Friday, February 25, 2011

Behind the Scenes with Tenneyson Absinthe Royale

Tenneyson Absinthe Royale, the most recent addition to our absinthe portfolio, is an excellent Swiss style La Bleue distilled in the historic Distillerie Les Fils d'Emile Pernot. The brand was created by Graham Wasilition, an American spirits enthusiast dedicated to bringing the absinthe category to a new level. Teaming up with David Nathan-Maister, author of The Absinthe Encyclopedia, and Master Distiller Dominique Rousselet, he created a complex, distinctive formula of exceptional quality. We interviewed Mr. Wasilition to reveal the true story behind the Tenneyson brand, and give you a behind the scenes look at what it takes to create a modern absinthe with traditional roots.

What inspired you to create Tenneyson Absinthe Royale and why is it named as such?

I have always been interested in eating and drinking well, along with trying new things. I fell in love with the absinthe category because it has such a storied past and is widely misunderstood and misrepresented. I was fortunate to strike up a relationship with the author of The Absinthe Encyclopedia, David Nathan-Maister, and we discussed what was missing from the category. We wanted to create an incredible brand that was approachable and honest in every sense. Absinthe had been a drink of the commoner and we wanted to take a humble approach towards creating a great absinthe that took some "Royale" inspiration. We chose the name Tenneyson because of the slight gin-like characteristics and UK-inspired direction. Absinthe had been portrayed as dark and mysterious for too long and we thought that it should be recognized as a truly world class spirit and Tenneyson Absinthe Royale was the name to do that!

The absinthe revival in the US started about four years ago... why did you wait until now to release Tenneyson?

I love this question. The category saw a spike in interest four years ago which has pulled back a little. We believed that this would happen because some brands really rushed into the category before truly developing their products which turned away some potential consumers. We are technically the 69th approved absinthe for sale in the US but really look at Tenneyson as a trendsetter that can bring the absinthe category to a new level. We really took our time to create an incredible product and didn't want to leave any stone unturned in its development and distillation. We are also on our "soft launch" and haven't officially pushed the product out. We are obviously available through DrinkUpNY but you should see much more of Tenneyson in the upcoming weeks as we really begin to share what we are doing.

One unique aspect of Tenneyson is that it has an interesting gin-like flavor profile. Was this done intentionally, and if so, why?

Tenneyson is first and foremost an authentic absinthe based on a century old European recipe. We don't want people to get the wrong idea that we are an absinthe/gin blend or something similar. When developing Tenneyson Absinthe Royale we really took our time to experiment with the profile and found that juniper berry (which is prominent in gin) and bitter orange really went well with what we had been working on when they were delicately balanced. The inclusion of these two elements allowed the spice to come out of the recipe and dried it out a little to create the perfect balance. We found both to be very pleasant and very approachable because they were some flavors that drinkers outside of the absinthe world would be familiar with even though they are not the dominating tastes in the profile.

Why did you decide to produce Tenneyson Absinthe at the Pernot Distillery in France, instead of producing it here in the US?

This is another question that comes up often. The Emile Pernot distillery, where Tenneyson is distilled and bottled, is one of only 2 operating absinthe distilleries in Pontarlier, France. The distillery has exclusive access to locally sourced wormwood which grows in the same soil as the wormwood which produced the most famous brands of the Belle Epoque. The supply source is pretty important when Grande Wormwood is what gives Absinthe its name (Grande Wormwood = Artemisia Absinthium). Our master distiller, Dominique Rousselet, is locally born and raised so he understands the region, climate, and seasons which all affect how the distilling process works and relates to the aromatics and botanicals. The distillery history and experience were the driving factors in developing and producing Tenneyson oversees.

Do you have any plans of releasing a Verte in the future? Are you working on any other projects that you would like to share with the readers?

We are really focused on introducing Tenneyson and raising the bar in the absinthe category here in the US currently. This being said, we are extremely passionate and excited about quality spirits and hope we can do similar things in the near future and we will keep everyone in the loop as we do so!

Expertly handcrafted from beet neutral spirits, Tenneyson Absinthe displays a lovely pearlescent louche and offers inviting aromas of fennel and juniper backed by a rich anise note. The complex, balanced palate opens with harmonious notes of grande wormwood, sweet fennel, anise and lemon balm, which then merge with bittersweet notes of orange and juniper that linger through the finish. Marc Thuillier, one of France's most well-respected absinthe experts, has described Tenneyson as "a top product" and "a real change from a traditional blanche, in a good sense". Purchase your bottle today to experience it first-hand!

