Whisky Magazine Issue 13
This article is 13 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 © 1999-2014. 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.
Michael Jackson makes an exception for the Emperor of Japan.
Royalty continues to attach itself to me. I discovered that the organiser of my annual malt-tasting in
Minneapolis is announcing in his posters that I once performed for the Emperor of Japan. This complete untruth must have arisen from a quite different episode.
I once gave a beer-tasting at the Belgian Embassy in Japan. At that event, the newly-appointed Belgian Ambassador wore a tee-shirt announcing that his country was 'Beer Paradise'. After two or three drinks, he changed into a morning coat and striped trousers and went to the Imperial Palace to present his credentials. He did not take me, or any whisky, but he
probably breathed the sweet aromas of fermented barley malt over the Emperor. More on Japan next time round.
In Britain, my attempts to distance myself from the Queen Mother have failed. She sat next to me (well, in the adjoining box) at the Braemar Gathering (known as The Highland Games), to which I was taken by some friends from
Glenfiddich. Her face was hidden behind a large pair of dark glasses but I knew who she was. She arrived in a convoy of Range Rovers, with The Queen, a troika of princes (Philip, Charles, Harry), Prime Minister Blair and his wife Cherie.
If further clues were required to the identity of the lady in dark glasses it was provided by approximately 100 pipers playing 'Happy Birthday'. The Queen Mother had recently celebrated her centenary. I rest my case. On the day in
question, it was a mixed case of Glenfiddich and its sister malt T...