Category Archive: News

  1. BenRiach Distillery Releases Four-Cask-Matured 21 Years Old

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    BenRiach 21 Years Old Whisky BenRiach Distillery announces the release of a twenty-one year old Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky, unconventionally matured in a combination of four types of cask: bourbon barrels, virgin oak, Pedro Ximenez and red wine casks.

    These four cask types are expertly blended together by the BenRiach Master Blender, Rachel Barrie, to create a multi-faceted and superbly balanced malt. Each cask amplifies unique notes of bourbon vanilla, virgin oak spice, PX sweetness and vinous red fruits developing from BenRiach’s signature sweet barley and fruit-laden style. This unpeated single malt is one of two BenRiach expressions to be released at 21 years old, and the other, its richly peated partner, will appear early 2018.

    The quality of these whiskies has already been recognised at the 2017 International Wine & Spirits Competition (IWSC) where both 21 year old expressions won Silver Outstanding medals.


    BenRiach Distillery Master Blender, Rachel Barrie, welcomed the new Speyside release:
    “At BenRiach we have developed a reputation for innovative maturation using an eclectic mix of cask types. BenRiach 21 year old is the next step on this innovative journey, bringing together four eclectic casks in one single malt: bourbon barrels at its core enriched by virgin American oak, Pedro Ximenez and red wine casks. This new unpeated expression is likely to both surprise and delight, as it opens with fresh summer fruit compote, soft vanilla and vibrant candied peel, developing into tangy red fruits, barley sugar and the warmth of chocolate ginger. I look forward to sharing this enigmatic malt with all intrigued to discover more.”

  2. BenRiach Releases Rare Peated Speyside, Authenticus 30 Years Old

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    BenRiach Authenticus 30 Years Old Whisky The BenRiach Distillery is delighted to announce the release of BenRiach Authenticus 30 years old, a rare opportunity to experience a peated Speyside single malt dating back to the 1980s. Crafted from densely peated malted barley, BenRiach Authenticus 30 years old is a rich, intense Speyside single malt Scotch whisky.

    Back in the 1970s, BenRiach began distilling a proportion of its whisky using peated malted barley, marking a return to the original Speyside character and flavour of malts made during the nineteenth century. Today the distillery holds a rare inventory of peated Speyside single malt, dating as far back as 1975. Research by leading whisky expert Charles MacLean indicates BenRiach was the first Speyside distillery to release a peated expression since WW2.

    This came in the form of BenRiach Curiositas 10 years old in 2004, which remains part of the core BenRiach peated range today. Since then, the distillery has experimented with peated wood finishes and the first BenRiach Peated Cask Strength release, an opportunity to experience a peated Speyside single malt in its most natural state. BenRiach peated single malt whiskies are distilled from peat cut in the North-East of Scotland, containing a prevalence of wood derived from ancient trees, heather and bracken. The burning of this peat releases sweet smoke and aromatic spices through the malt and into the whisky, reminiscent of a campfire in a Speyside forest.


    Announcing Authenticus 30 year old, BenRiach Distillery Master Blender Rachel Barrie, said:
    “At the BenRiach Distillery we pride ourselves on our unconventional distilling philosophy, creating unpeated, peated and triple distilled malt whisky. As the oldest expression in our peated range, we believe Authenticus 30 years old will impress with its distinguished profile. It is a more intense Speyside malt which carries a delightful balance of wild honey and peat on the nose. The combination of the soft, creamy vanilla, summer fruits and slight hint of cocoa coax the palate, while the infused sweet peat builds gradually to complete the unique character.”


    BenRiach Authenticus 30 years old is non chill filtered, bottled at 46%, of natural colour and available at specialist retailers worldwide.

  3. BenRiach Launches A Limited Edition Moscatel Wood Finish Single Malt Aged 22 Years

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    From renowned Master Distiller Billy Walker comes a limited edition BenRiach Moscatel Wood Finish aged 22 years.

    Launched today (16 November), this Single Malt Scotch Whisky offers notes of dark orange marmalade, cocoa and spiced honey.

    At BenRiach we have one of the most innovative ranges of any Scottish distillery and the 22 year old continues a great tradition of experimentation with wood finishes.

    This whisky was originally matured in American bourbon barrels before being finished in Moscatel wine casks from Portugal and Spain. During this second period of maturation, the spirit subtly interacts with the oak wood and takes on new flavours and aromas from the Moscatel wine cask.

