Planet Whiskies :: Scottish Single Malt Whisky, Scotch, Distilleries, American Bourbon, Japanese, Irish

World-Wide Whisky News by Planet Whiskies | Buy your whisky online

To advertise on Planet Whiskies visit our contact us page

Spirit Of Speyside 2015 | Top malts face taste test challenge as finalists are shortlisted in the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival Whisky Awards | 23rd January, 2015

Top malts face taste test challenge as finalists are shortlisted in the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival Whisky Awards | 23rd January, 2015

The finalists in the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival Whisky Awards have been named – and the shortlist is dominated by the giants of the region’s malt whisky industry. Judges put two entries from both Chivas Brothers and Diageo through to the final round, along with an entry from William Grant and Sons.

The shortlist is completed by with a malt from independent whisky merchants and bottlers Gordon and MacPhail, operators of Benromach Distillery.

The final rounds of judging will be staged during the annual five-day Festival, which this year takes place from April 30 to May 4. Unusually for a whisky awards scheme, members of the public are asked to determine the winners by casting their votes in blind tasting sessions.

Six finalists were selected from a total entry of 37 submitted by distilleries across Speyside. In the category for malts under 12 - or with no age statement - the finalists are Cardhu Gold Reserve and Strathisla 12 years. The 13 to 20 years section is between Aberlour 18 and Glenfiddich 18. GlenSpey 21 will go head to head with Benromach 30 in the category for over 20 years.

The awards are sponsored by coppersmiths Forsyths of Rothes – the company responsible for building many of the pot stills in which the shortlisted single malts were distilled.

A panel of 10 industry experts, leading whisky writers and retailers determined the final shortlist at a special tasting at the Knocomie Hotel in Forres, Speyside this week.

Whisky author and hotelier Penny Ellis, chairman of the judging panel, says, “It was a very challenging session, with some clear favourites and some very close calls. The 12 and under category had a very diverse spread of aromas and tastes, and something to suit different palates.

“The 13-20 years was the hardest category to judge as the entries had some very similar profiles. In that category we had to take two entries to a taste-off, and I stepped out as a judge to ensure that there would be a majority vote. The over 21 years category was fabulous and it was great to see some lesser known distilleries and smaller operators making their mark.

“I think the finalists serve to show that there is no such thing as a typical Speyside malt and that the breadth of the whisky here is huge. We’re asking Festival visitors to vote on the winners, and they will be in for a real treat with the six drams on the shortlist.”

World-renowned whisky writer Martine Nouet was also on the panel. She adds, “The judges’ task was not an easy one as the single malts we were given to sample were all excellent. But we had to make a selection and finally we succeeded. I am delighted that we came out with six contenders representing six different distilleries. This promises visitors to the Festival a superb journey of discovery as they nose and taste the six whiskies in the finals.”

There will be a number of roving judging sessions during the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival and visitors will be able to try all finalist malts before voting. This will also be a blind taste test so that they cannot be influenced by brand loyalty or awareness.

Festival director Laura Sharp said that allowing the public to vote on the winners was   extremely important to the event, and to the participating distillers.

She adds, “Our judging panel may help to educate and form opinions about whiskies in their-day-to-day roles, but it could be said that consumers are the real experts as they ultimately have the power to make or break through their buying preferences.

“Whisky drinkers appreciate a fantastic malt whisky when they taste one - we have every confidence that visitors to the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival will once again select winners worthy of being crowned the best in Speyside.”

The final judging session and awards prize-giving will take place at the closing ceilidh on Sunday, May 4.

Tickets for all events in the 2015 Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival programme, including the roving judging sessions, can be bought via the website – www.spiritofspeyside.com from February 3. The Festival is also active on social media – facebook.com/WhiskyFestival and @spirit_speyside on Twitter.

