WhiskyCast is where it all begins. Now in our 17th year, each weekly podcast brings you the latest in whisky news, along with the latest events, tasting notes, comments from other listeners, and the weekly “In-Depth” segment features interviews with the people who help make whisky the “water of life”.

Back to the Island (Episode 951: May 23, 2022)

Whisky lovers are making the pilgrimage to Islay for the first time in two years as the Islay Festival of Malt and Music gets underway later this week. There have been a lot of changes at the island’s distilleries since the last in-person festival in 2019. For instance, it’ll be the first Fèis on the island for Julieann Fernandez as master blender at Bunnahabhain Distillery. She’ll join us on this week’s WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, police are still searching for two suspects in the Glenfarclas Distillery break-in, while a Canadian distillery is rebranding as part of a settlement with the Scotch Whisky Association.

Links: Bunnahabhain | Glenfarclas | Macaloney’s Island Distillery | Redbreast | Hardin’s Creek | Lexington Herald-Leader | M&H Distillery | Jack Daniel’s | Jim Beam

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Happy Hour Live with Angus MacRaild (Episode 950: May 18, 2022)

The “Whisky Sponge,” Angus MacRaild, joined us on the latest Happy Hour Live webcast. Not only is he known for his outspoken blog on the Scotch Whisky world, but he’s also become an independent bottler as well as a collector. We’ll discuss his views on the world of whisky, his disdain for NFT’s, and answer some of your questions, too.

Links: The Whisky Sponge | Decadent Drinks

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Lexie Phillips Leads by Example at Jack Daniel’s (Episode 949: May 15, 2022)

Lexie Phillips grew up around Lynchburg, Tennessee watching generations of her relatives go to work at the Jack Daniel Distillery. Now, she’s leading the family – and the distillery team as Assistant Distiller alongside Master Distiller Chris Fletcher. She’s been in the role for a little more than a year, and has become a role model for other women working at the distillery. We’ll meet Lexie Phillips on this week’s WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, thieves strike at Glenfarclas Distillery’s visitors center, while another generation of Beams gets the title of Master Distiller and millions of dollars in whiskies go on the auction block. We’ll have those stories and much more on this week’s WhiskyCast!

Links: Jack Daniel’s | Glenfarclas | Jim Beam | Sotheby’s | Bonhams | The Dalmore | New York Distilling Co. | Liberty Pole Spirits | American Highway Reserve | Westland Distillery | Westward Whiskey | The Lakes Distillery | Douglas Laing & Co. | Speyburn | Lost Lantern Whiskey | Huber’s Starlight Distillery | Hotel Tango Distillery | Hard Truth Distilling | Bonhams Hong Kong Auction

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Happy Hour Live with Ernie Button, Kyle Swartz, and Nino Kilgore-Marchetti (Episode 948: May 12, 2022)

Photographer Ernie Button’s new book, “The Art of Whisky,” was published this week, and he joined us on last Friday night’s #HappyHourLive webcast along with whisky writers Kyle Swartz of Beverage Dynamics and The Whiskey Wash’s Nino Kilgore-Marchetti. You can catch our live webcasts on Friday nights at 5:00pm New York time on the WhiskyCast YouTube channel, our Facebook page, Twitter, and Twitch.

Links: “The Art of Whisky” on Amazon | Beverage Dynamics | The Whiskey Wash

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Reflections On a Fast Start (Episode 947: May 9, 2022)

Blue Run Spirits has only been around for a couple of years, but its whiskies have already found their way into the hearts of whiskey lovers. Of course, it helps to have a Bourbon Hall of Fame distiller like Jim Rutledge as part of the team. The latest Blue Run Bourbon release, Reflection, is out now. We’ll talk with co-founder Mike Montgomery and Blue Run’s new director of whisky, Shaylyn Gammon, this week on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, we now know what Islay’s newest distillery will be named, the Spirit of Speyside Festival hands out its awards, and Johnnie Walker floats the idea of whisky subscriptions in the UK. We’ll also have May’s Whisky Club of the Month and much more.