    The 22 year old is non chill filtered, natural in colour and bottled at 46% abv.

    Our Sales Director Alistair Walker said: “Moscatel is a sweet fortified wine, hailing from Portugal and Spain, which adds a buttery-soft, spicy and fruity dimension to the whisky. The result is a superlative malt in the classic BenRiach style. It is lusciously rich, velvety and full-flavoured, delivering superb dried fruit and honeyed sweetness, like a good apple crumble.”

    Rich gold mahogany.

    A full, sumptuous nose consisting of dark orange marmalade, rich fig syrup and sweet dates. A dusting of cocoa and cinnamon followed by a gentle hint of garden mint adds a luxurious character.

    Rich, velvety dark chocolate fondant topped with glazed maraschino cherries develops to plum cordial and spiced honey. The long finish is rounded with a gentle, earthy balance of nutmeg, stewed barley and old vintage leather.

    A rich body laden with dark Mediterranean fruits and a complementary balance of warm spices and delicate oak characters.

    Please do share this news with your family and friends and we look forward to hearing your thoughts on this latest BenRiach release through Facebook and Twitter.

  4. Batch 13 Of Our “Sensational” Single Cask Bottlings Released

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    Without a hint of superstition we are delighted to release today, 19 August 2016, Batch 13 of our renowned single cask bottlings.

    All twelve superb casks from the Elgin distillery are available as of today ranging from 16 to 40 years old, demonstrating an eclectic range of expressions, for which multi award-winning BenRiach is renowned worldwide.

    The variety sets BenRiach’s single cask series apart, including whiskies in the classic Speyside style, peated expressions and wood finishes, such as Tawny Port, Burgundy, PX Sherry, Claret, Madeira and Tokaj.

    Individually hand-numbered, non chill-filtered, bottled at natural colour and presented in a gift tube, each single cask is unique. 

    All twelve casks have been hand-selected by our Managing Director and Master Distiller Billy Walker, who describes them as “sensational” and adds:

    “Our much-anticipated batches allow us to identify very special casks in our inventory, and every single cask bottling is an exclusive limited release. I have selected these twelve casks because they are outstanding and full of personality.”

    Here are some of the highlights: 

    The oldest, 1975 #7028, at 53.0% vol, has been matured in a Sherry Butt and the peated spirit is rich amber in colour. On the nose, it bursts with tropical fruits and ripe banana with the most distant hint of campfire embers, while the taste is of plum skins, dark raisins and hints of yellow pear which hold a robust peat reek. Rich vintage leather and old oaky characters add a classic aged depth.

    The youngest, 1999 # 5043, at 56.4% vol, is of a rich antique-gold hue and has been matured in an Oloroso Sherry Puncheon. On the nose, there are fresh aromas of golden sultanas, candied peel and white pepper spice, while on the tongue there are delightful notes of cinnamon-spiced honey and rum-soaked sultanas. Peppery oak and crisp green apple skin add a terrific and vibrant contrast.

    A third, the 1994 cask # 4004, at 55.1% vol, has been matured in a Tokaj Hogshead, which suggests it will be much sought-after. On the nose this delicious Hungarian cask lends fresh wood smoke, boiled sweets and vanilla, which balance perfectly with a crisp citrus twist. The taste is a combination of ripe orchard fruits and heather honey, holding touches of crisp oak and vibrant citrus zest and finished with a sweet campfire peat smoke.

    Other expressions in the range boast of dark orange marmalade, sweet barbeque smoke, sour plums, rum-soaked raisins, heather honey and malt loaf. All twelve will soon be available at retailers worldwide and we look forward to hearing your thoughts on this latest BenRiach release through Facebook and Twitter.  We are confident that Batch 13 will prove lucky for whisky lovers worldwide. 


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    Whisky connoisseurs will be spoilt for choice today (18 August) as BenRiach release two superb whiskies; a new Pedro Ximenez Sherry Wood Finish Aged 17 Years and a fantastic Tawny Port Wood Finish Aged 21 Years.
    The first BenRiach jewel is a new 17 Year Old Pedro Ximenez Sherry Wood Finish. Sticky, sweet, spicy and tasting of dark chocolate and coffee beans, it has been matured in the traditional style in American bourbon barrels and replaces the renowned 15 Year Old expression. This creamy, fruity whisky, at 46% abv, has been finished in Pedro Ximenez Sherry casks sourced from the bodegas of Jerez de la Frontera in Andalucia, Southern Spain.

