To say the last year was crazy would be an enormous understatement. It was in short the busiest of my 17 years in the business. A lot of things were pushed to the side in November and December, and even January, because we just couldn’t deal with them. We made some progress catching up in January, but then there was the yearend inventory sale, and inventory and all the yearend stuff… it has taken the month of February to fully catch our breath.
In the grand scheme of things, and the chaos of the Covid-19 economy, we have been very lucky, and we don’t take that for granted. We donated more than $20,000.00 in cash to local charities over the last year, like the Calgary Foodbank, the Brenda Strafford Society to name just a few.
We are currently running a promotion on our main Instagram feed: instagram.com/kensingtonwm/ promoting a dozen of our neighbouring businesses in Kensington. Every day for 12 straight days we are giving away a $75 gift card to one of these great local businesses. It has been a tough year for most small businesses, and they need your support. I hope you will continue to consider shopping small and local.
This is the first full edition of the Malt Messenger since early January, and there is a lot to catch you up on. For starters, we just opened up three new virtual tastings for registration on our website, The whisky tastings include a pair of independent bottlers: The Whisky Agency & Hunter Laing.
There is also the first in a series we are calling “Rare & Old: Things Andrew Wants to Taste.” We had to pull the plug, understandably, on our Rare & Old Festival last Spring as the pandemic hit. There are still a load of Rare & Old Whiskies we want to taste though, so we are going to break it into chunks.
I’ve tried to keep the lid on some new releases over the last few weeks as we endeavoured to catch up, with varying degrees of success. We have 3 exciting new KWM Exclusive Casks to fill you in on. The first, our 2nd Millstone 100 Rye KWM Cask, won’t be a secret to any of you who took part in the KWM Whisky Calendar this year. It was our Day 1 whisky, it was a hit, and it has finally arrived in-store.
We also have our 3rd exclusive single cask of Benromach. It’s been about 7-8 years since the first two, but though those young casks were good, it has definitely been worth the wait for something with a little more age and maturity… The Benromach 2007 KWM Cask 134 is a whisky with a profile and complexity well beyond its 13 years of age!
Then there is our 2nd KWM exclusive single cask from Old Pulteney. Our first Pulteney cask was a world traveller (long story, but not an exaggeration), it almost took a year and a half from the time it was selected until it hit our shores. This one was much more timely, and like its predecessor, the Old Pulteney 2004 KWM Cask is a cracker!
Three new casks arriving is exciting news in its own right. But I have much, much more to fill you in on than that. We have six new whiskies from Gordon & Macphail, three of them exclusive to Canada. The G&M Archives Collection is a trio of whiskies bottled in G&M’s old bottle and packaging. But that’s not the only thing about them that’s retro. The prices are a bit more approachable than much of the new releases. There are also 3, very rare, closed distillery whiskies released to mark Gordon Macphail’s 125th Anniversary. The 47-year-old Glenury Royal is only the 2nd whisky we’ve ever seen from the distillery. And we’ve had fewer bottlings of Mosstowie and Coleburn than most people have fingers on one hand.
We tried to keep the arrival of a few other releases quiet too, including the Artist Collective range from La Maison du Whisky. It was a hit with those who took part in a recent virtual tasting. There are a few sherried whiskies in the mix and not one of the bottlings disappointed. The Ardmore matured in ex-Laphroaig casks was one of the most notable to me.
We have new releases to tell you about from The Single Cask, Morrison MacKay’s Carn Mor Strictly Limited range and Adelphi. Many of these are limited and won’t last long. Evan has also done a round-up of the February SMWS Canada releases.
In addition to all the new releases, we have also welcomed back the newly rebranded Benromach core range, as well as the second release from Glengoyne’s Legacy Series.
There are also a number of notable returned whiskies including GlenAllachie 15, two anCnoc’s released for the distillery’s 125th Anniversary, the Holyrood Spirits Merchants whiskies and a bit more of the Peat Monster Arcana.
As always, please let me know if you have any comments or questions.
If you are able to, please order online. Most days I receive more emails than I am able to reply to in a timely fashion.
In the event of a discrepancy in price, the Point of Sale at KWM will be taken as correct.
Kensington Wine Market
In this Edition
1. New Virtual Whisky Tastings
2. Introducing: The Benromach 2007 KWM Cask
3. Introducing: The Old Pulteney 2004 KWM Cask
4. Introducing: The Millstone 100 Rye KWM Cask #2
5. Introducing: The Gordon Macphail Archive Collection
6. The Gordon Macphail 125th Anniversary Whiskies
7. New Whiskies from Adelphi
8. Coming Soon: New Whiskies from Morrison MacKay
9. Introducing: The Glengoyne Legacy Series: Chapter 2
10. Evan’s SMWS Corner
11. The Benromachs are Back!
12. GlenAllachie 15 is Back!
13. The anCnoc 125th Anniversary Whiskies are Back!
14. The Peat Monster Arcana is Back
15. The Holyrood Spirits Co. Whiskies Are Back!
16. Our SMOS Caol Ila 8 Year KWM Cask Is Nearly Gone!
17. A Few More Deals
Kensington Wine Market
NEW VIRTUAL WHISKY TASTINGS
We have just listed 3 exciting new Virtual Tastings online
Independents Day: The Whisky Agency
· Date: March 26, 2021
· Time: 8 PM
· Cost: $55.00
· Pick-Up Date: Available Now
The Whisky Agency has earned a cult following at KWM over the last few years for one simple reason: they source and bottle some exceptional single casks. From humble beginnings in the early 2000s sourcing casks for the Limburg Whisky Fair (one of the best Whisky Festivals in the World) it is now a respected international player. We’ll sample 6 Whisky Agency whiskies from: Glen Elgin, Ledaig and a number of “Secret Distilleries!” Many of these whiskies are only available in Canada… We’ll also sample one very old Cognac from 1973. Included seven 15ml samples. A zoom code will be emailed a day or two before the tasting. 8 PM Friday, March 26.
