With the King’s Coronation taking place over the weekend, we thought it might be fun (and topical) to come up with a selection of whiskies from around the world that might be ‘fit for a King’.
It wasn’t until we started researching the post that we released how many distilleries King Charles III has visited. Wolfburn, Waterford, Ardbeg, Glen Garioch to name a few, as well as having Royal Lochnagar Distillery just down the road from Balmoral. He must be quite the seasoned connoisseur.
So while many distilleries are offering commemorative bottlings and releases, we thought we’d pick a few Royally themed whiskies that you might want to try.
The obvious place to start is our April 2023 club bottle from King’s Inch, named after the King Edward II ruling that 1 inch equalled 3 grains of barley placed end to end lengthwise. This was an improvement on the previous figure which was derived by taking the measurement of a small, medium and large thumb and dividing by three.
To us, it seems the perfect opportunity for King Charles III to maybe standardise the ‘dram’ measurement to be 35ml in the future.
You can find out more about the April bottling here.
As mentioned earlier, this distillery is the closest one to Balmoral, so when the King is at his Scottish residence and wants to ‘drink local’ this seems a opportune selection. Queen Victoria was also a fan of this distillery and issued it a royal warrant in 1848.
We quite like the ‘Royal Warrant’ concept in the ‘you may tell others you supply me with whisky’. It seems a nice way to associate oneself with a distillery in the future.
- Nosing notes: Sweet, fruity aroma with notes of ripe pear, orange zest, and honey
- Tasting notes: Rich flavors of fruitcake, honey, and toffee
As part of its connection with the Historic Royal Palaces, Speyside distillery created the ‘Royal Choice’ Range. The story goes that in 1815, to celebrate his own wedding, Lord Byron decided to gift a cask of Speyside whisky to King George III.
We’re a little disappointed that this didn’t become a tradition, as I think we’d all appreciate this more than a set of cufflinks from the groom?
Royal Choice 18 Year Old Blended Scotch Whisky is a well-aged and complex whisky with a rich, fruity sweetness balanced by notes of oak, vanilla, and spice. The subtle smokiness adds depth to the flavour profile, and the long, warming finish is the perfect end to a sip.
Crown Royal was first created in 1939 to honor a visit to Canada by King George VI and Queen Elizabeth. In an attempt to make the gift a little more regal, it was presented with the, now iconic, purple velvet and gold presentation bag.
For those wishing to stand out at your next whisky festival, you might not be aware of the trend for creating suits out of these bags. It’s definitely a step-up from the Malt Whisky Disney font hoody!
- Nosing notes: Aroma of vanilla, caramel, and butterscotch
- Tasting notes: Sweet flavors of vanilla and caramel
Moving away from Royal Warrants and Visits, how about this one?
The name “King Car” refers to the Kavalan’s founder, Tien-Tsai Lee, who was a former employee of a bus company and named the distillery after his previous employer. The term “conductor” in the name of the whisky is also a reference to Lee’s previous profession, a bus fare collector. A little more humble than our previous offerings.
- Nosing notes: Hints of tropical fruit, including pineapple and mango
- Tasting notes: Smooth and silky on the palate
Lidl’s own brand and now quite infamous, the name “Queen Margot” is likely a reference to Marguerite de Valois, who was a French queen and the wife of King Henry IV. She was known for her beauty, intelligence, and political influence, and is often associated with luxury and refinement. However, not one really knows the reason for the name.
This whisky is probably most famous for many media mistaking the ‘Best Blended Whisky Under 12 years old’ award, to ‘World’s Best Whisky’, which slightly over-rated it’s award, but made a good headline.
- Nosing notes: Rich and sweet aroma with notes of vanilla, honey and caramel
- Tasting notes: Sweet, fruity and nutty taste with a slight spiciness