Cheers from DrinkUpNY!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Experience the Wines of Madeira

The hillside vineyards of Madeira
The beautiful volcanic island of Madeira was discovered in 1418, when Portuguese explorer Gonçalves Zarco was blown off course by a violent storm while exploring the coast of West Africa. The earth was rich, fertile, and so covered with trees that he named the island Madeira, or "wood" in Portuguese. He reported his findings to his sponsor, Prince Henry the Navigator, who immediately decided to claim the island in the name of Portugal and establish a colony. However, the colony didn't fully flourish until 1452, when sugar cane and Malvasia grapes were imported from Sicily and Cyprus. By the end of the 15th century, Madeira was one of the largest sugar producers in the world.

This changed towards the late 1500's, when Portugal extended their reach to the Americas. They realized that the tropical climate of Brazil produced better, cheaper sugar than Madeira, so the island's farmers focused their attention on wine production instead. Madeira wine is produced from grapes grown on terraces that have been cut into the island's steep mountainsides. The grapes are crushed and fermented, but before fermentation is complete, brandy is added to increase the alcohol percentage while still preserving the natural sweetness of the grape. Although this is the standard process used to create fortified wine, one important difference is that Madeira is heated for several months. This heating, known as "estufagem", started in the late 1600's when wines from Madeira were transported on ships sailing to the Americas, as well as to mainland Portugal, England and India. Legend has it that a Madeira cask, forgotten in a ship's hold, returned to the island from a trip across the Equator. The wine was found to be richer, smoother and more flavorful than when it left, so from that point on, producers sent casks of their wines on long, tropical voyages. This practice ended in the early 1900's, but heating the wine is still a crucial step in the production of all Madeiras.

The popularity of Madeira grew as ships from numerous European countries stopped at the island to purchase and trade goods on their way to the Americas. In 1665, British authorities wanted to control the goods being imported into their American colonies, so they banned all products from Europe unless they were shipped on British vessels from British ports. However, products from Madeira were specifically exempted and British merchants in Madeira took full advantage of this by establishing ties with merchants in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Charleston and Savannah. It became the wine of choice for most wealthy Americans, and was even used to toast George Washington's inauguration, as well as the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

Unfortunately, Madeira's booming business declined in the late 1800's when the Oidium and Phylloxera diseases destroyed six thousand acres of the island's vineyards - even causing some grapes to become virtually extinct. This crisis passed and production was eventually restored, but only 20% of the damaged vines were able to be replaced with true Madeira varietals. The rest of the land was planted with American or European hybrid varietals, as well as numerous banana trees, which helped to revive the economy.

While many Madeiras today are blends of vintages and grape varieties, it is the vintage and solera wines that truly capture the essence of Madeira. These wines are created from particular grape varietals - Malmsey, Bual, Verdelho and Sercial - which not only describe the type of grape, but also the style of wine. Determined to preserve the tradition, The Rare Wine Company, along with Vinhos Barbeito, created The Historic Madeira Series in order to reintroduce Madeira to the general public. To emphasize America's deep historical connection to Madeira, each wine in the series is named for a U.S. city where it was popular in the 18th and 19th centuries. Each bottle bears an early engraving from the chosen city, along with a back label describing America's special link to Madeira's illustrious history. Try their "Boston Bual", "New Orleans Special Reserve" Terrantez, or "New York Malmsey" to experience Madeira first-hand, and truly appreciate the rich history behind this renowned wine.

Cheers from DrinkUpNY!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Behind the Scenes with Prohibition Distillery

Established in 2009, Prohibition Distillery was founded by Brian Facquet and John Walsh, the descendant of the notorious Frankie Walsh, a member of the bootlegging street gang Egan's Rats. Although Prohibition was repealed in 1933, Prohibition Distillery still strives to capture the youthful, rebellious spirit of the speakeasies in the roaring twenties. We interviewed Brain Facquet, one of the founders of Prohibition Distillery, to give you a behind the scenes look at Bootlegger 21 and the history that inspired the brand.

What first inspired you to create Prohibition Distillery?

The idea first came out in passing when John Walsh was asked by his sister: "If you could build your own liquor company based on a historical time period, what would it be?". His immediate answer was “Prohibition Distillery and Bootlegger 21!”. After that, John reached out to me and we started to learn the trade. I guess our inspiration comes from our kids! We want to build something that we can be proud of and pass down to our next generation! I guess you can say it’s the American Dream!

