Bladnoch Distillery launches new collection of peated Lowland Whiskies

Dr Nick Savage

BOLSTERED by the success of its inaugural peated lowland whisky, Alinta, Bladnoch Distillery has added to its range with four new expressions on that peated theme.

The historic 206-year-old ‘Queen of the Lowlands’ distillery derived the name ‘Alinta’ from indigenous Australian language evoking ‘fire’ and ‘flames’ – which it felt summed up the flavour profile of the first peated whisky to come out of Bladnoch since the business was taken over by David Prior in 2015.

Alinta is crafted using a combination of PX Sherry and ex-bourbon casks and is said to have notes of campfire embers, making it completely different to anything that had previously been released by the distillery, and not particularly typical of the Lowlands style of whisky in general.

Now, joining Alinta are four new whiskies made with peated barley: Alinta Reserve, and the three Single Casks, each showcasing distinct flavours and characteristics.

Bladnoch’s master distiller, Dr. Nick Savage, hand selects each cask. He commented: “The Bladnoch Peated Collection has been inspired by our 2009 stocks, which are uniquely 100% peated. Lowland single malt is not traditionally peated, however, the launch of Alinta had such an amazing reception from everyone. I wanted to extend this limited but unique peated section in our portfolio for those who enjoy the smoky styles of Bladnoch. Our peated collection is an annual celebration of the extremely unique and rare 2009 stocks at Bladnoch.”

The Alinta Reserve, a limited batch release of only 2000 bottles, will be selected annually by Dr Savage. For the inaugural 2023 batch, 100% first-fill Amontillado Sherry Hogshead casks were chosen, said to provide a well-balanced experience of smoky campfire and white chocolate.

The Peated Collection Single Casks are created using Bladnoch’s 2009 maturing stocks, which are exclusively 100% peated and exceptionally rare. Each year, Dr Savage will access these stocks to select and release three single casks, showcasing the uniqueness of Bladnoch’s peated history. For the three single casks of the first Peated Collection he has selected rum, bourbon, and sherry Hogshead casks.

The Sherry Hogshead expression packs a punchy ABV of 58.3% and is limited to just 262 bottles. its nose described as polished oak with nuances of nutmeg and dates. On the palate, it offers bonfire smoke along with plum jam, and the finish leaves you with the taste of a Bonfire Christmas cake.

The 2009 Rum Cask edition, with 248 bottles available, noses with notes of sugar cane, enriched with a floral and herbal body. The palate is described aa marshmallows on a campfire combined with apple pie.

Finally, the 2009 Bourbon Barrel is a celebration of rich, smoky flavours, limited to 231 bottles. The nose is said to have notes of smoky vanilla custard and on the palate, toasted vanilla pods and sandalwood.

Created without chill-filtration and with natural colour, Alinta Reserve will be available through markets including the UK, Germany, Taiwan, Australia and Korea; while the Bladnoch Peated Single Casks will only be available in the UK through Bladnoch’s website.