Independents Day: Hunter Laing Whisky
· Date: April 8, 2021
· Time: 8 PM
· Cost: $40.00
· Pick-Up Date: Available Friday, March 12
Join us for an exploration of the Hunter Laing whisky portfolio, guided by Andrew Laing. We will sample whiskies from Caol Ila, Tullibardine, Glendullan, Macduff and Tormore from the Hepburn’s Choice, First Editions and Old Malt Cask ranges. We will also be sampling a pair from the Old & Rare range, a sherried Tomatin 25 Year and a special release of “Heritage” Tamdhu 30 Year. The tasting will consist of seven 15ml samples as well as a 50ml mini bottle of Scarabus Islay Single Malt. 8 PM Thursday, April 8. A zoom code will be emailed a few days before the event.
*SAMPLES WILL BE AVAILABLE FOR PICKUP ON MARCH 12.*
Rare & Old: Things Andrew Wants to Taste Pt.1
· Date: April 22, 2021
· Time: 8 PM
· Cost: $150.00
· Pick-Up Date: Available Monday, March 22
The Covid-19 pandemic hit just days before we were supposed to host our first-ever Rare & Old Whisky Festival. We were gutted to have to pull the plug, but it was the right decision. It may still be a year or more before we can put on a festival-style tasting in-store, but we can still have some fun. There are more than a few old and rare whiskies we want to taste, and we know we are not alone in this. So we are putting on a new virtual tasting series, “Rare & Old: Things Andrew Wants to Try!” As the name implies it is built around a range of old and rare whiskies Andrew wants to sample. The first session will include: Auchentoshan 1988 PX, Bladnoch 25 Year, Blackadder Raw Cask Glen Scotia 1991, Glengoyne 30 Year, Pittyvaich 29 Year and Port Askaig 45 Year; a range of whiskies which would set you back about $6000+gst. Andrew’s sampled the Port Askaig 45 Year on numerous occasions… but he loves it and wants to taste it any chance he gets! 8 PM Thursday, April 22. Includes 7x15ml samples. A zoom code will be emailed a few days before the tasting.
THE BENROMACH 2007 KWM CASK
Our 3rd KWM exclusive Benromach cask is a First Fill ex-Bourbon Barrel, bottled after 13 years at 57.7%. Our 1st and 2nd KWM exclusive Benromach casks were here in 2013. They were young, but very well received. The outturn for cask 134 was 221 bottles. Benromach produces a lightly peated, traditional Speyside style of whisky.
Benromach 2007 KWM Cask 134 – 57.7% – 13 Year – First Fill ex-Bourbon Barrel – My Tasting Note: “Nose: soft, fruity and decadent; vanilla icing sugar, creamed honey and agave nectar; Jujubes, Five Alive and bright candied orange; cantaloupe and apricots; hints of chocolate, gentle spices and clotted cream. Palate: a surge of chewy malt, gentle earthy peat, fruits and toasted oak; more creamed honey and agave nectar with corn syrup; candied orange and crisp lime with more Jujubes and Five Alive; dark milk chocolate and lightly salted caramel. Finish: silky, warming and coating; the fruits, spices and chocolate linger long into an elegant finale that finishes with a flourish of clean earthy peat. Comment: a young malt with a maturity well beyond its years; the citrus fruits, chocolate and subtle smoke are in almost perfect balance.” – $145+gst
THE OLD PULTENEY 2004 KWM CASK
This is our 2nd exclusive single cask of Old Pulteney, and it is another lovely, savoury single malt. Only 216 bottles it is thick and honeyed with bags of coconut, citrus and gentle toasted oak.
Old Pulteney 2004 KWM Cask 236 – 55% – 16 Year – ex-Bourbon Barrel – My Tasting Note: “Nose: thick and honeyed with coconut cream icing, salted caramel and firm oak spices; lime zest, candied orange peel and grassy malt; Jolly Ranchers and tarte tattin. Palate: still thick, oily, creamy and coating; more coconut cream icing sugar on vanilla cupcakes; crème brulee and dulce de leche to go with the salted caramel; candy apple and candied orange with lemon and lime zest; warming spicy oak blankets the palate in a comforting way. Finish: warm, spicy and coating it lingers long with toasted oak, honey, coconut and salted caramel. Comment: this must be a first-fill ex-Bourbon Barrel; the oak presence is lush, but far from overdone; this isn’t as subtle as our last cask of Old Pulteney, but it is a banger none the less.” – $170+gst
THE MILLSTONE 100 RYE KWM CASK #2
<Our 2nd KWM exclusive single cask of Millstone Rye has just landed in-store. It featured on Day 1 one of our KWM 2020 Whisky Calendar… Bottled at 54.7% the whisky is made from a 100% Rye mash, milled by Dutch windmills, and matured in a single New American Oak Cask.
Millstone 100 Rye KWM Cask #2 – 54.7% – New American Oak – My Tasting Note: “Nose: spicy, oily and jammy right off the bat; German pumpernickel rye style bread and fresh dill; moist jujubes, treacle sauce and barrel-aged maple syrup; Dutch licorice, Goodies and candied fennel seeds; herbaceous, a touch of Fernet Branca and vanilla extract; ginger & molasses cookies. Palate: thick, sweet. syrupy and layered with decadent spices; still dill-y, more German pumpernickel-rye bread and ginger & molasses cookies; floral and herbaceous; loads of licorice: more goodies, Dutch licorice and candied fennel; more Jujubes, raspberry jam and orange-infused chocolate; more maple syrup and treacle sauce; floral French vanilla. Finish: fresh, fruity, floral and layered; more licorice, syrup and chocolate; dill, rye bread and Fernet Branca. Comment: this is a little less decadent from our first KWM Cask of Millstone Rye, but it might just be even more complex; this is proper rye whisky, insanely complex and a delight to nose and drink; sadly just over 100 bottles available; not sure I’ve ever put Fernet in a tasting note before!” – $105
INTRODUCING: THE GORDON & MACPHAIL ARCHIVE COLLECTION
The whisky is old, and so is the packaging, but the bottlings are new. These Archive releases were bottled exclusively for Western Canada, at prices you won’t soon see again. Higher than the G&M prices of yesteryear, but considerably lower than more recent offerings. There are three whiskies, and KWM is expecting just 6 bottles of each… I’ll have my own tasting notes out for them soon!
