2018 Parker’s Heritage, Bruichladdich Port Charlotte & More New Whisky

Limited-edition bourbon season doesn’t start for another month or two—Old Forester’s Birthday Bourbon usually kicks things off, with other special releases like the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection rolling out later in the fall. But Heaven Hill has gotten a head start by announcing this year’s Parker’s Heritage Collection release, a 10 year old straight bourbon finished in orange curaçao casks. The whiskey will cost $90 and, as always, a portion of the proceeds will go to support the ALS Association.

If you’ve got a yen for the peaty stuff, Bruichladdich will be rolling out three new whiskies in its Port Charlotte range this fall. All peated to 40 ppm, the lineup includes Port Charlotte’s first age-stated whisky, a 10 year old, as well as Islay Barley 2011—both $65 each—and MRC:01 2010, which was finished in Bordeaux casks and costs $115.

Meanwhile, fellow Islay single malt distillery Kilchoman has announced its 2018 editions of Loch Gorm ($110) and Port Cask Matured ($125). The 50 ppm whiskies will be available in limited amounts.

Irish whiskey fans should look for Walsh Whiskey Co.’s latest release, The Irishman Founder’s Reserve Caribbean Cask, a blend of single malt and pot still whiskeys finished in a St. Lucia Distillery rum barrel. With limited amounts available, it will cost $75.

Finally, Douglas Laing & Co. is offering just 300 bottles of a special edition of its Scallywag Speyside blended malt. The Chocolate Edition was matured primarily in Spanish oak sherry butts and blended to highlight—what else—chocolate flavors. It’s available on the distillery’s website. Read on for full details.

2018 Parker's Heritage Collection

Style: Bourbon
Origin: Kentucky
Age: Not stated, but 7-8 years old
Proof: 55% ABV
Price: $90
Release: September 2018
Availability: Limited edition

Need to know:

For the 12th release in its Parker’s Heritage Collection, Heaven Hill collaborated with French master distiller Alain Royer. This year’s limited-edition whiskey is a 7-8 year old straight bourbon finished in orange curaçao barrels.

Whisky Advocate says:

This is the second time Alain Royer has played a role in the creation of a Parker’s Heritage Collection release; he also provided barrels for the 2011 release, a 10 year old straight bourbon finished in cognac casks. Each year’s bottling in Parker’s Heritage Collection is unique, but as with all the releases, Heaven Hill will contribute a portion of the proceeds to the ALS Association in memory of former master distiller Parker Beam.

Port Charlotte 10 year old

Style: Single malt
Origin: Scotland (Islay)
Age: 10 years old
Proof: 50% ABV
Price: $65
Release: September 2018 in the U.S.
Availability: Widely available

Need to know:

Replacing Port Charlotte Scottish Barley, this is the first age-statement expression in the Port Charlotte lineup. It’s made with 100% Scottish-grown barley that’s peated to 40 ppm, aged for 10 years in first-fill (65%) and second-fill (10%) American whiskey casks and second-fill (25%) French wine casks.

Port Charlotte Islay Barley 2011

Style: Single malt
Origin: Scotland (Islay)
Age: Around 6-7 years old
Proof: 50% ABV
Price: $65
Release: September 2018 in the U.S.
Availability: Widely available

Need to know:

Made with only barley grown on Islay and distilled in 2011, this whisky is peated to 40 ppm and aged in first-fill American whiskey casks (75%) and and second-fill Syrah and Merlot wine casks (25%).

Port Charlotte MRC:01 2010

Style: Single malt
Origin: Scotland (Islay)
Age: Around 7-8 years old
Proof: 59.2% ABV
Price: $115
Release: Late fall 2018
Availability: Regularly available in limited amounts

Need to know:

Distilled in 2010, this whisky is made with Scottish barley and aged in first-fill American whiskey casks (50%) and second-fill French wine casks (50%). The casks were then emptied, and the vatted whisky was transferred into French oak Bordeaux wine casks for a year-long finish.

Whisky Advocate says:

Many peat heads have been devoted to Port Charlotte ever since its debut in 2006, and they should find little to dislike in this reshape of the brand’s core expressions. After all, more distilleries these days are doing away with age statements than adding them. And all the whisky in these bottlings is made just like past releases—using Scottish or locally grown barley peated to 40 ppm.

Still, if you’re looking for more peat in your glass, we can make some suggestions.

Kilchoman Loch Gorm 2018 Edition

Style: Single malt
Origin: Scotland (Islay)
Age: Not stated
Proof: 46% ABV
Price: $110
Release: July 2018
Availability: 15,000 bottles, including 1,920 for the U.S.

Need to know:

This is a combination of whiskies (peated to 50 ppm) distilled in 2007, 2008, and 2011, and matured exclusively in oloroso sherry butts.

Kilchoman Port Cask Matured 2018 Edition

Style: Single malt
Origin: Scotland (Islay)
Age: Not stated, but around 3-4 years old
Proof: 50% ABV
Price: $125
Release: July 2018
Availability: 10,000 bottles, including 1,320 for the U.S.

Need to know:

Peated to 50 ppm, this whisky was distilled and put into 30 ruby port hogsheads in 2014.

Whisky Advocate says:

Even peatier than the Port Charlottes, these Kilchomans are sure to pack quite a punch—and if you’re into that sort of thing, chances are good you’ll enjoy them. The 2017 Kilchoman Loch Gorm scored 90 points in our Buying Guide, while the Kilchoman Red Wine Cask Finish that used barrels from Portugal’s Douro Valley, where port is made, received 88 points.

The Irishman Founder's Reserve Caribbean Cask

Style: Blended whiskey
Origin: Ireland
Age: Not stated
Proof: 46% ABV
Price: $75
Release: July 2018
Availability: 4,560 bottles including 760 for the U.S.

Need to know:

A blend of single pot still and single malt, this whiskey was matured in ex-bourbon barrels for an undisclosed period of time, then finished for six months in casks from St. Lucia Distillers that formerly held Chairman’s Reserve Rum. Just 12 of the rum casks were used for this limited-edition bottling.

Whisky Advocate says:

Are rum-finished Irish whiskeys the next big thing? First Tullamore DEW released Caribbean Cask, and now this. The Tully scored well in our Buying Guide—89 points—but that is a blend. It will be interesting to see the effect of a rum finish on a blend of pot still and single malt whiskey.

Scallywag The Chocolate Edition 2009 Vintage

Style: Blended malt
Origin: Scotland (Speyside)
Age: Not stated but 8-9 years old
Proof: 48% ABV
Price: £50
Release: July 2018
Availability: 300 bottles; available only at douglaslaing.com

Need to know:

A special edition of Douglas Laing & Co.’s Scallywag Speyside blended malt, this whisky was matured mainly in Spanish oak sherry butts, which impart cocoa and mocha notes.

Whisky Advocate says:

Just about every whisky drinker knows that chocolate makes an excellent match for a good dram and a terrific cocktail ingredient. With its chocolate-forward blend, it should be easy to taste those flavors in this whisky—but if you need a little guidance, consult this how-to first.

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