WHISKY ART: First of all, tell us about who’s behind Peg Whisky and how your passion for whisky was born.
PEG WHISKY: Thank you for taking the time to interview us, the idea behind Peg Whisky came to fruition during a random drinking session between two cousins (Manny and Kully). Years ago, we used to do our own blending by mixing different single malts and grains together and experimenting to see if we could create a unique flavour profile that we enjoyed and, subsequently, one which others would also enjoy.
Then one day when we were sitting down and having a few drinks, we thought would it be great if we could bring out our own Whisky for everyone to appreciate. This lead us to the idea of Peg Whisky being formed.
There is a lot of history behind the term ‘Peg’ more information can be found on our website about the story of Peg and how it all started, so feel free to check it out www.peg-whisky.com
WHISKY ART: You decided to launch Peg Whisky with three different bottlings, each one representing a different approach to whisky: is that the spirit we can expect to guide the future series?
PEG WHISKY: Absolutely, the approach we are providing is that we have got varying products for everyone palates. The single cask range could be for your whisky connoisseurs who are potential collectors. They may be more interested in where the cask has come from i.e. the distillery, the region, age etc. They could also be complete newbies to whisky and want to try and experiment with new brands. An important feature of single cask series is making sure the whisky stays as pure as possible when extracted from the cask, so our Limited Edition range will always be bottled non-chill filtered and natural colour, they will also be bottled at cask strength everytime. For example, the Limited Edition No.I was bottled at a whopping 64.9% ABV, now, you might assume this would be very harsh, but its ridicolously smooth and a great dram to have especially over the winter months.
Our Small Batch Exclusive range is providing something different where we can experiment and bring out exclusive releases ranging from different casks, blends, grains and single malts. These exclusives will be limited to a few thousand bottles each time, for example our series 1 was one of 3,000 bottles which we released of a very pleasurable blended scotch. The series 1 was also bottled non-chill filtered and bottled at 46% ABV.
Finally we have our main blended scotch: when we were deciding on the flavour profile, we made sure it was approachable and worked well with all types of mixers. We’re happy to say we got it right! This whisky is a great place to start and a great introduction for all types of people to enjoy, whether you are new to whisky or a seasoned pro. Its unique flavour and finish makes it a great all rounder. We have options for everyone at all different levels of their individual whisky journey.
WHISKY ART: How do you decide which casks to choose for your bottlings: do you already have a precise goal in mind or you just follow your tastes and what the market has to offer?
PEG WHISKY: Bit of both really, it does depend on what is available in the market at the time, but we did base the final decision on the taste before purchasing. Our Limited Edition No. I is from the Speyside region, this was done intentionally as we feel the Speyside region is generally well received and a lot of great whiskies come from there. We own several casks which are maturing nicely, our Limited Edition No. II will be coming out very soon, so keep an eye out for this.
WHISKY ART: You started in a very difficult moment for the general economy, and I personally admire your courage to bring something new to us drinkers. You think that the “big C”, forcing everyone to stay at home, can become an opportunity for the whisky industry and for you in particular?
PEG WHISKY: Thank you for your comment, we do not know what the future really holds after we come out of the COVID-19 restrictions which have impacted so many people all around the world. But based on the current situation, we are finding that a lot of consumers are buying more goods online so there is a window of opportunity to sell even if it is not via physical stores, bars, or restaurants. We also ship to over 46 countries worldwide and receive sales from all over the globe. Once we come out of local and national lockdowns everyone will most likely want to get out and about, which is normal as we have spent so much time trapped and indoors. So, what better way to catch up with friends and family by having a ‘peg’ and talking about the good times ahead, cheers!
WHISKY ART: A lot of new distilleries are surfacing these days, not only in Scotland but all over the world: do you believe this will bring diversity and richness to the industry or there is a risk of an overloaded offering?
PEG WHISKY: We think the more diversity there is the better it will be, as it offers consumers more choice and I think we can all agree, the more choice we have the better it is. It also increases competition which means a better-quality product for the consumer as everyone is competing for that individual to buy their own brand. Consumers are very clued up these days about what they want and like, so if the liquid in the actual bottles is not good enough you will not succeed.
WHISKY ART: What are the difficulties of an independent bottler if compared to a new born distillery? And do you plan on produce your own whisky one day?
PEG WHISKY: It would be amazing to produce our own whisky and have our own distillery one day but that is an expensive goal to achieve! Guess we can all dream though. The difficulties of being an independent bottler is first trying to get a foothold in the world of whisky. You will find there are a lot of closed doors, but you have to just be persistent and keep trying to get a breakthrough. Once you get that, then you will find it opens the door for you and everything just kind of falls into place.
WHISKY ART: Besides COVID-19, there’s also Brexit looming over the Scotch industry: how do you think it will impact on your future?
PEG WHISKY: Like COVID-19, again we do not know what is happening! We are awaiting what the UK government advise, so we will know of the outcome at the beginning of next year. It just depends on what deal gets agreed and what the ramifications of that include. It will not just be us impacted, it will be numerous other businesses and industries, surely the UK government will consider this when making their decision, if not, then I heard Italia is a great place to stay, has excellent food and fantastic weather – watch this space!
WHISKY ART: And, talking about the future, what can we expect from Peg Whisky in the months to come?
PEG WHISKY: We have a lot great ideas to share, especially with our Small Batch Exclusive and Limited Edition range, and can’t wait to introduce these to the market. We cant give too much away right now, but keep checking in on our social media @PegWhisky profiles for the latest news.
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FYI – we also let our subscribers know first about the next Limited Edition release before it goes out to everyone else, so clearly it has its perks.