bar mitzvahs/funerals/distillation parties/pet funerals/graduation ceremonies/dinner/halloween/fancy dress parties/acid trips/cocktail afternoons/coffee mornings/grouse shoots or wine tastings.

Step 8… Leave to marinade for upwards of a decade and then post photos of yourself drinking them on the Malt Manaics Facebook page until 6000+ whisky geeks crowd fund you to stop torturing them.

Step 8… If further funds required sell the Brora 1972 Rare Malts to engineers looking for fuel capable of breaking the land speed record.

Alternatively you can sell everything at auction. Here are my latest notes on selling bottles at auction.

At first you find small bids on bottles with a big emphasis on the peat such as Lagavulin, Laphroaig, Ardbeg and Talisker but there can also be surprises in the form of Ledaig and after a while even some Mezcal. The whole is very gripping and engaging right from the start where prices really start to open up and rise once you give it some time. Zzzz zzzz zzzzz… right where are we? Wow! The Highland Park and the old Glen Garioch have really exploded with some very clear top bids. Quite incredible the way it holds your attention. Lets add some job lots…. with job lots you have all kinds of prices really starting to make the whole kind of complex and difficult to follow. It really starts to diversify in quite a bizarre but captivating way. We like mucho this style of auction at Whiskybling towers.

In the mid-auction straight away you have the impression with this amount of time that the Cognacs, Rums and Whiskies are really beginning to converge which can really happen with these spirits if they are given sufficient time in auction I find. You really get similarities between them becoming quite apparent. Now out of nowhere BAM: aged Tequila, just coming through in small bids here and there, totally unexpected. But overall it is the peaters that you really get the feeling are finally beginning to dominate, all these big bids on aged Port Ellen, vintage Laphroaig, rare Brora; it’s really quite a showstopper towards the finish.

The finish is now really long – there are STILL people bidding – it really fades and fades quite beautifully…especially as it is my bottles that are being sold. Quite astonishing in the finish really. All these little fluttering bids of Longmorn, Strathisla, old herbal liqueurs, aged Pinot Noir and even something of Gentian eau de vie. Finally wet dogs (I’m sorry Pongo, we didn’t mean to sell you).

Winnings: 98/100 bottles sold!

 

 

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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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After Giuseppe Linguini’s early exit from Whisky Live Paris yesterday Whiskysponge presents a last minute guest report from the distinguished Jasper Clementine of Whiskybling.com. 

Hello friends. It is I, Jasper, speaking to you here from Whisky Live Paris once again where I stand proudly alongside my fellow countrymen (well, Parisians) to taste some of the finest (well, half decent) whiskies and spirits the world (well…yes) has to offer. Please excuse this messy English as I tend to make a lot of smelling pisstakes.

I keep my samples in

I keep my samples in my wings.

Whisky Live Paris 2013. Maison De La Mutualité. Sunday show. 12.30-19.30. Capacity 2000. 

The arrival is rapid and very intense, I get queues immediately but they disperse with a little time and are followed by little pockets of conversation and chit chat. I encounter quite a few familiar characters but then I’m into the main auditorium and I collect samples of Bowmore, Ardbeg, Springbank, Lagavulin, Auchentoshan, Speyburn, Mannochmore (which is unexpected) and finally a few little samples of all different kinds of herb liqueurs. It’s a really great start to the show, lets hope the masterclasses can hold up to the auditorium.

To begin with the masterclasses are quite intense, but given time they give way to a pleasing and quite warm sensation of familiarity. I get the feeling of chipmunks from Richard McEwan (he keeps some in his briefcase). Here I collect samples of old cognac, anitseptic, fresh paint, some dried herbs and a little chocolate. These are followed by some unexpected samples of old Laphroaig, Macallan and pre-war Strathisla which are smuggled to me under the radar of the staff by some unnerving Belgian admirers of Whiskybling.com (ahh the price of fame). This is all quite full on, lets see what happens if we add a little beer….ok now that I’ve had about 4 pints of Kronenbourg everything becomes much easier and you get a real sense of how fun the whole thing is, now I engage with every part of it and having my photograph taken with all these crazy whisky-loons becomes much easier. Really quite enjoyable.

