GlenAllachie revives White Heather blendBy Melita Kiely
The GlenAllachie Distillers Company has recreated the White Heather blended Scotch whisky brand, which was discontinued in the 1980s.
Master distiller Billy Walker has created 2,000 bottles of small batch blend White Heather 21 Years Old, available from specialist retailers worldwide for RRP £120 (US$166) per bottle.
It has been bottled at 48% ABV without added caramel colouring or chill-filtration.
Walker, former managing director of the BenRiach Distillery Company, acquired Speyside distillery GlenAllachie from Pernod Ricard’s Scotch whisky arm, Chivas Brothers, in October 2017. The purchase also included the White Heather brand and MacNair’s.
He said: “Creating this blend took me back almost 50 years to when I started my career at Hiram Walker. It was there I started to learn the art of blending and the specialist skills required to select whiskies that when interfaced with each other ultimately amplified the overall flavour experience.
“With White Heather, I poured everything I’ve learned on my whisky journey into crafting a truly memorable small batch aged blend that sits proudly alongside even the very best single malts.
“I wanted to honour the original blend whilst recreating it in a much more premium form with exceptional wood.”
White Heather 21 Years Old is a blend of single grains and single malts from the Highlands, Islay and Speyside. The whiskies spent 18 years in first-fill American barrels, Sherry butts and second-fill barrels and hogsheads.
The blend, which comprises an ‘unusually high’ single malt content, was then matured for three more years in a selection of Pedro Ximénez puncheons, oloroso puncheons and Appalachian virgin oak casks.
Tasting notes include aromas of heather honey, butterscotch, peat and hints of tannins, leading to flavours of orange peel, soft tannins, butterscotch, heather honey and smoke on the palate.
In March last year, GlenAllachie received a £30 million (US$38m) funding package to support its international expansion.