At the heart of everything, Charles Edge London is a story about a man and his love of sharing a drink with others.
It is best to start with what we are not! We are not a distillery; we do not have heritage in buildings or in a particular location. However, what we lack in brick and mortar or, perhaps, more accurately coppers, wash backs and fermentation vessels, we make up for in knowledge, experience, passion for spirits and relationships. What started as a business aimed at supporting other distilleries worldwide as developed into an independent bottler of spirits for all tastes, who appreciate British craftmanship.
Charles Edge has spent over 30 years in the world of spirits, based in both France and the UK. Quietly in the background he has become an industry “go to” figure for his knowledge and ability to source and supply numerous large and craft distilleries the world over with all types of spirits, botanicals, and casks alongside his own expertise.
Given Charles’ reliability and discretion, he has built strong relationships with those that rely on him to support their business and it is satisfying to see so many succeeding in a very competitive market. It was upon these relationships and networks that he was able to move into independent bottling and opened access to a large array of single casks. Without merely buying casks ready for bottling Charles, alongside his team, has set down over 2000x casks at various stages of maturation with plans for release stretching well into the future.
The casks, ranging from new and exciting distilleries to the more established well-known distilleries, will offer something to all whisky drinkers. Charles takes great pride in working with only the best in the business and the awards achieved by the spirits he supplies, as well as the ones he bottles, reflect this. There are very few respected distillery names he has not worked with, much of which will certainly come as a surprise to many drinkers! However, he is very honest about the industry and his role. He does not obfuscate where he sources whisky, or any other spirit, from or his selection process. He partners and works with distilleries that demonstrate the best of British craftmanship and use of traditional methods.
Naturally, after many years happily working behind the scenes, it was only inevitable that he would wish to put his knowledge and relationships to good use by selecting and bottling whiskies of an outstanding nature under his own name!
Charles believes that one of the many wonderful aspects of whisky is that there are so any ways to influence it, from its inception as raw materials, throughout the distilling process, to the individual cask it lies in, the cask’s geographical location and the time it spends there. Consideration of these factors makes the art of distilling and role of Head Distiller/ Blender all the more impressive, ensuring the great blended and single malt whiskies known the world over maintain their prized taste. Charles has said in the past that, “the individual nature of whisky maturation allows us to appreciate the nuances and subtle quirks of individual single casks, like the universe the new and different flavours of whiskies continue to expand.”
Charles began focusing on single cask selection from across Scotland in response to customer demand as well as considering future customer curiosities. The casks were selected predominately to offer a different experience of single cask whisky from smaller known distilleries over household name distillers. Amongst the casks set for release in 2022 are casks from Ardmore, Ruadh Maor, Glen Garioch, and Glentauchers. However, amongst our inventory there are several casks from celebrated distilleries such as Bowmore, Bunnahabhain, Glenrothes and Jura that are in an advanced age of maturation leaving plenty of exciting expressions to be released in due course.
Charles has ensured that amongst his team he has experts in cask selection who understand the impact of casks from the world over. From the selecting trees from sustainably forestry projects in the South America, combined with the establishment of replantation and rewilding programmes, and working with local coopers to produce bespoke casks for specific customers (please ask Richard who will be at the Summerton Festival about this!), to sourcing Mizunara oak casks from Japanese distilleries and PX casks from vineyards in Spain, we understand the science and artistry behind likely outcomes of whiskies aged in each cask.
There are wide-ranging plans for Charles Edge London looking at greater control of maturation and storage as well as finishing of our whisky. Our current in-house qualified blender has previously worked as Head Blender in South Africa and gained whisky experience at Glenfiddich before subsequently moving to the UK. She is eager to put her skills to greater use as you can imagine!
Our Brand Stories:
Scots Gold was our first venture into selection and bottling of whiskies. Our four Scots Gold blends are each a complex blend of first-class grain with a high percentage of malt whiskies, matured in ex-bourbon casks. The aim was to produce these for the export market rather than the UK, given the export market is 80% of UK whisky sales! In the few short years these whiskies have been available, they have become sold worldwide and have received multiple awards for quality from numerous different competitions.
Scots Gold is distilled, blended, and bottled in Scotland as you would expect. However, each is a Blended Scotch whisky like no other, as you can imagine we would say! Masterfully blended using the finest Lowland grain whiskies and at least fifteen different single malt whiskies, with a high concentration of Highland malts, all matured in Bourbon casks, to create some truly exceptional whisky. Incorporating malts that are typically more mature than those of our competitors, Scots Gold is a smooth blended whisky which outperforms its competitors including Johnny Walker, Ballantine’s & Dewar’s in blind tasting competitions by respected whisky writers and commentators*. Currently our 8-Year-Old Scots Gold is our highest performing blend receiving 95pts at the IWSC competition last year. It does go to show that you should never judge a book by its cover, as the packaging is perhaps not the most eye-catching, but beauty is what is on the inside (Think that is enough clichés)!
