Whisky writer Jim Murray's picks of 2016's best whiskies have been announced on the Whisky Exchange blog, here are the winners

The controversial whisky writer’s bible declared Yamazaki Sherry Cask 2013 as his 2015 World Whisky of the Year last year, helping to boost sales and raise awareness for the Japanese whisky category.

However, many of the writer’s choices for the book – which claims to be the ‘world’s leading whisky guide’ – have come under criticism from many circles both within the industry and out.

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Always controversial, yet highly anticipated, the book – and this year’s winners – will no doubt be as closely scrutinised as those chosen in the past.

This morning the Whisky Exchange blog ended the suspense by announcing that this year’s big winner is actually a Canadian rye –  the Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye to be exact. Scoring 97.5/100, Jim Murray said of the winner: “To say this is a masterpiece is barely doing it justice.”

2016's big winner. Picture: The Whisky Exchange

2016’s big winner. Picture: The Whisky Exchange

The big Scottish winners are Glenfarclas – who won the Single Cask of the Year award with their Glenfarclas The Family Casks 1957 #2110 – and Glen Grant, who won Single Malt of the Year with their 10-year-old.

The Whisky Exchange added that Jim had increased his World Whiskies of the Year to five, as opposed to his normal three, accompanied by his choice of Single Cask of the Year,  before announcing the big winners. Perhaps unsurprisingly to many, the writer hasn’t included any Scottish whisky in his top five, though Irish whiskey Midleton made it into the top three (the first time an Irish whiskey has done so, reflecting the success this category has been experiencing of late).

JIM MURRAY’S 2016 WORLD WHISKIES OF THE YEAR

1. Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye (Canada)
2. Pikesville Straight Rye (America)
3. Midleton Dair Ghaelach (Ireland)
4. William Larue Weller Bourbon (Bot.2014) (America)
5. Suntory Yamazaki Mizunara (Bot.2014) (Japan)

SINGLE CASK OF THE YEAR

Glenfarclas The Family Casks 1957 #2110

THE WINNERS – SCOTCH

Scotch Whisky of the Year
Glenfarclas 1957 Family Casks #2110

Single Malt of the Year (Multiple Casks)
Glen Grant 10yo

Single Malt of the Year (Single Cask)
Glenfarclas 1957 Family Casks #2110

Scotch Blend of the Year
The Last Drop 50yo

Scotch Grain of the Year
Clan Deny Cambus 1987 25yo #9320

Scotch Vatted (Blended) Malt of the Year
Compass Box The Lost Blend

 

 

 

About The Author

Sean Murphy

Driven by a passion for all things whisky-related, Sean writes for The Scotsman extensively on the subject. He can also sometimes be found behind the bar at the world famous Potstill bar in Glasgow where he continues to enhance his whisky knowledge built up over six years advising customers from all over the world on the wonders of our national drink.

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