the perfect whisky drinking
(Image credit: Glenmorangie)

To create the perfect whisky drinking environment for the modern gentleman, Wallpaper* commissioned four designers – including Kilian Schindler from Kkaarrlls, Adrien De Melo, Jarrod Lim and Hanne Enemark – to create one-off accessories for Glenmorangie. Pictured are a carafe and tumbler by Hanne Enema and bottle glorifier by Adrien De Melo

We weren’t surprised to discover that premium Scottish whisky brand Glenmorangie treats the design and presentation of its classic single malt – from bottle, to glassware, to accessories – with as much care as it does the whisky-distilling process itself.

The fact is that it is these aesthetic niceties, the stuff that surrounds Glenmorangie during its slow, deliberate, creative procedure – the stills and vessels that contain it, the artisan casks in which it matures – that are key to its development from the beginning.

Consider how Glenmorangie sources the wood for its all-important casks. With around 60 per cent of a single malt’s flavour coming from the casks, the quality of wood used to construct them is crucial. A journey to Missouri’s Ozark Mountains finds the Tain-based team hand-choosing slow-growth oak trees with a highly porous nature. The selected wood is then given a two-year period of air-seasoning, heavy toasting and light charring to maximise its ageing potential. It is then fashioned into bespoke casks, which are leased to bourbon producers for up to four years for seasoning. Only then can each be called a Glenmorangie ‘designer cask’, and even then it is only used twice. This must be what Glenmorangie means when it says that its premium product is ‘unnecessarily well made’.

But Glenmorangie’s traditional techniques do not render it a backward-looking outfit. On a mission to undo malt whisky’s reputation as a loner’s tipple quaffed in dimly lit rooms full of musty books and hanging pheasants, the Scottish company has made capital out of its growing profile in the Far East as a sociable lubricant, consumed – table service style with bottles to the fore – in specially designed receptacles.

Last year, to further emphasise its quest for modernity, Glenmorangie commissioned London-based designer Philip Michael Wolfson to create a functional sculpture – a piece of conceptual poetry, if you like – called SoundForm FLUID. Deriving its form from the graph of the sound wave generated when whisky is poured into a crystal glass, it enhanced the already sensual whisky-drinking experience. 

Impressed by its attention to detail and with the notion of equipping the modern,
single malt-imbibing gentleman with a full complement of bespoke concepts, Wallpaper* embarked on an ambitious collaboration with the distiller, commissioning four designers – Kilian Schindler from Kkaarrlls, Adrien De Melo, Jarrod Lim and Hanne Enemark – to create one-off, whisky-drinking accessories. Alongside a carafe and tumbler, a lamp and a chair is a bottle ‘glorifier’. Never heard of one before? Well, thanks to Glenmorangie, you have now.

A floor lamp

A floor lamp by Kilian Schindler and chair by Jarrod Lim create the ideal ambience for enjoying Glenmorangie's classic single malt

(Image credit: press)

the glass

(Image credit: Hanne Enemark)

Carafe and tumbler by London-based designer and glass-blower Hanne Enemark. Her designs for the Glenmorangie and Wallpaper* collaboration are bottom-heavy classics, with an added drop of liquid glass running down the sides in gold. Working with the material in both its soft, flowing state and its cold, hard form, she creates shapes that emphasise the purity of the glass

water and barley

(Image credit: Adrien De Melo)

‘Source water and barley are the fundaments of whisky. They both grow or rise from the earth,’ says industrial designer Adrien De Melo, explaining the design concept of his bottle glorifier. ‘These two ingredients constitute the main atoms of the complex, yet simple and elegant nature of Glenmorangie’

wooden seat

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Jarrod Lim’s chair for the ‘Modern Gentleman’ project incorporates references from the classic Orkney chair, traditionally made out of driftwood by resourceful island crofters, with its slatted wooden seat. While its fish-scale tessellations are inspired by the racks of barrels ageing in Glenmorangie’s warehouses. Plans for a high-backed version are in the pipeline.

concave copper interior

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Kilian Schindler graduated from the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design in 2008 before setting up his own studio with German design collective Kkaarrlls. Inspired by Glenmorangie’s stills, the tallest in Scotland, as well as the golden hue of the whisky itself, Schindler has contributed a floor lamp to our ‘ Modern Gentleman’ project. Hardedged and industrial, it has a glowing, gilded, whisky-ish warmth emanating from its concave copper interior.

Rosa Bertoli was born in Udine, Italy, and now lives in London. Since 2014, she has been the Design Editor of Wallpaper*, where she oversees design content for the print and online editions, as well as special editorial projects. Through her role at Wallpaper*, she has written extensively about all areas of design. Rosa has been speaker and moderator for various design talks and conferences including London Craft Week, Maison & Objet, The Italian Cultural Institute (London), Clippings, Zaha Hadid Design, Kartell and Frieze Art Fair. Rosa has been on judging panels for the Chart Architecture Award, the Dutch Design Awards and the DesignGuild Marks. She has written for numerous English and Italian language publications, and worked as a content and communication consultant for fashion and design brands.