Whisky Magazine Issue 35
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Michael Jackson's summer season, boosted by Bell's
The first place I recall drinking beer that had been finished in a whiskey cask was Goose Island, the pioneering brewpub in Chicago. Now I can buy Innis and Gunn Oak Aged Beer, from Scotland, in my local Safeway in London. I hope you remember where your heard these things first.
I was in Goose Island the other day when in walked my American friend Krecje. He was wearing shorts, so I knew it was not yet Thanksgiving. Knowing when holidays are due is not my forte. When Krecje's knees vanish I can reflect upon the summer gone.
In London, my friend Billie drinks only gin-and-tonic from the summer solstice to the Equinox, at which moment of equilibrium she reverts to Scotch whisky.
In vain do I persist that the summer is the Whisky Season, the time of year when you can hunt the spirit to its source at festivals in Kentucky, on Islay and on Speyside. Summer then segues into fall and winter. From the Glorious 12th to St. Andrew's Day, Hogmanay, Burns' Night and St Patrick's. Sounds pretty convincing to me. That's the Whisky Season, too, isn't it?
This year, I invited my partner Freckles to the Islay Festival. She accepted. A holiday was due, she assured me. This meant, even on Islay, no working.
It was her first time on Islay, and she loved it: visited Ardbeg and Bowmore, discovered the reborn Bruichladdich. I enjoyed it, too, but was caught working: I allowed nose and notebook to coincide at Bruichladdich.
Freckles informed me that another holiday was imminent, and a further...