Luxebook May 2023

MAY 2023 Whisky Special ROYAL RANTHAMBORE A spirit that takes inspiration from the royal tigers

MAY 2023 THE GIST Like every year, we are back with our special issue on all things whisky. While whisky remains the most favoured drink in India, the audience is ripe for homegrown brands to take space alongwith traditional imported scotches and malts. For our special issue, we have a whisky tasting wheel and flavour profile chart that displays what a well-rounded and diverse drink it is. Intel on the latest private whisky clubs in the country is here to get you to connect with like-minded people who enjoy the tipple and savour it as much as you. Alongwith, a special collection of decanters for those indulgent evenings at home. Our deep dive into the role of the cask in whisky-making is an attempt to understand its part in generating depth of flavour, a quest part of every whisky makers’s dream. Besides, if you have a taste for the finest, then behold the best whiskies available in auctions, and the most awarded whiskies of this year. Happy reading, and cheers! Payel Majumdar Upreti —Editor Raising a toast S O C I A L M E D I A www.mediascope.co.in www.luxebook.in ADVERTISING SALES Mumbai (022 - 6846 8500) Regional Manager (West) — Katty Gia (+91 98705 32295) • Senior Manager — Lamont Dias (+91 91674 14988) Delhi (011 - 4562 5810) Sr. General Mgr. (North) — Asha Augustine (+91 98182 80431) Kerala (+91 94140 69321) — Sanjai Krishnan Manager Mktg. Services — Salim B • Client Servicing Manager — Reshma Malvankar Founders — Marzban Patel / Anita Patel • Director Publishing — Indu Joshi • Chief Marketing Officer — Apeksha Mehta Editor — Payel Majumdar Upreti • Writers — Arushi Sakhuja, Schenelle Dsouza, Jade Crasto Creative Director — Muhammad Jaan Faruqui This magazine is printed by and produced by Mediascope Representation (India) LLP. Opinions herein are the writers’ and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Mediascope. Editorial enquiries concerning the reproduction of articles, advertising and circulation should be addressed to: LuxeBook, Mediascope Representation (India) LLP., 51, Doli Chamber, Arthur Bunder Road, Colaba, Mumbai 400005, India. Email: luxebook@mediascope.co.in. Material in this publication may not be reproduced, whether in part or in whole, without the consent of the publisher. 2|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023

MAY 2023 Photo Courtesy: Royal Ranthambore 04 Trending 06 The World of Whiskies 14 Connoisseurs of Taste 22 The Cask Factor 20 Whisky Appreciation 40 Liquid Gold 28 Cocktail Hour 12 Fine Spirits 34 World Whisky Awards CONTENTS 2|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 AHMEDABAD | DELHI | HYDERABAD | MUMBAI | LOS ANGELES www.shyamalandbhumika.com

A whisky decanter which is usually made with glass or crystal has always been a status symbol. Most people assume that a decanter’s only purpose is to store whiskey. But in reality, this glass bottle does more than just store whisky. The whisky decanter allows oxygen to enter into it, releasing some of the aromatics that have been resting in it to improve the olfactory experience. While your whisky will not remain forever in a decanter, it can help maintain the life and quality of the alcohol contained within. If you’re ready to up your whisky game with decanters, here are some of the most luxurious ones available in the market. 1. Waterford Marquis Maxwell Decanter The Waterford Marquis Maxwell Decanter distinguishes itself from your grandfather’s whisky decanter by bridging vintage and contemporary elegance. Waterford has been producing crystal glassware since the late 1700s, and it lives up to its high standards. More than half of the decanter is covered with an eye-catching cut crystal pattern, and the short and broad cork adds a contemporary touch. Price: $120 USD (Approx. `9,867) 2. Highland Whisky Decanter Set The Highland series is ideal for dinner parties since each set includes four distinct designs: ‘Cross’, ‘Diamond’, ‘Square’, and ‘Straight’. These high-quality, fashionable decanters offer a sense of elegance and glitz to any home bar or table setting. Price: `16,995 3. German made Aspen Crystal Whiskey Glass/Decanter set The Aspen line of crystal glassware promises to be an excellent choice for people who value the beauty and quality of high-end glassware. Its powerful curves and lines combine to produce a one-of-a-kind elegant design that is guaranteed to amaze any whisky enthusiast. Because the Aspen line is machine-made, each piece has a uniform degree of quality and accuracy. This is crucial for individuals who love polished glassware and the attention to detail that goes into each piece. Price: `20,990 4. Shaze- The Cage The cage, where extraordinary experiences take centre stage, is the epitome of theatrics. This one-of-a-kind item features a hand-cut wave design that celebrates the decanter’s dramatic shape via the exquisite hand-cut crystal glass. A stunning effect arises when these precise CNC machined fins open up and release the decanter like magic. This decanter is safe to use because it is made of lead-free crystal. Price: `30,000 5. Zwiesel Kristallglas Zwiesel Kristallglas’ whisky glass and decanter exudes composure. It is made of high-quality glass and is simple to maintain. As an added bonus, its beautiful form lends prestige and sparkle to the barware. Price: `33,548 6. Fferrone The Margot Decanter is without a doubt the most stunning piece of Fferrone glassware. It is elegant, with its slim, sloping neck and distinctive internal fluting, which is a trademark of the Margot line. The tinkle of its glass cap after a beautiful pour is the music to the biggest triumphs as well as the most modest evenings spent revelling with friends and family. Master glassblowers hand-form each item without the use of moulds. The borosilicate glass is suitable for both hot and cold applications. Price: `34,395 7. Vista Alegre This decanter from Portrait by Vista Alegre will look great on your bar table. A modern collection that experiments with the texture of cutting and the creation of graphical overlays. It is ideal for bar tables and beginning homemakers. Price: `41,310 8. Vista Alegre Crystal Gold This decanter has been handcrafted using processes like as blow, injection, sandblast engraving, and gold paint, making it a work of art. This piece’s visual richness, design impact, and luxury nature make it suited for places of high refinement and unique events. Price: `1,48,300 9. Owl Decanter by Lalique Lalique was inspired by the Owl, a legendary creature that represents wisdom, to design two tumblers with powerful, structural lines. The owl image in satin-finished crystal, curls around each glass and decanter, set against a contrasting shimmering background of swirling crystal waves. The elaborate frieze, crafted in relief, gives these works a depth not previously seen in such work and exhibits the incredible savoir-faire of the Lalique glass-makers. Only available on request. Best decanters for your whisky 2 8 4 1 5 7 3 6 9 4|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|5 TRENDING

