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Posted 1 year, 6 months ago by Dr. Heinz Weinberger

Douglas Laing goes Palatinate

At the Whisky Palatina, a whisky fair in the Palatinate in Germany, our Douglas Laing's Fellow, Dr. Heinz Weinberger from Whisky-Connaisseur, presented various bottlings of Douglas Laing. Here are his impressions...


September traditionally heralds the start of a Whisky fair season in Germany. On almost every weekend until next spring, Whisky lovers and newcomers alike can try old and of course new Whiskies from different countries at the stands of the respective retailers. Until Autumn 2018, however, there was no Whisky fair west of the Rhine river – from Landau in the Palatinate to Cologne. But a local Whisky club called "Greenville Malt Society", founded 10 years ago, made it its business to change this. The name of the fair: Whisky-Palatina. It is one of the rather small fairs in Germany. The setting is a somewhat unusual location: the “Townhall” in the tranquil village of Einselthum with its 850 inhabitants, situated in the romantic Zellertal between the cities Kaiserslautern and Worms. After last year's premiere, the fair continued from 13 to 14 September 2019. Altogether 15 exhibitors offered a multiplicity of national as well as international Whiskies, predominantly however Scottish ones. Parallel to the fair, some of the approximately 450 visitors were able to deepen their knowledge of the water of life within the framework of the broad-based tasting offers. In addition to sufficient marketing material provided by Douglas Laing and the German importer Bremer Spirituosen Contor, as Douglas Laing's Fellow and Whisky-Connaisseur, I had a varied selection of 34 Single Malt, Single Grain and Blended Malt bottlings with me. Of them, the following were particularly in demand among the visitors:

  • Provenance Series:

    Bunnahabhain 11yo Refill Sherry Butt (DL13381)

    A superbly sweet, creamy and fruity single malt from the Isle of Islay with delicate orange marmalade, beautiful maritime notes and a touch of peat smoke

  • Old Particular Series:

    Probably Orkney's Finest 16yo Refill Hogshead (DL13371)

    A fruity, sweet Single Malt from Orkney with warming spices and a slightly smoky note

  • XOP – Xtra Old Particular Platinum Series:

    Glen Garioch 25yo Sherry Hogshead (DL12824)

    A rich, intense and full-bodied single malt with aromas of ripe dark dried fruits, winter spices and notes of tobacco and leather

  • Remarkable Regional Malts (RRM):

    Aged Limited Editions

    Scallywag 13 Years Old Exuberant sweet and fruity aromas in perfect balance with a rich spiciness coming from the sherry casks
    Rock Island 21 Years Old Deliciously maritime, sweet and spicy with a fruity and smoky core of lemon and peat
    Big Peat 26 Years Old A beautifully matured, expressive malt whisky from the Isle of Islay with a wonderful mix of creamy sweetness, fruity notes and fairly warming spices

Those attendees who didn't know the Douglas Laing bottlings yet could be convinced by the quality of the individual products right on the spot. In addition, I hosted a RRM tasting with the following four bottlings: Timorous Beastie 18yo, Scallywag 12yo Cask Strength, Rock Island 21yo and Big Peat Feis Ile 2017. One participant said to me: "I couldn't imagine anything with the term ‘Blended Malts’ and thought these are just some casks mixed together. But after trying these excellent whiskies and you explained them so well, I am now very convinced of the quality of the Douglas Laing bottlings.” Mission accomplished!

Photo Credit: Greenville Malt Society

The Whisky Palatina is a relaxed fair in a family atmosphere with highly motivated organisers, hard-working volunteers and lots of charm. Visitors appreciate the special, familiar atmosphere in which they can hold individual discussions, the high density of renowned experts and exhibitors from the whisky industry, the diverse range of whiskies and tastings and, of course, the tastings "Whisky & Music" with the world-famous Whisky Bard, Robin Laing. The next Whisky Palatina will take place from 18 to 19 September 2020. I will be there again presenting excellent bottlings of Douglas Laing.

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