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Issue 76 - Olympic big

Whisky Magazine Issue 76
November 2008


This article is 9 years old and some information provided may be time sensitive. Please check all details of events, tours, opening times and other information before travelling or making arrangements.

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Olympic big

Joe Bates heads to Beijing to see how this destination's duty free store.

Everything about Beijing airport's new Terminal 3 is big.Completed in less than four years in time for the Olympics, this enormous, glass and steel building stretches 3.25km and covers more than 1.3m square metres. It can handle more than 1,000 flights a day, and with hightech features such as a state-ofthe- art baggage handling system and 80kph automated passenger mover, it's a real pleasure to fly from.

A Taiwanese firm,Sunrise Duty Free,operates the main duty-free shop in Terminal 3.

You will find a pretty good selection of aged malt whiskies there along with some expensive vintage Cognacs and decent premiere cru French wine. Shop staff are polite and attentive and can speak at least some English.

On our visit there was still one bottle of Glenfiddich 40 Years Old left priced at CNY12,731 (£1,150). It might not be there for long however, as the store supervisor told me a customer had just bought two bottles – clearly this is one part of the world where the credit crunch has yet to bite.

Other high-end drams stocked include Glenfiddich 30 Years Old at CNY1,587 (£143),Balllantine's 30 Years Old at CNY1,994 (£180), Bowmore 25 Years Old at CNY2,036 (£183.50) and Chivas Royal Salute at CNY904 (£81.50).

For the price conscious, there is a good selection of cheaper whiskies,everything fromThe Famous Grouse at CNY173 (£15.60), to Bowmore Mariner 15 Years Old at CNY386 (£34.80) and The Balvenie Double Wood 12 Years Old at CNY283 (£25.50).

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