Page 10 - CACT 2021 Spring
P. 10

Dreaming of a grain to glass Welsh whisky is one thing, bringing it to life is another. This
                                                                                            has been a mission like no other. Every stage of the journey has been one of discovery.
                                                                                            While whisky has experienced a renaissance in Wales over the last 15 years, the ‘grain to
                                                                                            glass’ aspect has not yet been explored. The team have worked with local farmers who
                                                                                            have taken a leap of faith to turn their soil for whisky-grade barley. They have explored
                                                                                            malting techniques to come up with a process that works in house and invested in new
                             The Makings Of A                                               still technology. Perhaps most excitingly, all this exploration has led them to conclude
                                                                                            that kilning, one of the most energy-heavy aspects of the whisky-making process – is not
                    Grain To Glass Welsh Whisky                                             necessary. While whisky production may never be truly ‘sustainable’ this is a huge step
                                                                                            forward, and one In the Welsh Wind is proud to champion.

             ver since Alex Jungmayr and Ellen Wakelam set out on their distilling journey   As with all whisky, there is a waiting game to be played. Once new make spirit is safely
             in January 2018, they have nurtured a dream of producing a fully grain to glass   laid down in carefully selected casks, there will be at least 3 years to wait before bottling
        EWelsh whisky here in Ceredigion. With barley harvested in 2020 from the fields     – although judicious sampling will see the flavours of this unique Welsh spirit unfold
        of Ceredigion (including 2 acres at the distillery itself) and North Pembrokeshire, the   throughout that period. And although 3 years may feel like a long time, the team are
        team at In the Welsh Wind Distillery are ready to fire up the stills and make that dream   confident that it will fly by, and we will be toasting the arrival of this truly Welsh whisky
        a reality.                                                                          in the blink of an eye.

        Taking part in the Ceredigion Art Trail as an exhibition space, award-winning distillery   For those keen to be part of this Welsh whisky story from the start, In the Welsh Wind
        In the Welsh Wind is tireless in its ambition. Not content with producing a significant   is offering opportunities to either buy a 30 litre cask of whisky, or to make an investment
        number of Wales’ award-winning gins, including their own Signature Style, which     in a 50 litre ‘quarter cask’.
        recently won silver medals at the Gin Masters 2020 and the World Gin Awards 2021, the
        team have been focussed throughout the last 18 months on bringing to life a truly grain           For those interested to know more, visit the website
        to glass Welsh whisky.                                                                       or
                                                                                                       contact Joe, In the Welsh Wind’s business manager by email
        Many whisky distillers turn to gin as a complementary line of production to whisky                 
        – the relative speed it takes to produce a batch of gin supports cash flow and provides
        a useful income stream while time ticks by and whisky matures. In the Welsh Wind
        started with gin yet, from the early days of the distillery, they dreamed of a whisky still.
        Co-founder and director Alex Jungmayr explains “As we established the distillery to
        produce gin, we quickly imagined more - harvesting grain from our doorstep, malting
        it here in West Wales; imagined a bespoke still room, a cask room, and barrels of golden
        liquor dozing in the Welsh wind until a time when we could unleash them on the
        world.” For Jungmayr, this builds on an idea that is gaining more credence generally
        in the whisky world, that flavours of the land and the barley grown here can bring an
        exciting element of locality – or ‘tir’ to a whisky. He goes on “We experimented early on
        with infusing the flavours of the locality into our gins and began to wonder whether we
        could develop the idea of ‘terroir’, more commonly associated with wine production, to
        create a perfect expression of our beloved corner of Ceredigion in whisky form. A true
        West Wales whisky, from grain to glass, all production within striking distance of where
        we live and work, linking the East coast of Ireland and the West Coast of Scotland in a
        sweeping Celtic barley crescent.”

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