Forgotten Scottish Princess Gets Her Own Blended Whisky - The Whiskey Wash

Forgotten Scottish Princess Gets Her Own Blended Whisky

Elizabeth Stuart, eldest daughter of King James VI and I, is a name that’s part of the long and often tumulus history of the royal Scottish court. Her story is not as quite well known, however, as other Scottish royals, so should you come across a bottle of the new Scottish and Dutch blended whisky called The Winter Queen you’ll want to pause and learn before you take a sip.

The Winter Queen, according to those behind it, was created to celebrate the story and honor the memory of Stuart, who was born in Fife in 1596, but spent most of life in The Hague. The short version of her story is that as the “eldest daughter to King James VI and I and Queen Anne of Denmark, Elizabeth was always destined for a place in the history books. While still a child, she was caught up in the web of intrigue during the infamous Gunpowder Plot. At 16 she was married to Elector Palatine Frederick V and the couple moved to Bohemia, where they reigned. But after a year the couple were besieged and forced to flee Prague, earning the couple the moniker, the Winter King and Queen.”

“Elizabeth spent the next 40 years living in The Hague, campaigning for her lost lands and establishing a royal court that became an artistic and diplomatic hub whose influence extended across Europe. She also became a figurehead for the thousands of Scottish mercenaries based in the Netherlands.”

The whisky created to remember her is the third blend of international whiskies launched from Fusion Whisky, best known to date for the Glover offering it did in conjunction with independent Scotch bottler Adelphi. For this release what’s in the bottle is a nine-year-old malt whisky that’s a blend of Scotch malt whisky from Longmorn and Glenrothes distilleries and malt whisky from Zuidam Distillery in the Netherlands. It’s bottled at 52.7% ABV and prices around £125, or about $175 USD.

“By taking whiskies matured in different climates, we have been able to create a very new and innovative style,” said Adelphi’s managing director and master blender Alex Bruce in a prepared statement. “Like the historical characters we honour, these whiskies are themselves pioneers, challenging expectations of what blended whisky is. Crucially, these whiskies are also products of international partnerships and friendships. We’re very proud of it!”

Limited official tasting notes for Winter Queen suggest “nose drying; polished floor boards; chocolate and desiccated coconut; Scotch pancakes topped with bacon and coated in maple syrup; manilla envelopes; crème caramel; maraschino cherry; rhubarb crumble, dark toffee and molasses; soft and creamy mouthfeel; Sunday lunch, with quince jelly and jus.”

About the author

Nino Marchetti

Nino Marchetti is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and provided tasting input on many whiskeys at competitions. He also maintains a large private collection of whiskey from which he continually educates his palate on this brown spirit type.