What were some of the difficulties you encountered while creating Bootlegger 21?

Where do I start? We are always saying, “We will laugh about this someday!". We have had so many hurdles that you become used to your day being filled with adversity. This is an industry that is brand new to us, so we are continually learning. Both John and I really enjoy the challenge!

Bootlegger 21 is currently being produced in the Hudson Valley at Tuthilltown Spirits. Are there any future plans to move to your own distillery?

Our initial business plan was to build our own distillery, however it fell through due to dried up funding. Rather than pack it in, we started working with the guys up at Tuthilltown Spirits. The relationship is very unique and it allows John and I to be very involved in the production. We have been lucky, since every bottle our consumers drink was made by the two of us!

The Prohibition Distillery website states that "Support Wall Street and your local bartender: Buy a banker a drink." is your philosophy. Why was this chosen?

That was meant to be a joke, since the crisis on wall street was prominent when we launched our company. Unfortunately, we have been unable to update the website until recently, but the good news is that the "official" website will be going live very soon!

The ornate bottle and interesting label of Bootlegger 21 makes a strong statement about the brand. Is there any historical significance behind these choices?

Our label is based on the Federal prescription ticket for medicinal alcohol common during Prohibition, when patients could obtain their "medicine" from a pharmacy. We of course modified it to include 21, which celebrates the 21st Amendment and the repeal of Prohibition. The back of the bottle has an art deco drawing of a poppy flower, which was a common image during the period. Our inspiration for the bottle came from the shape and color of glass used during the era. I recently saw our bottle in an antique shop window in upstate New York, so I guess it passed the test. In case you were wondering, I did ask them to take it down!

Why was vodka the first release from Prohibition Distillery? Will there be any other spirits produced in the future? 

We had actually started out making a gin, but realized our vodka was pretty amazing on its own. In the future we will make other spirits, but for now we will focus on the quality and support of Bootlegger 21 New York Vodka.

Officially (not) prohibited in all fifty states, Bootlegger 21 offers a glimpse into the past, where spirits were produced in secret and enjoyed in password-protected establishments. Prohibition returns and this time, there's something to celebrate!

Cheers from DrinkUpNY!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Pisco Culture of Peru

Pisco, the national drink of both Peru and Chile, is a distilled grape spirit, or "aguardiente", that has a rich history dating back nearly 500 years. While the rightful ownership of the spirit is often disputed between the two countries, the city of Pisco in the Ica Valley of southern Peru is regarded as the birthplace of the product.

Centuries before the Spaniards arrived in South America, the Incan people created a complex system of canals which transported Andean river water throughout the desert. This early irrigation system, known as "Achirana", breathed life into the dry, infertile soils of the Ica Valley and provided ideal growing conditions for a variety of plant life. When the Spaniards arrived in the 16th Century, they extended the Achirana further into the countryside and in 1548, planted the first seeds for the Quebranta grape. Within 12 years, the vineyards were so fertile that Peru exported grapes and wine to Argentina, Chile, Spain and other countries. However, shortly after, the Spaniards were no longer satisfied with wine and craved the Spanish brandies they had enjoyed in their home country. They found that the Quebranta grape they had cultivated produced a strong, flavorful brandy that soon became quite popular throughout South America and overseas. Over time, this brandy became known as Pisco - named after the port from which it was exported.

Modern Pisco is quite different from the crude spirit it once was, although the traditional production methods are still practiced. There are currently seven grapes used to create different varieties of Peruvian pisco (Quebranta, Torontel, Moscatel, Italia, Albilla, Uvina and Negro Corriente), and each type produces a unique result. After the harvest, the grapes are cleaned, pressed and fermented for 18 days, resulting in a light bodied wine with a low alcohol percentage. This wine is then distilled in gas heated copper pot kettle stills, where it transforms into a pure, clear spirit with a much higher alcohol content. However, to achieve the final product Peruvian Pisco is not aged, but rested for a minimum of three months in glass, stainless steel or copper tubs that preserve the natural properties of the Pisco. It is then bottled without any added ingredients - including water. According to tradition, the Pisco must be untainted and bottled at its original proof.