When it comes to luxury whiskys, it’s a different kind of world. A true whisky aficionado knows that a bottle of the finest comes at a price. Many people love their drink strong while others love one that breaks the bank. Distilled by masters in the game, aged for over half a century and bottled in stunning decanters, many like to savour an exquisite glass of the brown spirit. In the exclusive world of whisky, there are two not-sosecret ongoing battles: one for age, and another for cost. Ground-breaking bids and new world records continue to reign supreme in the industry. Have you ever wondered what’s special about a $2 million bottle of whiskey? With six-figure digits having become the norm, here’s looking at the most expensive whiskies ever auctioned, and they cost a fortune! Yamazaki 55-year-old — USD $8,00,000 This Japanese whiskey has set a new record of being the world’s most expensive whiskies ever sold, for a jawdropping USD $8,00,000 (approx. `65.2 cr). First distilled in 1960, the Yamazaki 55-year-old is the regal blend of precious single malts that were all distilled under the supervision of Suntory’s founder Shin Jiro Torii and later aged in Mizunara casks for over 55 years. Yamazaki 55 was first bottled in Japan in 2020 with 100 bottles, and an additional 100 bottles were released in 2021, thus making it a limited edition that is truly a prized possession for anyone who owns it. BY ARUSHI SAKHUJA 9 Best whiskies auctioned in 2023 A bottle of the finest whisky comes at a price. THE WORLD OF WHISKIES 6|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|7

The Macallan In Lalique Six Pillars Collection — USD $600,000 Spanning more than a decade of collaboration, The Macallan worked with renowned French crystal maker Lalique to produce The Macallan in Lalique Six Pillars Collection. An exclusive series of limited-edition decanters, each of the bottles in the collection is more than 50 years old. The Macallan in Lalique Six Pillars Collection was sold for more than $600,000. The Six Pillars Collection marks 10 years of collaboration between the distillery and the French crystal maker, with each expression representing a pillar, or foundational characteristic, of the Macallan’s core identity. This set of limited-edition whiskies were all aged for more than half a century (the distillery seems to have more than a few ultra-aged barrels among the hundreds of thousands in its warehouses), and each comes housed in a unique and quite beautiful Lalique decanter. The Macallan 50 Year Old released in 2005, bottle 234 of 470, celebrating the distillery’s oak casks; The Macallan 55 Year Old released in 2007, bottle 43 of 420, celebrating the natural colour of the whisky; The Macallan 57 Year Old released in 2009, bottle 130 of 400, celebrating the finest cut, referring to the distillation process; The Macallan 60 Year Old released in 2011, bottle 56 of 400, celebrating the distillery’s curiously small stills that are said to contribute to the whisky’s character; The Macallan 62 Year Old released in 2014, bottle 211 of 400, celebrating the spiritual home that is the Easter Elchies House; and The Karuizawa 38-Year-Old Single Malt — USD $26,000 A bottle of Karuizawa 38-Year-Old Single Malt Japanese Whisky, one of a pair of Ruby Geishas released in 2021. This sherry-aged malt was distilled in the 1980s and bottled by Elixir Distillers exclusively for The Whisky Exchange. Each bottle in the pair has complementary labels designed by The Whisky Exchange’s creative director Raj Chavda and is presented in individual wooden cases. This is bottle number 129 of 223. Macallan 65 Year Old released in 2016, bottle 318 or 450, celebrating the peerless spirit of the distillery. The Macallan The Intrepid — $1.38m The Macallan distillery is the flagbearer when it comes to smashing records of the world’s most expensive whiskies ever sold. Earlier this year, The Macallan found its way into yet another record book, this time for creating the largest bottle of whisky ever released: The Intrepid. Standing at 5’11, the bottle and the minis hold approximately 311 litres of whisky (in other words, the equivalent of 444 regular-sized bottles). It sold for USD $1.38m at Lyon & Turnbull in Edinburgh, the bottle contains whisky from two American oak hogshead casks that have been maturing for 32 years each. The bottle itself pays tribute to 11 of the world’s most famous explorers, with each of their faces immortalized on its label. Macallan Distil Your World New York Edition — USD $250,000 It was apparent that Macallan’s Distil Your World New York Edition was going to cost collectors a pretty penny. Limited to just 1,000 bottles, the whisky was originally priced at $4,300 but ended up selling for a lot more online. In February this year, a single bottle of Distil Your World New York Single Cask Edition sold for $250,000 at Sotheby’s. his special Single Cask the Macallan’s NYC-Inspired Whisky Edition is one of only two bottles created by the distillery. It attracted 68 bids before it was sold to a private collector from Asia for triple the pre-sale estimate. The second bottle will be kept safely in the Macallan archive. The Reach — USD $609,40 The Macallan Reach 81-year-old whisky comes from a single cask laid down in 1940 and is the world’s oldest Scotch single malt 8|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|9

