The well-respected English whiskey expert Jim Murray has picked a single-malt Scotch whiskey distilled as Scotch but matured in the style of American bourbon, as World Whiskey of the Year in the just published 2014 edition of his “Whisky Bible.”
Murray awarded 97.5 points out of 100 — his highest score this year — to the whisky, Glenmorangie Ealanta, a limited bottling.
Glenmorangie’s Ealanta, released in January as the fourth annual release in the company’s Private Edition range, is a 19-year-old expression, fully matured in virgin American white oak casks with a provenance that stretches all the way to the Mark Twain National Forest in Missouri.
Ealanta’s innovative aroma and taste profile blew Murray away, he said. “It gave an aroma and taste profile completely new to me in over 30 years of tasting whisky.”
He described it as having “one of the longest finishes of any Scotch this year … and borderline perfection.”
“This is major coup for us,” said Dr. Bill Lumsden, director of distilling and whisky creation at Glenmorangie. “It’s no secret in our industry that it’s the wood that makes the whisky, and for many years my team and I have been carrying out detailed research in this area.” Lumsden, a pioneer in researching into the effect of wood on whisky maturation, is also well known for traveling the world to search out the best oak casks in which to mature his whisky.
Published by Dram Good Books priced at $19.99, the “2014 Whisky Bible” is available in bookshops and liquor stores throughout the world. Signed copies by the author can be purchased at www.whiskybible.com