Old Smuggler is a brand of blended Scotch whisky, part of the Campari Group, an Italian spirits and alcoholic beverages conglomerate. This is a no-age-statement blended whisky It is one of the most successful brands in smaller South American and European countries of Argentina and Belgium respectively.
Not much is known regarding the history of the Old Smuggler blended Scotch whisky brand. It is said that the original blend and brand name dates as far back as 1835. The brand name was conceived as an ode to the 18th century bootleggers and smugglers carried out the whisky trade illicitly to escape exorbitant duties on whisky distillation.
The Old Smuggler brand is currently being sold in over 20 markets throughout the world. The Argentinian, Belgian and American markets are key for the brand.
According to Campari Group, the Old Smuggler brand is the 8th largest selling Scotch in America, and the second largest selling whisky in Argentina. Eastern Europe is another important region for the Old Smuggler whisky brand where sales are particularly higher.
It became a part of the Campari Group in 2006, along with Glen Grant and a few other brands. This indicated Campari Group’s entry into the Scotch whisky segment.
Along with the no-age-statement, a 12 Year Old expression of Old Smuggler is also produced by Campari Group.
The Old Smuggler blend was said to be a combination of over 40 source whiskies, although the company website claims an alteration of the original recipe in 1947.
Scottish malts are blended with locally produced grain whisky in Argentina according to the company. Historically, Argentina is one of the biggest markets for Old Smuggler and have been among the bestselling brands in the country since the 1970s. French and American Oak barrels are relied upon for the maturation of this blended whisky.
Campari Group, the parent organization that own the Old Smuggler brand, claim that the Scotch Whisky Association has provided their certification for the blend to be referred to as a blended Scotch whisky.
The Old Smuggler blended Scotch whisky carries an alcohol strength of 40% ABV, the standard permissible limit for Scotch whiskies in most countries worldwide.
The Old Smuggler blend has not won any major medals or awards at whisky tasting competitions.
18th December 2016http://www.camparigroup.com/en/brands/whisky/old-smuggler