Hopkins’ Navy Supreme 12 Years Old Blended Scotch Whisky

Hopkins’ Navy Supreme 12 Years Old Blended Scotch Whisky

$395 AUD

Hopkins’ Navy Supreme is a fine example of a de luxe blend from the DCL stable of lesser known brands which once dazzled the consumer. This is a 75 cl bottle at 43% ABV destined for the Italian market in the 1970’s, judging by the tax label. The brand was probably withdrawn about then. Its title reflects a common trait to associate Scotch whisky brands with the armed forces.

The original blend would have contained malts from the Speyburn-Glenlivet and Tobermory distilleries, which John Hopkins & Co. Ltd once owned, and later from Oban distillery which was licensed to Hopkins, after  the latter had been incorporated into DCL in 1931. The association with Oban distillery is clearly stated on the label.

The condition is very good despite the likely age of the bottle and the fill is more than half way up the neck.

This product is located in the United Kingdom



John Hopkins & Co. Ltd. was established in 1874. The history of the company can be found at pages 259 -260 of The Schweppes Guide to Scotch.

The company’s Glen Garry  brand dates back to April 1878 followed by its Old Mull brand which was registered in November 1880. The latter still survives under the ownership of Donald Fraser & Co., a subsidiary of Whyte & Mackay Distillers Ltd., albeit in a quite different style. However, it is Hopkins' Navy Supreme De Luxe which catches the eye of the collector today, not least because examples are much scarcer than of the two other Hopkins brands since a) it was at the premium end of the market and b) was withdrawn in the 1970’s.

As well as being blenders, this company was also distillers. They built the Speyburn-Glenlivet distillery in 1896, having acquired Tobermory distillery in 1888. Later it was closely associated with Oban distillery and successfully promoted Oban 12 Years Old Highland Malt as an early example of single malt whisky marketing.

The company’s share capital was bought up by DCL in 1916 although it was not formally incorporated into the group until 1931. DCL had seen the Hopkins export business and its strength in blending as making it something worth acquiring. It is not clear when the company ceased trading but probably in the mid-1980’s when Invergordon Distillers acquired the Old Mull brand in 1986. Invergordon in turn was bought by Whyte & Mackay in 1993.