All about making whisky
A vintage whisky is nothing without its bottling date. This tells you its age, or in other words, the time that it has spent maturing in barrels (ageing stops once such spirits are transferred to bottles).
"While the barley harvest has little impact on the variations in the flavours of single malt whiskies from one year to the next, there are two factors that are essential in determining the nuances between the vintages: the differences between the barrels that can be used to mature the whisky, and the choices regarding the maturation made by the master distillers. In short, it is men and wood that make the difference."
Thierry Benitah, CEO of La Maison du Whisky
The serious enthusiast will select bottles from among the Scottish distilleries that come from a single cask (of which there are necessarily a relatively small number!). This is what is known as a single-cask whisky, and its origins will of course be specified on the label.
At the Malt Maniacs Awards, which is judged by a jury of 40 international whisky enthusiasts, the seven best whiskies tasted in 2012 were all vintage. And all single cask...
Our La Maison du Whisky shop, at 20 Rue d'Anjou in Paris, sells a selection of these prized rare bottles, such as the 37 year-old Glendronach 1972, which was matured in old sherry barrels, to produce just 399 bottles.
A whisky to be included in the pantheon of Scottish single malts, the nose is very citrus, while the palate offers notes of red fruit and liquorice, and a remarkable density on the finish, whose elegant purity is reminiscent of a Romanesque church.