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Distillery Tales And Traces Of Smoke: The Secret Speyside Collection Arrives In Hong Kong

Discover the secrets of Speyside at Ami / Wood Ear, the only place in Hong Kong to try the limited whisky collection.

October 19, 2021

A closed distillery whose story will stay frozen in time, a pioneering distillery favoured by many and a landmark distillery that rose from ruins. These highly sought-after distilleries in Speyside, Scotland come with stories, character and most of all, a limited-edition production of a carefully curated selection of 18-30 year old whiskies.

Photo: A-Vibe

The Secret Speyside Collection is composed of 15 aged single-malt whiskies and was previously launched in Japan and China. Each release from the collection has received a gold medal at the International Spirits Challenge, one of the most acclaimed spirits competition in the world, for two years in a row.

For the first time ever, the Secret Speyside Collection is available in Hong Kong, exclusively at Ami / Wood Ear in Landmark. The bar/restaurant offers whisky aficionados the unique opportunity to try six releases of the collection: Caperdonich (18 / 21 Year Old Peated), Longmorn (18 / 23 Year Old) and Glen Keith (21 / 25 Year Old.)

Photo: Pernod Ricard

CAPERDONICH

The Caperdonich releases are unique in that they will never be produced again, as the distillery was dismantled in 2011, brick by brick. Known as “the secret well” in Gaelic, tales recount two lovers who used to meet at the well. However, the boy met his fate once the girl’s father discovered of the secret love affair, killing him with the sword, which can now be seen on the bottle.

All three whiskies feature a peated expression, a smokiness created through the malting process through which the barley is exposed to smoke coming from peat, a decomposed organic matter found in soil, similar to young coal, that plays an important role in our ecosystem. 

Secret Speyside Rare Malt

Both matured in American oak barrels, the 18 and 21 year old show solid smokiness, with the first giving off hints of autumn bonfires, apple and brown sugar while the second’s pronounced smokiness is imprinted with traces of mandarin orange and cedar. The 25 year old was matured in oak hogshead, old bourbon barrels staves that have been reassembled with new oak ends, allowing more whisky to be stored and with less oak contact. Here, hints of green apple, pear and salt can be felt breaking through the smokiness.

 

Photo: Pernod Ricard

LONGMORN

Longmorn is considered the pioneering distillery, with its train seal representing the train track that was built by the founder to facilitate import of supplies and export of the finished product. A favourite amongst whisky connoisseurs, the pungent taste of toffee cream can be felt throughout all three whiskeys, which have all been aged in American oak barrels and hogshead. The sweetness of mango can be seen piercing through the 18 year old whisky, while its more mature big brothers will release hints of milk chocolate and lemon curd (in the 21 year old) and spicy delights from the cinnamon, mandarin orange and sultanas in the 25 year old.

 

Photo: Pernod Ricard

GLEN KEITH

Last but not least, the Glen Keith distillery has become a landmark in more ways than one. Not only was it built from the ruins of an old mill to become one of Scotlan’s youngest distilleries but it is also a training site for expert distillers. The 21 and 25 year old whiskies show an abundance of juicy summer fruit notes as well as unique flavours resulting from Glen Keith’s copper stills, who are taller than most. The 21 year old whiskey will have matured in specially selected oak barrels, giving off hints of peaches with an almond finish whereas the 25 year old, matured in American oak barrels, will burst with jam-like notes, ranging from marmalade to gooseberry jam and finishing with vanilla custard.

Ami / Wood Ear, Shop 302, 3/F, Landmark Alexandra, 18 Chater Road, Central, landmark.hk/en/dine/ami-wood-ear

 

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