Bruichladdich has released an exclusive Singapore single cask limited-release – part of its Micro Provenance range of unpeated single malts – that explores cask-aging in ex-Syrah barrels.
If there’s further proof that Islay whisky distiller Bruichladdich rather values its markets in this part of the world, it’s this – it recently launched an exclusive single cask release for both Singapore and Malaysia, its first-ever for Southeast Asia. Micro Provenance Cask No. 1898 was specially bottled for both markets, with just 144 bottles available in each country.
While single cask Scotch whisky releases aren’t uncommon in Singapore or Malaysia, most are those of the independently-bottled variety rather than official distillery expressions. The Bruichladdich Micro Provenance Cask No. 1898 is one of the rarer single cask releases to be issued directly out of a distillery specially for Singapore or Malaysia.
What’s so special about Cask No. 1898? The Singapore and Malaysia single cask exclusive specifically features unpeated Bruichladdich spirit that’s been aged for ten years in second-fill Syrah barrels, and bottled at cask strength (at an ABV that clocks in at 59.5%).
It’s part of Bruichladdich’s Micro Provenance series, the distillery’s experimental whisky range that explores provenance. It could be about changing up the barley varietals, as was with Bere Barley 2010 where it used an ancient varietal grown on Orkney. Or it could look at specific terroir as the Organic 2010 did, which tapped organic barley grown the other end of Scotland at Mid Coul Farms in Dalcross, Inverness. Then there’s its Black Art series, which trials with a range of vastly different cask types for maturing – or further aging – its whisky. As you can imagine, each expression from this range is unique, and can vary wildly based on aging, storage location, cask type, and many other variables.
Bruichladdich fans may remember the Octomore 7.2. Part of Bruichladdich’s ridiculously peated Octomore range, the 7.2 employed aging in American oak but also ex-Syrah casks from the Rhone Valley in its creation. Cask No. 1898 takes a leaf from the 7.2, drawing big jammy blackberry and strawberry notes – with a touch of black pepper – from the Syrah cask influence.
If we had to guess – Bruichladdich ain’t telling due to potential legal ramifications from wine producers – the casks they used were ex-Hermitage casks, that were employed in making some of the most iconic wines to come out of France’s Rhone Valley. But we could be wrong. And while there’s a hint of peat and smoke in Cask No.1898, it comes from aging in the Islay air as opposed to the use of peated malt.
“At Bruichladdich, we are passionate about experimentation in our casks and in our whisky”, says Bruichladdich head distiller Adam Hannett. “We are genuinely excited to be able to release some of these individual casks and share their character, flair and attitude with Bruichladdich drinkers.”
Bottles of the Bruichladdich Micro Provenance Cask No. 1898 are available in extremely limited quantities in Singapore at The Straits Wine Company at a recommended retail price of S$230 (700ml). Each purchase includes a complimentary Bruichladdich Glencairn nosing glass. An extremely limited Bruichladdich Bundle will also be available featuring Bruichladdich The Classic Laddie, Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2011, Bruichladdich Organic Barley 2010, Bruichladdich Single Cask 1898 and a complimentary Bruichladdich Glencairn nosing glass at the price of S$648.
Top bars in Singapore will also have limited stocks available for whisky enthusiasts who would like to taste a dram of the rare release, including The Single Cask, Malts, Cooperage, The Writing Club, CU, The Joint, and The Vault.