The Balvenie is a unique range of single malts created by David Stewart, The Balvenie Malt Master. Each has its own unique taste, but all are rich, luxuriously smooth and underpinned by the distinctively honeyed character of The Balvenie.
The exceptional quality of The Balvenie is attributable to the unique craftsmanship retained by The Balvenie Distillery. Nowhere else can be found a distillery that still grows its own barley, malts in its own traditional floor maltings, employs a team of coopers to tend its casks, a coppersmith to maintain its stills and has in its service the most experienced Malt Master in Scotland. The range incorporates The Balvenie Signature Aged 12 Years, The BalvenieDoublewood Aged 12 Years, The Balvenie C aribbean Cask Aged 15 Years, The Balvenie Doublewood Aged 17 Years, The BalveniePortwood Aged 21 Years, The Balvenie Thirty Aged 30 Years, right the way up to its highly coveted collector editions – a collection made through true craft and zero compromise.
About Neil Strachan, Regional Brand Ambassador for The Balvenie in Southeast Asia
Raised in Aberdeen, Scotland, Neil Strachan started out in the hospitality industry as a kitchen porter at the age of 16, even travelling to work in the kitchens of hotels in Austria and France. Inevitably, he discovered the inner workings of a professional kitchen and the hard work it entails. It was when he returned to Scotland that his job at a cocktail bar sparked newfound interest for the bar trade, which later grew into passion as he learned more about the premium spirits and cocktail craft – swiftly diverting his career path towards the spirits trade.
Neil then helped open the Malmaision Hotel in Aberdeen, where he learned about his local spirit. Starting out as a bartender, he quickly rose up the ranks to become an assistant manager, co-managing the busiest bar in the group. The hotel bar was snug with up to 400 varieties of whiskies from around the world, mainly single malts, and boasted one of the best collections in the region. VIP tour invites from various distilleries poured in and it was in Scotland that Neil grew in his knowledge and love for Scotch.
Neil’s thirst for adventure and new challenges led him to three very different bars on the home ground of Scotch whisky. One of the bars is situated in Ballater, seven miles away from the Queen’s summer home – Balmoral Castle. For almost five years, Neil lived in the Scottish country side and he relished his time there where he was enraptured by the science and art behind whisky making. When he was not busy at the bar, he loves nothing more than fishing, farming and snowboarding in the idyllic area. Despite the long drives to the surrounding Speyside distilleries, Neil also enjoyed visiting various distilleries in his own time, and he was always eager to learn more about whiskies.
A chance encounter with the Southeast Asian William Grant & Sons team paved the way for Neil to become the regional brand ambassador for The Balvenie. At the time, he was the business development manager of a friend’s brewery, Deeside Brewery, and also helping out at a friend’s pop-up bar, 10 Dollar Shake, both based in Aberdeen, Scotland. It was at Torin House, on the grounds of The Balvenie Distillery that Neil was serving drams to the William Grant & Sons South East Asian team.
No stranger to drinking, Neil likens highland games to the whisky Olympics and often jokes that if drinking whisky was a sport, there would be plenty of professionals in Scotland.
ABOUT WILLIAM GRANT & SONS
William Grant & Sons Holdings Ltd. is an independent family-owned distiller and was founded by William Grant in 1886. Today the company owns some of the world’s leading brands of Scotch whisky, including the world’s most awarded single malt Glenfiddich®, The Balvenie® range of handcrafted single malts and the world’s third largest blended Scotch, Grant’s®, as well as other iconic spirits brands such as Hendrick’s® gin, Sailor Jerry® spiced rum, Milagro tequila®, Reyka Vodka®, Solerno Blood Orange Liquer®, Monkey Shoulder® Scotch whisky and Tullamore D.E.W.® Irish whiskey.
For more information on the company, please visit www.williamgrant.com