Whisky Magazine Issue 23
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Spring is here. It must be as the various Distillery Managers, Master Distillers and Master Blenders have been dusted down after their winter hibernation in preparation for the first round of festivals and events. First stop was Whisky Live, London in March (see pages 22 to 27). Thence a migration to San Francisco, for Whiskies of the World Expo. Then the festivals on Speyside and Islay. There is also an event in Denmark to consider and one in Limburg, Germany. These guys do work hard. It's not all beer and skittles, you know.
The ‘wishful thinking' syndrome is quite entertaining. “Wow! Imagine being a Distillery Manager / Whisky Distiller” say the hard core enthusiasts. Yes, imagine it. Being on-site 24 hours a day, seven days a week in case anything goes wrong. Constantly having senior management urging you to increase yields, to use cheaper materials, to jeopardise quality in search of quantity and, ultimately, profit. Having to motivate a small committed team that has been told that production is being cut. Kicking your heels in the silent months. Staring out of the window at the incessant rain. Yet, of course, there are compensations. The pace of distillery life seems comforting. The knowledge that you are working in a timeless industry, doing what people have been doing in, more or less, the same way with, more or less, the same raw materials and equipment for hundreds of years lends a sense of perspective, history and heritage.
It strikes me that whisky in th...