The Scotch Malt Whisky Society is all about single cask, single malts – but sometimes you have to break your own conventions, especially when the whisky is this rare and this good. That’s why, with Cask No. 38.22: Love letters on linen paper, we’re proud to introduce a single malt, even if it doesn’t come from a single cask

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The Society has a proud track-record of doing things differently, dating back to our origins 35 years ago when we first brought single cask, single malt whisky to our members. Since then, our enduring mission has been to provide a constant variety of bottlings to you, and a never-ending range of flavours.

That mission has seen us undertake some experimentation and stray off the path of single cask bottlings in the past, and we’ve never hesitated to do things differently over the years – as long as the quality of what’s in our iconic green bottle speaks for itself.

So when a sample of whisky came in front of our Tasting Panel from distillery 38, the reaction was unanimous – it was so good that we had to bottle it for you, whether it came from a single cask or not.

Cask No. 38.22: Love letters on linen paper is an extremely rare 25-year-old single malt whisky from a Speyside distillery that was mothballed in 2002 and then demolished in 2011.

The distillery had been built as an ‘extension distillery’ in 1898 to cope with increased demand by the founders of Glen Grant, and was originally known as Glen Grant #2. But it closed only four years later when anticipated demand for whisky collapsed at the turn of the century and the ‘Pattison Crash’ took its toll on the wider industry.

The distillery lay dormant until 1965 and finally got its own name in 1977, only to be mothballed again in 2002. The site was sold to coppersmiths Forsyths in 2010 and then dismantled and demolished in 2011.

The whisky that came in front of the Tasting Panel was from a stock of single malt from the distillery that had previously been consolidated, or married, in a refill ex-bourbon barrel.

Cask No. 38.22: Love letters on linen paper is a dram to linger over and to savour. The Tasting Notes describe the nose as subtle and attractive, with orange blossom and jasmine, milk chews, white chocolate and perfumed pears. On the palate it has an exquisite mouth-feel, with lots of exotic fruits, tease-and-tingle citrus peel, fruit gums and just a hint of tobacco and medicinal spice – tasty and finely balanced.

We’ve bottled it with our distinguished black label, reserved for the most prestigious whiskies and reflecting both the rarity and the outstanding quality of a whisky from a much-loved distillery that no longer exists.

Due to the anticipated demand for Cask No. 38.22: Love letters on linen paper, we’re inviting members who would like to buy a bottle to enter our lucky draw ahead of First Friday, where we’ll pull names at random from our hat. We’re introducing this based on members’ feedback on similar releases. We know some members will be disappointed, but we feel this is the fairest option for everyone interested in buying a bottle.

Please note: All entries must be received by midnight on Thursday, 11 October, as we’ll be notifying winning members the next day. All winners must then contact us by 10am on Monday, 15 October, otherwise we’ll pull another name from our hat. It’s one bottle per member, which we strongly suggest you open and enjoy – don’t be that member who puts their bottle straight into auction!


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Closes: Thursday, 11 October, midnight

Winners: Friday, 12 October

Winner Reply: Monday, 15 October, 10am