Today in Cocktail Culture I bring you a cocktail that I just made for Glenglassaugh and tomorrow the history of that whisky.
An award-winning distillery, built in 1875, located on the beautiful Sandend Bay, is a nature lover and surfer’s paradise on the Moray coast of Scotland. The name Glenglassaugh means “Valley of the Grey-Green Place,” which refers to its lush coastal surroundings. The Glenglassaugh Distillery coat of arms, which features a design of gannets, stills and barley, is accompanied by the Latin phrase ‘Per Mare, Per Terras’, meaning “By land, By sea”. Not only does it reflect the surrounding coastal environment, it tells the story of how the whisky was historically transported to market, long before the distillery was built. The Glassaugh Glen was originally the site of a smuggler’s bothy where illicit distilling took place. Due to its the favourable position on the coast, a considerable amount of smuggling took place.
Glenglassaugh is the only distillery to straddle the Highland/Speyside border, with a coastal position, resulting in taste influence from three locations. The whisky matures in our beach side warehouses exposed to the North Sea air, which lends it intriguing salty notes; a Highland malt with seductive coastal charm. Once opened, Glenglassaugh quickly established a reputation for producing quality whisky and the company prospered. Following the unexpected death of one of James Moir’s nephews who inherited the distillery, it was eventually sold in 1892 to the Highland Distilleries Company. The distillery’s reputation for producing high quality malt whisky continued to grow but following a downturn in the whisky industry, the distillery was closed in 1907 alongside many others.
Despite being mothballed for over twenty years, the distillery has a history of proven maturation, with award winning old vintages dating back to the 1960s, whilst the recognized younger whiskies are bottled at higher strength. As this jewel of coastal malt is discovered and enjoyed, it promises to become a cult, contemporary classic.
1.5oz Glenglassaugh Revival
4 red grapes
1 spoon of lemongrass paste
1/4oz vermouth rosso
2 dashes of angostura bitters.
On a mixing glass muddle the grapes, add the other ingredients, add ice, stir and strain to a chilled glass with a big ice. Garnish with a grape.