New Scotch, Irish Whiskey, Craft Rye & More

In addition to the news that Casa Cuervo is purchasing Pendleton Whisky, this week has brought several new releases.

BenRiach is rolling out a 21 year old single malt that aged in four different casks: bourbon, virgin oak, Pedro Ximénez sherry, and red wine. The whisky is initially available overseas, but will be coming to the U.S. in 2018. Stay tuned for pricing and availability details.

Two Irish whiskeys are making their debut online only. Knappogue Castle 12 year old Special Reserve is a higher-proof version of the standard single malt, available at Meanwhile, DWD The Heritage Edition is a blended Irish whiskey that resurrects an old brand from the 19th and early 20th centuries.

Brooklyn’s New York Distilling Company has released a version of its Ragtime Rye, finished in applejack barrels. The whiskey meets all the standards for New York’s new Empire Rye category—one of eight whiskeys currently available with that designation.

Meanwhile, Copperworks Distilling in Seattle is rolling out its latest release, a single cask, cask-strength single malt that will be for sale at the distillery and online.

Finally, Glenglassaugh Distillery has released eight single cask single malts, ranging in age from 30 to 50 years old. The whiskies will not be available in the U.S. Read on for full details.

BenRiach Four Cask 21 year old

Style: Single malt
Origin: Scotland (Speyside)
Age: 21 years old
Proof: 46% ABV
Price: £125
Release: December 2017
Availability: Launching in the UK/EU; coming to the U.S. in 2018

Need to know:

A new 21 year old single malt from BenRiach, this whisky is a combination of bourbon, virgin oak, Pedro Ximénez sherry, and red wine casks.

Whisky Advocate says:

While it’s launching first in the UK and other overseas markets, this whisky will arrive on U.S. shores in 2018, though the price in dollars has not yet been announced. In addition, a peated 21 year old BenRiach will also be released in 2018.

Knappogue Castle 12 year old Special Reserve

Style: Single malt
Origin: Ireland
Age: 12 years old
Proof: 46% ABV
Price: $65
Release: December 2017
Availability: Online at

Need to know:

This special edition of Knappogue Castle’s 12 year old single malt is 46% ABV, up from the usual ABV of 40%. It’s only available online.

Whisky Advocate says:

Knappogue Castle released another limited-edition 12 year old last year that scored 92 points and was the Value Pick for our Spring 2017 issue. Will the higher proof justify a $23 increase in price on this whiskey? If we get the chance to review it, we’ll let you know.

DWD Heritage Edition

Style: Blended whiskey
Origin: Ireland
Age: Not stated
Proof: 40% ABV
Price: $60
Release: November 2017
Availability: Online at

Need to know:

This is a blend of malt and grain whiskeys distilled two or three times and aged between 5 and 10 years. DWD stands for Dublin Whisky Distillery Company, a historic Irish whiskey maker.

Whisky Advocate says:

Once upon a time, Irish whiskey outsold just about every other type of whisky, and Dublin was home to numerous distillers and bottlers. The Dublin Whisky Distillery Company (spelled without the e) was one of those, operating for decades from the 19th century until its closure in 1942.

Applejack Barrel Finished Ragtime Rye

Style: Rye
Origin: New York
Age: 2 years old
Proof: 50% ABV
Price: $45
Release: December 2017
Availability: 3,000 bottles in New York only

Need to know:

New York Distilling Company has a special edition of its Ragtime Rye finished for five months in applejack barrels from Warwick, New York’s Black Dirt Distillery.

Whisky Advocate says:

This whiskey is one of eight ryes released by New York State distillers as part of the new category they’ve created called Empire Rye. Per the group’s website, the standards of identity for Empire rye are

  • Must conform to the New York Farm Distiller (Class D) requirement that 75% of the mash bill be New York grain; in this instance that 75% MUST be New York State-grown rye grain, which may be raw, malted or a combination.
  • The remaining 25% of the mash bill may be composed of any raw or malted grain, New York-grown or otherwise, or any combination thereof.
  • Distilled to no more than 160 proof
  • Aged for a minimum of two years in charred, new oak barrels at not more than 115 proof at time of entry.
  • Must be mashed, fermented, distilled, barreled and aged at a single New York State distillery in a single distilling season. (The period from January 1 through June 30, is the spring season and the period from July 1 through December 31 is the fall season.)
  • A blended whisky containing no less than 100% qualifying Empire Rye whiskies from multiple distilleries may be called Blended Empire Rye.

Copperworks American Single Malt Release 009

Style: Single malt
Origin: Washington
Age: 3 years, 4 months old
Proof: 62.5% ABV
Price: $76
Release: December 2017
Availability: 122 bottles at the distillery only

Need to know:

The latest release from Seattle’s Copperworks Distilling is a cask-strength, single cask single malt, available only at the distillery and in the online store.

Whisky Advocate says:

Copperworks’ first release came out in 2016, and scored 86 points in our Buying Guide.

Glenglassaugh Rare Casks Batch 3

Style: Single malt
Origin: Scotland (Highlands)
Age: Varies (30 to 50 years old)
Proof: Varies (40.1% to 50.5% ABV)
Price: Varies (£310 to £4,500)
Release: December 2017
Availability: Limited; not available in the U.S.

Need to know:

Glenglassaugh’s latest release of single cask whiskies includes eight single malts.

  • 1965 50 year old—Hogshead, Cask #3510, 40.1% ABV, £4,500
  • 1967 49 year old—Hogshead, Cask #1114-1, 42.7% ABV, £4,050
  • 1968 47 year old—Pedro Ximénez sherry puncheon, Cask #2230, 46.1% ABV, £3,300
  • 1972 44 year old—Massandra sherry, Cask #1721, 42.4% ABV, £2,400
  • 1973 42 year old—Bourbon barrel, Cask #5638, 40.6% ABV, £1,950
  • 1975 41 year old—Sauternes hogshead, Cask #1277-1, 50.5% ABV, £1,750
  • 1978 38 year old—Pedro Ximénez sherry puncheon, Cask #2343, 42.5% ABV, £1,150
  • 1986 30 year old—Pedro Ximénez sherry puncheon, Cask #1393, 42.6% ABV, £350

Whisky Advocate says:

Look at the ABV on that 50 year old whisky—40.1%. That’s cask strenght, but is barely legal, since scotch must be bottled at a minimum of 40% ABV. Looks like they got to it just in time!

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