A Seven-Minute Ritual

Why 9:53pm Inspired The Royal Salute 30 Year Old Key to the Kingdom

It’s an ancient ritual that has happened every night since the 16th century and it inspired this whisky.

Why 9:53pm Inspired The Royal Salute 30 Year Old Key to the Kingdom
The Royal Salute 30 Year Old Key to the Kingdom pays homage to an ancient ritual.

Every night, at exactly 9:53pm, the Tower of London plays host to an ancient ritual that has been going on uninterrupted — an enemy skirmish delayed the ceremony once during World War II — since the 16th century. The Chief Yeoman Warder, accompanied by a military escort, makes his way from the Byward Tower to the Queen’s House. Along the way, he locks a series of gates. This elaborate ceremony is aptly called the Ceremony of the Keys, and is the inspiration for the latest release from Royal Salute — the 30 Year Old Key to the Kingdom.

Royal Salute is closely linked with British royalty. It was originally crafted to mark the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953 and has continued to pay homage with a variety of releases. The latest is no exception. Master blender Sandy Hyslop sourced some of the finest whiskies, all aged for a minimum of 30 years, across Scotland to create a blend filled with notes of pears, blood orange and honey that simmers into a gorgeous smoky finish.

Hyslop comments, “The new blend pays tribute to one of the longest-standing ceremonies still practised by the British Monarchy and captures the celebratory energy and classic refinement of the Ceremony of the Keys. Each whisky that was selected to create this expression is of the utmost quality. From the start of production through to bottling, it was a thorough process that required constant care and attention.”

The box with the Royal Salute 30 Year Old Key to the Kingdom.
The illustrations within the box are inspired by the different elements present in the Ceremony of the Keys.

And, as with any Royal Salute whisky, the 30 Year Old Key to the Kingdom is housed in a gorgeous black, handcrafted granite-effect flagon. The hilt of Scottish swords inspired the stopper, which is reminiscent of a jewel. The show-stopping bottle will look perfect on a whisky aficionado’s shelf. Open the box that houses the whisky and you’ll discover a decorative illustration inspired by the Ceremony of the Keys. There are horns, royal roses, swords, crests and, of course, keys.

Pour yourself a dram of this whisky, wherever you are, at 9:53pm. The ceremony lasts for seven minutes, but we think you’ll savour this for far longer.

The whisky retails for $530 and is available at select luxury retailers. If you prefer shopping from the comfort of home, drop them an email at hello[at]le-cercle.sg and the team will attend to you.