    BenRiach has long championed the use of Pedro Ximenez casks in which to finish its award-winning whisky. Maturation in these flavourful casks gives the whisky extra sherry sweetness and richness, darkens the spirit and adds notes of syrupy dried fruits, raisins and molasses on the palate.

    BenRiach 17YO Pedro Ximenez Finish - bottle in front of tubeColour
    Gleaming polished mahogany.
    Creamy spices, chocolate and sugar-coated almonds flow over sweet sultanas and dark fruit cake.
    Dark chocolate and freshly ground coffee beans merge with sweet dates and fresh figs. Delightful, peppery vintage oak and warm cigar box spices add to the long, contrasting finish.
    Sales Director Alistair Walker said: “The 15 Year Old took silver at the 2014 International Wine and Spirits Competition and I believe our new 17 Year Old is destined to do even better. “It’s a fantastic combination of oak, fruit, spice and sherry, with the sensational Pedro Ximenez influence lending this BenRiach a luscious dark chocolate flavour. It’s a liquid fruit bomb that’s full of sweetness.”
    Next up is a superb Tawny Port Wood Finish Aged 21 Years. Tasting of fresh cranberries, orange peel and boiled candy, it is bottled at 46% vol and replaces the 15 Year Old Tawny Port finish.
    This remarkable 21 Year Old was first matured in the traditional style in American bourbon barrels and then finished in a small batch of top-quality Tawny Port casks sourced from the Douro region in the north of Portugal.

    During this second period of maturation, the slow interaction of the whisky with the Port cask results in sublime flavours and aromas – in particular, a distinctive and rich red fruit taste.

    BenRiach 21YO Tawny Port_bottle - bottle in frontColour
    Rich amber with a copper glow.
    A perfect balance of fresh cranberries and warm white pepper develops to a combination of tart raspberries and boiled candy.
    Delicious toasted oak spices and hints of orange peel develop to a lively contrast of wild red berry compote and sour cherries, followed by a rich stewed barley character.
    Sales Director Alistair Walker said: “We launched our critically-acclaimed range of wood finishes ten years ago and since then the response worldwide has been consistently excellent.


    At BenRiach we’ve carefully selected whisky that has been gently maturing in bourbon casks so that drinkers experience the full impact of the Tawny Port cask after it has been finished.

    “It’s a phenomenal Speyside Single Malt with a tawny, fruity heart. A slight earthiness from the port is balanced with contrasting rich fruit characters and warm oak spices.”




  6. The BenRiach Distillery Company Wins 16 Medals in the International Wine & Spirits Competition

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    We’re delighted to announce that The BenRiach Distillery Company has won 16 medals, including 3 Gold medals, across its three brands at this year’s International Wine and Spirits Competition.

    Founded in 1969, the International Wine and Spirit Competition is one of the most prestigious in the world. It was set up to highlight excellence amongst the world’s best wines, spirits and liqueurs. Now in its forty-seventh year, it receives entries from over 90 countries, giving it global reach and reputation.

    Judging for the Competition is unique in that it has two stages; first, the products are tasted blind by expert panels, selected from over 300 fully experienced and qualified industry judges. Then, products which receive the top medals are subject to technical analysis before results are released. This crucial stage ensures winners receive complete validation.

    The BenRiach Distillery Company’s brands, which include The BenRiach, The GlenDronach and Glenglassaugh, took three Gold, six Silver Outstanding, five Silver and two Bronze medals. 

    For three years running,  Glenglassaugh 30 Years Old has taken Gold. It was the first release from the Portsoy distillery after it re-opened in 2013 and has matured in coastal warehouses for over 30 years.

    GlenDronach Original Aged 12 Years took Gold for a second year. This is testament to the quality of the whisky, which has matured in the finest Spanish Pedro Ximenez and Oloroso sherry casks.

    The GlenDronach Hielan’ Aged 8 Years has moved up from last year’s Silver to take Gold this year. For such a young whisky, it has consistently won critical acclaim worldwide. 


    The full list of awards:


    GlenDronach 8YO The Hielan’
    GlenDronach 12YO Original
    Glenglassaugh 30YO

    BenRiach 10YO
    BenRiach Cask Strength Batch 1
    BenRiach 10YO Curiositas
    GlenDronach 18YO Allardice
    Glenglassaugh Octaves Peated
    Glenglassaugh Revival

    BenRiach Heart of Speyside
    BenRiach 25YO
    BenRiach Peated Quarter Casks
    GlenDronach Peated
    Glenglassaugh Octaves Classic

    BenRiach 16YO

    GlenDronach 21YO Parliament


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    MULTI award-winning BenRiach Distillery in Speyside has today (7th June 2016) launched a peated expression of its Single Malt Scotch Whisky matured in quarter casks. Its makers hail it as “a peaty fruit bomb”.

