Launch of first Glover whisky
A world-first fusion whisky to celebrate the relationship between Scotland and Japan has been launched in Aberdeen.
The very best and rarest of Japanese and Scottish whiskies have been carefully blended to form 'The Glover', a unique new dram which will excite whisky connoisseurs in Scotland and Japan.
The whisky is named after Thomas Blake Glover who was born in Fraserburgh and raised in Aberdeen, but who left Scotland for Japan as a young adult. He would later be known as the Scottish Samurai because of the profound impact he had on the modernisation of Japan in the 19th Century. Glover would ultimately be the first foreigner to receive the Order of the Rising Sun from the Japanese Emperor in recognition of his many achievements.
The event was attended by Councillor Jenny Laing, Leader of Aberdeen City Council, Mr Hajime Kitaoka, the Consul General of Japan in Edinburgh, and Lord Charles Bruce, Honorary Patron of the Japan Society of Scotland.
Aberdeen City Council Leader Councillor Jenny Laing said: "Thomas Blake Glover came from humble beginnings in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire and became one of the most influential and instrumental people in the development of Japan in the 18th century.
"It is fitting the fusion whisky has been created as it blends together two of Scotland's greatest exports to Japan Thomas Blake Glover and whisky - help make the already strong cultural, education and business links between the north-east of Scotland and Japan even stronger."
In an unusual twist, Alex Bruce, the Managing Director of Adelphi Distillery Ltd who blended the whisky, is also the great-great grandson of the Earl of Elgin who signed the first treaty of Trade and Amity between the UK and Japan in 1858. It was this treaty which paved the way for British traders and entrepreneurs such as Thomas Blake Glover and his peers.
Mr Bruce said "I'm delighted to be involved in such an exciting and unique project. This brand is set to strengthen an already strong bond between Japan and Scotland.
"We wanted the final whisky to present the unique flavours of both casks, but also to be even more than the sum of its parts.
"We also added a drop of whisky from Glen Garioch Distillery in homage to Thomas Glover's home in Aberdeenshire, to complete the flavour profile."
The Japanese whisky used is one of only a few casks distilled at Hanyu Distillery, which closed in 2000, and the remaining whisky is much sought after.
The project was devised by Jim Millar from Arbroath who holds the Consul General of Japan's Certificate of Commendation and the Scottish Samurai Shogun Award for promoting the relationship between the two countries. He said "This whisky is an excellent way of acknowledging the life of Thomas Blake Glover, and celebrating our important relationship with Japan, which continues to flourish, especially in the fields of trade, culture and education".
The Glover' by Adelphi will be available in two brands, the first being the ultra-premium version which reflecting its extreme rarity will retail at about £1,000 per bottle, with the second premium version 'The Glover 14' by Adelphi which also contains the Hanyu whisky retailing at about £100 per bottle. The whisky was launched simultaneously in Aberdeen and Tokyo.