The world of Scotch whisky is abuzz with excitement as The GlenAllachie, an independent distillery renowned for its exceptional craftsmanship, unveils its latest masterpiece: Meikle Tòir (pronounced mee-kuhl tor), a peated single malt Scotch whisky. Spearheaded by the celebrated Master Distiller Billy Walker, this launch marks a significant milestone in The GlenAllachie's journey, with Walker overseeing his first core releases since acquiring ownership of the distillery in 2017.
The Peated Pursuit: Meikle Tòir's Origin
The name Meikle Tòir, meaning 'big pursuit,' embodies the relentless seasonal peated campaign undertaken at The GlenAllachie, commencing in 2018. Located in the Speyside region, the distillery sources mainland peat from St. Fergus for its peated production, which runs for approximately six weeks each year, resulting in the production of around 100,000 liters of Alcohol annually.
A Range of Exquisite Expressions
Meikle Tòir offers a compelling range of expressions for discerning whisky enthusiasts:
UK RRSP £51
This five-year-old single malt is a testament to meticulous aging in first-fill Bourbon barrels, American virgin oak casks, and Rye barrels. The result is a whisky brimming with waves of stem ginger, sweet spice, and oak-smoked sugar.
The Sherry One
UK RRSP £50
Following an initial period in American oak, this expression underwent additional maturation in quality Pedro Ximénez and Oloroso sherry puncheons. The outcome is a single malt with impeccable balance, featuring dark fruits, mocha, treacle, and subtle earthy peat smoke.
The Chinquapin One
UK RRSP £50
First aged in American oak, this expression was then transferred into superior Chinquapin virgin oak barrels from the Northern Ozark region of Missouri, USA. Whisky connoisseurs can anticipate smoked spices, roasted nuts, campfire smoke, and crème brûlée.
The Turbo 2023 Edition
UK RRSP £51
This super limited annual bottling captures the essence of the peated distillate, boasting the highest phenol content. The 2023 Edition spent five years maturing in three American virgin oak casks and five Oloroso Sherry hogsheads. It offers a powerful punch of peat, amounting to a spirit PPM of 71, alongside notes of toasted honeycomb, burnt orange peel, and worn leather.
Craftsmanship Beyond Compare
What sets Meikle Tòir apart is the dedication to the craft, evident in every step of the production process. Notably, each expression undergoes a lengthy fermentation time of 160 hours, nearly triple the industry average. This prolonged fermentation imparts a fruity, ester-rich character to the whisky, contributing to its exceptional quality.
Moreover, the whisky is bottled without added coloring and is non-chill filtered, ensuring the utmost authenticity and an optimal drinking experience.
Art Meets Nature: Packaging and Sustainability
The packaging of Meikle Tòir is a work of art in itself. Adorning the labels is a hand-drawn illustration by the prominent Scottish artist Iain McIntosh. This illustration vividly captures the rugged terrain surrounding the distillery, including the iconic peak of Ben Rinnes. The packaging employs an earthy color palette, thoughtfully chosen to hint at the whisky's smoky flavor profile.
Despite the additional costs involved, Meikle Tòir proudly collaborates with UK-based packaging suppliers as part of its commitment to environmental responsibility.
Availability and Future Pursuits
Meikle Tòir is poised to capture the hearts of whisky enthusiasts worldwide, with its UK RRSPs starting at £50. As of its launch, it will become increasingly available globally, ensuring that whisky lovers everywhere can embark on their own pursuit of peated perfection.
Master Distiller Billy Walker shared his thoughts on this momentous release: "This incredibly exciting launch is a key milestone for us all at The GlenAllachie. Five years in the making, it represents the culmination of our endeavors since we took over the reins at the distillery. Our intention has always been to release a peated single malt, and this is no surprise to those who have followed our journey from the start. Every element of the production process was carefully considered to ensure our vision was met. It’s not about accelerating the journey; it’s about expanding the experience."
Prepare your palate for the extraordinary and embark on a journey of flavor and craftsmanship with Meikle Tòir from The GlenAllachie.
About The GlenAllachie Distillery
The GlenAllachie Distillery, located in the heart of the Scottish Speyside region, is a relatively lesser-known gem that has been gaining recognition among whisky enthusiasts for its exceptional single malt Scotch whisky. Established in 1967, the distillery was designed by the renowned architect William Delme-Evans and has since undergone significant transformations and renovations to enhance its whisky production capabilities.
GlenAllachie is situated amid stunning natural surroundings, with the River Spey flowing nearby and the majestic Ben Rinnes mountain providing a backdrop to the distillery. This idyllic setting contributes to the unique character of GlenAllachie's whisky, and the region's water sources, including the Burnside Springs, play a crucial role in the distillation process.
One of GlenAllachie's notable features is its commitment to producing a diverse range of single malt Scotch whiskies, each with its distinct flavor profile. The distillery's core range includes various age statements and cask finishes, catering to a broad spectrum of whisky preferences. From the GlenAllachie 12 Year Old, known for its balanced and fruity character, to the GlenAllachie 18 Year Old, which showcases deeper and more complex flavors, the distillery offers a whisky for every occasion.
GlenAllachie's whiskies are known for their rich and flavorful profiles, often characterized by notes of orchard fruits, honey, spices, and oak influence. This complexity is achieved through a combination of factors, including the choice of oak casks for aging and the skill of the master distiller, Billy Walker, who has played a pivotal role in elevating the distillery's reputation.
In addition to their core range, GlenAllachie has released limited edition and single cask expressions, which have gained acclaim among collectors and connoisseurs. These releases showcase the distillery's dedication to experimentation and innovation in whisky-making.
GlenAllachie's visitor center offers tours and tastings, providing whisky enthusiasts with the opportunity to learn about the distillation process, explore the distillery's history, and sample a range of their whiskies. The welcoming atmosphere and scenic surroundings make a visit to GlenAllachie an enjoyable experience for those seeking to discover the hidden treasures of Speyside whisky.
In summary, The GlenAllachie Distillery is a rising star in the world of Scotch whisky, known for its commitment to quality, diversity, and innovation. With its stunning location and a portfolio of whiskies that cater to various tastes, GlenAllachie is making a name for itself as a producer of exceptional single malt Scotch whisky.