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Wort, Worms & Washbacks - Gavin Smith

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Wort, Worms & Washbacks - Gavin Smith

Postby Frodo » Mon Jun 26, 2006 5:24 am

Just finished this book - thanks for the loan Harry! Written by Gavin Smith, the book follows the career of John McDougall who was a "lifer" in the Scotch whisky industry. John was mostly a distillery manager and saw time at quite a few distilleries. Also spent some time in upper managment, so we get the picture not only of life in a distillery, but also in a blending company.

No punches are pulled, and Mr McDougall "tells it like it is". What makes this book interesting is the frequency of location change and cultural differances in different distilleries and managment style stemming from corperate structure. Comparisons between working on Islay and in Dufftown were particularly interesting - how much the differences were down to local culture I'm not sure. In fact, I think this is the biggest thing I got from the book was a comparison of different cultures for making scotch both in terms of geograghic location, and in terms of corperate climates.

An interesting read but I wouldn't put it down as a "must read".
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Postby hpulley » Tue Jun 27, 2006 1:43 am

I quite enjoyed that book and while it isn't my favorite whisky book it is quite interesting, written in more of a sequential format rather than chapters by subject.

Harry
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John McDougall's Book

Postby scotch4ever » Sat Jul 08, 2006 3:50 pm

I quite enjoyed the book. It was a refreshing change from a lot of whisky books. First, this book was not a paid advert by the big companies looking to influence our spending. John McDougall shows a side of the Whisky industry I imagine some would not want us to see. Second, I believe this is the only book that has been written by someone who has actually produced Scotch Malt Whisky. Gavin Smith is the co-author but I believe this book is more of an and auto-biography.

I do think the writing is a bit choppy, however, I think that ads to the flavor. John McDoguall is the only man alive to produce Scotch Malt Whisky in every region of Scotland which means he probably was not working on his writing skills. Just making great Scotch Whisky!

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