One of the most noted Pisco producers in Peru is Macchu Pisco, a family-run company that creates premium Andean Pisco by combining modern technology with traditional production methods. After the grapes are hand-harvested they are pressed by foot - a tradition the family has maintained through the years. Unlike many other grape-based spirits, the pressings are then discarded and only the first extract is used to create the Pisco. This care and dedication is evident in Macchu Pisco and La Diablada Pisco, two of the company's award-winning releases. First try them neat and then whip up a Pisco Sour! This refreshing cocktail is so popular that in 2003, Peru declared the first Saturday in February Pisco Sour Day!

Pisco Sour

1 1/2 oz. Macchu Pisco
1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp sugar
1/2 egg white
1 dash The Bitter Truth Lemon Bitters

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.

Cheers from DrinkUpNY!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Behind the Scenes with Riazul Tequila

As one of our best selling brands, Riazul has certainly made an impression on the market with their distinctive bottles, fascinating history and, of course, their premium tequilas. We interviewed Iñaki Orozco, the founder of Riazul Tequila, and Nicholas Diamond, the VP of Operations for the Northeast, to bring you the true story behind the brand and show the hard work and dedication that is required to create this exceptional spirit.

What is the history behind the Riazul brand?

Nicholas: Some tequilas claim they have a family history steeped in rich folklore, however Riazul's claim to fame stems from the Mexican War of Independence, and the beautiful Maria Higinia Gomez who served courageously as high counselor to the Mexican Rebel Leaders. It was for her dedication that she became the beneficiary of 10,000 acres of land in the highlands of Jalisco, where the "tierra roja", or red soil, is fertile, rich and aromatic. After giving most of the land away to the revolutionaries who fought for Mexico's freedom, Maria was left with 620 acres. These acres passed down through her family, remaining untouched for two hundred years, until a precocious young man became the beneficiary of the land in the late 1990's.

Iñaki Orozco knew that the land could be cultivated and serve as farmland for raising agave plants, and seeing a value for the land, sought out the elders of the family for their blessing. Initially planting 100 agave shoots, the agave crop flourished and over time Iñaki worked to plant more than 175,000 more shoots. The high elevation, cool climate, and red volcanic soils known only to Jalisco, are the perfect combination of elements for the cultivation of the agave used for tequila. At first, Iñaki simply planned to grow agave as raw product for other tequila companies. It was much later that his "sueno" or dream grew, and he began thinking about launching a private label brand for restaurants and bars. The family thought he had lost his mind.

Riazul Blanco and Riazul Añejo were introduced at the end of 2008 as the first tequilas in the Riazul portfolio. Riazul Reposado launched in September 2009 and word is spreading fast about this barrel-oaked tequila that is aged for nine months.

What inspired the creation of Riazul Tequila?

Iñaki: I wanted to provide American consumers with a true, premium tequila iconic of my country. Well-sourced and processed agave should ALWAYS deliver a good product, but unfortunately there are a lot of expensive, low quality tequilas out there. This is clearly a sourcing problem, because although there are a few techniques to personalize the profile of the tequila, the production process is pretty straightforward. We at Riazul will never have this problem due to our favorable soil conditions and endless supply of quality agave.

What were some of the difficulties encountered while starting your business?

Iñaki: The biggest on-going challenge has been to find the right distributor for our products, as well as finding the right people to represent the brand in different markets.

What sets Riazul apart from the competition?

Nicholas: Riazul Premium introduces a sexy, elegant and classic presentation from the moment you first spot the bottle, to your first "responsible sip" of the product. Created from quality agave and expertly produced, it's the tequila itself, or "the juice", that makes Riazul an exceptional contender in the tequila world. There are at present, more than 4,300 tequila products in the market, of which 3,500 are being distributed in the United States. Few measure up to the distinctive, elegant presentation of the bottle and the perfect chemistry held within, that can only be Riazul. When one experiences the Anejo for the first time, the reaction is always "Wow". It is simply said, "unlike any other tequila on the market". Perhaps it is the American and French Oak barrels that the elixir is "rested" or aged in, perhaps it is the soil and the plants, or perhaps it is the ingenious idea that tequila should be relished, enjoyed and savored. The complete harmony of all of the afore mentioned and more is poured into every bottle, delivering the smoothest, most consistent and undoubtedly incomparable tequila ever tasted.

Nicholas, how and why did you get involved with the company?

