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October 14, 2014

The Glenlivet Nadurra Unveils Hand­-Crafted Dram Chair By Award-Winning Designer Gareth Neal

By Neharika Padala

The Glenlivet, the single malt that started it all, has today unveiled the result of an exciting collaboration with award-winning British designer Gareth Neal a master of modern craftsmanship. Inspired by The Glenlivet Nàdurra, a connoisseurial whisky crafted in small batches using traditional techniques, The Glenlivet Nàdurra Dram Chair is a stunning chair intended for relaxation and enjoying a ‘dram’ of whisky, expertly hand-crafted by Neal to imaginatively capture the spirit of Nàdurra (meaning “natural” in Gaelic) in both function and form.

The original design will be on display for a limited period at The New Craftsmen store in London’s Mayfair, after which time it will be relocated to its residence at The Glenlivet Distillery in Scotland. A limited number of chairs can be commissioned to order at a cost of £6,200 each, with orders open only to those who have registered as Guardians of The Glenlivet – see for information and to register.

The Glenlivet Nàdurra is made using traditional methods from the nineteenth century, capturing the original passion and production techniques inspired by The Glenlivet’s founder George Smith and producing a standout whisky which perfectly piques consumer interest in contemporary crafted brands with heritage and authenticity. Similarly Neal – commissioned by The Glenlivet Nàdurra through The New Craftsmen, who represent and sell the work of some of Britain’s finest craft makers – has used these timeless attributes to inform an imaginative, contemporary design that is equally at home in the outdoors as it is in an urban apartment. Just like the whisky by which it is inspired, the chair’s distinctive character is steeped in the artisan and, while enjoying a dram of The Glenlivet Nàdurra, you can be enveloped in the materials intrinsic to its creation.

Design Maker Gareth Neal seated on his The Glenlivet Nadurra Dram Chair low resThe chair is entirely bespoke, hand-crafted in the oak which is crucial to the maturation of the prestigious single malt whisky. A dram can be nestled comfortably on the chair’s arm (the choice of which side being given to those commissioning an order), while the seat comprises selected Aberdeen Angus leather steeped in oak bark via a natural process carried out by the only remaining oak tannery in Great Britain. Copper rivets, mirroring the copper stills used in the whisky production process, ensure that the chair powerfully withstands the test of time and, for chairs that are made to order, each will be etched and numbered ensuring subtle variations and originality for every one of the collector’s items.

Neal, whose visionary and inventive design and workmanship has been exhibited at the world’s most prestigious museums and galleries, including the V&A Museum in London and Museum of Art & Design in New York, said: “As a design maker my core values are people, process and place.  Spending time with the handful of people who make The Glenlivet Nàdurra and witnessing first-hand the time-honoured processes that are used to create this fine whisky was truly inspiring, and I have used a similar, hand-crafted approach to my own production methods for this unique dram chair.

“Enjoying a dram is a moment of escapism and I wanted to immerse the sitter in the materials that have brought this moment of pleasure about, in absolute comfort. The piece is so lightweight that it can literally be transported to a location of choice. I imagined a dramatic vista of the Scottish Highlands but the collector will create his own perfect Nàdurra moment.”

Explains Nikki Burgess, Global Brand Director of The Glenlivet: “Neal and The New Craftsmen were obvious partners to commission to make The Glenlivet Nàdurra Dram Chair. They are passionately committed to a shared vision: combining the unique heritage of British craftsmanship with a sense of modernity. The partnership has resulted in something naturally crafted that is surprising and unique – a timeless original”.

The Glenlivet Nàdurra is the most natural expression of The Glenlivet. It is batch produced at cask strength using traditional methods and is bottled without chill-filtration, which offers additional complexity, body and a richer texture. The Glenlivet is expanding the Nàdurra range with two permanent additions; Nàdurra Oloroso, matured exclusively in sherry casks, will extend its presence from Travel Retail into domestic markets worldwide, while Nàdurra First Fill Selection will also be launching worldwide from September 2014.

Watch the ‘making of’ film here using the following code:

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(Source: The Glenlivet)


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