sold for nearly half a million (USD $609,40) at auction by Sotheby’s. Distilled in Scotland during World War II the Macallan The Reach 81-year-old comes from a single sherry seasoned oak cask laid down in 1940, making it the world’s oldest aged Scotch. Released by the Speyside distillery in February last year in a limited edition of only 288 decanters, each was cradled on a bronze sculpture of three hands. Dalmore-50-year-old — USD $19,778 A bottle of the rare Dalmore-50-year-old-1926 in a ceramic decanter and its original wooden presentation case sold for USD $19,778 at Bonhams online-only Fine Whisky and Spirits Sale which ran from 20 February – 1 March 2023. It had been estimated at £13,00018,000. Bonhams whisky specialist Georgia Porteous commented: “In a strong and varied sale, the Dalmore50-year-old-1926 stood out for its rarity and desirability and not surprisingly emerged as the top lot. There were also impressive performances from a good selection of Macallan’s with the Macallan Fine & Rare-30-yearold-1973 providing the pick of the crop.” Bowmore - 50-Year-Old (1969) Vault Collection — USD $35,500 Distilled by Bowmore in 1969 and matured for 50 years, this is the fourth and final edition from the highly esteemed ‘Bowmore 50-Year-Old Vaults series. Using American oak ex-Bourbon barrels and hogsheads, this exceptional cask strength release from Bowmore is one of its rarest whiskies to date. It was sold for USD $35,551 in January this year. Macallan - 72-Year-Old (Lalique) The Genesis Decanter — USD $69,800 This 72-year-old is one of the oldest expressions ever to be released by The Macallan. Distilled in the 1940s, and released in 2018, this single malt whisky is beautifully presented in a Lalique crystal decanter. Inspired by the creation of the new Distillery and Visitor Centre in 2018, the crystal decanter is positioned within a custommade wooden presentation case, designed by the Royal cabinetmakers for her majesty the Queen. This exclusive release is one of only 600 bottles produced worldwide by The Macallan. 10|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 Made in Italy

BY ARUSHI SAKHUJA Radico Khaitan broke the mould in the IMFL category with this finest-crafted whisky Royal Ranthambore A spirit that takes inspiration from the royal tigers ‘Truly India’s Finest Yet’ The Royal Ranthambore Heritage Collection, which is a premium whisky blend, has broken the norms of the whisky category in the Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) industry. What sets this blend apart from the rest is its distinctive approach to distillation and blending. The whisky is an ode to Ranthambore and a tribute to the majestic tiger in spirit. Inspired by the tigers that inhabit the space, the colour of this spirit is a majestic golden colour which is true homage to the hue of the tigers’ stunning coat. This luxurious blended whisky is crafted with various bespoke blended malt spirits from different geographical regions. The rare, imported malts are made from 100% malted barley, carefully blended with oak-infused Indian grain neutral spirit to harmonize this royal blend.The colour of the whisky is inspired by the royal tigers of Ranthambore. Much like other premium whiskies, indulging in Royal Ranthambore is a memorable experience. On the nose The spirit Royal Ranthambore is a rich symphony of taste, aroma and finish that entices the senses to give you a majestic experience. On the nose, the whisky has warm and intense orchard fruit aromas which are followed by sweet floral notes and a hint of citrus. Subtle forest honey and spicy dried fruits at the end leave a lasting trail. But when it comes to the palate it’s an absolute delight – if enjoyed correctly. Pour it, hold it up, have a good whiff, take a sip that lingers in the mouth for a few seconds and then, let it slowly flow down your throat. Upon tasting the whisky, you will feel a sense of warmth on your palate followed by rich flavours like English muffins, melted butter, plum cakes, apple pie, cocoa and a hint of spicy peaty smoke in the background. The long finish smoothens out with time and leaves you yearning for more. A worthy cover But the buck doesn’t stop there, the packaging is equally opulent to match the elusive whisky. At first glance, the bottle exudes elegance courtesy of its telescopic canister. Featuring rich heritage motifs of Ranthambore and a ribbed pattern the transparent glass bottle enables the holder to witness the masterfully crafted blend. However, the highlight of the beautiful, packaged bottle is the cap-on-cap closure that resembles a crown adding quite a royal look to the overall appearance. The canister too is of the same colour as the label of the whisky, allowing whisky aficionados to truly appreciate what lies within. The Royal Ranthambore Heritage Collection Whisky has set a high standard for the world of Indian-made whisky and is a must-try for anyone looking to experience an exquisite blend of luxury and taste. In reverence to the magnificent Tigers and Warrior Kings that ruled over the land Royal Ranthambore is a fine example of experiencing royalty in a bottle. With a legacy of over 75 years in whisky distillation and blending, it was in 2021 that India’s leading liquor company, Radico Khaitan launched their finest whisky creation, the Royal Ranthambore Heritage Collection. The company is also the parent to successful brands such as Rampur Indian Single Malt, Jaisalmer Gin, Morpheus Brandy, 8 PM Whisky, Magic Moments Vodka, 1965 Spirit of Victory Rum, all of which have delighted connoisseurs and customers alike.With a passion towards serving liquor of the highest quality, experimentation, attention to detail and a refined blending process, Radico Khaitan is synonymous with products that are smooth on the palate. Carrying the lineage forward, the brand has introduced a new whisky brand called Royal Ranthambore. 12|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|13 FINE SPIRITS

Whisky is one drink that needs no introduction; least in a country like India where inevitably it’s the favourite tipple on a regular day or on occasions. And while many drink whisky for the sake of it, only a few appreciate the true essence of the spirit. That is where whisky clubs make their grand entrance. Whisky clubs, whisky appreciation clubs, no matter what you call these, serve one very important purpose – to help enthusiasts (and beginners too) understand and appreciate whisky. Whisky clubs are still a fairly new concept in India, however, there are two very prominent platforms that have truly helped portray whisky in a new light – All Things Nice and Single Malt Amateurs Club. While whisky clubs are still a developing concept, it’s no doubt that they have helped promote whisky as more than just a festive spirit. These have helped educate people about the complexities of whisky so they can both, identify and appreciate a good quality whisky. Telling us more about their platforms Nikhil Agarwal – Founder, All Things Nice, and Hemanth Rao – Founder, Single Malt Amateurs Club spoke to LuxeBook about their role in celebrating and educating people about whisky, whilst sharing their thoughts on the whisky drinking culture in India. While All Things Nice is a more rounded platform for distinct spirits and fine wines, Single Malt Amateurs Club helps shine a light on the wonders on Indian whisky. Now, before we delve into the conversation of whisky clubs, here’s a short background on both platforms. All Things Nice Nikhil Agarwal worked with Moet Hennessey, Sula Vineyards and Diageo for 10-odd years before launching All Things Nice in 2010. He described the idea for launching All Things Nice as a platform that invited people to experience quality wine and spirits complemented by incredible food pairings from around the world. Lifting spirits: Indian whisky clubs drive appreciation for the tipple Private whisky clubs are driving the whisky appreciation culture in India BY SCHENELLE DSOUZA From left to right: Mr Dilip Tahil and Mr Nikhil Agarwal From left to right: Mr Nikhil Agarwal, Mr Jim Murray and Mr Danny Carroll Hennessy Event at Taj CONNOISSEURS OF TASTE 14|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|15

