REPOST: THE SPIRITS BUSINESS, by Nicola Carruthers APR 9, 2020

The new Raasay Rising programme will see the first 45 casks filled at the distillery available as part of The ’45 Cask Offering.

The programme pays tribute to when Charles Edward Stuart hid out on Raasay following the Jacobite rising of 1745, also known as the Forty-five Rebellion.

The 45 American oak Bourbon barrels were used to mature Raasay’s lightly peated inaugural spirit, which is now finishing maturation in Bordeaux wine casks.

Members of the programme will be able to fill their own casks on Raasay with the choice of peated or unpeated Raasay spirit at 63.5% ABV, while staying the night at the distillery’s whisky hotel (once the coronavirus lockdown is lifted). The casks will be left to mature for 10 years, or longer if preferred.

Whisky fans will also receive a bottle of the distillery’s inaugural Isle of Raasay single malt later this year, as well as a tour of the site.

Isle of Raasay Distillery co-founder Alasdair Day said: “The first 45 casks ever filled on Raasay, an island rooted in centuries of illicit distilling, hold a very special place in our distillery’s history.

“Rich in sweet vanilla and butterscotch flavours, with hints of smokiness from our lightly peated inaugural spirit, these Bourbon casks are available with your choice of heavily peated or unpeated Raasay spirit.

“The Raasay Rising experience includes a night in our whisky hotel and one of the first bottles of our inaugural Isle of Raasay Single Malt later this year, before enjoying the contents of your single cask single malt after 10 years’ maturation, or even longer if you’d prefer.”

The 190-litre cask is priced at £4,000 (US$5,000) and is expected to yield around 250 700ml or 750ml bottles. It can be ordered online from the distillery’s website.