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  • Personality

    As a cask comes to maturity, Finn curates sampling sessions in interesting and relaxing environments, with friends, whisky experts and trusted partners to discover the personality of each cask and gauge the experience each dram evokes.

  • Distillery character

    All the best distillers pride themselves on crafting whisky with a distinctive flavour, which is determined by the water source, grain and barley, the peat and malting, and their distilling processes. High quality original spirit is integral to every cask we bottle.

  • Cask influence

    The cask itself interacts with the whisky over time. The type of wood plays a big role, as do treatments such as the whiskies are aged in a variety of types of casks. The whiskies are aged in former sherry or bourbon casks, augmenting the cask influence. External conditions such as air temperature, pressure and humidity also interact with the cask producing a knock-on effect that makes the spirit inside unique.

  • Balance

    Finn uses these factors to balance each FT whisky experience. He may sample a cask and decide to leave it on the rack, allowing age to further develop its personality. He might decide to re-rack a whisky in a new cask to add a finishing touch. Or, he might simply deem it ready. When Finn decides the flavour is perfectly balanced, it’s time to bottle the whisky.

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Blair Athol 2013

Blair Athol 2013

  • Distillery
    Blair Athol
  • Date of distillation
    15/02/2013
  • Date of bottling
    17/06/2022
  • ABV
    59.4%
  • Number of bottles
    299
Make an enquiry
"It is a treat to be able to present such a high quality single cask of this stalwart Perthshire single malt."

With the Thomson family roots so deeply ingrained in Perthshire distilling, it was important to me that we showcased one of the region’s current distilleries in the first set of releases for Finn Thomson Whisky. Blair Athol is one of the unsung heroes of the industry with the vast majority of its spirit going towards some of the best-known blends around. So it is a treat to be able to present such a high quality single cask of this stalwart Perthshire single malt.

This particular cask is a smaller than usual ‘hogshead’. Originally holding around 230 litres instead of the usual 250, maturation has been faster than expected allowing us to bottle this cask at just 9 years old. Fruit, nut and chocolate flavours combine – if a famous ‘Fruit and Nut’ chocolate bar could be converted into whisky, this would be it!

Blair Athol has been the backbone of many a Diageo blend for years and is indeed the core component of another brand with its roots firmly based in the city of Perth, Bells. It is highly regarded for its nutty character which comes as a result of a shorter than usual fermentation. With such a robust new make spirit it is a distillery that often works best in first fill casks and it can maintain its character even in the most active of casks.

There’s something incredibly intriguing about this particular cask. Purchased as a 250L refill hogshead, on further inspection it became apparent that there was something unusual about this cask. The first clue was that the cask only ever held bulk 230L - more in line with a bourbon barrel than a hogshead. This prompted me to draw a sample of it at just 7 years old. Usually a 7 year old refill hogshead would still be quite pale in colour but this had a dark golden hue to it. Upon tasting it was clear this was no refill hogshead and perhaps instead a re-charred bourbon barrel adding chocolate and honey notes to the nutty spirit character.

There’s certainly a balance of flavours here. Raisin, hazelnut and chocolate notes all make an appearance. But don’t be lured into thinking this is an easy drinking beginners whisky. It is still complex and full of depth. Bottled at cask strength, there’s a real punch to this relatively young whisky. With a few drops of water some of those sweeter notes are indeed amplified and the chocolate notes morph into honey and caramelized sugar. For me, this whisky is one to take your time with, add water to taste and let the whisky sit in the glass for as long as you can resist. This is a whisky that lets the drinker make their own decision on how best to drink it and ultimately find their own perfect balance.

Blair Athol 2013

  • Distillery
    Blair Athol
  • Date of distillation
    15/02/2013
  • Date of bottling
    17/06/2022
  • ABV
    59.4%
  • Number of bottles
    299
Make an enquiry
"It is a treat to be able to present such a high quality single cask of this stalwart Perthshire single malt."
01

Cask Story

With the Thomson family roots so deeply ingrained in Perthshire distilling, it was important to me that we showcased one of the region’s current distilleries in the first set of releases for Finn Thomson Whisky. Blair Athol is one of the unsung heroes of the industry with the vast majority of its spirit going towards some of the best-known blends around. So it is a treat to be able to present such a high quality single cask of this stalwart Perthshire single malt.

This particular cask is a smaller than usual ‘hogshead’. Originally holding around 230 litres instead of the usual 250, maturation has been faster than expected allowing us to bottle this cask at just 9 years old. Fruit, nut and chocolate flavours combine – if a famous ‘Fruit and Nut’ chocolate bar could be converted into whisky, this would be it!

02

Distillery character

Blair Athol has been the backbone of many a Diageo blend for years and is indeed the core component of another brand with its roots firmly based in the city of Perth, Bells. It is highly regarded for its nutty character which comes as a result of a shorter than usual fermentation. With such a robust new make spirit it is a distillery that often works best in first fill casks and it can maintain its character even in the most active of casks.

03

Cask influence

There’s something incredibly intriguing about this particular cask. Purchased as a 250L refill hogshead, on further inspection it became apparent that there was something unusual about this cask. The first clue was that the cask only ever held bulk 230L - more in line with a bourbon barrel than a hogshead. This prompted me to draw a sample of it at just 7 years old. Usually a 7 year old refill hogshead would still be quite pale in colour but this had a dark golden hue to it. Upon tasting it was clear this was no refill hogshead and perhaps instead a re-charred bourbon barrel adding chocolate and honey notes to the nutty spirit character.

04

Balance

There’s certainly a balance of flavours here. Raisin, hazelnut and chocolate notes all make an appearance. But don’t be lured into thinking this is an easy drinking beginners whisky. It is still complex and full of depth. Bottled at cask strength, there’s a real punch to this relatively young whisky. With a few drops of water some of those sweeter notes are indeed amplified and the chocolate notes morph into honey and caramelized sugar. For me, this whisky is one to take your time with, add water to taste and let the whisky sit in the glass for as long as you can resist. This is a whisky that lets the drinker make their own decision on how best to drink it and ultimately find their own perfect balance.