A scotch whisky distiller, when asked recently if he made any blends, was gloriously sniffy and dismissive of blended whisky. It would have been interesting to see and hear what he would have made of the Johnnie Walker Directors Blends, which I got to taste last Thursday (November 28) in London.
Effective June 1, the deal sees Campari America add the regional malt brand to its existing stable of Morrison Bowmore titles, which comprises Bowmore, Glen Garioch and Auchentoshan.
Campari America replaces White Rock Distilleries as US distributor for the McClelland’s range, which includes expressions from the Highlands, Islay, the Lowlands and Speyside.
Gerry Ruvo, chairman and CEO of Campari America said: “This broad selection allows Campari America to appeal to every whisky fan, from the novice to the seasoned aficionado.
“The addition of the broad McClelland’s portfolio lets us offer even wider choices for our distributors, retailers and consumers, furthering solidifying our position as the premier whisk(e)y supplier in the US.”
McClelland’s has been in the US market for 18 years, during which time, according to Morrison Bowmore, it has grown to be the fifth best-selling single malt in the US and the fifteenth worldwide.
The group said McClelland’s is the second best-selling malt in its portfolio and saw sales triple between 2001 and 2010.
That means, according to Morrison Bowmore, McClelland’s has outpaced all of the top-ten selling single malts in the world (IWSR 2011 Report/Single Malt Category).
Mike Keiller, CEO, Morrison Bowmore Distillers, said: “Our fine portfolio of single malt scotch whiskies have shown significant volume and value growth since Campari America took them on in 2008.
“We are confident that McClelland’s strong growth trajectory will only continue under the expert leadership of Campari America and its outstanding sales force.”