For the first time in its history, Moray Golf Club has signed a sole-supplier agreement with one of Scotland's most respected suppliers of wines and spirits. The announcement forms part of the club's 125th anniversary celebrations, which also includes the release of a limited edition 15-year-old Speyside single malt and a landmark initiative to bring whiskies from every operating Morayshire and Speyside distillery under one roof.
The announcement, which coincides with the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival and Homecoming Scotland's inaugural Whisky Month this month, sees the bond between one of Scotland's most treasured links and the 'water of life' recognised in a formal agreement with the country's leading malt whisky specialists, Gordon & MacPhail.
"This is a very important and exciting announcement for Moray Golf Club," says John Ellwood, captain of Moray Golf Club. "The club was created around whisky 125 years ago with many of the founders directly involved in whisky production. It is therefore especially pleasing to confirm this agreement with Gordon & MacPhail."
The sole-supplier agreement between Moray Golf Club and Gordon & MacPhail goes much further than a simple agreement to supply wines and spirits. As well as bottling the club's hand-selected 125th anniversary malt and other whiskies, the Morayshire wholesaler is also sourcing whiskies from every operating Morayshire and Speyside distillery in what is believed to be a first for a Scottish golf club.
Among the extensive collection of malts on offer will be all those which have been bottled under the club's own brand and those used for special occasions, including Dailuaine, Glen Grant, Macallan and the current club whisky, Glen Moray.
"Moray Golf Club is more than just a golf club," says Stephen Rankin, director of UK sales at Gordon & MacPhail, "it's a tourist attraction. The club's objective is to have something unique to offer in order to attract tourists to the clubhouse. No-one else is doing it on the same scale as Moray Golf Club, and there is certainly no other club making such a feature of it."
In addition to the very special whisky collection, Gordon & MacPhail is also hosting a series of staff training programmes to advance the club's in-depth knowledge of various wines and liquors. As Ellwood points out, these initiatives form part of a series of improvements going on at the club. "The work with Gordon & MacPhail is part of a much broader set of objectives to improve the service we provide so we can create a clubhouse experience consummate with our two fabulous links courses," he says. "Making whisky a central part of what we offer is key to that."
The connection between golf and whisky at Moray Golf Club is written into the foundations of the club and will play a central role in the celebrations planned for the club's 125th year. "Moray Golf Club is one of the top links courses in Scotland and it is a great pleasure to be associated with the club," said Stephen Rankin. "We are working together with the club to deliver wonderful products whether it is an anniversary bottle of whisky or single-cask bottles for its members. It's a wonderful blend of golf and whisky, and you don't have to be a golfer to enjoy the wonderful environment that creates."
In what will be a memorable year for golf in Scotland, Moray Golf Club started the season in notable fashion by hosting the 77th Scottish Student Golf Championships for the 19th consecutive year. Rob Macpherson, Scottish student sport golf manager, said the club and its courses were the perfect setting for this important tournament. "Moray is a fantastic test of golf that challenges the best students in Scotland and the UK," he noted. "It is always in fantastic condition and the members always make us feel extremely welcome."
Moray Golf Club will be celebrating its 125th year with a series of events planned throughout the golfing season.
About Moray Golf Club
1) Founded in 1889, Moray Golf Club is situated in Lossiemouth, Moray, Scotland. The club has two 18-hole courses appropriately called the Old Course and the New Course.
2) A classic layout designed by Old Tom Morris, Moray's Old Course is one of the finest links courses in Scotland with one of the enduring closing holes you'll find in golf. At 6,572 yards, it has a par of 71. It is No 37 in Golf World's Top 100 Scottish Courses (2013).
3) The tighter New Course was masterminded by Henry Cotton, whose preference for precision golf can be seen in the shorter layout and smaller greens. At 6,068 yards and a par of 70, it is every bit as challenging as the Old Course.
4) Closely associated with whisky, many of the club's founders were distillers who collectively laid down various malts for the members of the club.
5) For more information about Moray Golf Club, visit www.moraygolf.co.uk
6) For more information about Gordon & MacPhail, visit www.gordonandmacphail.com
7) For more information about the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival, visit www.spiritofspeyside.com
8) For more information about Whisky Month, visit www.visitscotland.com
9) The SSS Championships were held between Sun 30th of March and Friday 4th Apr 2014. For more information, visit www.scottishstudentsport.com
About Gordon & MacPhail
Established in 1895 the family owned firm of Gordon & MacPhail has a number of business interests. It is as a retailer in Elgin; a wholesaler of wines and spirits in the UK; a bottler of Scotch whiskies, an exporter to over 60 international markets; and a distiller, owning Benromach Distillery in Forres.
Gordon MacPhail is one of the UK's leading independent specialist wholesalers and distributors, stocking over 4,500 products, including an extensive portfolio of wines, spirits and UK specialist beers and ciders.
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Office: +44 (0) 1337 858 807
Out of hours: +44 (0) 7976 369 260