It’s that time of the year when liquor companies race to introduce as many new brands as possible in the market. Good for us, because more the merrier. Here is a list of five recently launched very interesting whiskies that you may want for your home bar, except one, for which you would require a bit of luck and a trip overseas.
Monkey Shoulder is finally here
Any avid whisky drinker who happens to be an international traveller will vouch for this brand. Touted as more original than original Scotch whisky, it is hard to miss the three monkeys on the shoulder of the bottle. Monkey Shoulder whisky is a free-spirited, fun-loving triple malt with a smooth, rich and vanilla taste on the palate. It’s a favourite among bartenders as the whisky defies all age-old rules of how to drink whisky. It is a social scotch. A combination of three (that’s why we call it a triple malt) single malt Scotch whiskies all matured in oak casts that previously held Bourbon (that’s where all the smooth mellow vanilla goodness comes from), Monkey Shoulder is launched by renowned independent, family-owned distillers William Grant & Sons. The brand was launched in the UK market in 2005 but just entered the Indian market.
Monkey Shoulder is now available in New Delhi, Gurgaon, Chandigarh, Kolkata and Mumbai. Monkey Shoulder is priced at Rs. 4000 (New Delhi) 70cl bottle with 40% ABV.
Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey
Some may call it whiskey some may call it liqueur; Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey is a very interesting whisky with a sweet twist. The flavoured whisky has 35% abv, which by definition may not be considered as a whisky but liqueur. Crafted with Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey and mingled with a proprietary honey liqueur of the distiller’s own making, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey is a unique offering, which has sold one million cases since its launch in the US market. This is the first flavoured whisky from JD’s portfolio. Sweet honey notes with a hint of ginger, cinnamon, JD Honey is best enjoyed as an aperitif or you can make some delicious cocktails such as these. (Click here)
Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey is priced at Rs 5300 in Mumbai market. Other JD brands available in the market are JD Old Number 7 include Gentleman Jack, Silver Select Single Barrel and the limited edition Sinatra Select.
Grant’s Select Reserve Whisky
Grant’s Select Reserve is defined by the smoky and sweet flavour profile. The blend combines the best top grain and malt whiskies. With a unique balance of sweet, rich and peaty notes, the Select reserve has a distinct multilayered complexity that sets it apart. The premium spirit is owned by William Grant & Sons and priced at Rs. 3,150/- across the stores in Delhi. It is also available in Gurgaon, Chandigarh and Mumbai.
The Glenlivet Founder’s Reserve
Pernod Ricard-owned single malt brand The Glenlivet recently introduced the new Founder’s Reserve bottle in India. The international brand ambassador for The Glenlivet Alex Robertson while unveiling the brand said, “The Glenlivet is handcrafted to meticulous perfection. The Glenlivet Founder’s Reserve is a new, permanent benchmark expression in the brand’s core range, giving it a supreme place in every connoisseur’s list of favourites.”
The Glenlivet is priced between Rs 4,750 and Rs 6,800 per 750 ml bottle depending on the state. The Glenlivet Founder’s Reserve is available in Delhi, Haryana, Mumbai and Bangalore. It is also available in the leading airports.
Amrut introduces super premium Amrut Spectrum
The most iconic Indian single malt brand Amrut has probably as big a fan following in India as in the international market. In a recent event in Sweden, Amrut released Spectrum. This one isn’t available in India yet but here are the reasons why you should know about it.
It is the first ever whisky in the world to have been aged in a custom barrel made of five different oaks. Marketed as a five-wood whisky, Amrut Spectrum is technically a six-wood whisky. Originally matured in ex-bourbon casks at Amrut’s Bengaluru distillery for three years, the spirit was then transferred into custom barrels made from five different (old and new) oaks; American, French, Spanish, old Oloroso sherry cask stave and used Pedro Ximenez sherry cask stave. The whisky has already been called one of the best whiskies tasted by Ingvar Ronde, the author of Malt Whisky Year Book.
With 50% ABV and priced at £100, only 1,000 bottles of Amrut Spectrum are available in Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Taiwan, and Canada. That probably makes it India’s first super premium whisky brand.
Over the years, the company has managed to introduce around 18 expressions of Amrut in 40 different countries out of which only four variants are available in India.
Gotta love the good old Monkey Shoulder. My personal favourite blended scotch whisky. It’s just so darn easy-drinking!
The founders reserve, however, has not won me over. It’s just… not the 12. Which makes me sad.
Keep on waffling,
Thank you Nick for the feedback.