London’s Calling

100 Year Dry Spell Broken!

Arguably scotch, the whiskey that is produced in Scotland, is the best known and most coveted whiskey worldwide. Scotland exported more than 1.2 billion bottles of scotch and get this, that accounts for over 20% of all the exported UK food and drink (BBC statistics). Cross the border and English whiskey is virtually unheard of, despite it being quite commonplace in the 19th century. Well, watch out Scotland because London is distilling once more!

After a century of being a whiskey distillery free zone, London has finally had the dry spell broken by The London Distillery Company, who have launched a super premium rye whiskey. Making it the first whiskey distilled in London since the Lea Valley Distillery (Est. 1767) closed in the early 1900’s.

This rather special four year old LV -1767 edition whiskey has been twice distilled and aged in new English oak barrels (using anything else would simply not be cricket) and is made from 100% rye. Only a few experts have been allowed to sample this special edition as only 251 bottles have been released, but we are told that the, ‘First aromas are chocolate and lightly roasted coffee, followed by banana and pear notes, with a hint of apple mint to finish.’ That sounds like a very appealing waft and as it hit the palate, ‘rich cinnamon and stewed peaches complement the beeswax note from the oak.’ And if that wasn’t enough, ‘The finish is a lingering white pepper spice, dark cherry and a hint of macadamia.’ Sounds like a whole meal in a glass! The distillery recommend that the whiskey is served neat or with a single ice cube and of course, a dash of water as that will enhance the aromas.

The company was inspired by the name of an aspirational engineer from 1807. Their aim is to build upon the traditions of the great Georgian innovators. In that spirit of innovation they work to create traditional drinks with contemporary twists, like their Organic Honey Gin or their Organic Horseradish Vodka. The company was established five years ago and a lot has happened in what could be described as challenging times. With their CEO dismissed and a new management team drafted in in 2017. As well as launching this extraordinary whiskey, they have plans to enter the non-alcoholic spirits world, adding a non-alcoholic gin to their Kew Organic Gin range.

The London Distillery Company had better keep one eye over their shoulders as hot on their heels are a number of other fledging distilleries who have their sights set on distilling their own whiskeys. For example, Bimber Distillery, in West London plan to launch a range of London single malts as soon as next year. The East London Liquor Company is also working on a variety of themes on its maturing rye whiskey.

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