so familiar with and also introduce them to as many of them as possible.” One of the many aspects that make All Things Nice stand out is its collaborative efforts to introduce India to experts from the global food and beverage industry. “Bringing global experts to India is something that we thrive on because it allows you to see and experience their point of view.” Agarwal compares the experience to that of peeling an onion, where there is always so much more to learn. Among their most memorable events, Agarwal shared snippets of the series conducted with whisky legend, Jim Murray in 2019. The blind tastings event was a two-city series held in Mumbai and Delhi over a period of five days. “The series that we did with Jim Murray was perhaps one of our most successful events. People flew in from all over India to Mumbai and Delhi for the five events that we did consecutively; that was a huge success. I think we had about 600 odd people sign up over 5 days just to listen to him speak and taste the whisky along with him.” SMAC Officially formed in 2011, the Single Malt Amateurs Club (SMAC), Hemanth Rao shares, was originally formed as a “casual congregation of enthusiasts who liked whisky”. The impromptu thought was to set up a club for amateurs, professionals and connoisseurs who could experience and learn more about single malt whiskies. Rao shared, “The inspiration for the club was the fact that there was nothing of that sort (club) around and it would be great to have such a platform.” Considering it was only formed in 2011, SMAC has one of the largest memberships with over 5,500 members from across the globe who get to not only enjoy a good whisky but also be a part of the new whisky launches. The events at SMAC, Rao shares, range from whisky tasting sessions to master classes and even special whisky launch events, with at least one event per month.“We curate one event per month – from fun-filled tasting sessions that explore different whisky flavours to virtual or in-person master classes that provide “The intention of All Things Nice was always to celebrate great wine and great spirits,” Agarwal added. “I wanted to create a platform where people could come and experience different wines and spirits and (of course) a very direct association with food from all over the world and the pairing of food with wines and spirits, as well as create a network for people who thoroughly enjoy all of this together. That is the basis of all things nice.” When it comes to single malts, All Things Nice has been actively promoting the spirit though tastings and food pairing events. Agarwal who studied whiskey at the Edinburgh Whiskey Academy has even conducted courses for the Academy in India to help teach people about single malts and whiskey through events like jazz evenings paired with single malts and single malt dinners. The platform even released its own whiskey, Wood Burns – A Tale of Oak, created in collaboration with Fullerton Distillery in Goa. “Single malts are extremely popular in India and our intention is to broaden the experience of people in India with single malts that they might not be edutainment around the production, maturation and consumption of whisky.” We host in-person and virtual master classes to provide edutainment and knowledge sharing around whisky production, maturation and consumption. We also sell the finest range of professional and affordable whisky-appreciation glassware just to the basics in place for the appreciation journey. A collaboration always enlightens a whisky experience and SMAC has had plenty of those. The club has partnered with some very established names in the Indian whisky industry including Paul John, Amrut, Piccadily Agro, VBev, Diageo India, Beam Suntory India, and Glen Grant. Through these partnerships, SMAC has been able to deliver unparalleled whisky experiences for its members. One very exciting event at SMAC is its exclusive creation of whiskies meant solely for members. That’s right, the club creates its whiskies every now and then allowing members to participate in the tasting experience. Rao talks about some of SMAC’s memorable events Hemanth Rao at the Indri Trini Tasting Event Indri Trini Tasting Event 16|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|17

including the launch of AMAZE Trilogy – an exclusive club bottling that was exceptionally rated by over 90+ industry experts. The “Leap of Faith Tour”, he recalls was another interesting event, a whisky trail conducted in Goa meant exclusively for the club.“We brought together 50 members from across India on the leap day of 2020 for the release of the first single-cask whisky for India by Paul John.” Rao credits the SMAC’s members whose enthusiasm and support led to the success of each of their whisky events held over the years. As the whisky culture in India continues to evolve, Rao shares his desire to be a part of this change. “We want to remain at the heart of this change and play a catalysing role in making single malt whisky more inclusive and accessible. We hope to reach out to folks who hesitate to express themselves and give our members something that they can enjoy and appreciate.” Whisky Appreciation Clubs One of the major aspects for launching a whisky club is to help garner appreciation for the spirit.While many –more than half of the Indian population (adults) enjoys and appreciates whisky, not too many of them understand the complexity of the spirit. And so one can’t truly appreciate anything without being fully knowledgeable about it. However, change is rampant, and there exists a group of beginners and enthusiasts looking to understand and learn about whisky, with a little help from whisky clubs. Nikhil Agarwal might not completely agree with the name “whisky appreciation clubs”. He does nonetheless believe it to be the number one motivation for most whisky clubs. “I’m not sure if I’ve heard that whiskey clubs are also known as whiskey appreciation clubs, but they (whisky clubs) certainly do that (garner appreciation for whisky). Most clubs have one motive in mind which is to get people to taste more whisky and then also educate them along the way,” adds Nikhil Agarwal.“The idea is to share that knowledge with as many people as possible. And when people come for these tastings and experiences, their palette evolves, they certainly evolve in terms of what they like to drink.” Having been in the industry a fairly long time, Hemanth Rao points out the growing popularity of whisky clubs over the years, where said clubs work on trying to engage enthusiasts through their love for whisky. “There are more than a few clubs in India today and they are all engaging enthusiasts in their own unique way. Members and whisky enthusiasts are not shy today they will want to evaluate what every platform has to offer; all for the love of the spirit.” SMAC itself has seen quite a shift with a growth of membership. “When we started this (club), it was just a few friends hanging out together but now it’s grown multifold. We have seen a spike in memberships and not surprisingly it’s not from only the metros, the rest of India has begun to chip in. The taboo around the spirit will take some time to be replaced by educated appreciation; but the transition is afoot.” Bowled over by Bowmore - whisky launch Indri Trini Tasting Event 18|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023