    The BenRiach Peated Quarter Cask single malt is the first product to be launched after the parent company was taken over by Brown Forman at the end of April.

    This innovative release revives the once-obsolete tradition of using smaller “Quarter” casks to give greater intensity of maturation.

    Unusually for a Speyside distillery, this BenRiach expression is distilled from peated malted barley. The spirit is then matured fully in superlative quarter casks before being bottled at 46% abv.

    A smaller cask, such as the quarter cask, allows for more interaction between the wood and the spirit, giving the whisky a great depth of flavour and aroma in a shorter period of time.

    BenRiach Peated Quarter Casks - bottle in front of tube TRANSPARENT
     – Bright summer gold.

    Nose – Elegant waves of wood smoke intensify to burning heather with a delicious contribution of ripe orchard fruits. Subtle hints of peaches, cinnamon sugar and a slight herbal note of fresh barley give an added contrast to the unique, rich peat character.

    Taste – Intense peat smoke mellows to smouldering peat embers infused with green pear and nectarine notes. Nutty oak and vanilla pods combine with a touch of white pepper and a twist of lime to give a crisp, smoky finish.

    Sales Director Alistair Walker said: “Smaller casks mean bigger whisky. Using quarter casks allows the intensity of the spirit to shine through by speeding up the maturation process. In this fantastic new expression, the peat combines with the hints of pear and peach to produce an extraordinary fully-flavoured dram.”

    Keep an eye on our website and Facebook pages over the coming weeks for more information on new releases, tasting notes and exclusive product photography.



  8. Brown-Forman to Acquire the GlenDronach, BenRiach AND Glenglassaugh Single Malt Scotch Whiskies

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    Louisville, KY, April 27, 2016 – Brown-Forman Corporation announced today that it has reached definitive agreement to purchase The BenRiach Distillery Company Limited for approximately £285 million. When completed, the purchase will bring three outstanding Single Malt Scotch Whisky brands into Brown-Forman’s growing whiskey portfolio: The GlenDronach, BenRiach, and Glenglassaugh. The purchase will include brand trademarks, three malt distilleries, a bottling plant, and the company’s headquarters in Edinburgh, Scotland. The BenRiach Distillery Company, which has a workforce of 165 employees including 55 seasonal and casual workers, will operate as a subsidiary of Brown-Forman.

    “The acquisition of these super premium brands will allow Brown-Forman to re-enter one of our industry’s most exciting and consistent growth segments, Single Malt Scotch Whisky,” said Brown-Forman Chief Executive Officer Paul Varga. “The Glendronach, BenRiach, and Glenglassaugh single malt brands are rich in history and we believe they will continue to prosper and grow in our hands.”

    Varga noted that Brown-Forman previously was a minority shareholder of Glenmorangie plc and marketed the Glenmorangie Single Malt Whisky brand in the U.S. and Canada from 1992 to 2005 and in Continental Europe and certain Asian markets from 2000 to 2005. Brown-Forman sold its interest as part of Glenmorangie plc’s sale to Moet Hennessy in 2005.

    “We feel immensely privileged to have been custodians of this business for the last 12 years, and to be associated with these wonderful brands and great distilleries,” said Billy Walker, managing director of The BenRiach Distillery Company Limited. “Our team have energized these distilleries and engaged creatively and successfully with the premium end of the market. We are very confident that Brown-Forman will take The GlenDronach, BenRiach, and Glenglassaugh brands to the next level and fulfill their full potential, and prove to be worthy custodians of these historic distilleries.”

    The GlenDronach Distillery, located in the hills of the Scottish Highlands, was founded in 1826. GlenDronach produces a range of ultra-premium single malt whiskies and is most noted for its richly sherried whiskies. Located in the heart of Speyside, The BenRiach Distillery began making malt whisky in 1898 and is known for experimenting with wood finishes producing whisky from both non-peated and peated malted barley. The Glenglassaugh Distillery, founded in 1875, is located on the coast in the northern Scottish Highlands overlooking the North Sea producing a coastal Highland malt.

    The transaction, which is subject to customary closing conditions, is expected to close on or about June 1, 2016.