Read more about The Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival 2015

Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival 2014

<< Back to all the latest whisky news brought to you by Planet Whiskies

Planet Whiskies on Twitter
Planet Whiskies on Facebook
Planet Whiskies on Pinterest

Subscribe to Planet Whiskies newsletter

* indicates required


Loch Fyne Whiskies

Loch Fyne Whiskies

Have you seen all the whisky specials on offer at Loch Fyne Whiskies in Inveraray? All orders placed have next day delivery. Click to discover all these fantastic offers... Read More

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society

View latest whisky news

Diageo Latest: Johnnie Walker transformation plans submitted for Cardhu and Clynelish

Diageo Latest: Johnnie Walker transformation plans submitted for Cardhu and Clynelish

Plans to transform the visitor experiences at Cardhu and Clynelish distilleries have been formally submitted as part of a major Johnnie Walker Scotch whisky investment programme. Read more

New Whisky Release: Glengoyne Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky has announced the much-anticipated launch of Cask Strength Batch No. 007.

Glengoyne launches Cask Strength Batch No. 007

Glengoyne Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky has announced the much-anticipated launch of Cask Strength Batch No. 007. Read more

 

A Stunning Triumph For Sliabh Liag Distillers At 2019 Bartenders’ Brand Awards

An Dúlamán Irish Maritime Gin scoops the coveted Gold Gin Category Champion medal and The Legendary Silkie Irish Whiskey lives up to its name with three medals

A Stunning Triumph For Sliabh Liag Distillers At 2019 Bartenders Brand Awards

Donegal’s Sliabh Liag Distillers today received the highest industry recognition from some of the most renowned names in the UK bar industry in securing the Gin Category Champion award for its An Dúlamán Irish Maritime Gin. Read more

Order Glenmorangie Grand Vintage 1991: fourth limited-edition release within the celebrated Bond House No.1 collection.

Pre-order Glenmorangie Grand Vintage 1991: fourth limited-edition release within the celebrated Bond House No.1 collection

Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1991 is the fourth limited-edition release in the Highland Distillery’s celebrated Bond House No.1 collection. Read more

Scotland's oldest licensed distillery revealed as Littlemill With new historic documentary evidence proves that it was the oldest licensed whisky distillery in Scotland

Scotland's oldest licensed distillery revealed With new historic documentary evidence proves that it was the oldest licensed whisky distillery in Scotland.

Littlemill Distillery has long laid claim to an extensive and fascinating history, but new historic documentary evidence unearthed from the archives now conclusively proves that it was the oldest licensed whisky distillery in Scotland. Read more 

Great News from Edinburgh Tourism: World famous Scotch Whisky collection to stay in Edinburgh for another 10 years

Great News from Edinburgh Tourism: World famous Scotch Whisky collection to stay in Edinburgh for another 10 years

Susan Morrison of SWE and Diageo archivist Christine McCafferty

The most extensive and famous private Scotch Whisky collection in the world will remain a jewel in the crown of Edinburgh’s tourism landscape, after a new 10-year loan deal was agreed for its public display. Read more

Bringing whiskey distilling back to Donegal for the first time in 177 years: First Step Underway In Creation Of New Ardara Distillery

Sliabh Liag Distillers apply for planning permission

Bringing whiskey distilling back to Donegal for the first time in 177 years: First Step Underway In Creation Of New Ardara Distillery

Sliabh Liag Distillers have taken the first step in their ambitious plan to bring whiskey distilling back to Donegal for the first time in 177 years. The distillery which produces An Dúlamán Irish Maritime Gin and The Legendary Silkie Irish Whiskey, has acquired the Show Field in Ardara, and will be formally submitting a planning application to Donegal County Council this week. Read more

New Whisky Release: Glenmorangie's vintage collection reveals a whisky of implausible harmony

Rich plum limited edition celebrates Highland Distillery’s wood-finish pioneers

New Whisky Release: Glenmorangie's vintage collection reveals a whisky of implausible harmony

A Highland single malt which marries two profoundly different whiskies in
implausible harmony, is today revealed as the fourth release in Glenmorangie’s celebrated Bond House No. 1 vintage collection. Read more 

Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival offers visitors a unique opportunity to get hands-on in whisky-making process

Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival offers visitors a unique opportunity to get hands-on in whisky-making process