1. G&M Archive Release Glenlivet 1979 – 46.2% – 39 Year – Refill American Hogshead – Distilled: 24th September 1979 – Bottled: 12th October 2018 – Producer Tasting Note: “Ripe fruit aromas with vanilla and delicate elderflower aromas. The palate has fresh peach and some ripe melon flavours with underlying lime. Medium bodied the finish has a touch of pepper, oak and citrus.” – $2000+gst
2. G&M Archive Release Linkwood 1967 – 42.4% – 50 Year – 1st Fill Sherry Hogshead – Distilled: 23rd February 1967 – Bottled: 26th January 2018 – Producer Tasting Note: “Intense dried fruit aromas with plenty of oak and spices. A subtle hint of roasted hazelnut and underlying soft smoke. Mouth clinging and spicy – cloves, bitter orange and oak tannins offer a robust palate. Mouth drying, dark liquorice and oak persevere on the finish.” – $4250+gst
3. G&M Archive Release Glen Grant 1952 – 54.6% – 56 Year – 1st Fill Sherry Butt – Distilled: 17th September 1962 – Bottled: 18th September 2018 – Producer Tasting Note: “Rich Sherry influences, dark fruits – dried figs and blackcurrant with spicy cloves. Thick treacle notes give way to polished oak and aged leather. The palate has fruitcake, intense spices , Seville orange and charred oak flavours. Morello cherries and liquorice give way to a charred edge and subtle coffee grounds. The finish is long and full bodied with plenty of spice and oak.” – $4750+gst
THE GORDON & MACPHAIL 125TH ANNIVERSARY WHISKIES
The first of the 125th Anniversary releases from Gordon & MacPhail, the world’s preeminent Independent Bottler, have arrived. The three releases below are all from closed distilleries or silent stills. The Glenury Royal 35 Year is only the second whisky we have ever seen from that closed distillery. We’ve not seen much more from Coleburn and Mosstowie (a whisky produced by a Lomond still at Miltonduff Distillery) either. G&M’s global release for all of these whiskies is less 400 bottles, and just 164 of the Mosstowie… All three are limited to 1 per customer.
G&M 125th Anniversary Coleburn 1972 – 62.4% – 47 Year – Refill Sherry Puncheon Cask 3511 – Producer Description: “The first of the 125th anniversary whiskies to be released is the Gordon & MacPhail 1972 from Coleburn Distillery in Speyside. Coleburn Distillery, situated just four miles from the company’s Elgin home, started production in 1897 and it remained active until 1985. Just 363 bottles of the sweet, intense and complex 47-Year-Old whisky from Coleburn Distillery are available. After spending its entire maturation in cask 3511, a refill sherry puncheon, the golden-hued whisky has been bottled at cask strength (62.4% ABV), developing a sweet aroma with butterscotch notes.” – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: Sweet butterscotch, ripe fruit and subtle floral aromas. Caramelised sugar develops alongside waxy citrus peel, slowly transforming into fresh guava. Taste: Intensely sweet; fruity flavours of apricot and cooked apple with a subtle mouth-warming chilli spice edge. Subtle charred oak flavours give way to a soft undertone of mint leaves. Finish: A medium finish with sweet and ripe autumnal fruit and a lingering dry herbal note.” – $3000 – Limit 1 Per Customer! – 93pts Angus @WhiskyFun
G&M 125th Anniversary Glenury Royal 1984 – 49.1% – 35 Year – First-Fill Sherry Butt Cask 2355 – Producer Description: “The second of the 125th anniversary whiskies to be released is the Gordon & MacPhail 1984 from Glenury Royal Distillery in Stonehaven. No spirit has been distilled at Glenury since 1985, when it closed its doors for the final time and was demolished after a long history stretching back 160 years. Just 397 bottles of this elegant 35-year-old whisky are available. Laid down on Thursday 7 June 1984 and has been fully matured in cask number 2335, a first-fill Sherry Butt.” – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: Stewed fruit aromas and soft notes of polish give way to cocoa powder. Cinnamon spice comes to the fore alongside tart plum skin, treacle and subtle traces of toasted oak. Taste: Sweet and drying with fresh cherry and orange peel flavours. Burnt sugar and notes of dried fig develop accompanied by blackcurrant and fresh coffee grounds. Finish: Medium and fruity with lingering aniseed and sherry influences on the finish.” – $3000 – Limit 1 Per Customer!
G&M 125th Anniversary Mosstowie 1979 – 49.8% – 40 Year – Refill Sherry Hogshead Cask 20323 – Producer Description: “The penultimate of the 125th anniversary whiskies to be released is the Gordon & MacPhail 1979 Mosstowie from Miltonduff Distillery. Only 164 bottles are available worldwide of this full-bodied whisky, full of sherry influences and dark chocolate notes. The 40-year-old whisky was laid down in Gordon & MacPhail’s Elgin warehouse on Thursday 13 September 1979 in cask number 20323, a refill Sherry Hogshead.” – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: Fragrant vanilla pod and butterscotch aromas lead to candied peel and hedgerow blossom. Leather and stewed apple notes come to the fore alongside blackcurrant leaves. Taste: Flavours of black pepper complement spiced grapefruit and subtle sherry influences. Dark chocolate undertones develop accompanied by tart raspberries and strawberry liquorice. Finish: Long and medium-bodied with a hint of fresh mint leaves on the finish.” – $3000 – Limit 1 Per Customer!
INTRODUCING: THE ARTIST COLLECTIVE FROM LA MAISON DU WHISKY
A new to Canada range of independently bottled single malts from the legendary La Maison du Whisky. Only 6-18 bottles of each have come into the market, and none of them disappoint!
About the Artist Collective Range
“Since the dawn of time, artist collectives have been a place of exchange, inspiration and creativity. In the same way, each of the single malts found in our Artist Collective range draws the richness of their olfactory and gustatory palettes from the marriage of various casks. Devoted to diversity, every region and every style of Scottish single malt, peated and unpeated, are represented. Within this range we also find 43%, 48%, 57.1% (100 proof) and cask-strength bottlings. To illustrate the labels of the six bottlings in our first collection, La Maison du Whisky has called on contemporary artists from very different backgrounds. Each of them brings their own very personal touch that echoes the richness of the single malts selected!”
