Glenmorangie’s latest expression - a bike!

15 September, 2017

Following its move into sunglasses made from staves from its whisky casks, Glenmorangie, has now moved into bicycles - also made from whisky cask staves.

The LVMH-owned whisky house has gone into partnership with Oregon bike maker Renovo. The hollow frame of each Glenmorangie Original bicycle is created from about 15 staves, taken from the casks in which Glenmorangie Original was matured.

Here’s the technical stuff: When shipped to Portland, the staves were first kiln dried to ensure their suitability for Renovo’s purposes.  The staves’ charred surfaces were smoothed away, before they were handcrafted into frames by Renovo craftsmen – each taking more than 20 hours to create.  The frames, which vary in size to accommodate different riders (from 52-61cm), incorporate the American oak of Glenmorangie’s staves, alongside a small proportion of darker Sapele wood, which brings a colour contrast to the wood of the staves.  Given a durable coating, decorated with Glenmorangie’s Signet icon and individually numbered, these bicycles, which weigh around 18lb, (8.1kg).

Cost?  $6,950, approximately £5,173

Drinks International asked Dr Bill Lumsden, Glenmorangie’s  director of whisky creation, distilling & whisky stocks, whether this move into Finlay sunglasses and bikes was because there was no money in scotch whisky any more?  He emphatically denied the suggestion.  He said the ‘Beyond the Cask’ series, came about after discussions as to what to do with the casks once they have been used, to make Glenmorangie Original, it’s flagship whisky. The company uses its casks only twice: - first fill American oak, ex-bourbon and then second fill casks.

The company says Finlay & Co sunglasses and the Renovo bike, celebrates the casks in which Glenmorangie Original is matured, by “repurposing their staves in innovative ways.”

As parent company, LVMH (Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton), makes suitcases, haute couture and fragrances, DI asked Lumsden whether there will be Glenmorangie furniture, suitcases even Glenmorangie cask perfumes.

Lumsden smiled but refused to be drawn other than to say that the ideas for Beyond the Cask, come from the Glenmorangie team, not from LVMH. So, watch this space for further stave age news....

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