Scotland's Bladnoch Distillery has launched the Samhla Collection, an ultra-rare collection of whiskies paying homage to the Lowland distillery's past, present, and future.
Derived from the Scots Gaelic word for 'symbol' or 'likeness', Samhla comprises three expressions – dating from as far back as the 1960s – that are designed to represent three generations of Bladnoch's history. The concept for the collection was devised by David Prior, Bladnoch's current owner, who revived the distillery in 2015.
The oldest and rarest expression in the collection is The McClelland. Distilled in 1966, it is the oldest release to date from Bladnoch and is named for brothers John and Thomas McClelland, who founded the distillery on their Bladnoch farm in 1817. Limited to just 15 bottles, the whisky has been matured in an American oak cask.
Representing Bladnoch's present is The Prior, distilled in 1990 – the year Australian-born Prior began his journey in business – and matured in a Pedro Ximénez sherry butt. Only 50 bottles will be available.
Looking toward the future is The Sage, which is named after Prior's daughter and was distilled in the year she was born, 2008. The liquid for the expression has been drawn from two American oak red wine hogsheads, and it is limited to 100 bottles.
“The Samhla Collection brings to mind two quotes that truly capture its essence,” said Dr Nick Savage, Bladnoch’s master distiller. “Isaac Newton's words, 'If I have seen further, it is only because I stand upon the shoulders of giants', encompasses the respect we have for our inheritance and the continuation of the story. And when we consider the future and how we hand down our legacy, the famous quote, 'The true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit' perfectly captures the reason we make our whiskies at Bladnoch by protecting and nurturing our whiskies during our custodianship."
On the distillery's decision to release a collection of such limited quantity, Prior said: "In recent years, we have witnessed an unprecedented surge in the appreciation and demand for rare whiskies, with collectors and enthusiasts recognising their inherent value as both liquid assets and cultural artefacts. These extraordinary expressions, carefully crafted over time, embody the essence of craftsmanship, history, and exclusivity that discerning investors seek."
For more information on the Samhla Collection and to purchase, go to bladnoch.com/thesamhlacollection.