Recently 45 new members of the Keepers of the Quaich were inducted into the international society at a private ceremony held at Blair Castle in Blair Athol where the 60th Ceremony and Banquet took place. One of those members was Ian Atherton, CEO at Spirits Platform, who has been in the whisky & spirits industry for over 30 years.
Keepers of the Quaich was established by the Scotch Whisky industry to recognise the outstanding commitment of those who produce or promote the world’s finest spirit.
Ian started back in the early 80’s where he worked for Gilbeys selling both Scotch and Australian whisky, before he moved to have a long career at Suntory selling Japanese whisky. In 2016, Ian joined Spirits Platform as CEO, and today the company distributes a great range of premium spirits and whiskies, including The Macallan, Highland Park, Bruichladdich, Naked Grouse and Glenrothes to name a few.
The Society took its name from the traditional two-handled drinking cup which is described in the ancient Gaelic language of Scotland as a “cauch” or quaich, a uniquely Scottish vessel long associated with friendship and the enjoyment of Scotch Whisky. The Quaich was traditionally used as a cup of welcome with a dram of whisky for a guest. It symbolises hospitality, which is at the heart of Scottish culture.
The Society’s mission is to celebrate the values and image of Scotch Whisky as the world’s finest and most prestigious distilled spirit.
To date, just over 2,700 men and women from more than 100 countries have received the honour. Together, with the select few that are subsequently distinguished as Master of the Quaich, they represent thousands of years of shared experience and knowledge.
“Scotch Whisky was, and remains, the first global spirit and Keepers of the Quaich exists to recognise and celebrate the exceptional contribution of people working in all aspects of the industry, all over the world”, said Peter Prentice, Chairman of the Society. “At the ceremony, we inducted new Keepers from no less than 16 different countries which demonstrate the continued popularity of Scotch Whisky”.
In recognition of the 30+ years Ian has spent promoting scotch whisky in the Australian market it is a celebration and a real honour to be inducted as a Keeper of the Quaich. “Being part of a unique society of likeminded people, it gives me great pleasure to be in a position to bring the brands to life and recognise all the passion that each of the distilleries pours into producing the world’s best whisky”, said Ian Atherton.
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BELOW LEFT: From left to right: Mr Peter Gordon (Grand Master) Mrs Griselda Gordon, Mr Ian Atherton, Mrs Beth Atherton and Mr Peter Prentice (Chairman).
BELOW RIGHT: Mr Ian Atherton & Mrs Beth Atherton.