What I am noticing about some of the more recent bottlings is how the location of the distillery is being woven into the narrative about the dram, from the name and labelling to partnerships surrounding the launch.
First up is from Tobermory and the release of the latest expression in its Hebridean Series: Tobermory 25. Following the success of the previous 23-year-old and 24-year-old expressions, the 25-year-old is, the team say, inspired by the people of Mull’s long-standing history of working with the land that surrounds them.
The expression draws on the distillery’s affinity to the island and the crofting industry that has influenced the island as we know it today. In addition to the release, Tobermory has announced a partnership with award-winning wildlife filmmaker,Gordon Buchanan, who will be working with the distillery as an island ambassador, to preserve and promote the Isle of Mull.
Over in Fife, Kingsbarns Distillery has launched what they are calling their flagshire whisky Doocot. Distilled from barley sourced less than six miles from the distillery, the flagship single malt has enjoyed further maturation in cask than their previous ‘Dream to Dram’ whisky, maintaining balance and developing its complexity.
The Scots word for dovecot, the name Doocot pays tribute to an architectural feature at Kingsbarns Distillery. The distillery's doocot is a free-standing structure with Adam-style crenellations and Gothic detailing. It looks to all the world like a miniature fortified tower.
Finally Edinburgh’s soon-to-open Port of Leith Distillery has released Perpetuity whisky. Reflecting the rich history of Leith as a distilling district, Perpetuity is inspired by the story of a 15th-century Leith cooper, Henry Douglas – nicknamed the ‘Cursed Cooper’ – who is depicted on the label hard at work on his cursed cask.
The first batch of a limited number of 1,430 bottles are now available, comprising a blend of single malt and single grain whiskies from Highland, Speyside and Lowland distilleries. In keeping with other products under the Leith Export Co. umbrella, including Lind & Lime gin, Perpetuity comes in a contemporary wine-inspired bottle, with original artwork, created in-house.