New from the English Whisky Co.

The English Whisky Co. launched a new era in local production in 2006, fast developing a strong following in the UK and abroad. 100% British from grain-to-glass, the whiskies are precocious and span a remarkable range of styles and cask regimes. Unavailable in Australia for almost a decade, our stocks represent what's left of tiny allocations. Reviews from Jim Murray's Whisky Bible rarely hit below 92 points, with more recent bottlings occasionally breaching the mythical 95 point barrier: A remarkable achievement for any distillery, anywhere in the world. We are re-introducing these with highly competitive opening prices across the range, including two small batch "Chapter" editions that have garnered the attention of collectors.
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A century ago England's distilleries closed their doors due to fierce competition from their northern neighbours and a spike in the popularity of gin. In 2006, two farmers, James Nelstrop and son Andrew began experimenting with excess grain, turning it into new-make. At three years of age, the distillery's 'Chapter 5' release became England's first Whisky in over one hundred years.

Located about 300 miles from the Scottish border, copper stills and equipment were purchased from Forsyths of Rothes, who have been servicing the whisky industry since the late 1800’s. Legendary Laphroaig distiller, Iain Henderson was tempted away from retirement and commissioned for the initial runs with the first 29 barrels filled in December 2006. Iain finally did retire, but not before he spent four months training David Fitt, a brewer from Greene King to take over. David is now distillery manager.

The physical operation is called ‘St. George’s Distillery’, but all the whiskies are marketed under the 'EWC' label. Both unpeated and peated whisky is produced, in conjunction with a rolling program of cask trials that includes x-rum and sherry casks. Pinning down a ‘house style’ is difficult. The company is the most prolific producer of English malt whisky, though by Scotch standards, output is miniscule.

The flagship lineup employs a chapter system, with Chapter 5 representing their first-ever whisky release (chapters 1-4 were new make or less than three years old, which legally can’t be called whisky in the U.K.). Some are harder to find than others. Virtually all of them have received rave reviews from the likes of Jim Murray. Early bottlings we tasted back in 2011 were precocious. There are now two core products referred to as "Original" and "Smokey". At the time of writing, EWC’s 11 year olds are the oldest English whiskies made to date.