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Issue 58 - Ask the expert

Whisky Magazine Issue 58
August 2006


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Ask the expert

John Rose answers another selection of our readers' letters

Q. I am trying to find information on a bottle of whisky I have had for many years, it was given to me by a friend. Made of brown glass it has a tartan ribbon running down the outside of the neck with a seal and crest attached to the shoulder. The label is black in colour with red letters ‘Kennaway's Top Vat Finest Scotch Whisky 70 Proof 30 UP. Blended and Bottled by Kennaway and Company Limited, Exeter.' On the back of the bottle moulded into the glass is Kennaway's 1743. Can you help? R Burns Exeter

A. William Kennaway founded a wine and spirit merchants business in 1743 at Palace Gate, Exeter. It must have been a very profitable business because in 1789 William bought Trinity Chapel in Exeter's Magdalen Street.

In 1856 the Kennaway's had the entire complex restored by architect Edward Askworth, and the chapel became a shrine to the Kennaway family.

A bottle of Kennaway's Top Vat at auction would fetch £80 to £100.

Q. I have two hogsheads of Isle of Arran single malt, one cask distilled in 1996, 122ltrs of pure alcohol at 58% vol. The other cast distilled in 1995, 152ltrs of pure alcohol at 57% vol. I wish to dispose of them, so could you tell me how and what value they should fetch? I also have a ship-like decanter in a wooden box, limited edition number 023 of 1000, of the first ever production of single malt from the Isle of Arran distillery, cask strength of 60.3% vol.
J Leggett West Sussex

A. I have been in touch with Isle of Arran Distillers and they say...

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