The makers of a rare blend of Scotch and Japanese whisky have revealed that their fusion whisky has proved so popular they are now developing further innovative blends in partnership with other international distilleries.
Fusion Whisky Ltd said that all three versions of its groundbreaking Glover series have sold out, and it is close to launching a fusion blend using single malt whisky from Scottish distilleries and a whisky from Amrut Distillery in India. It said it hopes to launch the innovative whisky in the next few weeks, with the spirit reaching international retailers before Christmas.
The Glover whisky was launched in October last year, selling out in a matter of days, despite the £1050 price tag for the 22-year-old version. The whisky, which was made up of Longmorn and Glen Garioch Scotch as well as ultra-rare whisky from Hanyu distillery in Japan, was created to honour “Scottish Samurai” Thomas Blake Glover, an Aberdonian merchant who was instrumental in the industrialization of Japan in the late 19th century.
The 14-year-old version, which was unveiled at the same time, has also sold out, while all stock of the 18-year-old version, launched only in August, has been allocated and is now being shipped to international retailers and distributors. Cases of the exclusive whisky have already been exported to more than 15 countries, including most of Europe, Taiwan, Japan and Australia.
The whiskies were created at the request of the Fusion Whisky Ltd directors by Adelphi Distillery’s Managing Director Alex Bruce and internationally renowned whisky consultant Charles MacLean, who partner on the Adelphi selection whiskies, and now on the Fusion Whisky editions.
Drinks industry and export specialist David Moore, one of the founding directors of Fusion Whisky Ltd, revealed just how sought-after the whisky had become: “Normally, the directors are each allocated a couple of cases of the whisky, but within a week of The Glover 18 launch, demand was so high that Alex Bruce was on the phone asking if we would forgo some of our own share to help him meet the high demand this whisky has generated. That’s not a bad problem to have, and I’m afraid to say we did!”
The directors of Fusion Whisky – Mr Moore, Jim Millar and Graham Langley – said they knew the original concept for The Glover whisky had strong potential, but admit even they were overwhelmed by the international interest, and that this has spurred them on to reinvest and expand the business.
Mr Moore said Fusion Whisky Ltd had changed its company name from TBG & Co to reflect the longer term vision for the company. “While Thomas Blake Glover was the inspiration for our company founding, and the whisky has been a real success, there are other great Scots whose international legacy we want to honour, and other global distilleries we’re looking forward to working with. It makes sense to extend the series”.
He added: “We were overwhelmed by the level of interest for the Glover whisky, both for its concept as well as its look, aroma and taste. No one else is creating this type of whisky, and we want to make more.”
As well as Amrut in India, Fusion Whisky said it would produce future variants with whiskies from other countries, with the team researching Scottish historical figures and options for casks from international single malt distilleries. Fusion Whisky has not ruled out another variant of The Glover series.
Mr Moore admitted that creating these international fusions had its challenges but said the rewards were “clearly there for people to see and taste”.
Mr Millar, a senior parliamentary adviser at Holyrood, said the new series of fusion whiskies would continue the ethos of the original Glover whiskies. “Scotland and Japan have a strong and unique relationship and I was delighted we could honour that by creating the Glover whisky. With our new fusion whiskies we’ll continue to celebrate Scotland’s international friendships as well as its global influence, culturally, economically and socially.
“Fusion Whisky is a hugely positive business and I’m very proud of the fact we’re expanding following the success of the Glover.”
Fellow director Mr Langley confirmed that as an export business Fusion Whisky was able to draw on support from the likes of Scottish Development International, Scotland Food and Drink and Scottish Enterprise, and that a member of staff has been appointed to help manage the business.
He added: “We want to build on the phenomenal success we’ve enjoyed in the past year. By bringing in a dedicated project manager we can focus on building the Fusion Whisky brand and continue to pioneer our innovative concept of blending history and storytelling with beautiful whisky from Scotland and our partners worldwide. That’s something worth raising a glass to!”