the whisky blog

March 2, 2009

Innovator of the Year – for the second time

Filed under: 1 — bill mackintosh @ 2:42 pm

glenmorangie-astar-03-03-2009-11-01-091The  Glenmorangie team is no doubt celebrating with a dram of something special after being named the whisky industry’s “Innovator of the Year” for the second year running. The accolade – presented at the Whisky Magazine’s Icons of Whisky event held in London – was awarded to Glenmorangie for three bold new product innovations: Glenmorangie Signet, Glenmorangie Astar and Ardbeg Blasda and won against stiff competition from whisky producers across the globe.

Paul Neep, The Glenmorangie Company’s Chief Executive, said: “We are absolutely delighted to win this prestigious award for the second time. This top accolade from Whisky Magazine is a strong endorsement of our whisky creation and of the innovative approach we pride ourselves on.” Dr Bill Lumsden, head of whisky creation and distilling at Glenmorangie, said: “It is fantastic to receive this accolade again, especially as the awards are classed as the ‘Oscars’ of the whisky world. The title is a true endorsement of not just the superior quality and innovation of our products, but the sheer passion and commitment the company has put into developing whisky products that truly inspire.”

Whisky Magazine’s ‘Whisky Icons Awards’ are global awards which take place each year with regional heats in the United States, Canada, Ireland, Japan, Scotland and India. Glenmorangie won the Scottish heats in October 2008. The company is currently implementing a major investment programme worth £45 million, which will see it focus on building its premium single malt Scotch whisky brands – Glenmorangie and Ardbeg. The development programme includes increasing capacity at the Glenmorangie Distillery in Tain and at the Ardbeg Distillery on Islay to meet the anticipated future demand for its brands; the construction of a new bottling facility and the relocation of its Head Office to central Edinburgh.

Glenmorangie Signet was crafted under the guidance of the company’s head of distilling and whisky creation, Dr Bill Lumsden and Rachel Barrie, master blender and whisky creator. It’s a marriage of Glenmorangie’s oldest and rarest whiskies. It also includes whiskies created using rare and innovative ingredients such as high roasted ‘chocolate’ malted barley and whisky matured in casks which have been crafted and designed to meet the exacting needs of the Glenmorangie team.It is produced and matured at the Glenmorangie Distillery in Tain and is on sale in leading whisky specialist outlets across the world.

Glenmorangie Astar is a rich, silky and creamy single malt bottled at 100° proof, 57.1% ABV which represents the whisky in its most natural form. It is matured in the oak casks from the mountains of Missouri. Dr Bill Lumsden comments: “It is difficult to sum up years of passion and commitment. But I would describe Glenmorangie Astar as everything a single malt should be. It is the result of an incredible journey, the pursuit of perfection to find the very best casks in which to mature our single malt whisky.”

Ardbeg is famed for packing a peaty punch, but ‘The Ultimate Islay Malt’ has undertaken an experiment; to tame its usual mighty peating level and allow Ardbeg’s lighter qualities to shine through. The result is Blasda, which in Gaelic means ‘sweet and delicious’. Ardbeg Blasda unmasks the sweetness of sherbet vanilla, chocolate limes and the floral fragrance that is inherent in all expressions of Ardbeg. The packaging of Ardbeg Blasda is distinctly different – a clear glass bottle instead of the usual Ardbeg green – to emphasise the difference to the rest of the range. Blasda is chill-filtered and presented at 40% alcohol by volume ABV, where Ardbeg is usually non chill-filtered at a minimum of 46% ABV. –

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