Grierson's No 1 Vat Scotch Whisky Playing Cards (2)

Grierson's No 1 Vat Scotch Whisky Playing Cards (2)

$17 AUD
We don’t at the moment have any bottles of the old No 1 Vat whisky but this pair of old playing cards gives an idea of what these handsome bottles looked like.


Grierson’s, as it was originally known, was a firm of London wine and spirit merchants, dating back to 1820.  It was first located in famous Regent Street before moving to nearby Haymarket. Its warehouse was located under Waterloo Station, the scene of a famous heist of some 1000 bottles of whisky in 1946.

The firm took on the longer name of GRIERSON OLDHAM & ADAMS

in 1962 when it became the importer of Irish Mist. In 1966 it became part of the John Holt Group, which in turn was incorporated into the highly controversial Lonrho multi-national.  What happened thereafter is unclear, but Grierson, Oldham & Adams (Sales) Ltd. was incorporated in Ireland in 1973, opening an office at Grierson House in Dublin. However it was dissolved in 1989. Whether the move to Ireland had anything to do with Irish Mist remains lost in the mists of time, but that excellent product was sold in 1985 by its original owners and the Grierson operation in Dublin was wound up a few years later.

What the connection with another London wine and spirit merchant, Grierson-Blumenthal Limited, is unclear. The latter was founded in 1947 and eventually became part of the Forte Group. It subsequently moved from Willesden in North-west London to Guildford in Surrey, being dissolved on 28 July, 2015. The Forte involvement was interesting in that it was a personal share holding by Charles Forte and his fellow directors, with Grierson-Blumenthal supplying wines and spirits to the Forte hotels and restaurants. This cosy arrangement came under scrutiny in the late 1970’s compelling the company to be incorporated as a wholly owned Forte subsidiary. It was said to have had its own brand, Grierson’s No 1 12 Years Old (vatted) Malt. Hopefully, someone can confirm that.