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Whiskymag 137 July _Aug 2016

Taiwan King Car Distillery

Kavalan Malt Whisky

Kalvan Taiwanese Whisky


The King Car group, with more than 2000 employees, was established in 1956 and has business interests in several fields, principally in : beverages, food, biotechnology and aquaculture, It is particularly famous in the Far East for its RTD coffee brand “Mr. Brown” which is now available in Europe.


Kavalan distillery lies in the north-east of Taiwan in the Yilan chosen for its abundant supply of cold, spring water flowing through the Snow Mountain region.


Built in what can be considered a record time with a construction period lasting only nine months. The first drop of the new make spirit was drawn from the spirit  safe on 11th March 2006 at 1530 hours. Apart from purchasing copper stills abroad, Kavalan distillery brought in a professional whisky consultant to implement the highly specialized distilling and blending skills to  integrated with its own 30-year beverage manufacturing experiences.


The distillery is named after the Kavalan, the earliest tribe that inhabited Yilan, represents sincerity, honesty, and the spirit of step-by-step cultivation. Kavalan distillery continues the tradition of passionate commitment to creating the premium whisky.


The first bottle of Kavalan was released in December 2008 and now it is the best-selling expression. The recipe of classic Kavalan is complex and contains different types of casks- fresh bourbon, fresh sherry and refill casks rendering the spirit a multilayer of fruity and floral notes.


There is also a visitor centre on site, decorated with marble internally and dressed stone externally. More than one million visitors come to the distillery per year. It comes as no surprise that The Whisky Magazine named The Kavalan distillery in the 2011 World Icons of Whisky, “Whisky Visitor Attraction of the Year”.


To help produce the high quality whisky, Kavalan invited a world-class specialist to join its R&D team to advise the distillery on set up and production, this specialised knowledge was thus passed over to Kavalan distillery.


The quality of water is the key to the success of whisky. The distillery draws spring water from the Central Mountain and the Snowy Mountain Range to produce the whisky that matches Taiwanese tastes. Kavalan distillery is located at the cross boundary of Yilan Mountain and the sea. When the Pacific Ocean mist and the Snowy Mountain wind interact, the air circulating around of the casks will enhance the effects of “breathing”.


The “deeply asleep” whisky inside the casks will absorb the natural essence from the interactions of mountains and water, therefore creating its rich and charming characters.


Kavalan has been very meticulous with its cask selection. The single cask range was  launched in the summer of 2009. The limited edition Solist Fino is matured in top Fino Sherry butts that were used for the wine making. A recent expression Solist Vinho is fully matured in a used American oak wine barrel.


The oak casks are made from American oak that has been seasoned in the open air for at least 24 months. This reduces the astringent effect of tannins and releases more vanilla spiciness and hints of herbs. After their use for wine maturation the casks are carefully shaved inside then gently toasted over an oak chip fire. This converts wine residues into a complex mixture of fruit flavours.


Kavalan Single Malt Whisky


Colour; Lively and passionate amber.


Nose: Clean, elegant, floral, (pleasant and refreshing fragrance of the butterfly orchid), Fruity and seductive, with hints of honey, tropical fruits (mango in particular), pear drop, vanilla, coconuts and suggestions of chocolate,


Palate: A hint of sweet mango juice with that spicy complexity and gentle warmth on a medium, oily and citrus finish.


Kavalan Concertmaster Port Finish Taiwanese Single Malt Whisky Tasting Notes;

Port Cask Finish.


Appearance; Pleasant brownish red.


On The Nose; Tropical fruitiness with honey, vanilla coconut and candy floss.


Palate; Rich bodied with natural sweetness and complexity.


King Car Whisky Distillery:

Address: No.326,

Sec. 2, Yuanshan Rd.,

Yuanshan Township,

Yilan County 264,



Visitor center, Tours Available Please contact the distillery before travelling.


Taipei Head Office:

Address: No.230,

Sec. 3, Roosevelt Rd.,

Zhongzheng Dist.

Taipei City 100,

Taiwan (R.O.C.)

Tel:0800-588-911 Miss Liao,

(02)2365-6551#6184 Miss Wang

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