1. Artist Collective 3.6 Ardmore 9 Year – 43% – Matured in 7 in 7 ex-Laphroaig Bourbon Casks – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: creamy and empyreumatic. On the first nose, gum arabica envelops an oily, floral (violet, dandelion, daisy) peat. On a chromatic front, a background of candied lemon and juicy pear brings beautiful golden tones. Allowed to breathe, malted barley grains, medicinal notes (mustard poultice, camphor) and ash accentuate the feeling of warmth emanating from the aromatic palette. Gradually, placed on the same slate, exotic fruits (banana, pineapple) and aromatic plants (sage, verbena) appear. Palate: lots of eloquence and vitality. The milky attack (coconut, fromage blanc) reveals an impressive herbaceous freshness (cut hay, mint). The peat is perfectly integrated into the heart of the taste palette. Nestled between fresh fruits (pear, peach), sweet almond and lavender honey, it overflows with mineral salts and rooty particles (gentian, ginseng). The leguminous (leek, courgette) end of the palate is incredibly rich.” – $130 – More details online!
2. Artist Collective 3.3 Aultmore 13 Year – 48% – Matured in 2 First Fill Sherry Butts – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: refined, complex. Lovely notes of apricot, almond and quince paste bring lots of nobility and drive to the first nose. Allowed to breathe, it gains even more depth. Bourbon vanilla, toffee and nectarine then arrive, enriching the aromatic palette. The sherry’s influence focuses on a wonderfully elegant oxidation (precious wood, brandied cherry). Gradually it becomes powdery (cocoa), spicy (ginger) and honeyed (pine, heather). Palate: distinguished, precise. On the attack, lime blossom, infused verbena, apricot stone and orange zest play off one another with inspiration and eloquence. The mid-palate then focuses on malted barley and beeswax. This rich and sweet interlude leads to increasingly herbaceous tones (cut hay, straw). With time, dark chocolate and exotic fruits (mango, guava, persimmon) bring lots of style to the wonderfully long end of the palate.” – $178 – Only 3 Left! – Limit 1 Per Customer! – More details online!
3. Artist Collective 3.1 Benrinnes 22 Year – 51.4% – 3 Hogshead Casks – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: refined, distinguished. A subtle mixture of ripe fruits (pear, Mirabelle plum) and heady florals (lily, iris), the first nose is particularly elegant. Allowed to breathe, florals (daffodil, buttercup), cut hay and lucerne bring the tasting to a very inspired rustic register. Later, tobacco and noble spices (cardamom, clove) appear alongside the intoxicating fragrance of patchouli. In a grand finale, acacia honey brings lots of sweetness to the aromatic palette. Palate: clean, precise. With authority, the attack reveals fruity (wild peach, lime), milky (coconut) and vanilla flavours. On the mid-palate, verbena and sage bring beautiful green and iridescent nuances to the chromatic palette. With lots of flair, the end of the palate evokes a mint tea, chamomile infusion or even a creamy vanilla flan. The end of the palate is roasted (coffee) and cocoaey.” – $310 – More details online!
4. Artist Collective 3.2 Caol Ila 9 Year – 48% – Matured in Refill Sherry Butts – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: lively, powerful. Right away, the first nose invites us to discover a Caol Ila that is clearly more peaty than usual. In fact, cartloads of peat literally spill across an aromatic palette bursting with salts. Allowed to breathe, candied lemon and juicy pear appear alongside intense smoke, tar and soot. To ensure the presence of every element required for a great peated malt, medicinal (camphor, iodine tincture) and mineral (schist, slate) notes arrive in a grand finale. Palate: sharp and creamy. On the attack, the same marine peat seizes the taste buds. Out of this, smoke rings from a chocolatey Havana cigar, frangipane flavours, ash, candied pear, almond milk and a number of aromatic plants (sage, wicker) appear. The herbaceous (cut hay) mid-palate is profoundly malty and aniseedy. Just like on the nose, our peatometer registers an unusually high ppm content for Caol Ila. And yet, and it really is quite a feat, this single malt’s DNA is perfectly recognizable.” – $170 – More details online!
5. Artist Collective 2.3 Glen Grant 23 Year – 48% – Matured in 6 Refill ex-Bourbon Barrels – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: refined, lively. At once vanilla, herbaceous and camphoric, the initial nose is very complex. Allowed to breathe, it becomes milky (coconut), lemony and spicy (clove, ginger). In the background, we glimpse notes of malted barley, black pepper and aromatic plants (verbena, chamomile). This aromatic ensemble shows lots of distinction. Palate: neat, resolute. The attack takes on the malty character of the nose, offering a starting point that leads to particularly fruity (pear, Mirabelle plum, Golden apple) tones. The mid-palate is then creamy and vanilla. Next, spices (star anise, cinnamon), tiger balm and plants (fennel, aniseed) highlight its medicinal character.” – $270 – More details online!
6. Artist Collective 2.1 Linkwood 21 Year – 58% – 5 Sherry Hogsheads – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: full-bodied, complex. Wavering between notes of exotic rancio (mango), crème brûlée and sticky rice cake, the initial nose boasts remarkable finesse and generosity. Allowed to breathe, the fruit becomes more intense (Mirabelle plum, yellow peach, apricot), as noble spices appear (cardamom, cinnamon). Rose petals are then gradually deposited on the aromatic palette. Palate: rich, concentrated. The very typical Linkwood attack is delicately powdery (cocoa, almond) and spicy (cinnamon, nutmeg, clove). Mango and persimmon bring a touch of the exotic to the mid-palate, which is vanilla, deliciously caramelized and roasted (pipe tobacco), praline). Characterized by notes of precious wood (wax, oak), the end of the palate gradually becomes more and more malty.” – $310 – Only 3 Left! – Limit 1 Per Customer! – More details online!
THE SINGLE CASK
I’ve seen whiskies from this importer around before, but never in Canada… limited quantities of both whiskies have come in. But let’s be honest with each other. I know most of you will see “Ben Nevis” and glaze over the grain… We don’t have a lot of it, so it is limited to 1 per customer!
1. The Single Cask Ben Nevis 20 Year – 53% – 1999 – Hogshead – Tasting Note by The Chaps at Master of Malt: “Nose: Fragrant, almost perfumed at first, with sandalwood and citrus blossom. Soft caramel richness develops later on. Palate: Still floral, but with apple and pear growing. Chew dates and walnut in the background. Finish: BBQ citrus and bourbon biscuits.” – $300 – Limit 1 Per Customer!