To finish the VIP area is crowded with elements of eccentricity, there is something distinctly Scottish about it with elements of Franco-German infusion. I collect samples of Lapsang Souchong, the BEST Alsacian Gentian Eau de Vie, a quirky Ledaig and a packet of After Eight Mints. Typically is begins to rain and now, as was to be expected, there are a lot of wet dogs.

Comments: Hey that was good, I really liked it although of course you just cannot compare it to some of the old-style shows of previous years, this one feels very modern and ‘technological’ if you will. It’s a great example of this style but for me it’s not my favourite style. I think you know what I mean.

Score: 85/100   JGP: 911 (hey, just like my old Porsche).

They really are everywhere...!

They really are everywhere…!

And now some Jazz…

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The handy wax seal makes it even easier to fake as well.

The handy wax seal makes it even easier to fake as well.

Large, throbbing Polish investment company Wealth Solutions have announced that the next in their ongoing series of ‘wallet melter’ bottlings will be available only in miniature form. Previous releases have included a Glenfarclas 1963 and a Karuizawa 1964, both of which were sold in the UK through independent whisky merchants Disaster Of Malt. They carried price tags around the small house mortgage mark. Rommel Smolenski, Head of throwing money in the air and cackling at Wealth Solutions said:

“People will pay £1000 for miniature! Did you fucking see that, is crazy! Ok we just make miniatures now and give to auction!” 

The directors of Wealth Solutions have specialised recently in mock indignation after giving away expensive looking and very limited official miniatures to poor student bloggers and then pretending to be surprised when they started to appear at auctions. Desmond Frufru, a young whisky blogger from Elephant & Castle said:

“I couldn’t believe when they came through the post, I was like ‘Fuckin Jackpot Daddyo!’ I mean it’s not hard to write tasting notes for a Karuizawa 64 is it, look I’ll do it right now off the top of my head… Thick dark fruits, stunningly elegant spice mingling with a really unique waxiness and touches of exotic hardwoods, endlessly complex, full of notes of camphor, beeswax, old peat oil and all kinds of spicy fruits. See, you can write that about pretty much any old expensive whisky and get away with it. So, yeah, mine was in the post to scotchwhisky-onlinemultearnams first thing monday morning. I’ve been really tight for cash lately since I spent my entire student loan on six kilos of weed. It seemed like a great idea at the time.”

It has been confirmed that there are currently more reviews online for these two releases than there were miniatures released. Dwayne Lightningrod, director of scotchwhisky-onlinemultearnams.org said:

“You wouldn’t think people would pay over a grand for a five centilitre bottle of oak juice with a bit of wax round the top but apparently they do. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go and eat my breakfast at my computer so I can look at the latest online bids and spray cornflakes over the screen in shocked glee.”

It's all going to be miniatures now...

It’s all going to be miniatures now…

Rommel Smolenski has confirmed that the next Wealth Solutions bottling will be a sherry gorda of 1955 Strathisla. Muttering while drooling and rubbing his hands in a sinister fashion this morning he told whiskysponge journalists:

“There are still over 700 litres in the cask, very dark, it will all be miniatures, maybe we even make them only 4 centilitres this time…yes all for Rommel, all for Rommel.”

Dwayne Lightningrod of scotch whisky-onlinemultearnams.org pointed out:

“There are already quite a lot of aged Strathislas from the 1950s around and 700 litres would work out at around 14000 miniatures, which is quite a lot, you would definitely be flooding the market, the prices achieved before were no doubt due to perceived rarity and…”

Mr Smolenski responded with:

“Can’t hear you not listening! LALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALA!!!!!!”

Asked if he was worried by the prospect of having to flog potentially thousands of miniatures through his retail site at over £1000 a pop Rory Ballamory, director of Disaster Of Malt said:

“Not at all. That’s what the Boutique’y Whisky Thingy is for, if there’s any trouble shifting old stock we just rebottle it, slap a funky label on it and hey presto, sell sell sell. Everyone loves a funky label. The next one is a Laphroaig with the ghost of Bessie Williamson flying a magic peat shovel over a giant cask with the computer HAL from 2001: Space Odyssey while Iain Henderson wrestles a Sea Pig….. don’t ask me what a Sea Pig is.” 

This is a Sea Pig. Turns out they're real.

This is a Sea Pig. Turns out they’re real.

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