David Stewart MBE (5)


Today, The Balvenie’s Malt Master David Stewart was presented with an MBE medal by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for services to the Scotch whisky industry at a ceremony in The Palace of Holyroodhouse, Edinburgh, Scotland.

David has dedicated almost 54 years of his life to the Scotch whisky industry. His pioneering techniques have had a profound impact on Scotch whisky production methods used today. He is renowned for his groundbreaking work particularly around ‘cask finishes’ for The Balvenie and has developed a number of award winning whiskies enjoyed and loved by whisky drinkers all over the world.

Commenting on his MBE, David said: “I feel very humbled to receive this award. I started my career as a whisky stocks clerk in 1962 and I didn’t expect to become a malt master.  I feel incredibly proud. I’ve been very fortunate to work for a family run company and it has allowed me the freedom to experiment throughout my career. It’s a privilege working in this industry so to be rewarded and recognised in this manner is very humbling.”

“I’ve received a number of messages from people all around the world. I’d like to thank those who have been kind enough to congratulate me on the award and to all of the wonderful people I’ve worked with since I started almost 54 years ago.”

David has also been recognised with a number of high profile industry awards throughout his career, including the Grand Prix of Gastronomy by the British Academy of Gastronomes, and lifetime achievement awards from the International Wine & Spirit Competition and Malt Advocate magazine. He has also been named as an Icon of Whisky and a Master of the Quaich.

Simon Hunt, CEO of William Grant & Sons, said: “David’s dedication, skill and modesty have made him one of the best-loved and respected craftsmen in the business. David’s MBE is a testament to how well respected he is. He is considered to be one of the greatest master blenders and we are incredibly proud of him”

David will also be honoured with a beautiful book of congratulations, carefully designed in the style of an original whisky store register. Over the coming months pages from the book will travel across the globe, gathering well wishes and messages of congratulations from whisky enthusiasts and The Balvenie drinkers, before returning to Scotland to be bound and presented to David.

Whisky enthusiasts around the world are also invited to raise a toast at 19.45 today (the year David was born) to pay tribute to his achievements. You can share your tribute to this legendary Malt Master using the hashtag #RaiseADram.

For more information on The Balvenie and David Stewart’s MBE celebrations visit The Balvenie UK’s website, Facebook and Twitter.

*An MBE or Member of the Order of the British Empire is a medal awarded by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to individuals recognised for a significant achievement or outstanding service to their profession or community

About The Balvenie: 

  • The Balvenie is a unique range of single malts created by David Stewart MBE, The Balvenie Malt Master, who was awarded an MBE for services to the Scotch whisky industry in the Queen. Each has a very individual taste, but each is rich, luxuriously smooth and underpinned by the distinctively honeyed character of The Balvenie.
  • The Balvenie is dedicated to the five rare crafts that are used to create The Balvenie’s distinctive taste. It is the only distillery that still grows its own barley, uses traditional floor maltings and keeps both coppersmiths and coopers on site – making The Balvenie the most handcrafted of malts.
  • The Balvenie Single Malt Scotch Whisky is produced by William Grant & Sons Ltd, an award-winning independent family-owned distiller founded by William Grant in 1886 and today run by his direct descendants.

Source: Whisky Intelligence.

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