24th September 2018
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Bottled whisky from the isles

18 comments, , by , in News

The first ever bottled whisky from the isles will go on sale next month.

Shetland Reel Single Malt Scotch Whisky will be sold with four different cask strengths.
The whisky has been distilled in Portsoy, Aberdeenshire and bottled in Unst by the Shetland Distillery Company.

Director of the business Stuart Nickerson, said: “This a hugely exciting development for us and for Scotch whisky.

“It literally puts Shetland on the map as far as whisky production is concerned – and for the first time.”

“These four casks represent a start to whisky production in Shetland and we have plans to introduce more ‘Bottled in Shetland’ Scotch whiskies, with the long term plan being to install our own distillery and start distilling Scotch whisky on Unst.”

The casks of whisky were distilled and matured on the mainland of Scotland and then shipped fromAberdeen to Lerwick on the ferry before two more ferry journeys to Unst.

Only after a suitable period of resting were they bottled as the first ever “Bottled in Shetland” single malt Scotch whisky.

All of the casks emptied were octaves (50 litre capacity). Two of them were refill Scotch whisky casks and two were German virgin oak casks.

Twenty-one bottles have been produced of a peated whisky from one of the German oak casks. This has a price of £130 per bottle.

The remaining 151 bottles from the other three casks are on sale at £100 per bottle.

The whiskies will go on sale on 1st September 2015.

Mr Nickerson has a 35-year pedigree in the Scotch malt whisky industry, having managed several distilleries and revived Glenglassaugh Distillery before selling it to the BenRiach Group.

He and his wife Wilma own The Shetland Distillery Company along with Frank and Debbie Strang, owners of the Saxa Vord Resort.

About Adam Guest

Reporter for The Shetland Times. I have also worked as a senior news reporter at The Press and Journal, The Barnsley Chronicle and as a freelance reporter for The Doncaster Free Press. Alongside news reporting I specialise in music and sports journalism. Pork pie lover.

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18 comments

  1. David Spence

    I am trying my best to see the importance of such news in regards to the connection of the making of a product in Portsoy, Aberdeenshire and that product vastly, massively changing its origins to this of Shetland.

    Surely Trading Standards would have something to say about a product, allegedly, made in Shetland (as in putting Shetland on the map of Whisky production) when it was actually produced in mainland Scotland. If I store the freshly made whisky from the brewery into barrels and ship it to the North Pole, can I truly say it was Whisky made at the North Pole????? Just because it is stored at a certain location does not mean the product was made there. Even if the product has to be stored to give it more substance/body, does not give the right of the distillers/distributors to say the product was made at the location to where it was stored?

    To use the same analogy, I could get wool from a Shetland sheep, ship it to China to mass produce jumpers of all shapes, sizes and designs and then tell the customers it is a Shetland Jumper? Would you accept this as a genuine Shetland product???? I don’t think so.

    Reply
    • Ali Inkster

      It says it is bottled in Shetland, not made here. And if folk are willing to shell out the price for a bottle it will give them a peerie bit of working capital, but more important it will get the brand out there and will make sale of the whisky made here easier when it does come out the barrels. Good luck to them unlike Blackwoods it’s costing us nothing and will hopefully provide some much needed jobs.

      Reply
      • David Spence

        I wish them well. I just hope they do not fob off the consumer by saying the Whisky was made in Shetland, purely for the status of being the UK’s most northerly Whisky Distillery.

        However, Business and fabricating the truth to gain more money/customers, does go hand-in-hand……..call the nature of Capitalism.

  2. Ron Young

    I love to think that items have been grown, cared for and matured in the area that has its name on the label – but distilling Whisky in Aberdeen then shipping it to Shetland for a “suitable period of resting” and then bottling and labeling the bottle “Bottled in Shetland” – come on, they must think we’ve come wi’ t’ trip!! (Get reporter Adam G. to explain this)

    Reply
  3. iantinkler

    Truly idiotic, Will go to Tesco and get a few mixed wine boxes, put an a bin and stir.. Sell as Shetland Wine, the most northern winery , Chateau Flawton.

    Reply
  4. Hunter Inkster

    Well done to Stuart Nickerson and all involved at the Shetland Distillery Company in getting their first whisky product on the shelves. This is a fantastic project for Shetland and although the product is not currently manufactured in Shetland, they have to start somewhere to build up a brand in the whisky market and have a cashflow to fund the 6 years it will take to distill and mature a quality whisky which is fully produced in Shetland.

