Diageo North America has unveiled its 2021 Distillers Edition bottlings in the U.S – an annual release of Single Malts, each double-matured in a different type of cask wood chosen by Master Blenders to complement the characteristics of the whisky. The bottlings come from some of Scotland’s top distilleries, including Lagavulin, Glenkinchie, Talisker, Oban, Dalwhinnie, and Cragganmore.
Distillers Edition bottlings complement each distillery’s traditional character while providing Scotch fans a chance to explore the dynamic flavor possibilities of these distilleries.
“We’re excited to release this year’s collection of The Distillers Edition which includes offerings from some of Diageo’s most beloved distilleries in Scotland. These rare and specially crafted Single Malt Scotch Whiskies exuberate a unique richness, depth, complexity and nuance of flavor, due to the two step maturation process that each bottle undergoes,” said Tara King, Brand Director, Single Malt Whisky at Diageo. “The Distillers Edition line-up features an array of unique flavors that make it the perfect holiday gift for whisky lovers.”
Each batch of Distillers Edition must go through a labor-intensive, rigorously quality controlled and complex process before it can be bottled. First, special ‘crocodile skin’ charred cask-ends of brand new American Oak are prepared at a leading Scottish cooperage. To make the special casks used for the second maturation, the craftsmen there combine these heavily charred new wood cask-ends with re-charred American Oak casks.
The casks are then conditioned with fortified wine from the Iberian penninsula. Each wine is chosen to complement the character of one single malt and one only.
The whiskies each comes from a single year, so each bottle possesses subtle characteristics apart from others. After a month, the special casks, now imbued with character from the wine they have held, are disgorged and refilled with the mature single malt. Tended by a dedicated team, they are rested for up to six months, all the while being assessed until the desired flavor profile is reached. Once achieved, the whisky is bottled in a single batch.
All six of the 2021 Distillers Edition bottles are now available in the U.S. wherever fine spirits are sold.
The Diageo 2021 Distillers Edition Collection:
2021 Oban Distillers Edition
2007 Oban double-matured in ex-bodega Montilla Fino cask wood for a rich fruitiness and maritime flavors that bond with the fresh, sweet aromas and tastes of the regular release in an explosive, rich and deep expression of Oban.
Core Offering: Oban 14 Year Old
2021 Talisker Distillers Edition
2011 Talisker double-matured in ex-bodega Amoroso cask wood for rich and fruity sweetness that rounds out the peaty, peppery punch of the malty regular release, to create a richly rewarding and deeper style of malt.
Core Offering: Talisker 10 Year Old
2021 Lagavulin Distillers Edition
2006 Lagavulin double-matured in ex-bodega Pedro Ximenez cask wood for an intense, raisiny sweetness that marries beautifully with the smoky power of the regular release to create a massive, rich tasting power-house of a malt.
Core Offering: Lagavulin 16 Year Old
2021 Cragganmore Distillers Edition
2009 Cragganmore double-matured in ex-bodega Port cask wood for succulence and rounded depth of flavor to enhance the complex aromas and tastes of the beloved Cragganmore 12 Year Old.
Core Offering: Cragganmore 12 Year Old
2021 Dalwhinnie Distillers Edition
2006 Dalwhinnie double-matured in ex-bodega Oloroso cask wood for a rich sweetness and spicy complexity to enhance the heathery, honeyed aromas and tastes of the regular release.
Core Offering: Dalwhinnie 15 Year Old
2021 Glenkinchie Distillers Edition
2009 Glenkinchie double-matured in ex-bodega Amontillado cask wood for a nuttiness that rounds and deepens the sweet, grassy and dry aromas and tastes of the regular release.
Core Offering: Glenkinchie 12 Year Old
For more information, head over to Diageo’s official malts website.