Spring 2024 Banquet

Autumn Banquet 2022

Banquet Overview

On Monday 3rd Oct 2022, we once again gathered at Blair Castle, the ancient home of the Earls and Dukes of Atholl, and the spiritual home of the Keepers of the Quaich.

The Grand Master, The Duke of Argyll, presided over the Ceremony and Banquet.

The top table hosted the Duke of Argyll, the Duke and Duchess of Fife, the Earl of Dalhousie, the Earl of Erroll and Sarah and Jamie Troughton alongside our Chair Ian Smith and his wife, Caroline. In addition, we welcomed Chris Porter, the current Master of the Worshipful Company of Distillers, and Beanie Gerdaedts-Espey in her new role as Managing Director of Distillers' Ventures Limited.

We awarded the role of Honorary Keeper to our two Guests of Honour, Nick Kuenssberg OBE as Chair and Nicola Benedetti CBE as Honorary President of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

At the 64th Ceremony of Induction, there were eight new Masters and forty-seven Keepers of the Quaich from twenty-two countries around the world.


Nicola Benedetti learned to play the violin at the age of four. Born to an Italian father and Italian-Scottish mother in North Ayrshire, she was co-opted as leader of the National Children's Orchestra of Great Britain at the age of eight. She won the BBC Young Musician of the Year Award at the age of sixteen.

From 1997, she studied at the Yehudi Menuhin School for Young Musicians under Baron Menuhin and Natasha Boraskaya in Surrey. She has since performed with the London Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Scottish National Orchestra, Scottish Opera, and at the Last Night of the Proms. In 2017, she was awarded the Queen's Award for Music, the youngest of the twelve people to receive it since the award was established in 2005. For improving the lives of deprived Scottish children through Sistema Scotland and the Big Noise Orchestra, she was also awarded the annual Royal Medal of the Royal Society of Scotland in 2019.

A global champion of the arts, Nicola was earlier this year invited to become Honorary President of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS) and in October 2022, was appointed the 11th Director of the Edinburgh International Festival.


speeches 023 (1)NICK KUENSSBERG OBE


A prominent member of Scotland's business community, Nick Kuenssberg has been Chairman of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland since 2016. He is also an Honorary Professor in the Centre for Business History at Glasgow University.

We were delighted to induct both Nicola and Nick as Honorary Keepers.

Dinner Menu

Ballintaggart home baked sourdough with whipped butter and served with Great Glen charcuterie and olives.

Locally foraged wild Perthshire mushrooms with kohlrabi pickle and served with a confit egg yolk and an Isle of Mull cheddar crisp.

Served with The Singleton of Glen Ord Celebratory Bottling

Ballintaggart Haggis

Served with Deanston 18 Year Old

Seared loin of Atholl estate red deer served with smoked beetroot, salsify and pomme dauphine with sloe gin and juniper.

Served with Keepers of the Quaich Seventh bottling Tamnavulin 22 Year Old

Whisky baba with fermented cherry and topped with white chocolate and toasted almonds.

Served with The Royal Salute 25 Year Old Treasured Blend 

Glen Lyon coffee and a selection of teas served with Aberfeldy tablet.

Original Bean Virunga dark chocolate from Cocoa Runners


A new premium addition created in tribute to the crafters and grafters throughout the Famous Grouse history who worked tirelessly to find "the one”. With selective maturation in sherried American oak casks paying homage to our roots of sherry cask expertise. The result is a velvety smooth and well-balanced whisky, with notes of honey, vanilla, fudge and sweet fruits.


Our unique blend of the world's finest single malts is extra matured for six months in 'Naked' first-fill Oloroso sherry casks. This process adds a layer of rich and fruity flavour, creating a great tasting, versatile whisky, perfect for enjoying your way. Naked Malt is simply made to be enjoyed, however and wherever that may be.


Taking inspiration from the sweet fruity aromas that fill the still house, this is a balanced and smooth whisky. On the nose it suggests dried fruits and crystalised orange peel, with mid-notes of vanilla fudge, evoking the warmth of the still house in winter. After sampling, nosing and tasting spirit from over 200 casks, our blenders selected just twelve second fill sherry casks to mature this slow crafted whisky. At second fill, the casks add a fantastic depth of flavour to this unique expression, however it crucially maintains its unmistakeably Glen Ord spirit character. Richly flavoured, vibrant and smooth with a balancing spiciness, this ageless Singleton of Glen Ord has real presence and is a moment to savour.


This beautiful single malt whisky is from Deanston distillery and aged for 18 years. The nose yields honey and fresh stone fruits that burst out of the glass with creamy vanilla and the signature waxy orange note of Deanston. Floral notes, chewy biscuit and toasted cereal emerge with a hint of spicy cloves. The palate is zesty with orange then stone fruits at first. A second sip gives honey, beeswax and creamy toffee. The waxy mouthfeel creates a rich fruity and sweet sensation on the tongue. With water the spicy notes from the aroma become more noticeable, cloves, gingerbread and white pepper complement the sweet and fruity flavours to give a deep well-balanced whisky. The finish is long and complex with dried apricots, candied orange peel and a warm ginger finale.


This cask has been hand selected by Richard Paterson from Tamnavulin distillery and has been matured for 22 years with the last two years into a German Spatburgunder ripening Pinot Noir cask. The nose is elegant with ripe raisins, succulent peaches, Victoria plums dipped in kirsch with a hint of raspberry coulis. With time glacé orange segments, luscious cape gooseberries and bitter chocolate emerge. On the palate there is Madagascan vanilla, tangs of Parma violets, truffles and rosemary with a kiss of toffee apple and Doyenne pear. Then freshly baked ginger cake, toasted pistachios, hot brioche drenched in heather honey and chocolate orange. A splash of water will also help to tease out a finale of soft Pontefract cakes, Demerara sugar, Black Forest panna cotta and loganberries.


Selected tonight as a tribute to Her Majesty's Platinum Jubilee, the Treasured Blend is Royal Salute's first permanent 25 year old expression. Crafted by Master Blender Sandy Hyslop as a tribute to the Crown Jewels, this opulent blend features some of the finest & rarest whiskies from the Royal Salute Vault - all aged for over 25 years and expertly orchestrated to create an exceptional liquid with a glorious depth of flavour. The nose erupts in aromas of stewed fruit and blueberry jam, with liquorice, cinnamon and marzipan – with sherry and acacia honey. In the mouth, juicy prunes, treacle toffee and dark chocolate, rounded off with caramelised figs. A smooth clean finish has spice across the palate, making this a dram of right royal distinction.

A Memory to Cherish

Banquet Photography

A full selection of banquet imagery is available to download or purchase.