2. The Single Cask Strathclyde 26 Year – 55.3% – 1993 – ex-Bourbon Barrel – Tasting Note by The Chaps at Master of Malt: “Nose: Banana, toasted almonds and shortbread. Palate: Chocolate ice cream and digestive biscuits, red berry, cinnamon and ginger. Finish: Lasting spicy oak and some tangy citrus.” – $210
NEW WHISKIES FROM ADELPHI
Our newest offering from Adelphi is here, much of it in very small quantities. Some are limited to 1 per customer!
1. Adelphi Ardmore 2002 – 55.8% – 18 Year – Refill Bourbon Hogshead Cask # 285 – Producer Tasting Note: “Drawn from a refill bourbon hogshead, displaying a good bead and yellow gold in colour. The pungent, spicy nose is bursting with prunes, forest floor, peanut brittle, kippers, speck and soot. The palate expands on this with leather, pine needles, green peppercorns, brine, Old Spice and the smouldering remnants of last night’s barbecue. A lengthy, green finish brings this one home in style. – $255 – Only 2 Left ! – 1 per customer!
2. Adelphi BenRiach 1999 – 59.9% – 21 Year – Refill Bourbon Cask # 799 – Producer Tasting Note: “Fully matured in a refill bourbon barrel, this is Chardonnay in colour and has a moderate bead. On the nose, we discover rosewater, potpourri, apple strudel, pistachio and strawberry Hubba Bubba. On the palate this is echoed further with Turkish delight, crisp apples, Frangelico, desiccated coconut and Raffaello confectionery. The medium finish is unexpectedly mineral and herbaceous.” – $400 – Only 3 Left ! – 1 per customer!
3. Adelphi Breath of Isles 2007 – 58.6% – 13 Year – Refill Oloroso Sherry Butt – Producer Tasting Note: “Drawn from a refill Oloroso sherry butt with a medium bead and the colour of hay. On the nose we find Peach Melba, lychee, gorse flower, croissants, sweetcorn lathered with butter and driftwood. The palate is a beguiling combination of pink peppercorn, Hobnob biscuits, sweet and salty popcorn, and the whiff of peatbogs, resolutely backed up by a lurking peat. The finish is medium and savoury.” – $192
4. Adelphi Bunnahabhain 2009 – 59.3% – 10 Year – First Fill Sherry Hogshead Cask# 900023 – Producer Tasting Note: “The colour is old oak and has a moderate bead. On the nose we found Bovril and Scotch pie. There is also chocolate eclairs, tiramisu and oiled deckchairs. The palate brings peanut brittle, mollases, Salmiakki (Swedish Liquorice), camp coffee and dark fruits. The finish is sweet and salty. A big Bunna!” – $248
5. Adelphi Caol Ila 2008 – 54.9% – 12 Year – Refill Bourbon Barrel – Producer Tasting Note: “Disgorged from a refill bourbon hogshead, this is the colour of white wine and displays a very good bead. This classic Islay nose combines white pepper, smoked pancetta, barnacles, Christmas trees, and Savlon to great effect. On the palate we head dockside with lobster creels, petrol, tar, seaweed, ash, anchovies, mackerel pate on oatcakes. The bright, briney finish is all lemon and seafood. Something fishy is going on here.” – $192 – 1 per customer!
6. Adelphi Dailuaine 2007 – 52.2% – 12 Year – Refill Oloroso Sherry Butt Cask# 304336 – Producer Tasting Note: “Matured exclusively in a refill Oloroso sherry butt, rose gold in colour and showing very good beading. On the nose we first discover Seville orange peel and sunflower seed before diving into tobacco leaf, peppercorn, mesquite woodchip, brown sauce and Bloody Mary. On the palate we take an unexpected turn toward tiramisu, pecan nuts, maple syrup and minty pan drops. A medium, satisfying finish and a complex tour de force of a whisky.” – $192 – Only 3 Left! – 1 per customer!
7. Adelphi Deanston 2013 – 58.1% – 7 Year – 1st Fill Bourbon Barrel Cask# 7402 – Producer Tasting Note: “Fully matured in a first fill bourbon barrel, displaying a moderate bead and the colour of barley. The nose is bright with lime leaf, Creamola foam, Jelly Tots, lavender, flapjacks and crème caramel. The palate is laden with more citrus in the form of lime marmalade and waxy bitter orange before moving into cocoa powder, strawberry milkshake, white pepper and cardamom. A medium finish for this enticing Highlander.” – $150 – Only 3 Left! – 1 per customer!
8. Adelphi Laudale Batch 4 – 46% – 12 Year (Glen Elgin) – 1st Fill Oloroso Sherry Hogshead – Producer Tasting Note: “The Laudale series from Adelphi showcases some excellent sherry cask matured whiskies. Batch 4 is from Glen Elgin distillery, the whisky is all matured in first fill Oloroso sherry hogsheads for 12 years and bottled at 46%. Chocolate gingerbread laced with morello cherries and bitter Seville orange peel; juicy Christmas cake with a dusting of cocoa.” – $140
9. Adelphi Mortlach 1986 – 54.2% – 34 Year – Refill Bourbon Hogshead Cask# 34 – Producer Tasting Note: “Released from a long slumber in a single refill bourbon hogshead, burnished copper in colour and showing an exceptional bead. Packed with aromas of baked bananas, marzipan, mead, fruit salad sweeties, peach, apricot and linseed oil. The palate opens rich with honeycomb, walnut praline, hokey pokey ice cream and sea salt before revealing a savoury, herbaceous, and extremely lengthy finish. A fine dram indeed.” – $950 – 1 per customer!
NEW WHISKIES FROM MORRISON MACKAY
Some dark new lovelies from Morrison MacKay!
