Thursday, July 10, 2014

The Fifth Estate (2013)

Today's installment of SiscoVanilla at the Movies focuses on the political thriller The Fifth Estate (2013) which stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Julian Assange who is known as the founder of the website WikiLeaks. The movie is based on the book Inside WikiLeaks: My Time with Julian Assange at the World's Most Dangerous Website by Daniel Domscheit-Berg who was a former associate of Assange. I don't want to go heavily into what happened in the movie as I recommend that you all pick it up from your local library (yes folks, libraries have movies), RedBox, Netflix or however it is you get your movies and give it a watch.

Near the end of the movie, one of the casualties of the leak of classified United States Military and Diplomatic cables is U.S. Government official Sarah Shaw (Laura Linney). She was sacked due to comments made by her on classified cables. As she is packing her office, an interview that Assange is giving is showing on CNN. In walks in another U.S. Government official, James Boswell (Stanley Tucci). Shaw offers Boswell a drink as the interview continues to play. As Shaw ponders on how history will look back on the both of them and Assange, I notice something familiar about the bottle that Boswell is pouring from.

At quick glance it looks like a bottle of Drambuie though the label looked different. Drambuie has recently undergone a rebranding so the newer bottles differ from the older ones.

Drambuie Old and New Bottles
Upon further research, I realize that the bottle in the movie is none other than Drambuie 15. I had no idea there was even another kind of Drambuie. 

Drambuie is an aged scotch whisky infused with heather honey and a variety of spices that is known as being one of the two ingredients of the old school cocktail The Rusty Nail (Drambuie and Scotch). In looking for some history behind the Drambuie brand, the website gives a detailed and interesting synopsis on how Drambuie came to be:
The story of Drambuie begins over 267 years ago in July 1746. Prince Charles Edward Stuart (known also as Bonnie Prince Charlie) was on the run, after defeat at the Battle of Culloden had ended his hopes of restoring the Stuarts to the throne of Great Britain.

The Prince was pursued by the King’s men across the Highlands and Islands of Western Scotland, bravely aided by many Highland Clans. Among them was Clan MacKinnon whose chief, John MacKinnon, helped the Prince escape from The Isle of Skye. In thanks for his bravery the Prince gave John MacKinnon the secret recipe to his personal liqueur, a gift that the Clan were to treasure down the generations. An extraordinary elixir that would, many years later, become known to the world as Drambuie.
Upon further inspection on the Drambuie website, I notice that they have three Drambuie blends: Drambuie, Drambuie 15 and the Jacobite Collection. According to the website's listing for Drambuie 15:
Drambuie 15 is a whisky connoisseur’s expression of Drambuie drawn from the company’s finest selection of 15 Year Old Speyside Malts. Selected for their soft complex fragrance and flavour, the rare Speyside Malts ideally complement and balance the herbs and spicy aromas of Drambuie’s famed secret recipe.

With a nose of Drambuie’s aromatic citrus spice, fragrant grass and butterscotch notes, Drambuie 15 has a velvet soft mouthfeel with a tang of lemongrass and warming malty notes, berries and heather. A finish of shortbread, fresh herbs and the unmistakable long afterglow of the Drambuie elixir results in a refined, drier expression, perfect for sipping and savouring either neat or over ice.
Here is the sequence in which both Shaw and Boswell toast to each other and drink their dram of Drambuie 15:

And yes, they do drink it neat...just as the website suggests. Now I need to add Drambuie 15 to the list of spirits I need to try. And the search continues.

Until Then Happy Drinking,
Sisco Vanilla