Glenmorangie Artisan Cask, which launches at Whisky Live in Glasgow next weekend, is the result of 20 years’ research into which type of wood used for maturing whisky produces the greatest depth of flavour.
The casks are made from trees which grow in poor soil and shady conditions in Missouri, which the company claims produces highly porous wood to help the spirit extract more flavour during maturation.
Glenmorangie rented out the casks to a bourbon producer for four years before producing the 1995 malt, which is described as a rich, oily malt with toffee, plum and vanilla notes.
The 46% abv malt is aimed at connoisseurs and is targeted at top end supermarkets, multiple specialists and independents with an rsp of £29.99. The company expects Artisan Cask to eventually form 5% of its volume.
UK sales director Jim Cook said it would be a big hit at Christmas, and was confident bidders for the company, which has been put up for sale by the controlling Macdonald family, would recognise its commercial benefits.
“The sale won’t affect us pressing on with major strategic decisions,” he said. “We have a terrific reputation for innovation in malt whisky and are confident anything we are developing will be consistent with our past successes.”
International marketing manager Yolanda Jaques said: “All the publicity about the company has been fortuitous because it has opened up channels of communication.”