Bought: Online Whisky Auction, 7th June 2016
74/100 – Whiskybase (from 1 member vote)
I’ve wanted a bottle of Ainslie’s ever since I spotted its chunky vintage shape and retro label in my early days of collecting whisky (2013). The story that some bottles contained single malt from the Brora distillery was intriguing but that doesn’t apply to my bottle, which is much too recent. You can still find bottles of the Ainslie blend from the 1950s and 1960s but the Brora distillery only started in 1969. Its legendary peated malt was in production for 4 years until changing to a more Highland style in 1973. So finding an example of the Ainslie’s blend from this classic peat period must be like looking for a needle in a haystack.
Ainslie & Heilbron (Distillers) Ltd of Glasgow who produced the Ainslie’s blend started life in 1888 but went out of business in 1993. In 1998 the Belgian company P. Bruggeman (distillers since 1884) acquired the international rights to Ainslie’s along with the secondary brands ‘Royal Edinburgh’ and ‘King’s Legend’. I got this information from the P Bruggeman website, which still lists the Ainslie as one of their whisky brands along with Label 5 and Glen Turner. Hardly illustrious company, which is probably why Whiskybase say my bottle is only worth £11.90. I paid £20 for it at auction but the previous week an identical bottle sold for £14. It’s clearly not an investment or an excellent whisky but more a talking point in years to come.