New Arrival: The Tweeddale Batch 3

Thursday, November 07, 2013

This is another new arrival and was a unexpected but very welcome gift. Compared to many blends on the market the Tweeddale is a small batch release and while it has been resurrected in recent years the blend actually goes way back to the early 1800's.

The story of its revival makes for a great tale with the discovery of great grandfather's blending book for his family business in Coldstream, before it was wound down at the start of World War 2. Then in 2009 his ancestors set about bringing the Tweedale back, which was heralded with the arrival of Batch 1 in 2010. You can read all about this distinctive and artisan blend right here and it is well worth a visit.
This is batch 3 and was released in the Spring of 2013 in an edition of just 300 bottles with this specific design. Since returning to the whisky world Tweeddale has set the bar very high for a blend. It is one of the most enjoyable Scottish based blends I have tasted and this is thanks to the emphasis on quality. Drawn from just a handful of single casks, each batch is a blend split of 50% grain and 50% malt; a ratio that rewards the customer. There is no chill filtering or colouring and the strength is a welcome 46%; this is a blend as it should be. Of course you are paying slightly more for the contents but it is well worth that little extra to demonstrate what a blend can deliver.

A welcome feature is that a visit to the website reveals far more information as to what whiskies go into the blend than other blenders. This is what I want to see from all blenders; more clarity and information - even from no age statement whiskies (NAS) please. I'm far more likely to hand over £35-£45 for a good quality blend if I know exactly what is contained within compared to an £80 NAS Ardbeg Ardbog

No batch is the same with batch 4 taking us onto a 14 year age statement yet that's the minimum age with the oldest being 21 years and the grain 16 years. The SWA's restrictive rules means that while Tweeddale cannot disclose the specific distilleries. However the level of detail on show is better than hiding behind a rulebook and an uninformative label. Batch 4 is limited to 1420 bottles and is on my radar!


Distillery: A blend so various casks
Age
: 12 years 
Distilled: 2001
Bottled: Blended February 2013, bottled March 2013
Limited Edition of: 300

Strength
: 46%
Cask: Grain 18 year sherry butt, core malt 14 years from various casks, joined by malts ranging from 13 to 21 years in age from Islay, Lowlands, Highlands and Speyside - so the complete Scottish geographical malt! 
Price: £39.99
Additional: No colouring, not chill filtered

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