Wednesday, February 7, 2007

A Whisky by any other Name

I really don't know what possesses me to research this stuff. I guess I'm just naturally curious. I was watching tv and I saw this cheesy ad for 'Prime Blue' whisky.

I did a Google search and came up with some interesting info about the whisky market in Taiwan, particularly 'Matisse'.

Here's the link:
http://www.maltmadness.com/mm14a.html#14-14

Here are some of the highlights:

"Many people said that Taiwan is the 'Liquor Paradise'.
That is not only because there is no custom tax for whisky, but also because there are so many choices of liquor in this small island country."

Every year "every Taiwanese drinks 0.5L whisky, 0.1L Brandy, 0.5L wine and 0.25L import Beer," a very large number indeed.

"For many western whisky lovers, Matisse is a mysterious name, probably only very few people notice it from Magazine or IWSC some time ago. Matisse was created by some Taiwanese three years ago, the whole purpose was to create an Taiwanese' taste whisky."

"It is believed the liquor shop has 100% margin on Matisse while only 10% margin on normal blend whisky like Johnnie Walker and Chivas."

There are some other interesting comments about how Matisse may be made OEM by a Scottish distiller. Also, there is some insight into the gift giving value of a bottle of whisky in Taiwan. So, check out the article.

If you are interested in Prime Blue there is the start of something here in the wiki:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prime_Blue_Pure_Malt_Scotch_Whisky
Says it "
can also be found in select outlets in the UK". Hmmm, going up the world!

Next time you're in the market for a whisky, don't be suprised when you see the freaky Taiwan brands in the store!
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