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New Series Led By Royal Salute’s Forces of Nature By Kate MccGwire

Scotch whisky maker, Royal Salute, recently unveiled its newest expression, the Royal Salute Forces of Nature by Kate MccGwire.

This release is the first from Royal Salute’s new pinnacle collection called “The Art of Wonder.”

A statement from Royal Salute notes that releases from this collection will come from collaborations with critically acclaimed artists, taking inspiration from whisky blending.

Royal Salute Forces of Nature by Kate MccGwire
Scotch whisky maker, Royal Salute, recently unveiled its newest expression, the Royal Salute Forces of Nature by Kate MccGwire. (image via Royal Salute)

For the inaugural expression in the new series, Royal Salute invited British sculptor Kate MccGwire, who specializes in the medium of feathers, to create a one-of-a-kind piece to accompany their rare expression.

MccGwire’s body of work, Forces of Nature, marries the two worlds of fine art and whisky, drawing inspiration from Royal Salute’s whisky blending, the distilleries and the blending process.

Royal Salute Master Blender Sandy Hyslop crafted the new expression as a 53-Year-Old blend, with only 21 decanters available. Each are hand blown by artisan glassmakers at Dartington Crystal.

Each decanter is also engraved with intricate feathers and gilded in 24-carat gold leaf, with curves inspired by MccGwire’s sculptures. And, each decanter is accompanied by one of 21 pieces of art, called Paragon, created by Kate MccGwire exclusively for Royal Salute.

She did so using specially selected and sustainably sourced pheasant feathers. Together, they are housed in a hand-crafted wooden cabinet, accompanied by an art book detailing the collaboration between Royal Salute and the British sculptor.

The 53 Year Old age statement is one of the oldest released by Royal Salute, and it’s a nod to the year 1953, in which Queen Elizabeth II was crowned and Royal Salute was established.

The distiller’s notes describe this expression as rich and fruity on the nose, leading to notes of berries, candied walnuts, and sweet toasted oak with a long, rich, and slightly dry finish.

“For the first volume from the Art of Wonder collection, I wanted to create an outstanding expression that reflected Royal Salute’s desire to push individual craft beyond expectation,” Hyslop said. “To do that, together with my expert team, we crafted an opulent 53 Year Old blend, one of the highest ages we have ever released. This is a thrilling moment, and it’s been a privilege to blend such rare and precious whiskies at the pinnacle of what is achievable with delicate high-aged stock laid down by my predecessors.”

MccGwire said that for this body of work, she was inspired by the unpredictable and ever-changing forces of nature that influence the forms and energy that embody her sculptures.

“The three pieces I have created exclusively for Royal Salute celebrate the world of whisky and use regal pheasant feathers which are so beautifully figured with luminous amber in the brown, reminiscent of a well-aged blend,” she said. “After visiting the Strathisla distillery, I was also inspired by Royal Salute’s copper whisky stills, and have used the material in two of the pieces I’ve created, Protean and Plethora.”

The 21 editions of Royal Salute Forces of Nature by Kate MccGwire carry a price tag of $90,000. For more information or to find a bottle, check out www.royalsalute.com.

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