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Issue 56 - A potted history

Whisky Magazine Issue 56
June 2006

 

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A potted history

Justifiably famous for its range of Irish whiskies, the Pot Still in Gloucester is also a haven for lovers of single malts, unusual spirits, liqueurs and bottled beers. Richard Jones reports

When Chauncey Olcott and George Graff wrote the lyrics to When Irish Eyes Are Smiling in 1912 they left the world in little doubt that the ‘sweet lilting laughter' of anyone of Emerald persuasion is a truly wondrous thing. But how is such merriment achieved?

Success at the Cheltenham Horse Racing Festival or a rugby victory against England at Twickenham followed by industrial quantities of Guinness seem to be the traditional options.

But there's a good chance that a visit to Gloucester would have a similar and far more predictable effect.

The Pot Still began life as an internet only business (www.potstill.com) around seven years ago during the height of the dot-com boom. It was founded by David Radcliffe and quickly established itself as an Irish whiskey specialist.

“Although I was born in Manchester, my family are from County Clare and I grew up with Irish whiskies,” he explains. “I started to acquire Irish bottles and my collection originally formed the basis of my stock.” Pot Still as a high street presence came a later when David Radcliffe met Tim Errock.

Tim had spent 20 years in the drinks trade variously at Oddbins, World of Whiskies at Heathrow Airport and Milroy's of Soho, before moving to Gloucester in 2002.

Although the company is still owned by David, Tim, as general manager, is today very much its public face.

The shop is situated on College Court in the historic Westgate Quarter of the city.

With Gloucester Cathedral at its heart, much of this ...

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