Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has teamed up with Adnams to host a nine-year-old cask onboard its world cruise, according to a press release.
The movement of the ocean onboard the Borealis, which embarked on its 103-night world cruise this weekend, will help the single malt reach optimal flavor with the constant motion of the sea churning the whisky, increasing its interaction with the wood of the barrel.
The contact with the wood brings out the color of the spirit and enhances the flavor thanks to the caramelization of the barrels’ wood sugars and the salt air penetrates the barrel and adds saline notes to the whisky as liquid evaporates.
“This is actually a centuries-old maritime tradition,” said Thomas Rennesland, hotel operations director of Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines.
“In the days before glass bottles, spirits were transported in barrels from where they were made to where they were sold. The time and constant motion were known to mellow and mature these spirits giving them a unique flavor.
“These days many brands are returning to these routes and looking to age their products at sea, and we are absolutely thrilled to play host to a brand that is local to us here in Suffolk. On our world cruise this cask will spend 54 days at sea and a further 49 days visiting beautiful ports including those in Mexico, the US, Hawaii, New Zealand and Australia, the islands of French Polynesia, Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand, giving it a great story to tell through its flavors.
“Weathered by its journey, the barrel will then be offloaded in Southampton in April and returned to the distillery. Eventually, the whisky will be available to guests onboard our fleet.
“Maritime traditions are very important to our brand and tie into the fact that we put 175 years of experience into every single day for our guests. This is a great adventure to be part of and we can’t wait to taste the results.”
John McCarthy, head distiller at Adnams said: “This collaboration with Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines sees a 10-year-old celebratory whisky take an exciting detour from its usual journey. We’ve done our best to get things shipshape for the voyage, by using the finest East Anglian malted barley and maturing it in new French oak barriques, before it embarks on the maritime aging process aboard the Borealis.
“It offers an extraordinary opportunity to enhance the whisky’s character, infusing it with the gentle sway of the waves and the rich narratives of global ports. We’re really intrigued to see what this adventure at sea imparts.”
Bradley Adnams, head of export at Adnams said: “The venture with Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines is more than just a collaboration; it’s blending history and tradition with the spirit of exploration.
“As we send our specially crafted cask on a trip around the world we’re adding to its story, not just aging a premium single malt. We love to create distinctive and story-rich experiences for our customers, so when you open the bottle, it’s like we’re taking a journey together. The resulting whisky will be a blend of sea-infused maturity and East Anglian character – a truly international and adventurous spirit.”