The last great malts

July 25, 2017 12:09 PM
Spirited recipes & reviews from our resident mixologist

The “Last Great Malts” saw their grand unveiling in 2014 and John Dewar & Sons Fine Whisky Emporium has since been rolling out a portfolio of award winning malts, with the newest and most prestigious award given to Craigellachie 31, named World’s Best Single Malt by the World Whiskies Awards. The collection is a release of new expressions and never-before-released single malts. With the height of demand for single malts, are now seeing their opportunity to shine. Here’s a look at the five labels and what makes each unique.

Aberfeldy – 12-21 years - 40% ABV
The primary single malt for the Dewar’s blend is Aberfeldy. The family built the distillery in 1896 to keep the blend consistent and has been in the house of Dewar’s ever since. Vanilla and toffee round out the profile making it a great choice for an entry level whisky drinker looking for an easy drinking, honeyed sweet style of whisky.
Craigellachie – 12-31 years - 46% ABV
A meaty, hearty style of single malt, Craigellachie lends Dewar’s some of its bolder character. Craigellachie is a great choice for the adventurous Scotch drinker. What really makes it shine is its use of worm tubs, or long copper condensers used to cool the whisky off the still. This ancient and very delicate process actually touches less copper. With the lack of copper interaction, these big flavors give this malt a bold, chewy flavor that is unique and highly sought after. Think of a struck match aroma, chewy, with a studded apple finish.
The Deveron – 12-16 years - 46% ABV
This Speyside malt is distilled in the MacDuff Distillery, the northeastern-most distillery in all of Scotland. Located right on the sea in a little fishing town and thus the bottle, created in the style of green sea glass is a nod toward its nautical roots. Thewhisky shines with notes of green apple. Classically known as the heart of the Lawson’s blend, it is a prized single malt and is seeing its first proprietary bottling. A classic Speyside style, The Devron is fruity in character but would still pair well with a cigar. The 46% ABV is a lighter style, yet still rich in flavor.
Aultmore – 12-25 years - 40% ABV
Founded in 1897, the Aultmore of the Foggy Moss is a distillery set in the middle of nowhere in the mysterious Speyside area once famous for illicit distilling.  Aged only in American oak, the color is a beautiful pale straw with a flavor profile to match. Lightly floral, touch of vegetal with grassy cereal notes, this malt is pleasant and noticeably different than classic Speyside malts.
Royal Brackla – 12-21 years - 40% ABV
The oldest of the collection, Royal Brackla dates back to 1812. Originally the favorite whisky of King William and one of the oldest distilleries in all of Scotland. Royal Brackla is also famous for having one of the longest fermentation times, resulting in a sweeter, fruitier expression. The whisky also sees Oloroso sherry casks finishing the liquid for about 3 to 4 months and adding notes of raisins, dates and pears with a touch of spice.

About the Author

Hillary Choo is an award-winning mixologist, brand ambassador and former bartender. Hillary has received multiple recognitions, most recently Top Ten Mixologists in Miami by The Miami New Times in 2013 and Bartender of the Year Miami by Eater. Hillary is Portfolio Ambassador Miami for Bacardi USA. Follow Instagram at HillaryChoo. @ohillaryo