A scotch whisky distiller, when asked recently if he made any blends, was gloriously sniffy and dismissive of blended whisky. It would have been interesting to see and hear what he would have made of the Johnnie Walker Directors Blends, which I got to taste last Thursday (November 28) in London.
Released to worldwide markets from March, the single malt is limited to 6,000 bottles and is a combination of 14 ex-bourbon barrels and seven ex-sherry hogshead casks, selected by master distiller James MacTaggart from 1999 stocks.
According to the Highlands island distillery – which opened in 1995 – the new dram takes its name from the pair of golden eagles that nest in the mountain above Lochranza behind the distillery.
The Eagle joins the brand’s other Icons of Arran expressions, The Peacock, Arran Rowan Tree and The Westie - all named after animals and flora found near the distillery.
Isle of Arran Distillers said The Eagle has no added colouring and is made using “some of the purest waters in Scotland”.
Euan Mitchell, managing director of Isle of Arran Distillers, said: "Each of these Icons has a special place in our hearts, featuring some of the delights that can be found in this area.
“It also showcases what is great about the distillery through the quality and attention put into each of these drams and The Eagle is no exception."