1. Carn Mor Strictly Limited Glenburgie 2013 – 47.5% – 7 Year – Sauternes Cask Finish – Producer Tasting Note: “Honeycomb, apricot jam and a lusciously waxy mouthfeel.” – $100
2. Carn Mor Strictly Limited Glenburgie 2012 – 47.5% – 8 Year – PX Sherry Butt – Producer Tasting Note: “Barley malt and stone fruits with an ever so gentle hint of smoke.” – $108
3. Carn Mor Strictly Limited Mortlach 2007 – 47.5% – Oloroso Sherry Cask – Producer Tasting Note: “Rich and spicy with notes of ginger, orange peel and a dry, nutty finish.” – $142
4. Carn Mor Strictly Limited Royal Brackla 2008 – 47.5% – Oloroso Sherry Cask – Producer Tasting Note: “Fragrant and floral, with fresh orchard fruits and sweet vanilla custard to finish.” – $120
THE GLENGOYNE LEGACY SERIES: CHAPTER 2
Glengoyne Legacy Chapter 2 comes with updated packaging versus what we saw with Legacy Chapter one. Gone is the cardboard tube, which has been replaced with a box. and the new Glengoyne logo. Bottled at 48% like Chapter 1 – the new batch of Glengoyne Legacy contains whisky that was aged in first fill ex-Bourbon and refill sherry casks. Chapter 2 was originally released in September of 2020.
Glengoyne Legacy Series Chapter 2 – 48% – Bourbon & Sherry Casks – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: Full of vanilla and banana, maple syrup, peaches, coconut, fruit soaked trifle sponge, hint of lime and mint. Palate: Creamy and well balanced, apple crumble, honey drizzled toast, green grape and gentle spice. Finish: Richness builds in the warming finish, syrupy with hints of sweet oak and dates.” – $110
EVAN’S SCOTCH MALT WHISKY SOCIETYCORNER
Bottles from the February Outturn are now available and March bottles will hit the shelves this Friday!
Also – we are hosting an Outturn that we created ourselves in mid-March. This will feature seven bottles that were originally released during the 2020 Outturns that happened before we were allowed to fill bottles. What did we choose for that lineup? Grab a ticket and the samples to find out!
For now, you can read on for my take on the bottles in the February 2021 Outturn below. Quirky (and possibly kinky) bottle names ruled the month in homage to Valentine’s Day. Maybe you will find a new love for yourself or somebody else within this list!
44.129 – Based on the colour of the whisky, this 15 year old Craigellachie looks to be quite a bit different from last month’s sherried-high-alcohol insanity that was the quickly sold out 44.117. How will MUSCLE SPROUTS compare? On the nose, it is musty with plenty of tea-like notes as well as shredded wheat cereal, ginger, lemons, lime peel, and a touch of Juicy Fruit chewing gum. On the palate, it has a zingy beginning before broadening into richer – like a sparkling wine changing into a Riesling in the mouth. It has notes of both, along with more lemon and ginger, thyme, and other savoury notes that I can’t quite put my finger on. It manages to be rich yet delicate at the same time – like a really good Pho broth.
35.263 – The nose of this 12 year old Glen Moray carries much of that winey-oily-fruitiness that the distillery does so well. It also shows plenty of fresh, dusty grain notes as well as buttered whole-grain toast, chalky hard candies, golden delicious apples and ripe grapefruit skin. On the palate, it is bursting with juice and fruit with sunflower seeds, cracked pepper plus a drizzle of olive oil over it all.
12.42 – This is the first Benriach we have seen in a while from the SMWS Canada. GETTING FRUITY IN THE MALT BARN is 10 years old, which means it was distilled during Alistair Walkers’ time in control of the distillery and makes me excited to taste it! The nose shows coconut shavings, jujubes, milk chocolate, an Arnold Palmer (mocktail made from a 50/50 mix of iced tea and lemonade), and toasted almond shavings. The palate is round and creamy with pear pie notes (crust and all), lemon tarts, vanilla and oak tones, and a bit of angel food cake and white icing.
122.31 – 5 years old? Uh oh. But wait! This is a peated Loch Lomond? Now I am excited! Let’s give TARRY TARRY NIGHT a go. On the nose: yes, it is young. It has the peat plus starchy barley and wood pulp/cardboard that Loch Lomond seems to exhibit and that a love so much. It also shows an interesting combination of green tea with lime zest and a menthol cigarette held by some tall skinny model in a magazine advertisement from a 1990s Rolling Stone magazine note to it. Open up that magazine in your memory: it even has that slightly metallic printer ink on glossy magazine paper note to it. On the palate, it is juicier than you would imagine with passion fruit, freshly squeezed lime juice, pineapple slices, coconut water and minty mojitos. Plus, you are now for some reason eating that menthol cigarette advert from the vintage Rolling Stone mag. I love Loch Lomond and the wackiness they create – including this dram.
53.327 – We are back to a more typical peaty dram from Islay for the final sample of the Outturn. This Caol Ila is 10 years old. On the nose, KEEPING THE FIRE STOKED exhibits salty sea air, ozone, clamshells, dried seaweed snacks, and lemonade. On the palate, I get oatmeal with apple slices, a BLT sandwich, grilled scallops, and Fishermen’s Friend lozenges. For all of that, this is a very grain-driven Caol Ila. It has minerality, but it remains smooth and fresh on the nose and the palate.
Twitter and Instagram: @sagelikefool
All of this information, plus the information on previous releases that are still available can be found on our website here. If any SMWS bottles show as being out of stock on our website please contact us – we might still be able to get more.
THE BENROMACHS ARE BACK
The Benromach range has returned, and in new livery… One of the smallest distilleries in the Speyside, the whisky is lightly peated, a nod to the traditional Speyside whisky of nearly a century ago. The distillery was closed and in poor repair when bought by Gordon Macphail in 1993, it reopened in 1998 and now how has whiskies maturing in its warehouses that are more than 20 years of age.