The Scots Gold range is an elegant and thought provoking beginning to our journey into the iconic world of Scotch whiskies. On their own as a sipper or in a highball or a cocktail of your own desire, this is a great whisky range for all.
After releasing our blended whisky range Charles looked further to partner with a single malt distillery to produce our classic Single Malt whiskies that would act as a keystone to our single cask project under the name Canmore. Unfortunately, we cannot reveal which distillery it is but we’re happy to give you clues as to its identity in person – the first clue being it is a superb example of a Highland Single Malt Whisky! We believe our partner distillery represents all that we stand for – finest traditional craftmanship, pride in its story and heritage and, in this modern age, environmental responsibility. It perfectly matches with what Charles has set out to promote and is a fitting tribute to the Canmore name and the values it encompasses.
Nicknamed Canmore, King Malcolm III was the first of the House of Canmore, a leader renowned for his valour in battle, and his prosperous and fair leadership in peacetime. In his lifetime he was the first Scottish monarch to be known as King of Scotland.
The House of Canmore ruled over Scotland for the next 200 years. Yet, Canmore’s legacy lasted for centuries. He was immortalised by Shakespeare and his decedents included Robert the Bruce and the Stewart Kings and Queens of Britain.
Inspired by history and the stories of King Malcolm III, the bold, smooth and rich spirit of Canmore Single Malt is a reflection of his character and story.
Set against the historical and luscious Scottish Highland landscape, Canmore is made from the finest malted barley, carefully selected by the Master Distiller, with water from the spring that runs directly into the distillery.
We have chosen to work with a distillery that takes pride in its green and sustainable responsibilities. 100% of production is powered by wind and solar energy and all liquid waste is managed through a wetland facility allowing clean water to return to the burn from where it is sourced.
Canmore is exclusively produced by Charles Edge London; the malts having been personally selected by Charles from one of the Highlands’ most famous distilleries. The Canmore range is currently made up of two permanently produced No Age Statement and a 12-year-old whisky. However, …
The Canmore Single Cask range, from distilleries across Scotland, will be launched in Summer 2022. This will continue as an annual limited-edition range of releases (approx. 350x 70cl bottles each). In 2022 we will be bottling 11 different casks with many already being secured by customers abroad in the US and Asia. Yet, to ensure British whisky enthusiasts do not miss out, we have secured casks from Ardmore, Glen Garioch and Glentauchers exclusively for UK sales. These will be available directly from us and a few select independent retailers.
Now you would have thought that setting up two separate brands would be more than enough for Charles and his lean and agile team. Alas, for the team, no it was not. Charles’ third brand idea came with the inspiration of London and in particular Soho Square. For centuries this square has been known as a creative heart to the city with famous musicians, artists, actors, poets, and other creatives flocking to it and the surrounding area. It also represents a melting pot of different people, philosophies, food, and drink. Therefore, it felt as a fitting tribute to use it as the inspiration for our London Square Spirits. Our whisky is from Scotland, the vodka comes from Wales and the Gin from England, brought together here in the city where Charles lives. Will we add spirits to the Square absolutely in time!
London Square 12-year-old blended Scotch whisky is a fusion of art and passion, the master distiller’s ultimate expression of creativity. Made from a precise symphony of malt and grain whiskies aged in Bourbon Barrels for 12 years to create a distinctively deep depth of flavour. Often overlooked often dismissed, this blended whisky easily challenges people’s pre-conceptions of blended whisky quality versus Single Malt. We do not judge how people wish to enjoy their whisky so, neat, with a dash of water, or on the rocks in a cocktail. Whichever way you choose to use it, our 12-year-old blended whisky packs a seriously flavoursome hit that’s smooth and complex, with more plot twists than a Sherlock Holmes mystery!
We are very proud that after only on submission our London Square whisky received Gold at the Scotch Whisky Masters, alongside an award for its packaging which is not really that important in the grand scheme of tastings!
The second addition to the square hot on the heels of our whisky was our first gin bottling. It took 28 attempts to refine our London Dry Gin in conjunction with numerous mixologists, bar owners, customer testing, as well as a trip to Iceland (long story) to understand what consumers wanted from a gin. Seven of the most fragrant and aromatic botanicals collide together to create the most delicate of balances. We tirelessly worked to create something that had the unmistakably classic juniper front flavour but had a citrus balance, preventing the juniper from being too overpowering. It’s a precision-distilled classic. Equally happy as the star attraction or adding some depth alongside other flavours. This London Dry will make the perfect canvas to your cocktail creativity or as a classic G&T.
In a world awash with gins our London Dry has received two awards in one at the UK Gin Masters and the other at the USA Spirit Ratings.
Charles Edge London is all about that great drink with friends and family. We hope you enjoy that great drink with us.
* Whisky Advocate Scores 2021 rate all SG range above score of 87pts (8YO scored 90pts). Ballatine’s 12YO = 86pts, Dewars White label = 85pts, Johnnie Walker Red label = 84pts, Johnnie Walker Black Label 12YO 88pts.
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