Sun, Apr 15, 2018 - Page 15 News List

Flavored, low-alcohol Scotch?
Distilleries test whisky’s limits

As British law restricts ingredients to barley, water and yeast aged in oak casks, manufacturers risk running afoul of the Scotch Whisky Association in trying to reach millennials or niche markets

By Mark McLaughlin  /  AFP, EDINBURGH, Scotland

Murdo Fraser, convener of the Scottish Parliament’s cross-party group on Scotch whisky, also urged caution on innovation.

“My own preference would be that we don’t see any dilution of the Scotch whisky brand, and we therefore need to be careful about going down the route of innovating too quickly,” he said.

Patrons in the Roseburn Bar, near BT Murrayfield Stadium in Edinburgh, were divided on the debate between tradition and innovation.

Sipping a dram of Aberlour, 53-year-old stonemason Alan McGuire said that unpalatable innovations would “contradict the whole thing that whisky is.”

“It’s a beautiful drink that has been laid down for years, and to add something like ginger, or lemon or raspberry or something to it would just kill the brand,” he added.

However, 35-year-old nurse Christopher Gauld said he is “a big believer in change,” as he sampled a trendy looking Islay malt called the Classic Laddie.

“The whisky we have today wouldn’t be the way it is if people didn’t try things in the past, so I’m open to experiments,” he said.

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