New whisky won’t change Archie Rose’s gin focus

Archie Rose Rye Malt Whisky

Archie Rose Founder Will Edwards has said that the launch of the distillery’s first core range whisky, will not force any changes to its gin and vodka making focus.

Speaking at the launch of the Rye Malt Whisky, Edwards said people have asked him about the spirits the distillery has always made, now that the whisky has launched.

“One of the things that people have been saying to me over the last few weeks is ‘congratulations, you’re launching your first whisky, but what’s happening to your gins and vodkas?’” Edwards told those at the whisky launch event.

“It’s funny because I never thought about that, it hadn’t crossed my mind, but I suppose it is a valid question, because there are a lot of people who create white spirits in order to see them through until their whiskies arrive.

“But for us it is very different, we always set up Archie Rose as a distilling company, we wanted to be able to produce spirits across category. We wanted to be known for producing innovative, progressive, high quality spirits across all categories. It’s something that has been really important to us and we have maintained that throughout.

“I personally feel that by producing spirits across categories you can learn from the processes, the ingredients and the techniques from one category and apply it to another and make better spirits in every category.

“Fundamentally we are spirit lovers. Those who have been on this journey with us know that we have made gins, we have made vodkas, we have made an un-aged agricole, an aged agricole and coming into work every day and looking for that next non-trivial innovation is what keeps us going.”

Speaking about the new whisky, Edwards said the team had worked hard to create a spirit that would really stand out.

“One of the most unique characteristics about our rye is that it is malted rye,” Edwards said. “It’s rye malt whisky. There are only a handful of examples globally of people making whisky from malts instead of grain.

“What using malt instead of grain does is completely change the flavour profile. It’s a lot of work to dial that it, but it means it sits much more between a single malt whisky and a traditional American, spice-forward in-you-face rye. So it has a lot more complexity and has a lot more going on and if you are new to rye but love your single malts, you are going to find this a lot more interesting than a lot of the ryes you may have tried.”

Edwards said that while there are some techniques they’ve used in production, the other key element for this whisky is the casks they have used.

“We use 36 month, air-dried virgin American oak casks. That means that the oak itself has been dried in the open air for three years. Most casks are kiln dried, which is a super-quick process so air-dried casks are really hard to come by. They are actually looking to discontinue making them, but with the orders that we have put in they are going to continue making them for us. But these casks help add a whole different level to the spirit, and it’s another massive part of balancing the uniqueness of the rye malt.”

The first batch of the Rye Malt Whisky went on sale through a ballot and on the Archie Rose website this week, with further batches coming in September which will be released into bars, restaurants and bottle shops. The Rye Malt is the first whisky to become part of the core range of products from Archie Rose.

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