How to pick a whisky From flavour profiles to the colour and price, here’s how to pick the whisky that is right for you. BY ARUSHI SAKHUJA WHISKY TASTE CHART COLOUR CHART When many people begin their journey of appreciating single malt whisky, there are plenty of written guides, but very little that describes the terrain of whisky in terms of taste and aromas as well as colour and price point. What should you look for in a dram? What does the colour say about its age and what helps you identify how expensive a whisky is? LuxeBook takes you through the process of picking a whisky from the tasting wheel to the 20 point colour scale, helping you pick the right whisky. Of all the ways to enjoy whisky, sipping it neat reveals the impossible complexity of what is, by some measure, quite a miraculous spirit. Its recipe includes nothing more than a selection of simple grains, yeast and water, which is why whiskymaking is an art. From the flavour profile to the colour of whisky, these indicators help you decide which one is best suited for you. Here is a whisky tasting flavour wheel to help you appreciate everything that’s in your glass. The standard scale for describing whisky colours is based on a 20 point scale of colour intensity, that can be exactly defined by specific light absorbance measurements. The standard 20 -point scale gives us a visual reference to a colour chart for confirmation. In the absence of added colouring the following are usually indicative: (0-5) clear/pale gold young or refill cask matured, (6-11) medium to full gold 1st fill exBourbon or refill Sherry casks, darker gold (12+) well aged, any copper or bronze hue may indicate Sherry and darker (14-20) usually 1st fill ex-Sherry, crimson or pink hue may indicate Port or Red Wine maturation or finishes. The use of American white oak, European Sherry Oak or French Tannic Oak are likely to only introduce a variance of around 1 point on the scale. The industry uses a slightly expanded scale, either the Series 52 Brown Scale or European Brewing Convention (EBC) scale. Series 52 is the original Lovibond® Brown colour scale now currently used for the colour grading of whisky, honey and similarly coloured liquids or syrups. The standard version of this scale includes a series of 23 amber/brown glasses although other values are also available. Cereal One of the most common notes found in whiskies, cereal whiskies have aromas from the malted barley, which are usually modified by the later stages of production including fermentation and distillation. Floral Fresh and leafy scents that can range from blossoming flowers to the cutting of new grass. leafy, grassy or hay-like scents, sometimes like Parma Violets or gorse bushes. Woody Vanilla notes derived from American white oak with aromas that can range from cigar boxes, custard, caramel, burnt toast, or coffee grounds. Some aromas are directly related to age. Oak increases complexity, enhances fragrance and delicacy, lends colour and develops roundness. Fruity Desirable sweet, fragrant, fruity, solvent-like scents from citrus, apples, to bubblegum and paint. Peaty Scents from dried malt over peat fire ranging from incense, burnt wood to tar and dried shellfish. The scents are famously abundant in Islay malts and range from wood-smoke to tar, iodine to carbolic. Winey If the cask has previously been filled with wine (mainly sherry), the wood absorbs wine residues, which are extracted by the spirit and become part of its flavour. Here we refer to the more subtle aromas like grape skins, stalks, unctuous nutty oils and sherry notes that bring a winey edge to a whisky. 0.0 Gin Clear Jonguiripe Corn Deep Gold Chestnut- qloroso Sherry Henna Notes Pale Ataw Old Gold Deep Copper Tawny Old Oak White Wine Yellow Gold Amontillado Sherry Russemuscat Burnt Umber Pale Gold Amber Burnished Auburn, Polished Mahogany Brown Sherry Treacle 0.8 1.6 0.4 1.2 2.0 0.2 1.0 1.8 0.6 1.4 0.1 0.9 1.7 0.5 1.3 0.3 1.1 1.9 0.7 1.5 TASTING WHEEL WOODY CEREAL FLORAL FRUITY WINEY PEATY Medicinal, Smoky Oily, Nutty, Sherried, Chocolate Floral, Fragrant, Leafy Sweet, Dried Fruit Meaty cereal, Fresh fruit Woody, Vanilla, Toasted Teeling Single Grain, Glendalough Double Barrel Single Grain Irish whiskey Ardbeg 19 Year Traigh Bhan Batch 4, Bowmore 15 Year, Dalmore 18 years Glenfiddich Experimental Series Orchard, Balvenie 14 Year Old, Highland Park 18 year old Hibiki Harmony, Glenlivet Founder’s Reserve, Johnnie Walker 18 Year Old, Bruichladdich Classic Laddie Chivas XV, Glenmorangie Quinta Ruben, The Glenlivet Captain’s Reserve Selectively Finished in Cognac Casks Amrut Fusion Single Malt, Paul John Peated Select Cask, Lagavulin 16 Year Old WHISKY APPRECIATION 20|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|21

