Whisky Magazine Issue 25
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Regular readers of this magazine are no doubt aware that, if they have the cash to hand, there are distilleries out there simply waiting for a decent offer.
This has manifested itself in several well-documented distillery purchases, of which Ardbeg and Bruichladdich are but two. At the time of writing, rumours are rife about another high-profile acquisition. All of these have a common thread. They are all examples of distilleries returning to Scottish ownership.
Why is Scottish ownership important? For the same reasons US ownership of US distilleries is important. There are others more qualified to answer this question at length. But the basic answer appears to be “because it damn well is!” For a more erudite and fuller answer, I suggest you turn to Pip Hills' Scots on Scotch (recently reissued by Mainstream, see News). I read it, for the first time, flying up to Arran recently. It is a collection of essays from a disparate bunch, to say the least. From Derek Cooper, a contributor to Whisky Magazine but who will be associated forever with The Food Programme on BBC Radio 4, to the literary critic David Daiches. From Russell Sharp, formerly Chief Chemist at Chivas Regal to the poet Hugh MacDiarmid.
The biggest problem with most whisky books (and, paradoxically, sometimes their greatest strength) is that they are the thoughts and words of one individual. It is more thought-provoking to have the opinions of many; you will agree with some and, doubtless, you will disagre...