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Issue 67 - I like to think I started malt whisky cocktails

Whisky Magazine Issue 67
November 2007


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I like to think I started malt whisky cocktails

Ian Wisniewski talks to Ranald Macdonald of Boisdale Restaurants,London

IAN: Running a Scottish restaurant with a specialist selection of Scotch whisky seems like a reward rather than a job?

RANALD: I think a lot of people would assume the way I spend my life is one constant reward.

Making a restaurant work is simply providing excellent produce and a lovely atmosphere, but doing it in the context of running a business.

You've got staff, margins, suppliers, customers, the building, there's a huge number of variables, and all those variables have to be sandwiched into a one and a half hour or two hour experience.

IAN: Various Scotch whisky bars have generally been library style or covered in tartan,whereas you have your own style at Boisdale.How important do you think this can be in terms of introducing Scotch whisky and Scottish food to a broader audience?

RANALD: We've never had a designer, I've evolved the way it looks and I think of ourselves as being quite egalitarian, you get a nice mix of young and old, affluent and not so affluent, I think everyone quite likes that, it creates a buzz. In the evenings you get jeans and tee shirts, and suits, and I think we've definitely introduced a lot of people to whisky, I certainly have. If anyone tells me they don't like whisky I'll pour them something light and delicious, and take them through how to nose it and add a little water.

IAN: As customers are more experimental when ordering cocktails,and so more likely to try a spirit they're not familiar with, do you think whisky cocktails are a goodw...

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