Arran’s master distiller marks milestones with anniversary whisky

Sep 6, 2017by Annie Hayes

James MacTaggart of Isle of Arran Distillers is celebrating his 10th year as master distiller and 40th year in the Scotch whisky industry with the release of a limited edition bottling.

Described as "fresh and vibrant", the James MacTaggart Anniversary Single Malt has been blended from a selection of first fill Bourbon Barrels from his first months of production in 2007. The liquid offers notes of salt and lemon oil on the nose, with white pepper, boiled sweets and apple pastries on the palate and a "lengthy" finish likened to a Whisky Sour cocktail. "The last 10 years have been very special for the distillery," said MacTaggart. "We’ve released our oldest age statements, including the 18 Year Old which was a real coming of age for Arran. "One of the great pleasures of my job is crafting unique bottlings inspired by the island and its history – a history that I’m proud to be part of." MacTaggart started his career at Bowmore on Islay in the 1970's. In his time at Arran he has created some of the distillery's most popular expressions – including its Smugglers' Series, the final bottling of which sold out within one day. Euan Mitchell, managing director of Isle of Arran Distillers, added: "James is a man dedicated to traditional whisky making, but with an eye to the sensibilities of the modern whisky drinker, he's been instrumental in establishing the quality reputation of the Arran Malt and opening scotch up to a new generation of fans. “This bottling is a fantastic way to pay tribute to the influence James has had on the Arran Malt and to give the Arran community a chance to own a piece of distillery history. We hope people will join us in raising a dram to a great man and a fantastic master distiller." The James MacTaggart Anniversary Single Malt is non-chill-filtered with with no artificial colouring, and bottled at cask strength of 54.2% abv. Limited to 12,000 bottles worldwide, the whisky will be available online from early October at, within the distillery shop, and from specialist whisky retailers worldwide for the RRP of £64.99.