The Notch Single Malt 15 Year
Notch, as in “not Scotch, but rather single malt whisky from Nantucket,” is a new world whisky distilled from pure island glacial water. Cisco Brewers develops the whisky wash by producing a young beer made from Maris Otter malt; the wash is then transferred to the Triple Eight Distillery, where the alcohol is heated in a small copper pot still. The heart of this pure distillate is captured and racked in ex-bourbon barrels from the makers of Jim Beam, Jack Daniels, Woodford Reserve and Buffalo Trace. The fresh distillate is then laid to rest in the bonded warehouse for 8 years. Where and how “The Notch” is aged, is a process and an art.
Beginning with the distilled liquid, the journey starts with years spent “in the wood”, first in American White Oak casks, then transferred for its final months to Nantucket Vineyard’s French Oak merlot wine-soaked casks, which imbue the product with its Nantucket red hue. Its smooth taste is derived from Nantucket’s climate which is similar to that of Scotland with modest temperatures and an abundance of fog. According to Jim Murray of the Whiskey Bible, “the short temperature spikes in the summer months actually speed up the maturation process to that of 2 times of what is aged in Scotland, making for a superb dram and brilliant new whisky.”
These factors along with Nantucket’s proximity to the ocean make the island an ideal location for producing single malt whisky. Combine that with the distilling and blending expertise of master distiller, Dean Long, and what you have is, “The Notch”, Nantucket Single Malt Whisky.
Triple Eight Distilling, creators of The Notch
After the founding of Nantucket Vineyard in 1981 by Dean and Melissa Long, and Cisco Brewers in 1995 by Randy and Wendy Hudson, the idea of establishing a distillery on island seemed the next logical step. In 1997 Nantucket Vineyard purchased a copper pot still and began distilling spirit. Dean Long became the lead distiller at Triple Eight Distillery after 16 years as head winemaker for Nantucket Vineyard.
After 11 years and the successful release of the Notch Single Malt Whisky in 2008, Dean returned his main focus to winemaking and Randy Hudson took over as lead distiller after serving as head brewer for Cisco Brewers for the previous 13 years.
Triple Eight Distillery has been recognized many times as an industry leader in spirit production and has been awarded top honors in national and international competitions such as the International Spirit Challenge, San Francisco World Spirit Competition, International Wine and Spirit Competition, American Distilling Institute, American Craft Spirit Association and The Berlin International Spirits Competition.
For more information, check out the Triple Eight website.