    This is one of the steps in a long-term project and it is one that we should embrace rather than trying to derail or pick holes in because it is only bottled in Shetland at this time. Good luck Stuart and lets hope in time the Shetland Distillery becomes as successful as Highland Park.

    Reply
  5. iantinkler

    Well I suppose the price tag shows shows the targeted consumer, some rich fools around still, or should I say, around a still.

    Reply
  6. Michael Inkster

    Nice to hear someone with a positive comment on this forum for a change instead of the usual perpetual bickering amongst the regular half-dozen or so for whom this appears to be virtually a full-time hobby, Michael Inkster

    Reply
  7. David Spence

    Hunter, not wishing to pick holes in what you have said but………

    ‘ although the product is not currently manufactured in Shetland ‘ and

    ‘ quality whisky which is fully produced in Shetland. ‘

    Does seem a little contradictory. lol

    Reply
  8. David Spence

    I hope somebody can refresh my memory, but was there not a similiar business in Nesting in regards to storing whisky in Shetland (but it was made outwith Shetland) and then pawning it off as a product of Shetland purely for the status as being the UK’s most northern distillery (said very loosely lol) ?????

    May be somebody can throw some light on this please?

    Reply
  9. Chris Laurenson

    If its no made wae Shetland water dan hits no Shetland Scotch….Duuuhhhhh….!!!!!!

    Reply
    • John Tulloch

      I doot “Wir Shetland” water is no Scotys, so quat wye cud dae mak “Scotch” quhisky fae dat? I doot dae hae ta bring in da raw stuff an bottle hit ur dan furgyit da hell thing?

      Reply
  10. iantinkler

    Real Shetland Whiskey
    “The Blackwood distillery (Nesting) was set to become the first malt whisky distillery to be set up in Lerwick, Shetland Islands, off the north coast of Scotland. The distillery will use Bere Barley, an ancient strain that has been grown in Shetland for over 5,000 years.”
    Sadly was not to be, finance!!. 2008

    Reply
  11. David Spence

    Good point, Ian. If all the ingredients needed to make Whisky (I believe the irish spelling is Whiskey?) are grown on Shetland, and the water comes from the burns/loch’s, fair enough, brand it a Whisky made in Shetland.

    However, if part of the production process involves using water from the tap, I would hope the manufacturer’s would filter out all the nasty wee chemicals NOSWA has put into the water prior to this water being used in the production? lol

    Reply
  12. Haydn Gear

    I find the varying opinions about the Shetland whisky saga a bit odd, to say the least.How can a Scottish whisky be passed off as a Shetland product? If Japanese whisky were to be shipped in (perish the thought!) could that too be bottled in Lerwick and sold as Shetland whisky? What about the trades description Act?Wisgi Cymreig is produced at Penderyn, South Wales.No way would it be considered anything but Welsh.Water from the Brecon Beacons ensures that is so.The main problem is that it’s VERY costly occupying a niche market. At least I’ve had a glassful !! Meanwhile , I’ll stick to Dalwhinnie and Aberlour.

    Reply
    • John Tulloch

      Me granny wis wint ta say, “Whit’s wrang wi you, dir plenty o water ida tap?”

      Reply
  13. Haydn Gear

    My mother (99) says she won’t drink dwr tap (tap water) because ” they put all those chemicals in it to kill germs”. Is she right and do they? Without doubt, water tastes different in many places. I’ve never been àble to make a decent cup of tea in France . Water in Wales is definitely superior to London water but ours isn’t recycled from the Thames half a dozen times !!!

    Reply
  14. ted bruning

    Forgive a Sassenach for butting in, but there’s a longstanding and completely transparent tradition of finishing single malts in casks of various origins to produce radically different expressions which connoisseurs and collectors understand, appreciate, and will pay silly money for. This kind of exercise produces a tiny bit of cash-flow to help the enterprise on its journey to maturity but more importantly maintains its profile among the paying-silly-money community so that when the distillery’s own distillate finally emerges it will be long-awaited and much-anticipated. Even better, the bottled-in-Shetland whisky comes from Glenglassaugh, which Mr Nickerson helped rescue from closure.

    Reply

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