Scottish Highlands and its winner(s)

The International Whisky Competition is something every true whiskey connoisseur should know of, as it recognizes some of the finest spirits in the world – from bourbon, to scotch, to Japanese whisky. Established in 2010, this year was marked by a momentous occasion. For the first time, a woman, Stephanie Macleod, was awarded “Whiskey of the Year.” As the master Blender of John Dewar and Sons, it is fair to say that Macleod is a highly regarded specialist in the profession today.

Dewar’s Aberfeldy Distillery

Macleod’s expertise in whisky is founded in Dewar’s Aberfeldy Distillery whose history goes back to 1848 – the creation of the brand by John Dewar, Sr.. In 1896 the brand expanded to become a global market leader and began to win several awards, including a gold medal in the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair.

The winner of the world’s most followed Whisky Competition is John Dewar and Sons Double Double 32 Year Old, scoring 96.4 points. Dewar’s describe their winner with rich, ripe treacle notes with a hint of smokiness and the silky smooth finish. The ultimate smoothness of the Malt comes from a unique Four Stage Ageing Process finished in Pedro Ximenez Sherry Casks.

On top of this spectacular award, John Dewar & Sons also won the “Master Blender of the Year” & “Golden Barrel Trophy” at this year’s competition.

Located on the outskirts of Aberfeldy, this renown distillery is easily accessible from Edinburgh and Glasgow. Visitors, that are doing a distillery tour, are able to fill a bottle from their hand-selected casks and have access to the heritage exhibition and warehouse. Tours range from £9 to £27. For more information, click here.

Activities close by

If visiting the distillery is of interest, there are several activities close by which are absolute highlights. To start off with, Ben A’an is one of the most popular amongst the country’s smaller hills and is perfect for a scenic hike with one of the best views Scotland has to offer. Although the path is well built and clean, the route is still quite steep, so a fair bit of fitness is required.

In the mood for a bike tour instead of a hike? Then head to the highlands during May where Britain’s largest closed road cycle event, the Etape Caledonia, takes place. Having debuted in 2007, today more than 35,000 people take part. It attracts riders from all over the country to cycle through the beautiful wilderness of the Highlands.

Scottish Highlands

The picturesque Scottish scenery offers something for everyone: both the sport loving tourist and those hoping to witness Scottish sport in action. For those belonging to the latter group, the Highland Games are a must see. Offered throughout summer, the games feature everything quintessential to Scottish culture. From bagpipes, kilts, and whisky, to shot put, tug-o-war, caber toss, and hammer throw.

For the fantasy lover, then the Enchanted Forest is a wondrous attraction to visit. Set amidst the magical Autumn woodland of Faskally Wood in Highland Perthshire, the Enchanted Forest has been captivating audiences for 18 years with its pioneering sound and light shows.

International Whisky Competition

Besides the above mentioned awards, Dewar’s also won the following prestigious positions within Scotland:

Best Blended Scotch (Scotland)

  • 1st Place: Dewar’s Double Double 32 Year Old (96.4 pts)
  • 2nd Place: Dewar’s Double Double 27 Year Old (92.9 pts)
  • 3rd Place: Dewar’s 25 Year Old The Signature (92.8 pts) 

Best Blended Scotch Under 10 Year Old (Scotland)

  • 1st Place: Dewar’s Caribbean Smooth (88.6 pts)
  • 2nd Place: Dewar’s Ilegal Smooth  (87.9 pts)

Best Blended Scotch 12-15 Year Old (Scotland)

  • 1st Place: Dewar’s 12 Year Old The Ancestor (90.4 pts)
  • 3rd Place: Dewar’s 15 Year Old The Monarch (88.0 pts) 

Best Blended Scotch 16-20 Year Old (Scotland):
1st Place: Dewar’s 18 Year Old The Vintage (85.9 pts)

Best Blended Scotch 21-24 Year Old (Scotland):
1st Place: Dewar’s Double Double 21 Year Old (91.9 pts)

Best Blended Scotch 25 Year Old And Over (Scotland)

  • 1st Place: Dewar’s Double Double 32 Year Old (96.4 pts)
  • 2nd Place: Dewar’s Double Double 27 Year Old (92.9 pts)
  • 3rd Place: Dewar’s 25 Year Old The Signature (92.8 pts)

Other Scottish distilleries who have won various categories from this year’s competition include:

  • Ardberg
  • Glenmorangie
  • The Glenlivet 

The England-based distillery, Cotswold, received the title of “Best World Whisky” with the following ranking:

  • 1st Place: Cotswolds Peated Cask Single Malt (91.1 pts)
  • 2nd Place: Cotswolds Founder’s Choice Single Malt (87.2 pts)
  • 3rd Place: Cotswolds Single Malt (87.1 pts)

Check out detailed results here.

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