Old Masters – Cask strenght
Distilled : 1997 – Bottled : 2010 – Cask number : 1511 – Alcool : 56,90 %
About the whiskies from this distillery is written: The whisky has a very complex style that is certainly linked to the original form of stills “pot still” (Charentais alembic). It is dry and has a strong aroma. Rather, it is recommended as a digestive.
Plantée sur un éperon rocheux situé entre Aberlour et Grantown-on-Spey, la distillerie de Cragganmore domine de toute sa hauteur le fleuve Spey.
C’est plus la proximité du chemin de fer que la présence d’une source d’eau qui décida de l’emplacement de la distillerie Cragganmore.
A l’inverse des autres distilleries du Speyside, Cragganmore utilise une eau de source marquée par la roche, qui souligne le caractère fruité, complexe et floral de son whisky, d’une sécheresse minérale singulière. La forme des alambics de la distillerie lui confère également une extraordinaire richesse aromatique, évoluant entre douceur et austérité. Ils ont été conçus par John Smith lui-même à la création de Cragganmore.
Cragganmore possède 2 wash stills, 2 spirit stills de formes très plates et dont les cols de cygne son coudés en forme de T. Elle utilise l’eau de la Craggan qui est très minérale. Le recours à des condenseurs traditionnels, en forme de serpentin, contribue pour sa part à la richesse et à la complexité du distillat. Tout ceci explique sans doute pourquoi Cragganmore a toujours été considéré comme un malt «Top Class» par les blenders.
The bottler : James MacArthur
James MacArthur was established in 1982 with the aim of selecting whiskies from Scottish Distilleries which were either not very well known or had ceased to operate and bottling them at cask strength, thus introducing whisky drinkers to distilleries they had never heard of.
This policy has been continued, with top quality single barrel bottlings from a wide selection of distilleries. Whiskies are currently bottled at ages ranging from 10 years to 30 years and at both cask strength and 45%vol. These are fine examples of the quality and variety available from each whisky producing region and the Company has won several awards over the years for its bottlings, both internationally and in the UK. Our bottlings are also well received by Jim Murray in the Whisky Bible, the Spirit Journal in the U.S.A. and by Malt Maniacs in Europe.
James MacArthur’s Old Masters, Cask strength whiskies are bottled at natural strength and without the whisky having been chill-filtered or having colour added. The 45% bottlings, although reduced in strength, are similarly non chill-filtered and have no added colour. The aim is to offer a product which is as natural as possible and which retains its original characteristics and flavours.
The Speyside is a region that forms a core within the Highlands and that stretches along the Spey River. It goes even further, far beyond the lands of the Spey. Thus, the distilleries placed along Livet, Fiddich, Avon, Lossie, Findhorn and Deveron are also considered as a part of the Speyside. As it is not a geological unit, the boundaries of that region have never been set and sometimes, one could argue about the region from which a distillery comes from. According to the way we establish the boundaries, 63 of the 90 distilleries still in operation in Scotland are in the Speyside.
But why can we find as many distilleries in that area? As it was hardly accessible in the past, Speyside used to provide a good protection for distilleries that were usually illegal at that time. Later, when the railway was introduced and the roads were improved, the region still had the required infrastructure to interest investors. Besides, it met all the necessary conditions for whisky manufacturing, which are water, peat and barley in quantity.