Speyside

Balvenie 14 Year “Peat Week”

Balvenie 14 Year “Peat Week”

The Balvenie are large and successful enough to not only keep their full stock of standard offerings in full swing, they’re also keen on playing with all the elements available in whisky production to create more limited offerings. The Balvenie 14 Year “Peat Week” is so named because the distillery has apparently been distilling peated whisky since 2002 for one week a year. Hitching their cart to the transparency train, Balvenie does a brilliant job of listing exactly what week in any given year this scotch was distilled during, along with some particulars about how peat characteristics are imparted to whisky in general. While not part of their standard lineup, it appears that Balvenie is poised to make this scotch a regular or semi-regular offering, even if only ever in limited quantities.

BenRiach 16 Year

BenRiach 16 Year

The BenRiach distillery has been through some rough times since it’s founding in 1898. Unfortunately, it has been susceptible to the booms and busts of the industry over the past century and more, closing a number of times in lean years but always coming back. Even when whisky production was halted, however, some aspect of the place still functioned, even if only to product floor maltings sold to other distilleries. It has been owned by Glenlivet, Seagrams, and the BenRiach Distillery Company Ltd. before being sold to the Brown-Forman Corporation in 2016. Starting in the 60s, the distillery has expanded and evolved with each transition and each challenge. For most of its history, it was used as a component in blends and was not released as a BenRiach malt until 1994. Along with this BenRiach 16, the core line is comprised of 10 and 20 year offerings, along with a ranges featuring peat, wood finishes, and premium expressions.

Cardhu 12 Year

Cardhu 12 Year

While it might be infamously known for the “pure malt controversy” from the early 2000s, Cardhu has been in almost continual production since its founding by John and Helen Cumming, though for much of its history was known as Cardow after the original farm the distillery started on in 1824. There is a great deal of history around Helen and her daughter-in-law Elizabeth Cumming used in their marketing, for both women ran the distillery during early years to develop and refine the character of the whisky. Around the turn of the 20th century, Cardhu was sold to Johnnie Walker. Cardhu was for many years one of the smallest distilleries in Scotland and has been a staple in Johnnie Walker blends ever since. The current iteration of the Cardhu 12 year began in 2006 and is part of a range that includes the 12, 15, and 18 year single malts, plus two with No Age Statements.