This week we head to Africa, we start in South Africa to be more precise. Our first stop is the James Sedgwick distillery, home or the Three Ships range of whisky. The range consists of a 3 year old called Select, a 5 year old, a 3 year old finished in bourbon, this is the first 100% South African whisky with the first two being a blend of Scottish and South African whiskies. There is also a 10 year old single malt that is released in limited batches. The fifth release of the 10 year old single malt since its first release in 2003, is not expected until early 2016. The success of the 10 year old took the distillery by surprise and they didn’t have plans in place for production to meet demand, that is until this next release from this one it should be a yearly release.
The Distell group who own the distillery also own the next stop on our journey, we cross the boarder into Zimbabwe. Here we visit the African Distillers limited, the producer of the Harrier and Gold Blend brands of whisky. I can’t find much out about this distillery but it does seem to be linked with the production of a few well know African spirit brands, for example Amarula cream liqueur and Admirals rum.
Now we head north to Israel and a brand new distillery, The Milk & Honey distillery in Jaffa. When the distillery is up and running it will not store it’s maturing malt on site, instead the owners are looking to experiment. They intend to mature some of the spirit in land in the dry deserts and also at the coast which would be hot and humid. This could produce some really interesting results, with huge differences in the way the new make spirit could taste.
From Israel we cross the Mediterranean to Italy and the first stop in mainland Europe. Here we go to Puni Destillerie in the north of Italy. The interesting thing about this malt is they are using three different types of malted cereals, malted barley, malted rye and malted wheat are being used to make the malt whisky. They are calling it triple malt and intend to use this for their core expression. With requests from over 20 countries for distribution the future looks promising.
Our last stop this week is just across from Italy and is well know for its associations with the whisky industry, we head to Spain and the Destilerias Liber in Padul, Granada. They produce a 5 year old single malt that is double distilled and matured in sherry casks called Embrujo de Granada.
This is were I leave this week and look forward to heading further into mainland Europe and discovering the new and old world’s of whisky production.