A peek into August's Pour & Sip box
August brings with it four new Scotch whiskies for you to try, from the Lowlands, Highlands, Fife, and Islay, as well as a brilliant Japanese whisky, too – a bit of a move away from last month’s USA-themed box! Let’s find out what they are.
Lochlea Our Barley
We’re very excited to have the first ever core release from Lochlea this month! Distilled in South Ayrshire in the Scottish Lowlands, the distillery is based on an old cattle farm – not just any old farm, but one that the famed Scottish poet Robert Burns (after which Burns Night is named) lived and worked on in the late 1700s. An independent, family-owned distillery, Lochlea as acquired in 2006 and officially commissioned in the summer of 2018, repurposing the cattle sheds into warehouses. Now under the management of ex-Laphroaig distillery manager John Campbell, the team is growing 50-acres of malting barley, and a lengthy fermentation makes sure fruity, ester-laden wash. Sitting alongside the limited edition releases, this flagship ongoing core release, Our Barley, is dubbed ‘John Campbell’s masterpiece’, matured in a combination of ex-bourbon, ex-sherry, and STR (shaved, toasted, and re-charred) casks.
Smokehead Rum Rebel
From Ian MacLeod Distillers, the original Smokehead was first released in 2006, a mystery Islay single malt full of thick smoke and spices. Then, in a creative feat Smokehead managed to put its whisky stamp on International Rum Day in 2020 by releasing Rum Rebel, which is finished in ex-Caribbean rum casks. The savoury, smoky notes from the Islay whisky base pair brilliantly with the sweetness of the rum cask, which brings a very healthy dose of tropical fruit and sweetness to the spirit. It’s a classic pairing of sweet and savoury that satisfies both cravings with bold flavours.
Glencadam 13 Year Old 2008 Réserve de Sauternes
The Glencadam distillery was founded back in 1825, and though it was mothballed at the turn of the millennium, in 2003 it was sold to Angus Dundee, which wasted no time in getting it back on its feet within two months of the acquisition. This is a limited-edition wine cask-finished single malt from the Highland distillery, initially matured in American oak ex-bourbon casks before being moved to casks which previously held Sauternes wine. The sweet dessert wine hails from Bordeaux, made with the rarer white grapes from the region, and is full of stone fruits, tropical fruit, and butterscotch flavours, all of which have made their way into this whisky! Seeing as dessert wine is made for after dinner sipping, this’ll also do well as a postprandial dram.
Lindores Abbey Single Cask (cask #0386)
Found on the edges of Fife, it looks like Lindores Abbey was always meant to become a distillery, because it’s claimed that in 1494 Lindores Abbey was the site of the first written reference to whisky in Scotland! Later on in 1912, the Abbey and a neighbouring farm were sold to the family of the current owners, but it wasn’t until 2013 that they embarked on a £10 million project to build the current distillery, which finally opened in October 2017. This whisky was distilled in May 2018 entirely from Fife barley, which went through a very lengthy fermentation of 119 hours, and was filled into the distillery’s 386th cask, an ex-bourbon barrel from Kentucky’s Old Forester. It rested there until June 2022 when it was drawn from the cask, with a yield of just 246 bottles. The long fermentation, slow distillation, and maturation combined make for a sweet, fruit-forward, and gently creamy spirit.
Nikka Coffey Malt Whisky
Founded in 1934, Nikka is the 1934 creation of Masataka Taketsuru, who is also generally regarded as the founding father of Japanese whisky itself. Nothing to do with your morning brew, this Coffey Malt is distilled in the first commercialised continuous still, the Coffey still, named after Aeneas Coffey, an Irishman. Coffey stills are usually used to distil grain whisky, so this is something a little different from Nikka. Produced entirely from malted barley at Nikka’s Miyagikyo distillery, Coffey Malt was never meant to be a permanent release, but was added to the core range in 2014 thanks to its popularity. The malt is allowed to shine through in this release, full of notes of baked goods, woody spices, and citrus fruits.