Benromach 10 Year – 43% – Matured in ex-Bourbon & Sherry Casks – Producer Tasting Note: “Sweet green apple and pear complement creamy dark honey. Soft vanilla develops alongside gentle smoke. Smooth flavours of malted cereal and stewed fruit combine with warm toffee and a hint of black cherry. Full bodied finish with malted cereal persevering and lingering soft smoke.” – 92 Points, Whisky Advocate “This expression was distilled from malt peated to 12 to 14 ppm, and aged in 80% bourbon and 20% sherry casks before a final year in more sherry casks. Sweet smoke on the early nose, with malt, vanilla, quite dry sherry, apple, and toffee. Smoky barley, vanilla, subtle sherry, and light honey on the palate. Peaches, ginger, and woodsmoke on the medium-length finish. Very accomplished. – $72
Benromach 15 Year – 43% – Matured 9 years in Bourbon and Sherry before Finishing 6 more years in First Fill ex-Oloroso Sherry – Producer Tasting Note: “Aromas of sweet toffee initially, leading to undertones of cracked black pepper and peat smoke. Rich forest fruits develop and complement dark chocolate and dried banana. Creamy and sweet with ripe apples and an undertone of charred oak. Dark chocolate develops and leads to toasted oats and orange peel with a subtle hint of smoke. 93 Points, Wine Enthusiast “This amber-hued whisky offers caramel, oak and a hint of black cherry on the nose and mouth. The drying palate leads with black cherry and creamy honey, finishing taut, with leather, cigar wrapper, dark chocolate and clove heat.” – 90 Points, Whisky Advocate: “This spent 9 years in a combination of bourbon and sherry casks, then 6 years in first-fill European oak oloroso casks. Sherry is to the fore on the nose, with apple pie, honey, vanilla, black pepper, and ultimately pipe tobacco. A viscous and rich palate, with more apple pie and vanilla, while the sherry is drier, with new leather and woodsmoke. Salted caramel and spicy oak on the finish.” – $130.
Benromach 2009 Cask Strength Batch 004 – 57.2% – Matured in ex-Bourbon & ex-Sherry Casks – Producer Tasting Note: “Aroma: Rich dark forest fruits with clove and cinnamon spice, followed by sweet raspberries and dark chocolate aromas. Palate: Sherry soaked fruit and subtle smoke lead to a hint of zesty orange peel. Red apple flavours develop alongside subtle cracked black pepper. Finish: Full bodied and long finish with sweet smoke and red berries.” – $105
Benromach Contrasts: Organic – 46% – Virgin American Oak – Producer Description: “The world’s first certified organic single malt whisky since 2006. UK Soil Association accredited from start to finish, Benromach Organic is matured in Virgin American Oak and gives sweet, malty notes with creamy pepper, banana, coffee and cocoa flavours.” – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: Sweet vanilla and ripe fruits accompany citrus zest. Toasted malt leads to green apples. Palate: Creamy with soft pepper and butterscotch. Freshly ground coffee develops alongside dried banana and a subtle herbal edge. Finish: Medium bodied and long with aniseed and cocoa powder.” – $90
Benromach Contrasts: Peat Smoke – 46% – 1st Fill ex-Bourbon – Producer Description – “Small batch made with heavily peated barley. Benromach Peat Smoke is matured in first-fill bourbon barrels. It offers fragrant vanilla notes, which lead to lemon sherbet and apricot, finishing with smoky bonfire embers.” – Producer Tasting Note: “Aroma: Very rich smoke with fragrant vanilla and light citrus zest. Hints of apples develop accompanied by white chocolate. Palate: Smooth with toasted oak, honey and sweet ripe fruit. Butterscotch and marshmallow flavours lead to a lemon sherbet all alongside sweet smoke. Finish: Mouth-coating sweetness and bonfire embers.” – $88
THE GLENALLACHIE 15 YEAR IS BACK!
One of our favourite sherry bombs is back in-stock after being sold out for 3 months… The whisky was added to the GlenAllachie core range in 2019, and is finished in PX and Oloroso Sherry Casks.
GlenAllachie 15 Year – 46% – Finished in Oloroso & PX Sherry Hogsheads & Puncheons – My Tasting Note (from an earlier batch): “Nose: Christmas cake, treacle sauce, dark chocolate and molasses; maple syrup and loads of dark fruits: raisins, dates and figs; promise of some dark spices. Palate: rich, round, dumpy and fruity with loads of big sherry tones; layers of dark fruits and Christmas cake; raisins, dates and figs again; cola cubes, maple syrup and treacle toffee; later soft leather, damp tobacco and earthy/nutty tones; the crisp spices arrive late again. Finish: dark rich, coating and fruity, with a drying spicy finish. Comment: this is an unbridled and flawless sherry bomb… probably not quite as elegant as Billy wants it to be, but he’s only had the distillery for two years; a very promising sign of what is to come; look out GlenDronach Revival, you have competition!” – $125
THE ANCNOC 125TH ANNIVERSARYWHISKIES ARE BACK!
These whiskies were released in 2019, to mark the 125th Anniversary of the Knockdhu Distillery. They are both excellent, but the 16 Year is a star… It is limited to 1 per customer! We have a bit more of the Peat 125th Annv., so there are no limits there.
1. anCnoc 16 Year 125th Anniversary – 56.3% – Matured in ex-Bourbon – Producer Description: “Released for the first time at cask strength with sweet vanilla notes, delicate spice and a hint of coconut and butterscotch toffee, the 16 Years Old is a unique taste of our history in a light, modern and elegant expression.” – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: Sweet vanilla, notes of coconut & butterscotch toffee. Taste: Citrus, faintly spice, vanilla & green apple fruitiness.” – $160 – Limit 1 Per Customer
2. anCnoc Peat 125th Anniversary – 46% – Matured in ex-Bourbon & Finished in European Oak – Producer Description: “Peat is an intriguing, mellow journey from the heart of Knockdhu’s rich peatlands. Matured in ex-bourbon American oak then further matured in Spanish oak casks, the sunset gold whisky is filled with notes of almonds and dried fruit. A stunning smoky, sweet dram.” – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: Wood smoke, with almonds and dried fruit. Taste: Smoky with a hint of burnt toffee.” – $125+gst
THE PEAT MONSTER ARCANA IS BACK!
We received a shipment of this 20th Anniversary bottling from Compass Box in December, but it didn’t last long. We are grateful to have received a bit more, though 700ml bottles this time, rather than the 750s we had previously. Accordingly, the price has dropped a few bucks!
Compass Box Peat Monster Arcana Blended Malt Scotch Whisky – 46% – Composed of Talisker, Ardbeg and Miltonduff – Producer Description: “What is the Arcana of whiskymaking? We use the term to refer to the secrets and mysteries of cask maturation, as new questions regarding oak and the ageing process continually arise. ‘Arcana’ can imply information withheld but we don’t believe in keeping secrets about the whiskies we make. Peat Monster Arcana investigates how smoky whisky interacts with French oak.” – Producer Tasting Note: “Chocolate, cinnamon and boat tar appear on the nose while the palate is fruity and compellingly waxy. A dry smoky presence steadily builds.” – $122 – More Details Online!
