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The Glenrothes launches Philos A masterwork of design, a world-first for whisky and yachting

Rare whisky distillers The Glenrothes launch their masterwork of design, Philos. Philos is a sculptural gimbal-decanter designed to protect and pour the most precious luxury whisky, Demijohn1969, while at sea. Philos is a world-first across yachting, whisky and design, conceived of by The Glenrothes, and brought to life with designers Studio Indigo and makers Little Halstock. Following a preview in Saint-Tropez during Les Voiles regatta, Philos is now set to make a world tour in 2024.

Philos combines precision engineering, contemporary aesthetics, and fine craft. It is an uncompromisingly luxury design piece for the discerning whisky lover who craves the rare and unique, created for the super yacht. Philos is a deceptively simple expression of the nature of the extraordinary Demijohn 1969 whisky that sits at its heart. Its scale is impressive, and at over one metre high, is a dramatic presence of a glinting silver sphere, hand-painted
with deep blues and sea greens, set on a topographic stepped base, reminiscent of Renaissance globes. At its heart a crystal decanter, hand-blown in Portugal, contains 70cl of Demijohn 1969. This is suspended in a four-way gimbal that allows movement in response to pitch and roll. Six interlocking concave leaves form the sphere, making a protective shroud around the whisky. The sphere is set at an 23.5° angle, mirroring the rotation axis of Earth, and is made of finely finished aluminium. To pour, the decanter is inverted by hand, and locked in place with a secret key. An antique compass, made in Edinburgh in 1891, is surrounded by an aluminium bezel is set in the base of the object. Twisting the bezel engages a concealed series of metal cogs, like the gears of a clock. This raises a hidden aluminium and glass “flute” that applies pressure to the bespoke spirit-measure fitted to the mouth of the decanter, charging the spirit-measure chamber with a perfect 50ml pour. Philos comes with six decanters of Demijohn 1969 and is intentionally reloadable for that purpose.

The liquid then flows through a concealed pipe before reappearing into a waiting glass, nestled into the topographic curves of the base, a nod to The Glenrothes’ own water source. The entire process is mechanical, with neither pneumatic nor electric parts. Philos is conceived of by The Glenrothes, with design by Studio Indigo, craftsmanship and making by Little Halstock. “The question was how one could protect, and pour, the ultimate whisky while at sea, without spilling a drop? Together with our friends Studio Indigo and Little Halstock, we set about creating Philos to push boundaries, challenge convention, yet remains rooted in our heritage and steeped in craft. We strived for unparalleled beauty, attention to detail and storytelling to envelop our prized whisky, with an experience that is seamless, delightful, and with a dash theatre,” said Anna Lisa Stone, Head of Creative. Philos combines precision and poetry in a timeless way, embodying The Glenrothes’ philosophy of unparalleled beauty, attention to detail and storytelling, combining to enrich a moment in time. The world tour is set to start in early 2024.


For more information, images, process story, and interviews, contact:

Hannah Cox | Creative PR T: +44 (0) 7528004897

Notes to Editors:

About The Glenrothes.

The Glenrothes is the creator and curator of rare aged single malts, crafted by a small community of whisky-makers in the heart of Speyside. Everything they do sits on the fulcrum between daring ideas and timeless elegance.

The Glenrothes make their fine single malt whisky from their home in the ancient Glen of Rothes. The distillery was founded in 1879 by Mr. James Stuart & Co., then proprietors of The Macallan. The distillery has been an important part of the working town, from the first coopers to today’s skilled custodians. There has been a beautiful continuity in culture, underpinned by the friendship of the founders (whose graves are close by one another in the cemetery opposite the distillery) felt in the close-knit, family feel of the distillery to this day. The Glenrothes is custodian of some of the world’s oldest and finest single malts. It is one of the few distilleries in the world that still uses their own private water source for every aspect of production. Fresh spring water from the grounds of The Glenrothes Estate is naturally filtered through millions of years of volcanic bedrock as it makes its way to the distillery, resulting in water that is remarkably soft and free from impurities. This exceptionally soft water is fundamental to the elemental elegance that is the signature of The Glenrothes house style. Its qualities truly come of age after around 18 years and beyond, with a remarkable evolution in complexity and sophistication. The Glenrothes are guardians and creators of the finest whiskies to be borne from the land, created with expertise and authenticity.

About Demijohn 1969

The Glenrothes makes small batch, rare whiskies that combine poetry with precision in every drop. Their dedication to craft finds exquisite expression within every single cask. The whisky was laid down in cask on the 31st of July 1969. Nearly a decade ago, when the whisky reached 44 Years Old, the cask was identified as containing liquid of truly remarkable quality. Rather than risk losing quality or strength the whisky was taken from its cask and transported into six glass demijohns (jars) to make sure it stayed as it was, a moment suspended in time. The demijohns have been locked behind bars in the distillery warehouse cellar, thickening in dust and mystique, ever since. Master Whisky Maker, Laura Rampling, describes the liquid from Demijohn 1969 as a “unicorn whisky” – one that stops you in your tracks, then haunts you with the knowledge you will never see it again. There is an undeniable aura of magic surrounding Demijohn 1969.

Philos, the design concept

Studio Indigo guided the three narrative strands for the design, which are expressed in Philos.

Sky: celestial navigation. Navigation for the maritime traveller is essential, the earliest of adventurers would be guided by the stars. An homage to those first armillary spheres forms the protective essence of Philos.