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Smooth single malts

The process of ageing and maturing spirits in previously used barrels dates back hundreds of years, but was more than likely discovered by chance when new products were transported in old barrels, resulting in the new liquid taking on some of the characteristics of its original wine or spirit.

Over the centuries the process of cask ageing has become highly specialised, resulting in unique flavour profiles of various spirits.

More recently, the Alexandrion Group – a company drawing on 200 years of experience – has created a new range of single malt whiskies that have all been aged in a variety of barrels, from the company’s own wine producing division, to bourbon barrels from Kentucky.

The wine barrels are sourced from Alexandrion Rhein 1892 Domains (the group’s wine making division), which produces some of the best wines in the country, in part due to the location of their vineyards, in the Dealu Mare region, which are at the same latitude as the Bordeaux region in France.

Given the company’s prolific wine production they were able to become one of the few companies in the world to use barrels from their own wine production to age their single malt whiskies – the first single malt range anywhere in the world to exclusively use 100 % malted barley from Romania.

The variety of barrel types and combinations has produced some fascinating results, some of which we were recently delighted to sample, summarised below.

This Carpathian Single Malt was matured exclusively in a European oak red wine cask, sourced from the company’s own winery.

This expression spent its initial years in a charred first fill ex-Kentucky bourbon cask of white American Oak, which was transferred to a toasted European oak red wine cask previously used in the production of a Romanian Fetească Neagră wine sourced from their own wine business.

This is the Greek & Cypriot variety of the single malt series, was initially matured for three years in 53-gallon (240 litre) first fill American white oak ex-Kentucky bourbon, before being transferred to 200-litre barrels from the Troodos Mountains of Cyprus, previously used to produce the ancient Cypriot wine, Commandaria – a sweet dessert wine.

Also using the the 53-gallon (240 litre) first fill American white oak ex-Kentucky bourbon barrels, this whisky spent its initial years in 285-litre French Cognac finishing casks, which has added much more complexity to this rich golden whisky.

All four expressions were samples neat and over ice; they were all exceptionally smooth, with each one imparting a depth of flavour produced by the unique ageing process. There are eight new and unique whiskies, which we fully expect to win awards throughout 2024 and beyond.

The Salameh family who took the reins of this 200-year-old company have not been afraid to experiment and to try new processes and techniques, but every one has been underpinned with a respect for the company’s and country’s significant distilling expertise.

We look forward to keeping track of this company as it continues to establish its brands across the globe.

For more information visit their website