The term 'monkey shoulder' harks back to whisky making heritage, a reference to a condition that maltmen sometimes picked up while working long shifts, turning the barley by hand. It had a tendency to cause their arm to hang down a bit like a monkey’s, so they nicknamed it 'monkey shoulder'.
One day, Willaim Grant (makers of Balvenie & Glenfiddich) legendary Malt Master David Stewart decided to create the world’s first 'triple' malt, by combining single malts from three of Speyside’s finest distilleries (you can guess who two of them are, we bet).
The three Speyside malts are then blended together in a small marrying tun where they hang out making eyes at each other for anything from three to six months. There’s not a single drop of grain whisky in Monkey Shoulder, and the chosen malts mature in first fill ex-bourbon casks. William Grant coopers repair these ex-bourbon casks so that they impart a smooth and mellow vanilla flavour into the resting malt whisky.
When it’s ready and taste tested, this triple malt whisky gets bottled and receives its triple monkey badge.