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Issue 11 - Never stumped for words

Whisky Magazine Issue 11
September 2000


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Never stumped for words

Jim Murray muses on the role of two loves in his life.

Is there a more apposite place to write about whisky than a distillery, or perhaps an adjoining warehouse? The answer is a resounding “No!”

However, the location I'm at this very moment comes a pretty close second. I'm sitting amid buildings spanning Victorian, Edwardian and more modern eras. They exude an air of charm, serenity and civility. And those buildings are associated with, and have witnessed, moments that have captured a world's imagination. This is a place where legend and history blur; where craftsmanship, art and guile combine to offer the senses a beauty too rarely found in everyday life. I am at Trent Bridge, one of the world's most famous homes of cricket.

Not Lords, or The Oval, Edgbaston, Headingly and Old Trafford. These are legendary English cricket grounds, where international games are played over no less than five days if need be to achieve a result.

But what on earth has this got to do with whisky, you may be wondering. Well, for me at least, quite a lot. You don't have to be a cricket fan to
thoroughly appreciate the world's finest whiskies, but for my money it helps.

At 13, I had no intention in being a whisky writer, neither did I aspire to be a journalist, broadcaster, Prime Minister or racing driver. There was only one thing I wanted to be - a professional cricketer. But it was not to be, although cricket was to play a vital role in the eventual outcome of my future life.

When I turned 15 and was still at school, I was commissione...

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