With more and more independent bottlers appearing and more single cask bottlings available it’s hard to know in which direction to turn !
Just recently I have been introduced to a new kid on the block as they say and I have been rather impressed with what I have tasted and seen from these guys, so it only seemed right to have a chat and get to know them and what they are offering..
A day in the life.. Tom from the single cask..
Can you tell us about the company and your day to day job / what is involved.
Why did you decide on a career in the world of whisky
The whisky industry in Scotland has always struck me as being unique for a number of reasons, not just for its internationally renowned product. My university business studies were focussed on the fascinating way in which competing whisky companies seem to cooperate to a surprising degree; somehow this led to a ‘research trip’ to Islay to speak to several distillery managers and I’ve been hooked ever since.
What does whisky mean to you?
For me whisky is made special by its community. Everybody is very welcoming, passionate about what they do and willing to share their knowledge and enthusiasm.
What is it that you enjoy the most about the industry
I always enjoy getting out to different events and talking to people about what we do. Our tasting events are always a highlight, as we make it our mission to only bottle whiskies that we ourselves find very interesting, so it’s great fun to hear feedback. For example our heavily peated English whisky always takes people by surprise and leads to some great discussions!
What has surprised you most about the industry
The level of knowledge never fails to surprise me. Not just in terms of people working in the industry but also in speaking to consumers, there’s a tremendous appreciation for the complexity of whisky on both sides, which ensures work will never be boring.
What’s your favourite time and place to enjoy a dram?
Tough to pick a favourite, though sunny evenings with friends involving whisky, cigars and ideally a barbecue have to be up there. Living in Scotland those occasions can be few and far between…
With all the NAS and various cask finishes available, what do you predict to be the next big innovation in whisky?
It’s difficult not to be biased, but speaking to so many whisky enthusiasts in the last couple of years there has been a lot more appreciation for every aspect of a whisky, not just the age. People ask us about filtration, bottling strength, cask history, etc. More and more producers, not just here in Scotland but around the world, are pushing boundaries and skirting close to the line in terms of what is acceptable/expected. I even tried some bacon-infused whiskey recently…
It feels like anything is fair game, as long as there’s no deception. That’s why our team tries to remain open-minded when selecting casks. We make a point of keeping all of our whiskies as natural as possible, straight from the cask to the bottle, and there are a lot of surprises out there; we want to let the spirit speak for itself. So watch this space!
Have you got a favourite whisky?