Whisky Magazine Issue 11
This article is 16 years old and some information provided may be time sensitive. Please check all details of events, tours, opening times and other information before travelling or making arrangements.
Copyright Whisky Magazine © 1999-2017. All rights reserved. To use or reproduce part or all of this article please contact us for details of how you can do so legally.
I was lunching with my publisher recently in a trendy London restaurant, as one does. It was the kind of place which is favoured by advertising account executives and merchant bankers; my publisher was hoping to persuade the chef/owner to write a book. While we were waiting for him at the end of the meal, we fell to chatting with the wine waiter. I enquired about the demand for malt whisky, of which he had a pretty decent selection, largely independent bottlings. “Over the past year,” he said, “there has been an increasing number of women ordering one or two glasses of malt with their lunch – usually well diluted, often with ice – rather than wine or mineral water. They say it isn't so soporific as wine, yet compliments what they are eating. He indicated a couple of svelte Blair babes in sharp, dark suits who were scrutinising their bill with a calculator.
“It is too early to tell whether this is a trend, but it's not an isolated incident. The straw poll I took for this editorial reveals that similar sightings of style-conscious, 30-somethings have been made in stylish restaurants in Glasgow, Newcastle, Manchester and Edinburgh as well as London. And, of course, Scotch (usually blended or 5-year-old malt, drunk long, with a mixer) has been a fashion accessory in Spain, Italy, France and Greece for years.
There was a time when Scotch (and soda) was only drunk by women of the mettle of P.G.Wodehouse's ‘aunts' – formidable ladies in tweeds, who stood no nonsens...