Nicholas: I met Iñaki through a mutual friend here in NYC. Inaki, who had moved to the US from Mexico, attended Business School with my friend at Rice University in Houston, TX. After Business School, Iñaki was looking for investors to get Riazul off the ground. After meeting Inaki and getting my hands on the business plan, I immediately loved his passion and the idea behind launching a product like Riazul Tequila. I loved the idea that Iñaki and Riazul were integrated all the way down to the soil in Jalisco, and there was real history behind the brand.

Initially, I was just an investor in the brand, but just as the brand was ready to launch in October 2009, I decided to join Iñaki as a full time partner and started to learn more about the business, as well as growing and developing a brand - a task 8 years on Wall Street could never teach you. We just completed two full years of operations and I am happy to report that we are now sold in 11 states in the US and sales of Riazul are growing monthly.

Can we expect any new releases from Riazul in the near future?

Iñaki: An extra-añejo is our most likely addition to the portfolio at some point in 2011. We are also looking into a value brand.

Every sip of Riazul tequila is born from a land rich in history and a prideful people who value family, friends, and self-determination above all. So take your time to truly appreciate Riazul's complex balance of flavors, and always remember to "Flow Freely"!

Cheers from DrinkUpNY!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Celebrate Valentine's Day With DrinkUpNY!

Whether you're having a romantic dinner with your better half, or boycotting the holiday with your friends, Valentine's Day is an excellent excuse to indulge in lavish drinks. To help you out, we've composed an interesting selection of wines and spirits that will add the finishing touch to your perfect evening.

Light, semi-sweet sparkling wines are always a popular choice, especially if they happen to suit the holiday. Try a sparkling rose - not only will it pair well with a variety of foods, but its vibrant pink color will match your decor! We recommend:

De Montoux Rose
Composed of 40% Chardonnay, 35% Pinot Noir and 25% Pinot Meunier, this light pink Champagne is smooth, dry and balanced. Soft floral notes on the nose follow through to the palate, where they merge with subtle flavors of red berries, vanilla and buttered toast.

Le Vigne di Alice "Ose" Vino Spumante Rose Brut
Alice Ose Vino Spumante is produced from 100% Marzemino, an unusual grape that has also found a home in southern Trentino. The nose abounds with fresh rose petal, while the palate boasts ample red berry fruit supported by zesty acidity.

Patrick Bottex Vin du Bugey-Cerdon "La Cueille" Methode Ancestral Sparkling Wine
This obscure sparkling wine, blended from Gamay and Poulsard, is hard not to love. Loaded with ripe red berry aromas and flavors, this fresh, slightly sweet, low-alcohol red is a fun wine for all seasons.

Many of our other wines are also a great choice for the holiday, so visit our Valentine's Day Selection for more ideas! However, if wine just isn't for you, we also have many excellent spirits that will fit the mood as well. The following items are perfect for mixing light, elegant cocktails that both you and your date will enjoy:

Combier "Roi Rene Rouge" Cherry Liqueur
Combier Rouge is composed of a blend of Guignes and Morello cherries for their aroma and spiciness, and black cherries for their deep, ruby color. The result is a light, sweet, fruity liqueur with hints of pepper and licorice. Made entirely of natural ingredients, Rouge contains no added sugar and is sweetened entirely from the fruits themselves.

Esprit de June Liqueur
This unique liqueur is crafted from the vine-flowers of Ugni Blanc, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and other grape varietals. The blossoms used in this liqueur are carefully chosen for their specific flavor characteristics. The Ugni Blanc provides pear, peach, and white flower notes, the Merlot lends wild strawberry and cherry-blossom aromas, and the Cabernet Sauvignon contribute strawberry, raspberry and violet notes. Beautifully balanced and exceptionally smooth, this liqueur mixes will in numerous cocktails.

Averell Damson Gin Liqueur
Created by infusing Damson plums with small-batch American gin, Averell displays sweet aromas of berry, plum and spice that lead to a tart, full flavored palate.

Medea Vodka
This high quality, flawless spirit is not only an excellent cocktail base, but a gift in itself! The distinctive packaging of Medea offers programmable LED technology on the front of the bottle, which is definitely a unique way to say "I Love You"!

If you're looking for something a bit different, you could always try pairing saké with your Valentine's dinner! Kamoizumi "Happy Bride" KomeKome-Shu is mildly sweet, pleasantly tart, and shows enough acidity to keep it balanced. It is a delectable companion to Thai food, spicy curries, and an array of dessert tarts and custards.