Sandy Hyslop - Chivas Brothers

Visitors attending the world’s leading Scotch whisky festival are being given a unique and exclusive opportunity to get hands-on with the distilling process. Speyside Distillery is offering just 10 people the chance to work alongside its distillers to produce spirit when it throws open its doors during the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival. Read more

Tobermory Distillery Celebrates launch 12 year old Signature Expression

Tobermory Distillery Celebrates launch 12 year old Signature Expression

Tobermory, one of Scotland’s oldest commercial distilleries, this week unveiled its new signature expression – the Tobermory 12 Year Old. Read more 

Tullibardine explores whisky and food fusions in partnership with award-winning restaurant Aurora

Tullibardine explores whisky and food fusions in partnership with award-winning restaurant

Tullibardine has announced a culinary venture with one of Scotland’s top independent restaurants, Aurora. The partnership aims to encourage a creative approach when it comes to tasting and enjoying single malt whisky and to explore the versatility of the spirit. Read more

Exclusive Interview with Paul McDonagh owner of Bon Accord: Glasgow Whisky Bar

Paul McDonagh owner of Bon Accord

It’s a pub that I have been into many times in the past, even before my passion for whisky took over. So, when I got the opportunity to meet the owner of “Bon Accord”, Paul McDonagh, I jumped at the chance. Read more

Great Whiskies Website

Buy Whisky online go to Great Whiskies (Planet Whiskies sister website)

Planet Gin Website

To read all the Latest Gin News. please go to our sister website - www.planetgin.com

VisitScotland Interactive Whisky Guide

Visit Scotland Interactive Whisky Map

Found out about 105 whisky distilleries in Scotland's five whisky regions in this very exciting interactive whisky guide :: More information

Some Scottish Whisky Available to Buy Online

Littlemill 26 Year Old 1992 - Old Malt Cask (Hunter Laing) Single Malt Whisky
Littlemill 26 Year Old 1992 - Old Malt Cask (Hunter Laing) Single Malt Whisky ~ 50% ~ 70cl

Region: Lowland  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £440.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Tullibardine 30 Year Old - Stillmans Dram (Whyte & Mackay) Single Malt Whisky
Tullibardine 30 Year Old - Stillmans Dram (Whyte & Mackay) Single Malt Whisky ~ 45% ~ 70cl

Region: Highland  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £325.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


BenRiach 30 Year Old Authenticus Peated Single Malt Whisky
BenRiach 30 Year Old Authenticus Peated Single Malt Whisky ~ 46% ~ 70cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £390.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Black & White (2L) - 1960s Blended Whisky
Black & White (2L) - 1960s Blended Whisky ~ 40% ~ 200cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £576.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


1812 Indefatigable Single Malt Whisky
1812 Indefatigable Single Malt Whisky ~ 50% ~ 70cl

Region: Australian  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £5,220.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


SMWS L1.39 11 Year Old 1982 Single Malt Whisky
SMWS L1.39 11 Year Old 1982 Single Malt Whisky ~ 57.2% ~ 70cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £450.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Caol Ila 38 Year Old 1980 (cask 12785) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Single Malt Whisky
Caol Ila 38 Year Old 1980 (cask 12785) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Single Malt Whisky ~ 53.9% ~ 70cl

Region: Islay  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £650.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Laphroaig 28 Year Old Single Malt Whisky
Laphroaig 28 Year Old Single Malt Whisky ~ 44.4% ~ 70cl

Region: Islay  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £475.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Bowmore 45 Year Old 1972 (cask 3882) - 30th Anniversary Gift Box (Sign Single Malt Whisky
Bowmore 45 Year Old 1972 (cask 3882) - 30th Anniversary Gift Box (Sign Single Malt Whisky ~ 46.7% ~ 70cl

Region: Islay  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £4,950.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Inver House Green Plaid (1.75L) - 1980s Blended Whisky
Inver House Green Plaid (1.75L) - 1980s Blended Whisky ~ 40% ~ 175cl

Region: Scotch  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £336.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Planet Whiskies on Pinterest

Planet Whiskies on Twitter