THE HOLYROOD SPIRITS MERCHANTSWHISKIES ARE BACK!
The Holyrood Spirits Merchants Blended Malt Whiskies from our friends at the Holyrood Distillery have returned. The Distillery is the brainchild of Calgarians Rob & Kelly Carpenter, who are perhaps better known as the owners of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society’s Canadian Branch. While their whisky matures, the distillery is producing Gins, Gin Liqueurs and bottling sourced Whisky.The following whiskies have all returned, bottled without colouring or chillfiltering at 46% and 700ml:
1. Holyrood Spirits Merchant Fruity Blended Malt Scotch – A Campbeltown Blended Malt created to highlight a “fruity” profile. – $60
2. Holyrood Spirits Merchant Smoky Blended Malt Scotch – A peated Blended Malt Scotch whisky, created to emphasize it’s “smoky” profile. – $60
3. Holyrood Spirits Merchant Spicy Blended Malt Scotch – A Blended Malt Scotch whisky created from single malts matured in ex-Oloroso Sherry casks. – $60
4. Holyrood Spirits Merchant Sweet Single Grain Scotch – A mystery Single Grain Scotch Whisky which was finished in Alligator Heavy Char Barrels. Bottled at 46%. – $60
OUR SMOS CAOL ILA 8 YEAR KWM CASK IS NEARLY GONE…
It’s young, heavily peated, sherried and bottled at 61.2%, it packs a wee punch. It has also been a huge hit with our customers. At the time of writing, we have less than 20 bottles left!
SMOS Caol Ila 8 Year KWM Cask – 61.2% – Refill Sherry Butt – My Tasting Note: “Nose: smoked haddock chowder, rustic bread and farmhouse butter; I’m in the Old Kiln (I know, I know, this isn’t Ardbeg but I’m transported); coal dust, chewy malt; crisp smoke, firm leather and a dash of lemon and lime. Palate: here we go, warm, earthy and smoky with a base of honey, vanilla and crisp spices: more lemon and lime; the sherry elements grow in prominence over time adding Demerara, some dark fruits and loads of spice: clove, fennel seed and Dutch licorice; more smoked haddock and chewy malt (my hearty bread), dark earthy peat and sea weed; thick, oily and warm but without a sharp or rough edge. Finish: long, thick and coating, the soft peaty oils and spices cling to your palate while crisp smoke, smoked haddock and chewy malt slowly fade away. Comment: big and bold but balanced for a young malt tipping the scales at well over 60%; lots of layers given its youth, the sherry notes build over time balancing the brash young peat and smoke; the nose transported me to Islay, to one of my favourite places to sit, dine and dram, the Old Kiln Cafe; the palate is layered and satisfying, but also leaves me wanting more; more whisky adventures, more smoked haddock chowder, and a return to my spiritual home!” – $85
A FEW MORE DEALS
When you get a great product at a great price, everyone wins!
1. Balblair 12 Year – 46% – $90 Currently 20% off for $71.99
2. Boutique-y Heaven Hill Corn 9 Year – $90 Currently 35% off for $58.49
3. Boutique-y Heaven Hill Whiskey 9 Year – $92 Currently 35% off for $59.79
4. Compass Box Malt Whisky Collection – 3x50mls of Spice Tree, The Spaniard & Peat Monster – $58 Currently 40% off for $34.79
5. Game of Thrones Clynelish House Tyrel – 51.2% – ex-Bourbon – $110 Currently 25% off for $82.49
6. Game of Thrones Talisker House Greyjoy – 45.8% – ex-Bourbon – $112 Currently 25% off for $86.99
7. Loch Lomond The Open Special Edition – 46% – $74 Currently 30% off for $51.79
8. Laphroaig Quarter Cask – 48% – $88 Currently 25% off for $65.99
9. Maltbarn Bruichladdich 2010 – 55% – 8 Year – Bourbon Cask $182 Currently 30% off for $127.39
10. Tipperary 2002 KWM Rum Cask Irish Whisky – 55.7% – 17 Year – Rum Cask Finish – $165 Currently 25% off for $123.74
STAY HOME… WE’LL DELIVER!
We Are Offering Some Great Deals & Free City-Wide Delivery for Orders Over $100
FREE DELIVERY – We are offering free delivery for orders over $100 placed online or over the phone, and will do our best to deliver within 72 hours.
CURBSIDE PICKUP – Place an order, we’ll let you know when it is ready. Call us when you are out front or parked in the back lot and we’ll bring it out. Simple as that!
GIFTING – Want to send someone a care package? All gifting options are still available. Quarantined parents and closed schools qualify as a “wine emergency”. Gift cards are also available and can be used over the phone.
If you are able, please submit your order online. We will answer any questions you might have before finalizing and processing your order. You are not automatically billed when you submit your order.
We will do our best to answer and process as many phone orders as we can. Call us at 403-283-8000.
COVID-19 Precautions at KWM
To protect our staff and customers we have implemented some policies!
Please do not enter the store if:· You have returned from Outside of Canada in the last 2 weeks, or you live with someone who has!· You are showing symptoms of COVID-19, or if you have been in close contact with someone diagnosed with or suspected to have contracted COVID-19.
If the above applies to you, please order online or by phone and we can deliver!
Precautions we are taking in-store:· All of our staff are wearing masks, and we’d appreciate if you would do so too!· We are only allowing 6 customers in the store at any given time.· We have hand sanitizer throughout the store for the use of customers and staff.· We kindly ask that you do not to pick up products unless you intend to purchase them.· We are frequently disinfecting commonly touched surfaces and high contact areas within the store.· We are also not accepting cash payment at this time.· Staff are frequently washing and disinfecting their hands.· We have cancelled all in-store tastings.· We are monitoring our staff for symptoms.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we all try to navigate this challenging time!
Store Hours Sunday: 11am – 6pmMon – Wed: 10am – 8pmThu – Fri: 10am – 9pmSat: 10am – 8pm
*All Prices Quoted here are subject to change and do not include GST. In the case of pricing discrepancies, the price at our point of sale will be taken as correct.*