Single malt whisky - tasting notes

23 Dec 2011

Cutty Sark: The making of a whisky brand

Posted by: Ruben Luyten In: * News

Cutty Sark bookAlthough I’m generally not the biggest fan of whisky books, I’ve recently spent a few evenings reading the new Cutty Sark book. In many regions it’s one of the most popular brands of blended whisky and the story behind the brand is quite colourful and interesting to read.

This 192-page book was edited by Ian Buxton and features articles by Helen Arthur, Dave Broom, Charles Maclean, Marcin Miller and several other well-known names.

 

It starts by investigating the popularity of the brand in different key markets around the world: Madrid (where it is mixed with lemonade, I’ve witnessed that), Lisbon, Lithuania, India, China & Japan, Britain, etc. After that, different aspects of the brand’s history are placed in the spotlight.

One of the most important things is the link between Prohibition and Cutty Sark (you may have read about this in the Whisky Yearbook 2012 as well). It’s no secret that Cutty Sark was intended for oversees markets and Captain Bill McCoy provided the East of the USA with an important amount of Scotch, obviously a much better product than the illicit liquors at the time. No surprise the Americans stayed faithful to their brand even after the liquor ban was put to an end.

Also nice to read is the article about Kirsteen Campbell, the new Master Blender of Cutty Sark. Interesting fact: she makes around 120 batches a year, each composed of 103 butts of malt and grain whisky. Kudos for keeping all these batches consistent!

Of course there’s also a chapter about the components of the blend: Glenrothes (the “home” of Cutty Sark), Tamdhu, Highland Park, The Macallan and Bunnahabhain, as well as some information on cocktail making with Cutty Sark. And much more…

In short: a book that’s well written, with beautiful photographs. A great gift for the holidays, even for people who are normally not blend drinkers!

Cutty Sark: The making of a whisky brand
ISBN: 9781780270265
Ed. Ian Buxton
hardback, around € 35

Cutty Sark: The making of a whisky brand 4 Ruben Luyten 2011-12-23

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  • Tony: Well the 1401 batch 8 could be found easily in most places for £200 - indeed I got one for £180 with a discount. The £225 price was a bit high and
  • WhiskyNotes: Don't just look at the UK - it's not always representative for the rest of the world. The last 1401 for Europe was batch 8. I bought that one for €
  • Sam: Nicely written notes, not rated this myself yet. Just to confirm, it's nowhere near a 40% price rise though. The last 1401 released in the UK was at

Coming up

  • Macduff 1980 (Golden Cask)
  • Karuizawa 45 Year Old (cask #2725)
  • Cardhu 18 Year Old
  • Craigellachie 13 Years
  • Port Askaig 19 Year Old
  • Ledaig 2005 (Maltbarn)

1659 notes by Ruben

WhiskyNotes - Ruben LuytenThis blog is my personal collection of impressions, written while searching for the ultimate single malt whisky.