Why We Apply Radical Transparency To Whisky Production
Guided by our belief in transparency, Archie Rose Distilling Co. is proud to openly share the ethos behind what, how, and why we do things with an unwavering drive to universally expand people’s knowledge and appreciation of spirits and hospitality.
This transparency was built into the brand from our very first days of operation where our original distillery site in Rosebery was designed to be visible to members of the public so passers-by could have a look inside at what our expert distillers were up to.
Whisky as a spirits category (more so than any other category) has been long subject to an air of mystique in how distillers produce the products they do.
“At the end of the day, all that leads to is a lack of understanding around how great whisky is made and what’s in the final product that people are enjoying,” Archie Rose Founder Will Edwards says.
As evidence of this commitment to transparency in both our processes and materials used, we launched the Archie Rose Spirit Data platform, allowing spirit lovers the opportunity to delve deeper into our spirit products on a batch-by-batch basis, through detailed tasting and production notes from the distillery floor and bond store.
“Our Spirit Data platform is a scalable, digital version of all the stuff we do physically and is accessible to anyone anywhere 24/7. So even if you can’t visit your venue for a tour of our distillery, you can still access all the same information,” Will says.
“Our Spirit Data platform is a hugely important part of our transparency and education, it’s about helping people understand not just the ‘how’, but the ‘why’ behind our products,” Senior Spirits Blender David Fisher says.
“It’s about getting as much information on our process to the people drinking our products as possible. There is a growing number of people who want to dig deeper into what is going in their glass, to see the information that informs the marketing of our products.”
Covering the entire Archie Rose product range from our award-winning core spirits to our limited-edition releases, tailored products, and bottled cocktails the Spirit Data platform will walk you through the life cycle of not just the spirit, but your spirit specifically from initial inception to the bottling line to your glass.
And whilst we haven’t been in the whisky business for long, rendering traditional age statements redundant, we do allow access to all details of the casks that went into our whisky blends (including their age, cask type, cask treatment, filling and decanting dates) as our own answer to an age statement via our Spirit Data platform.
Moreover, as the global supply of significantly aged whisky has diminished, brands have reverted to not disclosing the age of their whisky products.
“One of the most topical transparency issues in recent whisky time is non-age whisky products,” Will says.
“Our product is intentionally not labelled with age on the pack - the reason we do this is not because we trying to hide the age of whisky but because we aren’t able to sufficiently communicate the age on the bottle, whereas with Spirit Data we give you the minimum product as others do but we also give you the age of every single cask that makes up the blend of the batch you’re holding.
“Most brands don’t want to disclose this. We do that because we don’t feel an age statement is a sufficient disclosure of the product’s age if you just have to hold to the minimum and we’re only satisfied with giving full transparency via Spirit Data.
“The batch numbers allow us to future-proof the release, packaging and material. For example, as the whisky evolves, the average age of the liquid will get older with larger format casks used. By allowing the information to be clearly visible on Spirit Data, we’re open and transparent about that transition.”