Does it matter where whisky is matured? BY ARUSHI SAKHUJA The Cask Factor Exploring Distillers’ Experiments in Maturation Styles and categories differentiate themselves with the use of different grains, yeast strains and maturation climates. Scotch, bourbon, rye – no matter the classification, one of the most important factors affecting the final flavour of a whisky is the wood cask or barrel it’s aged in. “I would say probably 90-95% of the flavour profile of the whisky comes from the cask. Whatever we get from the cask is pretty much the character and the flavour of the whisky– all the colour, character, notes that you get in whiskey result from the casks you’re ageing them in,” shared Angad Singh Gandhi, Brand Ambassador, Glenfiddich. As we can’t judge a book by its cover, the subdued appearance of a cask can belie the beauty within. In the whisky business, a lot of fuss is made over the vessel in which drinks are served and matured – from appropriate tasting glassware to the cask. For some, these are less important than the beverage itself. But for others, the choice of container is a key component of the drinking experience. However, the real presentation vessel for whisky is the humble cask. While there may be something appealing in the vibrancy of a virgin oak barrel, the cask lacks the pleasing aesthetics of other vessels in the whisky experience. Whisky casks are an apt example of the famous quote, it’s what’s on the inside that counts. Those notso-visually-appealing casks are the true magic behind a beautiful whisky – one that holds vibrant flavours.What’s more, the presence of casks in the global transportation of alcoholic drinks gives distillers myriad flavours to play with. From these casks, distillers and blenders can pick ingredients and craft a recipe that complements the character of their new make. Whisky is matured for several years in casks of different origins. What influences the maturation process? Why do Whiskies from one distillery sometimes taste so differently? LuxeBook dives deeper. History of the Cask The history of the wooden cask reaches back more than 3,000 years to the ancient woodlands of north-western Europe. These vessels were skilfully constructed and secured to hold liquid such as beer and mead. Casks were one of humankind’s most robust and versatile containers until the advent of steel drums and moulded plastics in the 20th century. And... nothing can surpass oak containers in flavour maturation for wine and spirits, and there would be no modern whisky without oak containers. At whisky warehouses worldwide, nearly 60 million oak casks lie in storage, maturing the whisky of the future, and oak, above all species, serves as the ideal wood that produces the most desirable flavour for whisky. Angad Singh Gandhi, Brand Ambassador, Glenfiddich THE CASK FACTOR 22|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|23

Different types of casks With increasing maturation time, the whisky takes up flavours from the cask. Initially, it’s a general wood flavour but especially vanilla, toffee and oak. The wood passes over its character to the whisky hence impacting the flavour of the spirit. A wooden cask is a small masterpiece of craftsmanship. Although more and more machines are used by coopers today, the actual manufacturing is still done by hand. Only oak wood is suitable for cask production, softwood contains resin, which prevents the cask from breathing and other types of wood emit unpleasant flavours that make the Whisky unenjoyable. Oak wood from trunks with an age of 70 to 200 years are the ideal ones for whisky maturation. Oak reigns supreme in the whisky industry and, even more so, oak casks previously holding bourbon or sherry. Exceptional Oak Casks are the single greatest contributor to the outstanding quality and distinctive aromas, flavour, and natural colours of whisky shared Jodie Marriott, Brand Education Manager, The Macallan. She continued, “At The Macallan, oak for the casks is sourced primarily from America & Europe. The American oak is harvested in Ohio, Missouri, and Kentucky when they are approximately 70 years old. As American oak is denser than its European relative, it is perfectly suited for creating sherry casks. In contrast, the European sherry seasoned oak is more porous and contains many more tannins than American oak, which although they take longer to mature, play a pivotal role in the colour and flavour of spirits.” The use of cabernet sauvignon, pinot noir, chardonnay and champagne casks finishes are a recent development in the industry. While a blender can monitor the oak quality after the wine has been removed and the whisky filled in, it all comes down to how the liquid will work with the wood. That part can never be fully controlled. Distiller teams play around with the best maturation period and depth to create the best flavour. Fortified wine (port or sherry) casks work well with whisky, while many other lower ABV (alcohol by volume) types do not. The acidity is a big component and a hard one to control, while some grape varieties can be too bitter or light to impact the final liquid resting in the cask. Even more so, the finishing period is hard to monitor; being left for too long in the ex-wine cask can add acidic off notes to the whisky, while too short a period means nothing really changes. Sherry casks have been used to age whisky for centuries. But sherry-cask finishing – which was once popular in the 1940s and ’50s, is now seeing a resurgence. Sherry-cask-finished whiskies, with their rich, fruity sweetness, are softer and the best renditions are delicious. Adding to this expert Jodie says “Sherry casks can add rich, dried fruit flavors, such as raisins, figs, and spice notes. Mastery of this union and the insistence on only using the finest ingredients results in a perfect partnership of both American and European oak sherry seasoned casks, that combined, create extraordinary tasting notes of toffee and vanilla.” Ageing whisky in barrels that were used to store sherry gives the alcohol a sweet, fruity flavour. The sherry flavours interact strongly with the whisky, adding waves of fruit and sweetness, these are peaty aromas, with full-flavoured raisins and a fruity smokiness on the palate. Angad Singh Gandhi, Brand Ambassador, Glenfiddich spoke on the different types of casks, “Traditionally, the two casks that have been used most widely in the world have been ex-bourbon casks and ex-sherry casks, by ex I mean there were bourbon and sherry in them respectively. Having said that, apart from these two casks today, we are ageing whisky in hundreds of different types of casks. When we talk about casks there are two types of concepts in it, there is a concept of ageing and there is a concept of finishing - for example, Glenfiddich Gran Reserva 21 year old that we recently launched in India is aged in an ex-bourbon and exsherry cask for 21 years, however, it’s finished in an exrum cask for which we make our rum and season the cask with that then we put the 21-year-old whisky into it to get those notes of rum. Using casks from white wine to red wine to cognac, beer casks, tequila casks, and mezcal casks. Casks can come from any and every spirit, Japanese casks like Mizukawa have been getting a lot of popularity in the past few years.” Gandhi further mentioned that his favourite kind of cask is an ex-sherry cask because of the amazing flavours that are more complex bites, woodiness and more spiciness. For me, my favourite cask experiment would actually be Project 20, because it’s extremely different and difficult to marry 20 different types of casks together and I think that is an extremely complex and characterful whisky that I’ve come across.” Glenfiddich distillation FUN FACT Did you know that 90 per cent of all casks used in the maturation of Scotch whisky are ex-bourbon? 24|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|25

