Ardgowan Expedition selected for prestigious international design archive


Ardgowan Expedition 20-year-old continues to gather plaudits.

The limited-edition blended malt, which contains whisky that has visited the South Pole, was released in September 2018.

Since then the premium dram has scooped a bronze medal in the Scottish Field Whisky Challenge, and now the packaging design – by our Dublin-based brand agency Clickworks – has  been selected for the 100 Archive 2018, a prestigious curated showcase of what are considered the best 100 Irish designs in a given year.

Here distillery CEO Martin McAdam meets with communications manager Neil Davidson to find out how distillery plans are progressing.

Neil: Martin it is a while since you released Expedition. Have you been happy with the results?

Martin McAdam: Yes, absolutely. We obviously don’t have our own whisky yet and we wanted to create something that reflects what we want Ardgowan to be in 20 years’ time. With our first blended malt whisky we achieved the Bronze Award at the Scottish Field Whisky Challenge. We think that was a tremendous result for the first outing.  

Neil: Why do you think you did so well?

Martin McAdam: What we want to do with every whisky we release is to start with the liquid. Working with people like Willie Phillips and now Max McFarlane you get to know that a quality product has to be the starting point. They both drum this into our team every day.

Neil: Tell us about the packaging and the design you chose for Expedition.

Martin McAdam: Again, it is about quality and authenticity. Expedition as a product had to reflect the achievement of Robert Swan OBE and his son Barney. By walking across the Antarctic using only renewable energy it shows the realities of what can be achieved by using the alternatives to fossil fuels. The packaging reflects the preparation needed for an expedition and the style and quality of expedition equipment.

Neil: What is important about the recent selection for the @100archive?

Martin McAdam: When we set out last year to create something special for our Expedition whisky we decided to work with the team at Chemistry and Clickworks. I personally have worked with the team for over 30 years and they have become great friends. As this is a startup they committed some sweat equity to the project. The brief was to define the packaging to reflect the quality of the liquid and the achievement of the South Pole Energy Challenge. I believe the team did that.

Neil: What is the purpose of the @100archive?

Martin McAdam: The @100archive is a living archive which presents and discusses the past, present and future of design and communications. For Expedition to be selected it means that we have done something right. The packaging for Expedition is very strong statement and a design which we believe will pass the test of time.

Neil: Thank you Martin McAdam, our CEO at Ardgowan Distillery Company Limited. We will get together again soon to find out what else is happening at the distillery.

Ardgowan Distillery