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James Bond's Top 3 Whiskies

 
PUBLISHED IN scotch, whisky, james bond
Do you like your Whisky shaken or stirred Mr. Bond? Granted Whisky might not be the first drink that springs to mind when you think of 007 but over the years the British spy has had his fair share of drinking moments that do not include the iconic Vodka Martini.

If you go off the original books written by Ian Fleming you could even go as far to say that there are very few drinks that Bond isn't willing to try. Self-made cocktails, Champagne, Whisky, Vodka, Rum, wine, beer, you name it, the world's most famous spy probably had it… twice.

Therefore, giving you a full breakdown of Bond's drink choices might require us to invest in a new website server. So let's just focus in on Scotch. Here are three Whiskies you will need to get on your shelf if you want to drink Scotch like James Bond.

Scotch and Soda

Before the dawn of Hollywood movie budgets, the brand names of Bond's Whisky rarely appeared in the 007 novels. Although the books contain several references to James sipping on "Scotch and Soda", most of the time we can't know what that Scotch might be. Damn you and your mysterious side, Mr. Bond.

What we can say however is that to drink like the original James Bond you need to find yourself a tasty little Scotch that combines nicely with Soda. So let's do a bit of deduction.

We know that Fleming was writing about Bond during the fifties and sixties, a time when single malts were still relatively uncommon. It's therefore safe to assume that the "Scotch" being referred to was a Blend.

There is also one brand that appears enough times during the novels for us to assume that Bond did have a preference. Haig & Haig Whisky was an exclusive blend at the time that was enjoyed on several occasions in the books by both Bond and his CIA companion Felix Leiter.

Sadly some of the original expressions from Haig are no longer available but the resurgence of Haig Club Whisky in recent years can let us all keep Mr. Bond's drinking habits alive.

 

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Haig Club Clubman has been designed to mix with sodas and is the ideal Blend to get you started with your 007 Whisky collection. Oh, and thanks to its maturation in Bourbon Casks, the Single Grain Blended Whisky has that extra bit of kick we all know Bond would love.

Bond's everyday Dram

So what about single malts? Don't you worry… when it comes to the pure stuff Bond does not mess around. Luckily the legacy of 007 has outlived the fifties and sixties, and in recent years, thanks to the wonders of product placement sponsorship, we have seen Bond enjoy the delights of single malt Scotch Whisky.

Firstly, Talisker, appearing in The World is Not Enough and Die Another Day. During both, bottles of Talisker make an appearance in M's office. The glass Bond drinks from during The World is not Enough even triggers his realization that a bomb is about to be detonated and kill Sir Robert King.

Despite the brief appearance, the Bond nerds out there did their research and found that the Talisker bottles in the film used an older style of label design for the 10-year-old malt.

 

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This expression is widely regarded as a must-have for any Whisky collection and is the reason the island of Skye's only distillery shot to fame around the world. With hints of peat and a unique smoke and peppery flavor, this reasonably priced expression makes drinking like 007 an absolute no brainer.

A Whisky not to be Wasted

While Bond's glass of Talisker did play a minor role in the story of The World is Not Enough, it's not until Skyfall that we see a certain expression of Whisky take center stage. Unfortunately, however, this one does not fall into the reasonably priced category.

Given Bond is a man who knows what temperature his favorite vintage of Bollinger Champagne should be served at, we always knew his favorite Scotch was going to be something a little bit special. Macallan 1962 Whiskies are part of a range created by the distillery using their rarest and finest casks. With a varying price point always in the thousands, these expressions are not ones to be wasted.

In the infamous scene, a bottle from the range is introduced by Bond's nemesis Silva as a "50-year-old Macallan, a particular favorite of yours I understand." 



Supposedly the reference to a 50-year-old Scotch was actually a reference to the fifty-year celebration of James Bond films as opposed to the Whisky's age. In reality, the Whisky's age is just a measly 25 years! Different ages are available in the Macallan 1962 range but the 25-year-old was sold at auction for approximately $15,000 and makes sense as the bottle from the movie.

 

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The age is a neat little reference to the fact that it appeared during the 25th Bond film and the bottle mentioned in the auction above was also signed by the cast. Even if that was just a bit of luck, what we can say is that getting your hands on the final item for your Bond Scotch collection will not be easy.

Tasting notes on this bottle are almost as rare as the bottle itself but one can only assume that the 43% ABV 25-year-old release embodies the iconic spice and chocolate orange flavors celebrated by Macallan.

Oh and one final thing…

Since the appearance of Macallan in Skyfall there have been many brief appearances of the brand during the last two bond movies. In Spectre for example Bond can be seen sipping on Macallan 18 at his home in London. While it is not described as "a particular favorite" this Sherry celebration of a dram might just give your Bond Scotch collection the final Macallan hit that it desperately needs.





READ MORE ABOUT: scotch, whisky, james bond

By Calum

Calum

Having lived in Spain and America from age 13 to 21, Calum returned to his homeland of Scotland and immediately took an interest in all things Whisky. Today he is based in London working in marketing and makes any excuse for a trip home to visit a few more distilleries.

 

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