Amid an enormously successful year, Wolfcraig Distillers have this week announced their ‘biggest release to date’ as part of a continued collaboration from two world-renowned legends of the Scottish whisky scene.  

The dynamic duo of Richard ‘The Nose’ Paterson OBE and Ian MacMillan has already introduced us to the company’s Premium Distilled Gin and 30-year-old Premium Blend whisky, the latter of which earned them a gold medal at the Spirits Business Global Scotch Whisky Masters 2023.  

Now, it’s the turn of a 14-year-old Deluxe Blend, an 'expertly crafted' spirit which has been matured in a hand-selected trio of sherry casks from Bodega San Andreas in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain. 

The Herald: Pictured: Richard Paterson (left) and Ian MacMillan (right)Pictured: Richard Paterson (left) and Ian MacMillan (right) (Image: Supplied)

Mr Paterson said of the release: “The elegant blend is a golden icon of pure beauty.  

“It’s rich and intense at first but like all good things you must wait; after all, it has taken many years to consummate this loving union of different seasonings from the selected casks.    

“The aftertaste of glazed tangerines, marzipan and chocolate mousse with fresh hints of spicy ginger and nutmeg provide the perfect finish to this luxurious blended whisky.”  

Widely regarded as one of the most experienced master blenders in all of Scotch whisky, Mr Paterson has been entwined with Wolfcraig’s journey since its very beginnings after rekindling a professional partnership with ex-CEO of Whyte and Mackay, Michael Lunn, and his son Jamie.  

He said: “Michael Lunn was a man that I knew exceptionally well, and he called me one day in around 2018 to say that he and Jamie were starting a distillery in Stirling.  

“Knowing the passion and drive that he had I was instantly attracted to the opportunity.  

“Whisky runs in my blood, and I’ve dealt with many single malts and blends over the years. 

“But seeing this all the way through from its initial concept to where we are now is what it’s all about.  

“It’s a legacy to leave behind.”  

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Joined in 2020 by Mr Macmillan, an award-winning distiller with over 40 years of experience, the pair set out to find rare and aged whisky stocks which met the high standards required for the original Wolfcraig releases.   

Famously claiming to have “rejected more than they selected” the result is a series which seamlessly marries the rich heritage of whisky drinking in Scotland with a sense of modern innovation.

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Mr Paterson continued: “We don’t want to be fuddy-duddy, which means that we’ve got to strike the right balance.  

“Although it’s vital that we never forget our roots, we must ensure a modern concept that is going to appeal to a new generation.  

“Ian and I often travel to whisky festivals across the world and we’re increasingly meeting younger people who are excited to talk with us.  

“To me, there’s nothing better than seeing someone really taking their time to sample a whisky and discuss all of its complexities.  

“There’s a real drive to keep the industry vibrant and fresh, but in doing so we have to retain a high level of credibility and quality.  

“That’s the way to produce a really outstanding scotch.”  

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Although there has been plenty to celebrate in the short time since Wolfcraig was first launched, the close-knit team also faced an unimaginable loss when one of the company's original co-founders, Michael Lunn passed away earlier this year.  

While determined to honour his vision, they were later dealt another huge blow from Stirling Council as plans for a £15m flagship distillery, complete with an educational visitor centre, restaurant and bar were rejected for a second time.  

The Herald: Pictured: Jamie Lunn, director of WolfcraigPictured: Jamie Lunn, director of Wolfcraig (Image: Supplied)

Jamie Lunn, director of Wolfcraig, said: “The setbacks with planning permission have been financial, and emotional and have negatively impacted the projected timelines in our business plan.  

“We’re still working on multiple sites for a distillery, and it remains an important pillar of the business.  

“In the meantime, we’ve been focussing on the independent bottling side of Wolfcraig to build our brand and establish ourselves as a key player in the premium whisky space.”  

With no intention of sitting idle while they search for the perfect home, Wolfcraig’s latest sees 4,500 bottles of their 14-year-old Deluxe Blend available to purchase now.   

Promising more to come Mr Lunn said: “The beauty with every one of our small batch releases, is that Richard and Ian have meticulously selected the finest single malts, blends and grains and brought them together to create original releases that can only be enjoyed once before they are gone forever.  

“This is why every one of our releases is so special, through taste you are marking a moment in time that can never be replicated.”  

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Master blender Ian MacMillan, who is known for having created some of the sector’s most recognised single malts while working with the likes of Bunnahabhain, Tobermory and Deanston added: “It has been a memorable experience to work with Richard and to combine our 100 years of experience together to create an excellent product such as the 14-Year Old Deluxe Blend.  

“This is a whisky to be shared and enjoyed in those special moments in life.”   

The Wolfcraig 14-Year-Old Deluxe Blend is priced at £80 per bottle and is available to purchase via their website here.  

For further updates on new releases, including a limited batch of Wolfcraig 35-Year-Old Blended Grain Scotch Whisky planned for next month, find them on social media here.