When thinking of whisky and peat, Speyside in Scotland has not been a region that's come to mind. Until now.
But wait there's more. This whisky is not only smoky! it's also sweet!
Ailsa Bay is the only whisky in the world to be created based on an industry-first “sweetness” index which enables the scientific measurement of sweetness. This complements a precise calculation of ‘peatiness’ to create the perfect balance between smokiness and sweetness – all driven by advanced technology. This revolutionary method was developed by Malt Master Brian Kinsman at William Grant & Sons. Ailsa Bay single malt whisky is also the only Scotch whisky to undergo ‘micro-maturation’, a process where the new spirit is first kept in small bourbon casks to age for up to nine months. By ‘cask starting’ rather than ‘cask finishing’ the malt, whisky scientists can then layer on a complex matrix of flavours, taking the liquid through rapid, intense maturation and incorporating varying levels of sweetness and smokiness.
The unique methodology is driven by a collective of whisky visionaries and scientists including William Grant & Sons’ family member, Peter Gordon whose dream led to the building of the Ailsa Bay distillery to develop a new style of peated whisky.
Now, Aisla Bay is available in Australia and the Scoopsters got the first taste. Well, one of them, at an exclusive media launch this month. One of us is a peaty Scotch drink, and one of us isn't even a Scotch drinker, but now our Nicky Girlstar has been converted. So whether you are already into a wee dram, or not, this one is for you. Cheers!
Ailsa Bay is available in Australia through Vintage Cellars (and online), select First Choice stores (and online) only and Liquorland select stores this month at a recommended retail price of $AUD99 per 700ml bottle.
Images courtesy of William Grant & Sons.