How casks impact the flavour of whisky Besides the type of wood and the thermal treatment also the size of the casks influences the maturation process. Whisky matures faster in small casks since the surface area is more in relation to the content – the exchange of substances between wood and whisky happens faster. Increased demand for casks in the Whisky industry has also contributed to the rise of cask prices. That’s why it makes sense to use casks several times, and casks can be used three to four times after which it loses its flavour. First-fill casks are hence interesting to taste – first fill’ doesn’t mean the original filling of the cask with Bourbon, Sherry or Port, but the first Scotch Malt Whisky that’s filled into a cask. This fill extracts the strongest flavours from the wood, and hence the whisky is worth indulging on. During maturation three fundamentally different effects in the cask play a role. First, subtractive maturation is those new make whiskies that dimmish the unpleasant taste after 5 to 8 years. That’s also the reason why there are only a few Whiskies younger than 8 years. Second is Additive Maturation; with increasing maturation time, the Whisky takes up flavours from the cask. Initially, it’s a general wood flavour but over time it passes its character to the Whisky. Lastly, Interactive Maturation; where in the basic character of a whisky is shaped by the special distillation and the malt that has been used. With increasing age, the cask taste is combined with the distillery character. When distillery character and cask influence join to form a harmonious whole, it is called interactive maturation. Additionally, there are other factors that influence the flavour of whisky as well told the Brand Education Manager at The Macallan, Jodie. Factors such as the climate of the region where the casks are stored can affect how the whisky interacts with the wood and matures over time. “For example, in warmer climates, such as those found in some regions of the United States or India, whisky tends to mature more quickly due to increased evaporation and greater interaction with the wood. In cooler climates, such as Scotland, maturation is slower, allowing the whisky to develop more subtle and delicate flavours over an extended period. For Example, The Macallan distillery is in Scotland’s Speyside region which is famous for developing lighter and sweeter whisky that tends to exhibit floral, fruity notes owing to its milder climate, therefore we mature our whiskies in Sherry-seasoned oak casks, which produces a deep complexity of flavour notes and range of rich colours.” Other factors that one must keep in mind according to her are the quality and condition of the wood used to construct the cask are crucial as well, the size of the casks impacts maturation ( the smaller casks allow for more interaction between whisky and wood, resulting in faster maturation, while larger casks promote slower maturation); and finally the age and condition of the cask can affect quality and character of the whisky. Well-seasoned, properly maintained casks are often preferred. However, to conclude Jodie said, “ The choice of the “best” cask for whisky maturation depends on the desired flavour profile and the style of whisky being produced. The Macallan Double Cask range, for instance, combines whisky matured in both American oak casks and European oak Sherry Casks. This dual cask maturation approach allows the whisky to benefit from the distinct characteristics of each cask type, resulting in a harmonious flavor profile with layers of complexity.” But irrespective, we can say that it’s an established fact that good whisky boils down to the choice of cask. Jodie Marriott, Brand Education Manager, The Macallan 26|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|27

When you think of a spirit like whisky, you almost never imagine it in a cocktail. And true aficionados will agree that a whisky is best enjoyed neat or at the very least over ice. However, over the years, aficionados and amateurs have both become open to the idea of a good whisky cocktail, favouring classics like the whisky sour and highball. And while we love the classics, a little experimentation is always fun! Refreshing the classics with a contemporary take, expert mixologists around the country shared their modern recreations of classic whisky cocktails made especially for the warm summer season. Check out these cocktail recipes below! 1. Aunty’s Hooch — Kapil Dubey, Food & Beverage Manager, ITC Grand Central Ingredients: 90ml white wine 30ml vodka 30ml orange juice 15ml sweet & sour 30ml carrot juice Garnish: orange wheel Method: Pour ingredients into shaker & shake well with ice. Strain in balloon glass. Top it up with white wine. Garnish- orange wheel. 2. Cuban Sour — Varun Sharma, Head of Bars, EHV International Ingredients: 60ml aged rum 15ml spice mix water 3 to 4 dashes of wine bitters Wine foam Method: Mix the aged rum, wine bitters, and citrusy tea water and blend with the special spice mix Refreshing whisky cocktails inspired by the classics Expert mixologists give classic whisky cocktails a modern makeover fit for the summers COMPILED BY SCHENELLE DSOUZA water made with Indian spices like coriander seeds, cinnamon, star anise, bay leaf and Guntur chilli. Top with the wine foam and garnish with star anise. 3. Dark Knight — Vishal Tawde, Head Mixologist, PCO Mumbai Ingredients: 50m whisky 12.5ml caramel syrup 10ml lime acid Garnish: Espresso foam Method: Shaken 4. Gleaming Reno — Glenmorangie Ingredients: 40ml Glenmorangie Lasanta 1/2 a passionfruit 10ml ginger syrup 15ml pineapple juice 1 dash vanilla bitters 10ml egg white Method: Add the whisky, tropical ginger syrup, pineapple juice, lemon juice and egg white into a cocktail shaker. Then scoop the seeds and flesh from half a passion fruit and add them too. Fill with ice cubes and shake well, then strain into a chilled martini glass. And don’t forget to bring some bling to the glass. We suggest gold leaf and a lemon twist. 5. Golden era: Captivation — Atul Mastud, Bar Shift Manager, Hakkasan Ingredients: 45ml Bourbon 15ml date cordial 20ml schezuapn shrub Yang walker 4 drops of aromatic bitters Garnish: Skewered date, date powder & edible gold Method: Stir & single strain 4 2 3 COCKTAIL HOUR 28|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|29