So matter what plans you have this year, have some fun on February 14th and raise your glass to the good times ahead! Visit our Valentine's Day Selection for even more great ideas!

Cheers from DrinkUpNY!

Friday, February 4, 2011

An Introduction to Shochu

Kagoshima - the home of shochu
While Japan is commonly known for their saké, the popularity of shochu, Japan's other alcoholic beverage, is on the rise. Distilled in the warmer regions of Japan, shochu is commonly created from sweet potato, rice, soba (buckwheat) and barley, although a few adventurous distillers use brown sugar, chestnuts and other grains.

While shochu most likely has its roots in China, Korea or Thailand, the traditional home of shochu is Kagoshima, a city on the Japanese island of Kyushu. Kagoshima is proud of their shochu heritage and is the only region of Japan that does not brew saké. They produce imo-joshu, a sweet, spicy shochu created from distilled sweet potatoes that offers a full palate and complex, earthy flavors. Satoh Shochu, a noted brand from Kagoshima, is a smooth, savory imo-joshu than can be enjoyed warm or on the rocks.

The final characteristics of any shochu are not only influenced by the raw ingredients, but also by the distillation method. There are currently two methods employed in Japan that produce radically different styles of shochu, and both have their place in the market.

The older method, otsu-rui (also known as honkaku), was first used in the 14th century and is the method typically utilized by small, artisan producers. The shochu is usually created from one ingredient and is only distilled once to preserve its flavor characteristics. Toyonaga "Land of Plenty" Shochu, made from premium Yamada Nishiki rice, is an excellent example of this distillation method. Enjoy straight, on the rocks, or add a splash of hot water to release the intricate flavors and aromas.

Kou-rui, the second method, has only been used since 1911, and didn't become a legal classification unil 1949. Kou-rui shochu is distilled multiple times from more than one of the common raw materials. This style of shochu is light and clean with more subtle flavors, and is typically used as a cocktail base or paired with meals. Yama No Mori "Mountain Guardian" Shochu, distilled from barley and rice, exemplifies the kou-rui method and also makes an excellent introduction to shochu.

Cheers from DrinkUpNY!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Revival of Welsh Whisky

The Penderyn Still
One of the few remaining independent distilleries, Penderyn revives a 250 year old whisky distilling heritage in Wales that had long been forgotten. The first Welsh distillery in over a century, Penderyn is located in a small, rural village at the foothills of the ancient Brecon Beacons mountain range, surrounded by the famed Fforest Fawr National Park. It is here that Penderyn combines high quality raw materials, naturally sourced mountain water, a distinctive copper pot still and specially crafted casks to create some of the finest malt whiskies on the market today. However, due to the size of the facility, only one cask of malted barley spirit can be produced each day, resulting in limited worldwide distribution.

The first stage of production begins with a high quality malted barley wash, which is supplied by expert Welsh brewers S. A. Brain & Co. in Cardiff. This barley is then distilled in the unique still at Penderyn, which was designed by Dr. David Faraday and consists of a single copper pot beneath a tall rectifying multi-plate column. While most Scottish and Irish distilleries would use a conventional two or three pot still system, the technology developed at Penderyn allowes an extremely clean and flavorful spirit to be produced from a single still. The distillation process is closely supervised by Gillian Macdonald, Penderyn's distiller, who routinely checks the distillate to ensure quality. The distilled spirit is then combined with Penderyn's own pure water source, located in the carboniferous limestone deep below the distillery. This is the only water used in the distilling and blending process and it is a key ingredient in Penderyn's malt whisky.

Although the individual characteristics of a malt whisky are influenced by a number of factors, much of the flavor and final color depends on the type of wooden barrels used for maturation. These barrels are carefully selected by Dr. Jim Swan, one of the world's finest Master Distillers and an authority on wood management. Penderyn's whisky is first matured in Buffalo Trace bourbon casks, but when the time is right, the whiskies are disgorged and re-casked in ex-Maderia barrels. The whisky slowly absorbs the character of the Madeira, increasing in subtlety and complexity.

Bottled at premium strength, Penderyn "Aur Cymru", or "Welsh gold", is an exceptional single malt that offers enticing notes of cream toffee, vanilla and leather on both the nose and palate. Bold, savory notes of tropical fruit, raisin and oak emerge on the lasting finish. Quite different from a Scotch or Irish whisky, Penderyn is a must-have for any whisky enthusiast!

Cheers from DrinkUpNY!