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Issue 67 - Dutch whisky delights

Whisky Magazine Issue 67
November 2007


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Dutch whisky delights

Tell Wullie Macmorland that whisky doesn't go with food and he'll laugh at you. He'd know;he's been serving the two together in the Netherlands for nearly 20 years. Our man finds out more

Ask restaurateur and whisky aficanado Wullie Macmorland how it is that a Scot is successfully running a restaurant in the Netherlands and the short answer is that he stopped there on the way to Switzerland more than 30 years ago and never quite left.

The full story is of course far more complex than that.But two pretty much unscheduled visits to The Netherlands were what led to the foundation of the successful business he now runs.

Wullie,now aged 49, trained as a chef in Scotland in the early 70s, learning French cuisine before heading over to France.When he finally returned to Scotland, though, he found it hard to settle back in.

“So I set out to Switzerland to work but stopped in Amsterdam for a few weeks and never really left,”he says.

So lost to a life of wacky baccy and loose women then? Not quite.After another spell of travelling and working he returned to The Netherlands to try his hand at running a business.

“I opened a bistro in 1989 and it was unqualified disaster,”he recalls.

“There were too many restaurants doing the same sort of thing.” ButWullie was to have a turn of luck, and although he almost certainly doesn't see it this way, it came courtesy of the English.The town he was living in,Alkmarr, held an English week to acknowledge its twinning with the English city of Bath.

“And people kept saying to me ‘you're English,what are you doing?' That of course is like a red rag to a bull and I got so fed up with it that I made our restaurant a ...

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