    For more than 145 years, Brown-Forman Corporation has enriched the experience of life by responsibly building fine quality beverage alcohol brands, including Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, Jack Daniel’s & Cola, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, Gentleman Jack, Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel, Finlandia, Korbel, el Jimador, Woodford Reserve, Canadian Mist, Herradura, New Mix, Sonoma-Cutrer, Early Times, and Chambord. Brown-Forman’s brands are supported by nearly 4,400 employees and sold in approximately 160 countries worldwide. For more information about the company, please visit

  9. BenRiach launches first-ever cask strength batch

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    BenRiach is today (17 March 2016) delighted to launch the very first edition of its new Cask Strength release.

    Like the critically-acclaimed GlenDronach Cask Strength batches which have been eagerly snapped up by whisky enthusiasts worldwide, BenRiach plans to regularly release new batches from its award-winning Elgin distillery.

    The whisky chosen for Batch 1 is classic BenRiach in style. You will be treated to a voluptuous sweet taste of honey, soft fruits and gentle spices – but at a cask strength of 57.2% ABV, it packs a real punch!

    BenRiach Cask Strength Batch 1 - bottle in frontMaster Blender Billy Walker’s tasting notes show that the whisky chosen as the Batch 1 Cask Strength is absolutely outstanding.


    Gleaming harvest gold with a burnished copper edge.


    Sweet toasted oak spices are interwoven with roasted orchard fruits and dusted with cracked barley. Black vanilla pods, desiccated coconut and a gentle floral note add complexity to the ripe, fruit-laden nose.


    An excellent example of the delicious BenRiach character. Creamy heather honey pours over a medley of apples, pears and apricots. Subtle notes of candied peel and fresh ginger give a delicate warmth and lead to a classic combination of vanilla, toasted coconut and sweet barley in the luscious, velvety finish.

    Sales Director Alistair Walker said: “Cask Strength Batch 1 is another momentous and exciting “first” for the BenRiach distillery.

    “This stunning Speyside whisky, with all its classic BenRiach characteristics, is the first Cask Strength expression to be added to our core range, allowing us to showcase the true BenRiach style in its most natural state – straight from the cask to the bottle, non-chill filtered and at its natural colour, allowing the distillery’s unique spirit to shine through.

    “It is an incredibly fine dram and I am confident it will prove as successful as our wonderful GlenDronach batches.”

    The BenRiach Cask Strength Batch 1 is available from specialist whisky retailers soon.


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    The Stage One winners and medallists of the 2016 World Whiskies Awards have been announced, with the BenRiach 10 Years Old and the GlenDronach Cask Strength batch 5 both winning gold.

    Presented by Whisky Magazine, The World Whiskies Awards select, reward and promote the best Whisky Taste and Design to consumers and trade across the globe.

    In stage one, each whisky is tasted in its relevant sub-category to identify and select the sub-category winners and award any medals. The panel of expert judges blind tasted entries grouped by their style, region and age statement. Each entry is tasted blind and marked to an agreed and strictly enforced marking system. In addition to nose, palate and finish, the judges will look for balance, character, complexity, quality and functionality.

    BenRiach 10YO In Front of Tube transparentThe BenRiach 10 Years Old has won a gold medal in the Speyside 12 Years & Under category. The 10 Years Old, the cornerstone of the BenRiach range, is the first core range expression to be created predominantly from whiskies distilled at the BenRiach Distillery after it was acquired in 2004 by Master Blender, Billy Walker, and his two South African partners. This fresh, fruit-laden single malt captures warm oak spices, green apple, dried apricots, peach and banana with subtle touches of aniseed, lemon zest and barley.

    In the Highland No Age Statement category, the gold medal was awarded to The GlenDronach Cask Strength Batch 5. A perfect example of the traditional GlenDronach character, bottled at 55.3%, non chill filtered and at natural colour. This latest batch of the popular Cask Strength releases brings a perfect combination of sweet golden sultanas, rich fig syrup, ground almonds, orange bitters and a gentle dusting of black pepper. On the palate, Demerara sugar-glazed dark fruits lighten to apricot syrup infused with stem ginger and vanilla.

    Sales and Marketing Director Alistair Walker said: “To receive a gold medal for the BenRiach 10 Years Old is particularly satisfying as it is the cornerstone of the BenRiach core range. Its release last year was a significant milestone for the distillery and the 10 Years Old has been well received by whisky aficionados around the world.”

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