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Isle of Raasay Distillery receives over 17k worldwide bids to buy flagship whisky

The Hebridean Island, which has a population of 161 people, has received over 17,000 bids to buy bottles of the Isle of Raasay whisky.

Published: May 20, 2021
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17,478 people from as far afield as Barbados and Bangladesh, entered the online ballot for the chance to purchase the Isle of Raasay Distillery's flagship whisky.

The whisky release follows years of development on an island rooted in centuries of illicit distilling.

The ballot, which closed on Wednesday 19 May, will give 2,500 lucky whisky fans the chance to secure a 70cl bottle of its much-anticipated signature Isle of Raasay Single Malt ahead of its official launch on 4 June.

A further 500 will receive an exclusive ticket to a special virtual launch event featuring the whisky’s maker, whisky writer Dave Broom, as well as a 70cl bottle of the Isle of Raasay Single Malt and a ‘deconstructed dram’ tasting pack containing 6 x 5cl samples of the six signature recipe casks.

The launch follows the distillery’s Inaugural Release 2020, which sold out months before it was even bottled last year.

Co-founder Alasdair Day said: “We’ve been taken aback by the hugely positive response from whisky fans right across the world, with 10,000 entering the ballot in the first 24 hours alone.

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“Our unique six cask maturation combines peated and unpeated Isle of Raasay spirit with first fill Rye Whiskey, Chinkapin oak and first fill Bordeaux red wine casks.

"The first of this cask combination in Scotch Whisky history.

“Whilst our ballot may be closed, whisky fans can still visit one of our many stockists around the UK and in our 20 international markets to secure a bottle after the official launch on 4th June.

“Our distillery and Borodale House whisky rooms have also reopened, and a batch will be set aside for staycation travellers to enjoy when they visit.

“This launch puts the Isle of Raasay firmly on the whisky map and is a testament to the innovation and hard work of our distillery team.”

The six recipe casks offer complexity and depth of character in the spirit.

Every drop is distilled, matured and bottled on the Isle of Raasay using water from their well: Tobar na Ba Bàine (the Well of the Pale Cow).

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It is natural in colour, non-chill filtered, and 46.4% ABV.

Later on this year the distillery will launch single cask releases of each of the six signature recipe casks.

Participants at the special launch event on Friday 4 June will enter a poll to decide which single cask will be released first from the ‘Na Sia Cask Series’ (Na Sia, meaning ‘The Six’ in Gaelic).

Whisky fans can visit one of Raasay’s international and domestic stockists to purchase its signature single malt, further details of which can be found on its interactive stockists map.

One such stockist, The Scottish Gantry based on Stirling, has already seen demand from customers for the much-anticipated single malt.

Kevin Moore, co-owner of The Scottish Gantry, said: “The release by the Isle of Raasay Distillery of their fabulous gin created huge expectations for their whisky releases.

"These have been more than exceeded. Everything this distillery touches exudes provenance and a sense of community spirit.

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"We are delighted to be working with Raasay in showcasing their brands and look forward to what is yet to come.

"They are truly establishing themselves as a Scottish distillery of real excellence and have quickly gained genuine status on both the whisky and gin maps of Scotland.”

Located between the Isle of Skye and the west coast, Isle of Raasay Distillery’s vision is to create the finest Hebridean single malt Scotch Whisky.

As well as this, the team want to fully immerse whisky lovers in the Raasay experience at the five-star visitor centre and Victorian guest house with spectacular views of Skye’s Cuillin mountains.

Employing more than 10 percent of the island’s population, Isle of Raasay Distillery recently received enough job applications to double the island population when they were searching for a distillery operator.

Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind writes for The Scotsman on all things food and drink related.

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