A spirited conversation with David Blackmore as A Tale of Tokyo launches in SA

Glenmorangie global brand ambassador David Blackmore. Picture: Trevor Kolk

Glenmorangie global brand ambassador David Blackmore. Picture: Trevor Kolk

Published Dec 20, 2023


Glenmorangie has unveiled a new limited-edition whisky called, A Tale of Tokyo, just in time for Christmas and New Year’s Eve,

Combining bright, bold flavours with soft sweetness, A Tale of Tokyo is a premium single malt whisky combining bright, bold flavours with a soft sweetness – resulting in a dram that is as full of delicious sensory contrasts as Tokyo itself.

To coincide with the launch of this limited-edition single malt, David Blackmore, the Glenmorangie global brand ambassador, was in SA recently where the wondrous world of Glenmorangie and the sights, sounds and tastes of Tokyo were brought to life at the official launch event at Kōl Izakhaya, a Japanese-themed restaurant at Hyde Park Corner in Johannesburg.

New limited-edition Glenmorangie ‘A Tale of Tokyo’. Picture: Supplied

Independent Media Lifestyle caught up with Blackmore to discuss the new variant, and his journey with the brand.

Since joining the Glenmorangie team, he has globe-trotted his way hosting master-classes, attending whisky festivals, not forgetting the many drams that he has shared and enjoyed along the way.

Speaking on the new variant, Blackmore said Japan’s capital had always been a place of great creative inspiration for Glenmorangie’s globe-trotting director of whisky creation, Dr Bill Lumsden.

“Dr. Bill Lumsden is always very inspired by places, people, and experiences. His whisky-making process comes from that perspective. With A Tale Of Tokyo, the inspiration was the very contrasting aspects of Tokyo the city, from the hustle and bustle to the fanatic side to the very traditional side within that massive city.

“The creators balanced the resulting unique and bold flavours from the Japanese oak with Glenmorangie aged in both bourbon and sherry casks, to create a deliciously balanced whisky that encapsulates the exhilarating contrasts of Tokyo.

“The team collaborated with Japanese artist Yamaguchi Akira, who has created his own playful perspective of the city’s rich layers of history and culture in an artwork which adorns each bottle and its packaging,” Blackmore said.

Glenmorangie global brand ambassador David Blackmore. Picture: Trevor Kolk

Born and raised in Scotland, Blackmore studied at the University of St Andrews and after graduation was a bit lost on what he wanted to do.

“I did banking jobs and then there was a kind of moment where I really needed to decide what I wanted to do with my life and I worked for an events management company; that was when I was introduced to Scottish whisky for the first time in my life and I rapidly fell in love with single malt Scotch (so much so) that I became a member of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society.

“In 2003, I moved to London and I went to my first whisky festival where I met Dr. Bill Lumsden and I got his business card; for the next year I either called him or emailed him asking for a job as an ambassador and the rest is history,” he said.

Blackmore added: “I think the way that we have packaged the whisky, the artisanal hand-drawn art that goes with the gift box is all about presenting single malt Scotch whisky in a new light.

“We are not forgetting our heritage and history but we are very much open to the future. Our tradition is one of innovation and has always been.”

Glenmorangie A Tale of Tokyo is available at leading retail stores. The recommended retail price of this premium bottle is R1 599.95.

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