The Tasting Panel magazine

April 2010

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Page 44 of 116

SPECIAL REPORT: WHisk(e)y Speyside Story M ango? So last year. Try pomegranate before it’s so yesterday. In a market driven by stylish infused spirits, isn’t single malt scotch a wee bit out of fashion? Not if it’s introduced by a Scotsman who’s as passionate about his whisky as he is about his tartan. Dennis Malcom, Glen Grant Master Distiller. Dennis Malcolm, Glen Grant’s kilt-clad distiller, says that he’s had a lot of whiskies in his time and thinks that his is one of the most surprising and trendy spirits around because of its simple recipe and approachability for the novice drinker. “With flavored vodkas, they’re hanging on to the baby flavors. This is something for a matur- ing drinker,” said Malcolm. “It’s the lightest single malt out there and very easy-drinking.” The third-generation distiller for Southern Hospitality Bascule may be the best whiskey bar In the Southern Hemisphere Nautically-inspired Bascule Whisky & Wine Bar, on Cape Town’s waterfront, is the perfect setting for enjoying whiskies. Connoisseurs, collectors and the socially savvy mingle in this seductive spot, where members of their respective wine and whisky clubs house over 8,000 bottles on site. You can put the prolific staff to the test as they arrange tastings to your liking and suggest pairings throughout. In looking for the perfect match, leading flavors Whiskies at Bascule. in your single malts are the best indicators for food and whisky pairings. Bascule suggests starting with a gorgonzola quiche or bleu cheese soufflé; it’s a natural partner for equally robust, peaty Laphroaig. The double layer of smoke in the smoked salmon harmonizes beautifully with Highland Park 18. After dinner, Glenmorangie’s sherry-infused richness pairs seamlessly with chocolate truffles. —Karen Loftus 44 / the tasting panel / april 2010 GLen GRAnt ARRIVES IN NEW YORK story and photos by Lana Bortolot Glen Grant was in New York last month with the Skyy Spirits marketing team for the brand’s launch. The spirit doesn’t need Technicolor to attract drinkers—it has a colorful history all its own. (Indeed, the brand's slogan is “a pale whisky with a color- ful history.”) First established in the Speyside whisky region in the mid-19th century by two illegal distillers and smugglers, it was handed down to and built up by Major James Grant, an innovator who claimed a few firsts: He was the first man in the Highlands to own a car—a Rolls Royce—and the first to install electricity in a distillery. The Glen Grant 10 Year Old (80 proof, SRP $44.99), light in color, is dry on the nose, and then opens in the mouth to orchard fruits, ending with a nutty, creamy finish. Malcolm likens it to Italian grappa; indeed, the brand does 80 percent of its volume sales in Italy, where it’s been the number one single malt for 48 years. But for the “arrived drinker,” Malcolm suggests the Glen Grant 16 Year Old (86 proof, SRP $79.99) with its honeyed and intensely dried-fruit nose. “When you chew and roll it in the mouth, it’s still light and elegant,” he says. Robin Coupar, Senior Brand Manager in the whisky division at Skyy Spirits, says his team will take slow steps in introducing the whisky here, starting with seven key markets (California, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Texas). “We’re looking to build the brand with independent retailers and enhance that effort with events such as a whisky-fest” he said. Says Malcolm, “The drinkers for this are more inquisitive and want more information about what they’re drink- ing and why it’s different. We don’t create anything for them—we go back to our roots.”

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