Island life: Robin Coupar

Island life: Robin Coupar

We send some of the whisky world’s great and good off to our desert island. What will they take? This edition, Campari's Robin Coupar

Caskaway | 24 Apr 2020 | Issue 167 | By Rob Allanson

  • Share to:
Robin Coupar, a native of Edinburgh, Scotland, is a leading whisky expert who has dedicated more than 26 years to the industry. Robin is the Global Whisky Advocate for the Campari Group’s whisky portfolio that includes Glen Grant single malt Scotch whisky, Wild Turkey Kentucky Straight Bourbon and Rye Whiskey, Russell’s Reserve Bourbon and the brand's rye whiskey expression and Forty Creek Canadian Whisky.

In 2016 he was inducted into the Keepers of the Quaich.

Robin’s passion and knowledge of whisky started in Scotland but extended well past the UK borders.

Based now in California, his whisky expertise and reputation was built through a series of assignments and creating consumer events with some of the most renowned names in the world including Diageo and Moet Hennessy where he worked on many famous spirits brands.

His experience has also seem him work with Glenrothes, Bowmore, Auchentoshan, and of course in the realm of Bourbon.

At Campari he has performed several marketing roles in the whisky category. He has been heavily involved in the Glen Grant brand, from writing tasting notes and developing brand training and stories.

He has also focused on innovations and developing new liquid expressions. Robin also leads the sensory evaluation process for Campari whiskies.

Whisky #1

Glen Grant

10 Years Old

This has been my favourite for a while now. It has consistently performed well among those in the know and is highly recommended by the experts. It delivers strongly on nose, palate and finish with wonderful complexity and balance. It’s very easy to drink,
a beautifully well-crafted and
elegant dram.

Whisky #2


10 Years Old

I always have this at home and it’s the polar opposite to Glen Grant. Big, thick, oily, smoky but it’s quite a gentle spirit once you get to know it a little better. Like Glen Grant, purifiers are used in the distillation process to produce a lighter style.

Whisky #3

Black Bottle

Perhaps the most iconic whisky I remember and still enjoy from my days growing up in Edinburgh. I worked in a few pubs in the city and was quickly turned on to it by some of the regulars. It’s a mainstay back home and I will always covet Black Bottle. It’s rich, complex, quite bold but marvelous.

Whisky #4

Wild Turkey


Bourbon is a whole different beast to Scotch whisky. This one is made from corn and equal parts of malted barley and rye. For a big, robust Bourbon it's very balanced with toffee, vanilla, spice and fruit notes.

Whisky #5


16 Years Old

A unicorn, a one off find from about six years ago when it was priced around $80 a bottle. It was like drinking nectar. I’ve never seen it in the market since and if I did, that value would likely be 10 times the price now.

A Brief final luxury

If I was on a desert island far away, what I would take with me would be my garden. It’s my sanctuary and it actually kind of inspired me 10 years ago when I started working for Glen Grant. Having visited the distillery and seeing what Dennis Malcolm had done, he had made this beautiful garden, so I thought I’m living in the country now and I have this beautiful half an acre, so I started to plant a garden and now I have a pergola, about 15 fruit trees and oak trees. When I get back from a busy trip or if I’m working in a city and I come back, I just love it. I love the peace and tranquility and there is something very spiritual about being in nature. So that is definitely what I would take to my desert island and I think I would be quite happy there with a few bottles of Glen Grant.
Magazine Archive

From the archive

Select an issue

Subscribe Now

Subscriptions for
Whisky Magazine are available
in print, digital or as a
complete package

The Benefits

8 print editions a year

Enjoy the convenience of home delivery

Full access to every digital edition via desktop, iOS or Android device

Latest Issue Subscribe Now

The Whisky Encyclopedia - Coming Soon 2024

Discover the world of whisky with our comprehensive encyclopedia
Featuring companies, distilleries, brands, glossaries, and cocktails

Join The Community

Sign up to the Whisky Magazine
newsletter letter and get access to the latest
in all things whisky

paragraph publishing ltd.   Copyright © 2024 all rights reserved.   Website by Acora One

Consent Preferences