Links: Blue Run Spirits | Elixir Distillers | Spirit of Speyside Festival | Bunnahabhain | Lagavulin | Caol Ila | Laphroaig | Ardbeg | Dewar’s | Whiskey Del Bac | New Riff Distilling | Alias Whiskey | Johnnie Walker | Castle & Key | Old Fitzgerald | I.W. Harper

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Happy Hour Live with Tasmania’s Fannys Bay Distillery (Episode 946: May 4, 2022)

Mathew and Julie Cooper built Fannys Bay Distillery next to their home in Tasmania, and their small-scale whiskies are just now becoming available in the United States. The Coopers joined us on our latest #HappyHourLive webcast along with Holly Seidewand of First Fill Spirits and Her Whisky Love, who persuaded them to export their whiskies for the first time. We’ll also get the first look at two new bottled in bond whiskies from Jack Daniel’s that arrived via The Whisky Fairy just before showtime.

Links: Fannys Bay Distillery | Discovery Bottles

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A True Crime…and Whisky Story (Episode 945: May 1, 2022)

Two years ago, we brought you the story of Jonathan and Cindy Bray. The Canadian whisky importers were arrested by Idaho State Police on charges of illegally selling whisky out of their storage unit in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho and spent 24 days in jail until they were released and allowed to return to Calgary. Last September, they pleaded guilty to a reduced misdemeanor charge and were sentenced to six months of probation, and last month, the case was dismissed after they successfully completed their time on probation. We’ve never heard their side of the story…until now. In his first interview since the arrests, Jonathan Bray explains why they had their Scotch Whisky Advent Calendars in an Idaho warehouse to begin with, and how a series of cascading circumstances and errors led to their arrests. You’ll also hear from the prosecutor in the case, too.

In the news, Heaven Hill is investing $135 million to build a new distillery in the Bourbon Capital of the World, while Chivas Brothers will spend $88 million to upgrade two of its Speyside distilleries in Scotland. We’ll taste a really old and rare Irish whiskey, and a new Jack Daniel’s whiskey leads to a question about “Bottled in Bond” whiskies in our Behind the Label segment.

Links: Heaven Hill | Chivas Brothers | Diageo | Compass Box | Midleton Very Rare | Suntory | dekantā | The Lakes Distillery | Fannys Bay Distillery | Jack Daniel’s 

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On the Road in Las Vegas (Episode 944: April 24, 2022)

Back out on the road again for our first whisky festival since the pandemic started! While we were in Las Vegas for The Nth, Richard Paterson and Craig Bridger joined us for a special edition of the Happy Hour Live webcast, and you’ll hear part of our conversation on WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the human resources departments at several distilleries are busy with new hires, and we’ll have the details…along with a conversation with Scott Davidson of Glencairn Crystal about supply chain problems affecting whisky makers and how Glencairn is trying to help solve a shortage of glass bottles. We’ll also have tasting notes, Behind the Label, and much more!

Editor’s note: Production support for this episode was provided by The Dalmore.

Links: The Dalmore | Tamnavulin | Lagavulin | Beam Suntory | American Craft Spirits Association | Glencairn Crystal | The Glenturret | Frey Ranch | Old Elk

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Happy Hour Live with Starward Whisky’s David Vitale (Episode 943: April 20, 2022)

Australian whiskies did extremely well at last week’s San Francisco World Spirits Competition, and Melbourne’s Starward Whisky led the way with 12 Double Gold and 3 Gold medals. That’s the most of any whisky brand in the entire competition. Starward founder David Vitale joined us on the last #HappyHourLive webcast to talk about not only his whiskies, but the success of the entire Australian whisky category.

Links: Starward Whisky

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Coors Enters the Whiskey Business (Episode 942: April 18, 2022)

Colorado’s Coors family has been making beer for five generations, but it’s also been supplying many of the state’s craft distillers with malted barley for more than a decade. Now, the family has decided to make its own whiskey using a blend of Colorado single malt made with its own malted barley and Bourbons from Kentucky and Indiana. It’s part of a company goal to expand into distilled spirits, as David Coors explains on this week’s WhiskyCast In-Depth. In the news, the results from this year’s San Francisco World Spirits Competition are in, and whiskies from Australia did extremely well in the judging. We’ll have the rest of the week’s whisky news, tasting notes, and on Behind the Label, we’ll answer a listener’s question about his cloudy bottle of whisky.

Links: Five Trail | San Francisco World Spirits Competition | Starward Whisky | Diageo | Uncle Nearest | Woodford Reserve | Glasgow Distillery Company | Sweetens Cove | Barrell Bourbon | Old Elk 

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