6. Hennessy Maple Spiced Old Fashioned – Hennessy Ingredients: 60ml Hennessy Very Special 4 dashes angostura bitters 7.5ml homemade spiced maple syrup Garnish: slice of ginger & dehydrated lime Method: Add spiced maple syrup, bitters and Hennessy in a mixing glass full of ice. Stir until well chilled and diluted. Strain into an old-fashioned glass with an ice block. Garnish with a flamed cinnamon stick. 7. High(T)Ball – Hemali Bendre, Head Mixologist, Native Bombay Ingredients: 60ml Blended scotch whisky 20ml sustainable mint syrup- 20ml 45ml chamomile tea brew- 45ml Soda water- Top up Garnish: Fresh mint sprigs and orange wedge Method: Start by filling your glass with ice, follow it by the Blended scotch whisky, and top it off with the mint syrup, tea brew and soda water. You don’t stir or shake the cocktails in a built up drink. Garnish with Fresh Mint sprigs and Orange Wedge before you sit back and sip! 8. Melon Sage Old Fashioned — Malvika Pardhanani, Bar Executive, The St. Regis Mumbai Bar Ingredients: 60ml melon infused whiskey 15ml sage syrup A dash of spice bitters Garnish: Melon balls and a sprig of sage Method: Stirred 9. My Rosetta — Mayur Marne, Head Mixologist & Partner, Cobbler & Crew, Pune Ingredients: 60ml Johnnie Walker Red Label Scotch 40ml pineapple & ginger cordial 15ml blueberry wine 15ml vanilla lactate 20ml lime juice Method: Shake & Strain 10. Old Fashioned Roast — Avril Gonsalves, Head Mixologist, Butterfly High Mumbai Ingredients: 60ml Jim Beam 10ml maple syrup Garnish: Marshmallow garnish Method: Stirred 11. Tamarind Whisky Shake — Prantik Haldar, Beverage Innovations Head, The Bombay Canteen Ingredients: 60ml whisky 90ml orange juice 5ml lime juice 2 bar spoon (or teaspoon) tamarind paste Ice cubes Garnish: Orange peel Method: Add all the ingredients to a cocktail shaker along with ice and shake. Pour over ice in the old-fashioned glass. Garnish with the orange peel. 6 9 11 12 30|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|31

12. Walter White – Latesh Kotian, Beverage Director, Silly Mumbai Ingredients: 60ml Jim Beam bourbon whisky 7.5ml elderflower syrup 3-4 dashes Angostura aromatic Bitter Garnish: orange peel Method: Stirred and poured over clear block ice 13. Yang walker – Rosslyn Selwin Karpanam, Head Mixologist, Yauatcha Ingredients: Fresh rosemary Fresh lime juice 30ml grapefruit juice 10ml Baiju 10ml Umeshu 45ml Black Label scotch whiskey Garnish: Fresh Rosemary Method: In a chilled glass, add fresh rosemary, fresh lime juice, grapefruit juice, baiju and shake well. 8 11 32|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|33

Winners at the World Whisky Awards 2023 Here’s a look at the winning whiskies from the World Whisky Awards 2023. BY ARUSHI SAKHUJA World Whiskies Awards Global Winners 2023 World’s Best Single Malt: M&H Elements Sherry Cask The distillery, formerly known as Milk & Honey, won the accolade for its Sherry Cask expression—non-chill filtered and bottled at 46% ABV and distilled by head distiller Tomer Goren. Initially released in mid-2020, M&H Sherry Cask was part of the brand’s Elements series which focuses on unique components of maturation. It is the first whisky ever to be aged in Kosher sherry casks from the Jerez region of Spain. In the hot and arid Middle Eastern climate, the application of this cooperage has imbued the underlying whisky with a thumping melody of red fruit, dark chocolate and tobacco. World’s Best Single Cask Single Malt: Glen Scotia, First Fill Bourbon Cask No. 372 Glen Scotia Single Cask distilled in 2009 and aged for 13 years exclusively in a first-fill bourbon barrel is the World’s Best Single Cask Single Malt. Bottled in 2022 with only 218 bottles available, this remarkable unpeated Single Cask liquid (56.4% ABV) offers aromas of warming oak spice and fresh vanilla, which intermingle with basked red apple and caramelised banana. On the palate, there are hints of dark chocolate and spicy ginger before a smooth salted caramel and cherry compote finish. World’s Best Blended: Breckenridge, High Proof Bourbon Whiskey The Blended Bourbon Whiskey, but with a twist was bottled at a gripping 105 proof. Winning an award at WWA 2023 the whisky offers a wild ride through rich, dark caramel and toasted almonds, burnt Baker’s chocolate and dried orange peel, with a lingering finish of vanilla and spice. A masterful combination of mouthful flavours. The Bourbon Whiskey has a deep, burnt orange hue. World’s Best Blended Limited Release: Ichiro’s Malt & Grain, Blended Japanese Whisky 2023 Every year, Chichibu Distillery rolls out an annual limited-edition batch of its white-label Malt & Grain bottling. This year, the 2023 limited edition cinched the title of Best Blended Limited Release. Ichiro’s Malt & Grain Blended Japanese Whisky Limited Edition 2023 is a blend of single malts from Chichibu Distillery together with casks sourced from Japan by Ichiro Akuto. The World Whisky Awards announced the winners for some of its most coveted categories at Merchant Taylor’s Hall in London on March 30 this year. One of the most renowned awards in the whisky world, the awards focus on the World’s Best and country winners in the World Whisky Awards and the Icons of Whisky. From bartenders to brand ambassadors, chefs to visitor attraction managers, the Icons of Whisky Awards honour the people who work tirelessly to produce and promote whisky, along with the very best shops, bars, visitor attractions and agencies. This year however, things took an interesting turn.... the grand prize for the World’s Best Single Malt did not go to the producers from the major malt-making regions of Scotland, Ireland or Japan. Instead, it was collected by M&H Elements Sherry Cask out of Tel Aviv in Israel, and The Representative Bourbon was awarded the title of World’s Best Bourbon. Among this year’s top winners, Heaven Hill Brands took home the title of Distiller of the Year, and Whyte & Mackay’s Gregg Glass was named Master Blender of the Year. To celebrate World Whisky Day, LuxeBook has put together a list of some of the top World Whiskies Awards Global Winners 2023. 34|LUXEBOOK|MAY 2023 MAY 2023 |LUXEBOOK|35 WORLD WHISKY AWARDS

RkJQdWJsaXNoZXIy NTcxNzM1