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Issue 70 - Technical perfection

Whisky Magazine Issue 70
February 2008


This article is 10 years old and some information provided may be time sensitive. Please check all details of events, tours, opening times and other information before travelling or making arrangements.

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Technical perfection

The Glenrothes is one of Scotland's biggest distilleries but is an enigmatic one too,its doors generally closed to visitors and its malts relatively unknown.Dominic Roskrow visited it.

Iam halfway up a stairwell in semi darkness and all I can smell is…how can I put this politely – horse dung.

In front of me is Ronnie Cox, Whisky Magazine's Scottish Ambassador of the Year.Behind me is former Whisky Mag editor and industry jack in the box (he pops up all over the place) Marcin Miller.

“So what can you smell, Dominic?”Ronnie asks.

Oh dear.

“Horse shit!”he declares before I can reply, and laughs heartily. It is at this point I realise I'm in the presence of madmen.

Let's have some context here.

The plan had been for a small press group to travel to The Glenrothes for a tour and tasting then dinner, but things have gone pear-shaped due to a series of unfortunate occurrences and our group has been growing smaller at a speed and for an array of reasons that even Agatha Christie would have struggled to match.

So much so, in fact, that by early evening we are reduced to me and my hosts, with the promise of another writer in time for dinner.

And it was while deciding how best to fill in the spare couple of hours between our arrival at the distillery and that of the other journalist that I noticed the doorway to the Cutty Sark visitor centre.

As The Glenrothes doesn't normally welcome visitors, this was intriguing. Surely worth further investigation?

You betcha!

For the Cutty Sark visitor centre, pumped horse manure scent and all, is a triumph of tacky technology and awesome oddness as you're likely to find.

At the top of the stairs Ronnie open...

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