Ardray was a collaborative creation between Calum Fraser, the chief blender for Scotch at Beam Suntory, and Suntory's blending team.
Together they tested over 200 blends made up of “the very best quality whiskies from distilleries across the Highlands, islands and lowlands of Scotland”.
Beam Suntory is the proud owner of renowned Scotch distilleries including Bowmore, Laphroaig, Auchentoshan, and Ardmore. To create their exceptional whisky, the company carefully selected spirits from multiple distilleries, including their esteemed partner Edrington, the Scottish spirits firm behind iconic brands like The Macallan, Glenrothes, and Highland Park.
“With inspiration from historic blend styles and the vision of Suntory's founder Shinjiro Torii, Ardray celebrates the quest to reimagine the historic excellence of blended scotch and encourage a greater appreciation for the art of blending. A hundred years ago, inspired by traditional Scottish whisky, Torii-San envisioned a Japanese approach to create a subtle, refined, yet complex whisky that would suit the delicate palate of the Japanese.With this remarkable blend, we honour Torii’s quest, from a reinterpretation of Scotch for the Japanese palate to Ardray: a new, elegant interpretation, designed to celebrate the excellence of blended Scotch Whisky.” ~ Beam Suntory
Every batch of Ardray was meticulously crafted to achieve a harmonious balance between malt and grain whiskies, ensuring consistency with each production. Furthermore, a portion of each batch was deliberately set aside for blending with subsequent batches, ensuring a seamless continuity of flavours and maintaining the whisky's distinctive character.
“In creating Ardray, we have combined an exceptional selection of the very best Scotch whisky has to offer with the inspiring talent of Suntory’s blending team to create something new, refreshing and exciting. The time, care and attention to detail taken to source both malt and grain whiskies from some of Scotland’s most noted distilleries has allowed us to explore hundreds of blends of Scotch malt and grain whiskies to achieve Ardray’s optimum balance of multi-layered flavours. Ardray promises a rich and complex taste, with a distinctive harmony of flavours: a mild, gently floral, and citrusy fruitiness, with a vanilla custard creaminess and a rich, silky mouthfeel and lengthy aftertaste that is unmatched.” ~ Calum Fraser, chief blender at Beam Suntory
Starting from the conclusion of May, a restricted quantity of fewer than 2,000 cases, each containing nine litres, will be exclusively retailed in four select cities: London, Shanghai, Los Angeles, and New York. Subsequently, it will gradually expand its availability to additional global markets.
Ardray, boasting an alcohol by volume (ABV) of 48%, is currently purchasable through The Whisky Shop at a recommended retail price (RRP) of £60/US$80.
About Beam Suntory
Beam Suntory is a leading global spirits company that specialises in premium spirits and operates in more than 120 countries worldwide. The company's rich history dates back to 1795 with the founding of the Jim Beam Distillery in Kentucky, USA. Beam Suntory offers a diverse portfolio of iconic brands, including Jim Beam, Maker's Mark, Knob Creek, Laphroaig, Yamazaki, and Courvoisier, among others.
With a strong commitment to craftsmanship and quality, Beam Suntory upholds traditional production methods while also embracing innovation in its spirits production. The company is known for its expertise in whiskey-making, encompassing American bourbon, Scotch whisky, and Japanese whisky. It carefully selects the finest ingredients, including grains, water, and oak barrels, to create exceptional spirits with distinct flavour profiles.
In addition to its focus on producing premium spirits, Beam Suntory is dedicated to sustainability and responsible practices throughout its operations. The company strives to minimise its environmental impact and support local communities.
With a global presence and a dedication to producing exceptional spirits, Beam Suntory continues to delight whiskey enthusiasts and spirits connoisseurs with its diverse portfolio of world-class brands.