Whisky Magazine Issue 40
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In the latest of our round table debates, we look at special finishes.
Dave Broom, drinks guru (DB)
Paul Godfrey, group marketing manager for malts, William Grant & Sons (PG)
Bill Lumsden, Global brands ambassador/ master distiller, Glenmorangie (BL)
Arthur Motley, Royal Mile Whiskies (AM)
Keir Sword, Royal Mile Whiskies (KS)
This issue's question: Are special finishes good for the whisky industry because they
attract new customers?
Q: Are wood finishes a good thing or a bad thing, and why?
AM: A good thing. They provoke people's interest, are useful in tastings and provide a point of reference for wine lovers.
BL: Yes they're a good thing for the Scotch whisky industry and the consumer, because they have offered a wide range of new flavour experiences, while still maintaining traditional values. They've also helped generate some much-needed interest in the category.
DB: Of course they are a good thing. In principle. They keep interest in the category, they are a good way for distillers to extend their portfolio – something which is particularly relevant to those producers with a small number of distilleries – they offer a new way of looking at, and enjoying whisky. They engender debate. They open up the possibilities of new flavours. Yes, overall they are a good idea.
PG: Finishes per se are not a bad thing but I would qualify it. Where finishes become questionable is when they stop complementing the character of a whisky and instead overpower it and mask its true characteristics – this has been the case with some recent f...