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Article: Interview with Selim Evin, founder of Chapter 7 Whisky

Interview with Selim Evin, founder of Chapter 7 Whisky

Interview with Selim Evin, founder of Chapter 7 Whisky

One of my favourite bottlers is Chapter 7 Whisky. I've been working with their founder, Selim Evin, since the very start of So I was glad to sit down with him, share a dram, and learn more about his journey into whisky.

Selim Evin, Founder of Chapter 7 Whisky

Thanks for joining us, Selim. How did you get into whisky?

My first distillery visit was an amazing experience. I was 16, and my grandfather took me on a trip across Scotland, visiting many distilleries over ten days. That trip left quite a mark on me and a real appreciation for whisky and its rich heritage. It was the spark that led me to become an independent bottler.

Your nickname is "Malt Chaser". How did you get this nickname and what does it mean to you?

The nickname "Malt Chaser" reflects my hunt for unique and special whiskies. It's not just about finding rare bottles; it's about discovering the stories and characters behind each cask. It's always an exciting chase, and one that fuels my passion and curiosity.

And how about the name Chapter 7, where did that come from?

The name "Chapter 7" was inspired by literature and the seven ages of man, as described in William Shakespeare's monologue from "As You Like It." The monologue outlines the stages of life a person goes through, and I feel whisky goes through similar stages. From its infancy to its prime, each stage of whisky's life tells a different story. The name "Chapter 7" represents this idea. Each cask, each bottle is a chapter in a larger narrative, capturing the spirit at its prime and telling the story of a whisky in its most exciting stage.

Independent bottlers bring a unique dimension to the whisky industry. How do you see Chapter 7's role in the industry?

Independent bottlers like Chapter 7 add diversity to the whisky world. We provide access to unique expressions and rare finds that might otherwise go unnoticed. By bottling single casks and crafting small batches, we offer whisky enthusiasts a chance to explore new flavours and stories. It's about pushing boundaries and offering a fresh perspective on whisky.

What do you look for in a whisky to bottle?

The selection process is a combination of intuition, taste, and knowledge. I'm drawn to lesser-known whiskies and distilleries, and I let the whisky tell its story through its flavour. The history of a cask adds depth and context, but taste is always the guiding factor.

I don't necessarily aim for a specific taste profile. Instead, I focus on variety. When bottling a batch, I choose a mix that offers something for everyone, both taste-wise and price-wise. From peated Scotch to Sherry cask finishes, I try to present a diverse range that appeals to different preferences. It's about embracing the uniqueness of each cask and creating a collection that resonates with a wide audience.

You sometimes bottle "ideal strength", can you tell us more about this?

The use of "ideal strength" came from my feeling that full cask strength whisky can sometimes be too strong for some drinkers. By slowly diluting the whisky to a level where it performs well without overpowering the palate, we create a more accessible and enjoyable experience. It's about finding the perfect balance that showcases the whisky's character.

What can whisky fans expect from Chapter 7 in the future?

The future holds exciting possibilities. The Monologue range will continue to spotlight single casks, while the Anecdotes will feature small batches of experimental blends. Our new line, the Prologue, will focus on young whiskies with exceptional character. Each release offers a unique exploration of whisky, and we'll continue to expand our collections.

Finally, Selim, your journey from a young boy visiting distilleries with your grandfather to becoming the Malt Chaser is inspiring. What advice would you give to someone looking to start in whisky?

Follow your curiosity and never be afraid to take risks. Passion is a powerful motivator, and if you're driven by something you truly love, the journey becomes an adventure. Stay true to your vision, embrace challenges, and never stop chasing what excites you.

Selim, thank you for sharing your insights, passion, and the incredible story of Chapter 7. We look forward to the continued adventures of the Malt Chaser.

Thank you for having me. Here's to more discoveries and great whisky!

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