Meet George Keeble…

George was one of my first main contacts in my whisky journey. He was working at the Soho Whisky Club in London, and helped get me started on my whisky story, pretty sure he poured me a Linkwood. That was a long time ago. Since then George has travelled and worked in Australia with Starward Whisky, has his own whisky wholesale business and has just launched “Fragrant Drops”, his independent bottling company. So lets get to know what 3 whiskies have marked out his whisky life.

George, you’ve been around whisky for while, but can you tell me what you do now?

I operate a whisky wholesale business, through which I sell bulk whisky that’s still matured in the cask. We also source spirit for bulk blended whiskies for export.

I know you from Soho Whisky Club originally, so I know you have had the opportunity to try some great drams. What’s your first choice?

Blackadder Raw Cask ‘Blairfindy’ 1964 (45YO) – Cask Ref. 4713 – 53.4% (single cask) –
Single Malt Scotch Whisky.
My whisky career began back in 2011, as a part-time barman at Soho Whisky Club, in
London. During the following 6-7 years, I was fortunate enough to sample countless brilliant whiskies at work. This ‘Blairfindy’ (an unnameable Glenfarclas) was bottled by the world-renowned independent bottler Blackadder. It is one of the finest whiskies I’ve ever had the great fortune to taste. It is very rich, very dark and very complex – a true ‘Sherry-bomb’

Wow, so where do you go after that? What’s your second dram?

Starward ‘Nova’ – 41% (small batch production) – Australian Single Malt Whisky
After several years of pouring drams and hosting tastings at the aforementioned Soho Whisky Club, I found myself yearning for a career change. With a longing to learn whisky production and a newly-acquired brewing and distilling certificate under my belt, I left London in search of distilling experience. I chose Australia as my destination.
As luck would have it, I managed to snag a distiller job – at Starward no less!
It’s nice to think that there are bottles of Starward in the world that were mashed, distilled,
filled, re-racked, bottled or labelled by yours truly. Fully matured in Aussie red wine casks, the Starward Nova is bloody delicious!

That’s a pretty cool legacy to have. Now, your third and final dram, what have you chosen?
Fragrant Drops Ardmore 2009 (14YO) Mezcal Finish – Cask No. 9001334 – 55.9% (single
cask) – Single Malt Scotch Whisky.
Fast-forward a few more years and I have found myself where I am today – running a whisky cask wholesale business and on the cusp of launching a brand of indie bottling – Fragrant
Drops. (note, Fragrant Drops was launched in January 2023). Shameless self-promotion aside, starting an independent bottling range has been a dream of mine for many years. This Ardmore 2009 single cask, which has been finished in a fresh Mezcal barrel for a full year, was one of the first casks I purchased with the hopes of one day bottling. And it has finally, after several delays, been bottled. If you can find a bottle, I recommend it!

If you wish to find out more about where you can buy Fragrant Drops, you can find it here:

George’s cask business is here:

George is also on Instagram -whiskywithgeorge

Published by Claire Vokins

My am involved in whisky and horticulture. I own a small professional garden care company with a focus on working in a sustainable way. Whisky enthusiast. Studying "Politics, Philosophy and Economics" with the Open University. Stoic.

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