Harvey’s of Edinburgh, in partnership with Historic Royal Palaces, officially launched Spey Royal Choice single malt whisky at a press event held at the Tower of London in the Wakefield Tower. Harvey’s is planning to expand the Spey brand internationally into Taiwan, mainland China, Russia, Brazil and the USA through domestic and travel retail channels.
Spey is distilled in Aviemore at the boutique Speyside Distillery by Harvey’s of Edinburgh and is produced exclusively under licence from Historic Royal Palaces. The whisky is only sold in the UK domestic market within the palace shops at the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace and Kensington Palace as well as online www.historicroyalpalaces.com. The charity Historic Royal Palaces looks after Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, Banqueting House, Kensington Palace and Kew Palace.
Spey Single Malt Whisky is also poured in Aspire Plus private jet lounge at Newcastle Airport.
While the brand’s distribution is limited in the UK, Harvey’s of Edinburgh Chief Executive Officer John Harvey McDonough, who was onsite for the launch, said his company will be looking for opportunities in travel retail. McDonough will attend this month’s TFWA Asia Pacific Exhibition & Conference in Singapore as a visitor with the hopes of making contacts to expand Spey’s presence in the Asian travel retail market.
Spey is sold at the following airports and duty free locations in Taiwan: Hualien, Kaohsuing, Taoyuan, Taipei Minquan, Taichung, Songshan, Keelung Harbour, EverRich Plaza in Neihu and Kimmen Harbour.
He said: “We are delighted to now take the product into new global markets and introduce whisky lovers across the world to its soft notes. We are confident that it will be as well received as it has been at the royal palaces.”
Spey’s royal link is a key part of the brand’s heritage, which dates back almost 200 years when Lord Byron gave King George III a barrel of Spey whisky to celebrate his marriage to Annabella Milbanke in 1815 at Seaham Hall. According to historic records, the barrel was sent to the King’s family home at Kew Palace.
Historic Royal Palaces Retail Director Gina George, who also attended the event, said: “Royal Choice blends the very best of British manufacturing with a good story to create a new luxurious whisky. I believe this combination of support between Harvey’s and Historical Royal Palaces illustrates strength and depth of relationship between us and their ongoing commitment to the historical royal palaces.”
McDonough added: “We are very proud to be a part of the Historical Royal Palaces for the launch of Spey’s Royal Choice Single Malt Whisky. The Tower of London is a pure cultural icon.”
He went on to talk about how his grandfather John, who was a whisky trader in the North East of England, told him that if he wanted to get into the whisky industry then he would have to learn about brand marketing. Following a career in Taiwan and Sri Lanka with the International Distillers & Vintners of Britain, McDonough started the current incarnation of Harvey’s in Taiwan 20 years ago.
McDonough said: “He’s long since gone but he would have been very proud that the Harvey’s business has got this far.”
The latest addition to the Spey whisky range, Spey Royal Choice single malt, is made from Scottish ingredients and handcrafted distilling methods before being aged in sherry casks from Spain to give it a flavour that is said to be like, “biting into butterscotch candy”. The whisky is presented in a hand-crafted wooden box with a certificate of authenticity.
Spey Royal Choice retails at £150 (US$250) for 700ml.
Article and image source: The Moodie report