If you’re looking for a Christmas present with a difference for the adventurous whisky fan, The Scotch Malt Whisky Society has launched a new range of membership packages, which can be tailored with optional extras.

The Society is the world’s leading whisky club with a community of more than 26,000 malt-loving members around the world. The club, which was started by a group of friends in Edinburgh in 1983, specialises in single cask whisky and takes a unique approach to whisky by celebrating the flavours in the bottle through 12 unique flavour profiles.

New range of membership packages

The core annual membership of the Society costs £65 and provides whisky lovers with an array of benefits including: exclusive access to Society whiskies and other spirits; entry to the Society’s Members’ Rooms in Edinburgh and London; members’ rates for SMWS tasting events; discounted dram prices at SMWS partner bars; free subscription to Unfiltered, its award-winning members’ magazine; and savings on postage and packaging.

In time for Christmas, the Society has introduced a range of new membership packages, which allow buyers to build on the core annual membership (£65) with tailored optional extras to suit the preferences of the whisky lover in their life.

SMWS membership pack

The new membership packages are:

Pioneer (£130): the most popular option – core annual membership PLUS a beautiful welcome pack containing three 10cl sample bottles, a £15 e-voucher, SMWS journal and club lapel badge
Champion (£110): core annual membership PLUS a specially selected bottle of the moment
Explorer (£90): core annual membership PLUS a Taster Pack containing five 25ml samples of Society whiskies from its 12 flavour profiles
High Flyer (£80) core annual membership PLUS a three-dram tasting flight for one person at the Society’s Kaleidoscope bars in London or Edinburgh
Sharer (£125): core annual membership PLUS two tasting vouchers (each worth £35) redeemable at any of the Society’s partner bars and events around the UK, and its Kaleidoscope bars in London and Edinburgh

The gift that keeps on giving

The Society releases around 20 new whiskies each month. Christmas is the perfect time to become a member as the Society releases one of its biggest-ever selections of bottles, with around 100 new bottles being released during November and December. This includes bottles with festive flavours and names such as ‘Curl up by the fire’ and ‘Hot apple and cinnamon sponge’.

Each whisky released by the Society is drawn from a single cask, which may only produce as few as 100 bottles, making each bottle a limited edition. Rather than reveal the name of the distillery where the whisky is from, The Society describes its bottles through the lens of flavour.

It releases its bottles through 12 unique flavour profiles with names such as Spicy & Dry and Old & Dignified; each bottle comes with a fun and evocative name, such as ‘Killer bee rum punch’ and ‘Hansel and Gretel at the Savoy’, and colourful Tasting Notes (‘gentle, sweet with a hint of spice like sticky rhubarb and ginger crumble or gooey vanilla cherry pie’) which detail the flavours.

In addition to its award-winning single malts, the Society now bottles an expanded range of other spirits such as gin, rum, cognac and bourbon through its new Single Cask Spirits range (www.smws.com/spirits). In December, this includes an Armagnac called ‘Amareng Amaretti’ and a bourbon called ‘A powerful concoction’.

Try before you buy

There are Scotch Malt Whisky Society Kaleidoscope bars situated in both Edinburgh and London, where guests can experience the range of whiskies and other spirits as well as a selection of fantastic food.

Visiting the bars is a great way to experience the Society for the first time and will provide the opportunity to learn about its history and its whiskies from the knowledgeable staff.

Kai Ivalo, Spirits Director at the Society, said: “It’s been an incredibly exciting year for the Society, with some of the most amazingly diverse whiskies and other spirits we’ve ever released. From our core single malts and our grain whiskies to our new selection of gin, rum, cognac and bourbon in our Single Cask Spirits range, there’s never been a better time to join the Society.”

To buy a membership of The Scotch Malt Whisky Society as a gift this Christmas, visit http://www.smws.com/whisky-club-membership

SMWS Christmas Tasting flight at Kaleidoscope Bar TillBritze

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