It appears that the new Scotch Whisky Association rules allowing Scotch to be finished in a larger variety of cask types has been a welcome boon to the industry, which has been taking advantage of this new way to innovate. Just last month, Dewar’s launched Ilegal Smooth, an eight-year-old blended whisky finished in Ilegal Mezcal casks.
And now Chivas, owned by drinks company Pernod Ricard, has followed suit with its Chivas Extra 13 collection, a series of 13-year-old blends that are finished in different types of barrels. The new lineup consists of the following expressions: Chivas Extra 13 Oloroso Sherry Cask, Chivas Extra 13 Rum Cask, Chivas Extra 13 American Rye Cask, and Chivas Extra 13 Tequila Cask.
This last expression is particularly unique. There have been tequilas finished in Scotch whisky barrels — Don Julio has released two reposado tequilas, one finished in Lagavulin barrels, and one in Buchanan’s casks. But according to Chivas, this marks the first time a whisky has been finished in tequila barrels (something that has been done before with American whiskey), although there was a somewhat limited Buchanan’s Two Souls release last year in Mexico.
“The Extra 13 collection represents new territory for Chivas as we continue to open up the world of Scotch whisky to new audiences and fresh experiences,” said Sandy Hyslop, director of blending at Chivas, in a prepared statement. “At Chivas we believe that blended is better – and nowhere is this more evident than with our new collection, which blends exceptional Scotch with a diverse, internationally-inspired palette of flavors.”
Each bottle features art from Minneapolis-based artist Greg Gossel, who is known for his street art style that often features celebrity images like Tupac, Prince, and Kurt Cobain. As far as availability, the Rum Cask finish will be limited to travel retail beginning in July, but the other three expressions are available at select retailers around the country at $45 per bottle.
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