Following last year’s announcement of the rebirth of Mortlach™, one of the most formidable and revered Single Malt Scotch Whiskies to have been created on Speyside, images have now been released that reveal the highly distinctive engineered style of the stunning new Mortlach bottles, along with more distribution and pricing details.
In 1823 Mortlach was the first distillery to be built at Dufftown, now one of the epicentres of Speyside whisky distilling. Its most eminent owners were the entrepreneurial Scottish civil engineer George Cowie, and his gifted and equally ambitious son Dr Alexander Cowie.
In tribute to these distinguished pioneers, the design style of the new packaging is rooted in an engineered world, reminiscent of beautiful man-made structures, whilst also elegant, luxurious and contemporary.
The engineering cues incorporated in the bottle design are most visible in the unique faceted base of the Rare Old & Special Strength bottles, whilst the metal structures of the 18 and 25 year-old bottles protect, enhance and display the fine single malts they contain. The design of the metal structures has been inspired by some of the great engineering feats of the Victorian period, especially the cantilever bridge design made famous on Scotland’s very own Forth Road Bridge.
Georgie Bell, global brand ambassador for Mortlach, said: “Mortlach whiskies are a celebration of those audacious thinkers who shape and make today’s world, just as their forefathers did in the era in which Mortlach was born. These spectacular bottles help tell that story.”
Four new Mortlach variants are designed for global travellers and for connoisseur Scotch whisky drinkers. Due to the very limited supplies of this unique liquid, these new expressions of Mortlach will be sold in 50cl bottles, except for the USA where for legal reasons 750 ml bottles will be used.
In the early years, the distribution of these rare and prestigious whiskies will focus on carefully selected cities. They will first be available in London and Berlin in June, and in a small number of global travel retail channels. They will then roll out – again in very restricted volumes – to the cosmopolitan cities of Asia-Pacific in August (for example Taipei, Shanghai, Beijing, Hong Kong, Singapore) and at the same time to New York, Chicago and San Francisco in the United States.
Meanwhile, to build more stocks of Mortlach for the years ahead, plans are progressing for the expansion of Mortlach distillery with all the strong purpose, ingenuity and attention to detail of the Cowies, doubling the distillery’s capacity.
The expansion will include the building of a new stillhouse. This will replicate the bewilderingly complex process with which Alexander paved the way – a unique distillation system (which commentators have attempted to explain as ‘2.81 Distilled’) precisely calculated to create this celebrated, highly complex and richly flavoured whisky. Mortlach has been described by whisky connoisseurs as “The Beast of Dufftown” for its rich and powerful flavours.
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Mortlach new expressions
- Mortlach Special Strength (travel retail exclusive) is a big, warming cask strength liquid with a complicated yet harmonious mix of young vanilla and mature oak, underscored by roasted aromatics and a long, pervasive and smooth finish
- Mortlach Rare Old: A complex and bold expression with Mortlach’s signature exquisite balance of sweetness and dryness for which the distillery is renowned. Superbly structured and well balanced, the whisky’s fruit and floral notes on the nose introduce a rich, energetic palate and a pleasantly drying finish
- Mortlach 18 Year Old is a compelling and moreish expression which is best enjoyed straight. Characterised by a fine interplay of meaty notes, malty sweetness and balancing acidity
- Highly complex and multi-faceted, Mortlach 25 Year Old combines roasting spices and an almost animal intensity with dense layers of decadent sweetness.
The guideline pricing will be £55 for Rare Old, £180 for Mortlach 18 year old, and £600 for Mortlach 25 year old. In Global Travel the Special Strength will be £75. (All prices shown as UK Recommended Retail Prices.) Prices for the United States and other regions will be announced later.
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