Whisky Advocate

There’s Only So Much Sherry

by Dominic Roskrow

It’s the year 2008 and I am talking to an independent bottler. Rather, he’s talking to me. And not so much “to,” as “at.” In fact, he’s ranting. “How can you talk about a quality product when it’s permissible for me to take a tired old cask which previously contained Chardonel wine—and Chardonel is a manufactured grape—then fill the cask with scotch spirit, mature it in Scotland for a year and a day, color it with caramel, and then sell it as Scotch whisky? Which bit of that has anything to do with maintaining quality?”


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