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WHISKY PHOTO OF THE WEEK
This week’s photo shows a part of the distilling process that’s hard to see, since most distilleries cook their mash in closed mash tuns. This photo shows the inside of one of the tuns at Speyburn Distillery in Dufftown, Scotland, and I shot it during a visit there in 2011.

WHISKY PHOTO OF THE WEEK

This week’s photo shows a part of the distilling process that’s hard to see, since most distilleries cook their mash in closed mash tuns. This photo shows the inside of one of the tuns at Speyburn Distillery in Dufftown, Scotland, and I shot it during a visit there in 2011.

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WHISKYCAST EPISODE 489: JULY 25, 2014

Tasmania’s distillers have been making some unusual and incredible whiskies in recent years, but many of them are flying under the radar of whisky lovers. Belgrove Distillery is one of those underrated distilleries, but when WhiskyCast listener Matt Wooler told us we had to check it out, we did. Peter Bignell built the distillery from the ground up on his farm, where he grows his own grain, makes his own whisky, and even fills and labels each bottle by hand. He’s also making what may well be one of the few peated rye whiskies in the world, and shares his story with us on this week’s WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Kentucky’s stocks of maturing Bourbon have reached the five million barrel mark for the first time since 1977, we’ll get the latest on commemorative bottlings from Maker’s Mark and The Famous Grouse, and Woodford Reserve mourns the death of a longtime family member…Elijah, the distillery cat.

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WHISKY PHOTO OF THE WEEK
This week’s Whisky Photo of the Week features the original stills from the old Powers John’s Lane Distillery in Dublin. After the distillery closed around 1975, the site eventually became the home of Ireland’s National College of Art & Design. While many of the buildings were converted into classrooms and studio space, the stillhouse had to be demolished. However, they left the stills in place as a tribute to the site’s history. Shot this last September during a visit to Dublin.

WHISKY PHOTO OF THE WEEK

This week’s Whisky Photo of the Week features the original stills from the old Powers John’s Lane Distillery in Dublin. After the distillery closed around 1975, the site eventually became the home of Ireland’s National College of Art & Design. While many of the buildings were converted into classrooms and studio space, the stillhouse had to be demolished. However, they left the stills in place as a tribute to the site’s history. Shot this last September during a visit to Dublin.

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WHISKYCAST EPISODE 488: JULY 18, 2014

Celebrity-branded spirits are a big trend these days, and the whisky world is no exception. Last week, we reported on the lawsuit filed by John Wayne’s heirs against Duke University seeking to protect the family’s trademark rights to produce a “Duke Bourbon” featuring the late actor. It’s a little easier when the brand is based on a character instead of the actor, though…and this week, we’ll hear from two entrepreneurs who have done just that. Michael Howard of Prairie Creek Beverages in Dallas is behind the J.R. Ewing Bourbon named after the legendary “Dallas” villain, and Ed Caan of Riviera Imports worked with Paramount Pictures on Ron Burgundy Great Odin’s Raven Scotch as part of last winter’s “Anchorman 2” premiere. He’ll tell us what Paramount executives originally wanted to call the whisky, too.

We’ll also have the latest on the pending sale of Whyte & Mackay, along with word that distillers just down the road from J.R.’s Southfork Ranch have won a zoning battle for their new distillery site. David Beckham, Simon Fuller, and Diageo have launched their Haig Club single grain Scotch in London, and The Famous Grouse releases a special bottling for the Glasgow Commonwealth Games. Finally, we’ll look at ideas for summer whisky cocktails with bartender Jeff Bell of PDT in New York City.

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The Manhattan skyline tonight from the 16th floor rooftop lounge at Kimpton’s INK 48 hotel during a Johnnie Walker event.

The Manhattan skyline tonight from the 16th floor rooftop lounge at Kimpton’s INK 48 hotel during a Johnnie Walker event.

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WHISKY PHOTO OF THE WEEK
This week’s photo features the classic exciseman’s lock on the spirit safe at Bruichladdich Distillery on Islay in Scotland. These locks require two keys to open…traditionally, one was held by the distillery manager and the other by the Customs & Excise officer assigned to the distillery. The idea was to make sure no one could get access to spirit off the stills without paying taxes on it.

WHISKY PHOTO OF THE WEEK

This week’s photo features the classic exciseman’s lock on the spirit safe at Bruichladdich Distillery on Islay in Scotland. These locks require two keys to open…traditionally, one was held by the distillery manager and the other by the Customs & Excise officer assigned to the distillery. The idea was to make sure no one could get access to spirit off the stills without paying taxes on it.

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WHISKYCAST EPISODE 487: JULY 11, 2014

Glenmorangie’s Dr. Bill Lumsden wanted to push the envelope 16 years ago when he got his hands on some French Oak barriques from an undisclosed Bordeaux wine chateau, and see just how long he could put a whisky away for finishing. He got his answer a couple of years ago when five of those barriques yielded the Glenmorangie Pride 1978 single malt that was released this week. We’ll discuss that process with him on this week’s WhiskyCast In-Depth, and he’ll respond to Ardbeg lovers who claim the Islay landmark’s current releases don’t quite match up to those old classic Ardbegs, but still want him to revive the Ardbeg 17-year-old. In the news, Scotland’s whisky industry gets dragged into the independence referendum debate, while two distillers pick their sides in the showdown. Speaking of showdowns, John Wayne’s family is squaring off in court against Duke University over a Bourbon honoring the legendary movie star.

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Just posted my tasting notes for this new Bourbon from Jim Beam at the WhiskyCast web site!

Just posted my tasting notes for this new Bourbon from Jim Beam at the WhiskyCast web site!

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WHISKYCAST EPISODE 486: JULY 4, 2014

Corn farmers have a saying “knee high by the Fourth of July” to gauge whether their crop will be a good one, and we’ll look at the grains that go into making “America’s Native Spirit” with veteran Bourbon distiller Dave Pickerell on this Independence Day episode. Corn, rye, wheat, and barley each add their own unique character to a Bourbon, along with many of the exotic grains distillers experiment with, and Dave will break them down for us on this week’s WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, Glasgow leaders give their blessing to a new distillery along the River Clyde, and we’ll have more on new distilleries in Ireland and New Zealand, along with an update on new whiskies from Highland Park, Jim Beam, and Kininvie. This week’s tasting notes include Barrell Bourbon, Jim Beam’s new Signature Craft Quarter Cask, High West’s American Prairie Reserve, and a rare Glengoyne 15 matured exclusively in Bourbon casks.

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WHISKYCAST EPISODE 485: JUNE 27, 2014

Michael Urquhart is retiring from Gordon & MacPhail in September, but the leader of the family-owned business calls it a natural “changing of the guard.” However, his successor is the first person from outside the Urquhart family to lead Gordon & MacPhail in its 120-year history. We’ll talk whisky and family with Michael and Ewen Mackintosh on this week’s WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, there’s another retirement as Bruichladdich’s Duncan McGillivray wraps up his 40-year career, the Bourbon Capital of the World is getting another new distillery as the Bardstown Bourbon Distillery brings a Bourbon Hall of Famer home, and we’ll catch up with the guys from Seattle’s Westland Distillery as they spread their wings with a new distribution deal.