No Age Statement Whiskies are whisky expressions released without a listed age. Sometimes known as flavour lead expressions* these single malts are blends of different age whiskies.
In recent years NAS whiskies have become far more common, and incredibly polarising. Distilleries and brands argue that the lack of age statement allows the blender to create flavour and expressions that would suffer if restricted by age. Critics argue that instead they result in young whiskies replacing older expressions.
*by Marketing teams
What are age statements?
Whisky age statements indicate the age of the youngest cask used to create a single malt*.
*Single malts are actually blends of whiskies from a single distillery, rather than the content of a single cask. Standard expressions such as the Laphroaig 10, Bunnahabhain 18 or the Glenfarclas 25 are all marriages of multiple whisky barrels.
Are all no age statements bad whiskies?
Absolutely not, several distilleries such as Kavalan have never released an age statement, while other whisky brands have produced incredible, award winning, age free expressions.
The controversy behind the introduction of NAS whisky generally stems from three concerns :
- A number of core expressions have been replaced by no age statements in recent years, often at steep mark ups
- The lack of transparency allows distilleries to overcharge for younger whisky
- A perceived threat to quality such as the Macallan decline correlated with the move to nas
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