The Black Douglas
Say you are a whisky lover but have never heard of this scotch and someone mentions Black Douglas-- what are you likely to think? For us, we got transported to the wars of Scottish independence and remembered one very brave man, Sir James Douglas, who led several other valiant warriors to the battlefield. In case you do not know who Sir James Douglas was, he was a Scottish knight who swore his loyalty to Robert de Bruce, first lord of Annandale, king of Scotland from 1306 to 1329. He was a man who stood beside Bruce and fought relentlessly since the time he got back from Paris and found his estates to be in possession of Robert de Clifford. After the defeat at the Battle of Methven, Sir James Douglas returned to South Scotland and attacked his own estate until it was completely destroyed. But it was primarily his raids on the English that won him the title of “Black Douglas”. Later during the Wars of Independence, in an attempt to overthrow the Spanish conquerors, he laid down his life, holding on to a silver casket that contained the heart of Robert de Bruce.
Now you have a brilliant scotch which is a tribute to the “Good Sir James” of all times, but who decided to honour him? You might have heard of the Carlton and United Breweries from Melbourne, but they weren’t always known by that name. In fact, back in 1851 they were known as The McCracken Brewery. Then they expanded, divided, and took control of several other small distilleries and breweries over two centuries and became the famous Carlton and United Breweries around 1907. Hardly a surprise that The Black Douglas is one of their popular spirits and not only does it sell like hot cakes in Australia where it is made, but also New Zealand. What amuses us is that a scotch which speaks of Scottish rebellion and the bravery and sacrifices of countless warriors is a homage paid to them by a few men from a very faraway continent. We think the spirit of nationalism transcends boundaries like space and time.
The Black Douglas is a blended scotch whisky which is made with the finest of malt and grain to give it a very rich texture with a distinct smoky character. Sweet on the palate with notes of honey, it is one of the best from their label. But it is The Black Douglas- Black Reserve, 12 Year Old, a rather new extension of the brand that can truly win the heart of connoisseurs and amateurs alike. It is matured in American oak casks which add to the full-bodied flavor of the whisky, with hints of spice and adequate smokiness on the nose and palate.
The thing about The Black Douglas is that it not only comes in very classy looking bottles, but also cans. Now that is the kind of convenience and comfort we look forward to often. And let’s be honest, how many scotch whisky brands do you know who actually sell their liquor in cans? Well, to remind you, Carlton and United Breweries primarily brew a number of beer, twenty under their label to be precise, with very popular brands like Hoegaarden, Crown, and Budweiser. So, if you actually come across a can of scotch, and you certainly will, particularly if you are looking for The Black Douglas, you know what you are holding in your hand is something unique. There is The Black Douglas Premium Strength and Cola, which is one of the most sold liquor in Australia. It has a high malt content, making it smooth and perfect to be consumed neat. The added Cola flavor is favored by a lot of people who prefer having their whisky with coke. In case you are on diet, you can always avail The Black Douglas Zero. There is also however The Black Douglas Dry which is rich with a dry ginger aroma, and leaves a similar aftertaste too.
The Black Douglas hasn’t arrived in all markets yet, true. But it is only a matter of time. Till then, you can always get your bottles and pack of 6 cans online.