The Tasting Panel magazine

May 2015

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 89 of 115

86  /  the tasting panel  /  may 2015 A sk anyone who sells single malt Scotch what the future of the industry is, and in one word, they'll say "millennials." This demo- graphic is gaining on the traditional Scotch drinker as the emerging force pushing single malts to centerstage—a departure from the blended whiskies they've been known to reach for. "What I like about this generation is that they tend to be collectors," says Kevin Stein, Marketplace Manager of the family-owned Twin Liquors in Austin, Texas. "They don't stick to one single brand or flavor profile; they really want to broaden their palates." Single malts likely have the American bourbon and rye industry to thank for that, which paved the way for mid-20s drinkers to explore complex brown spirits and value the story and artisanal method of production. So what are they reaching for first? "Speyburn," says Stein. "Speyburn 10 Year Old specifically has been a huge jumping-off point." As a classic Speyside single malt from the edge of the Highland region, Speyburn has the lighter, fruity complexity characteristic of that particular Scottish region. "It's very accessible to a palate still develop- ing a taste for the category," says Nima Ansari, Spirits Buyer of Astor Wine and Spirits in New York City. Both he and Stein consider Speyburn to be one of the most underrated brands in its category, citing its consistency, balance and price point as a benchmark for a versatile, quality single malt. "It's a phenomenal whisky to enjoy neat, but you can still mix it with club soda," says Stein. Ansari agrees: "With mixing Speyburn, you're not giving up the preciousness of the spirit." Traditionality in production is a common theme in the Scotch industry, which aligns with current consumer embrace of an interest in Old World, MILLENNIALS THRUST THE SINGLE MALT SCOTCH CATEGORY INTO THE CRAFT SPIRIT SPOTLIGHT by Éva Pelczer PHOTO: KIRK WEDDLE

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Tasting Panel magazine - May 2015