Whisky Magazine Issue 92
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Regis Lemaitre has used his passion for whisky to convert hundreds of recluctant drinkers to the joys of Scotch whisky. Dominic Roskrow reports
When Regis Lemaitre was in his early 20s he decided to go and live in Spain. The Frenchman doesn't explain how he ended up in Scotland but you can bet your last Euro it was something to do with whisky. And he's been in Scotland ever since.
Now 40 years old, Regis runs a businesses called Whisky Mad and Whisky Kilt and his life is dedicated to educating people into the joys of Scotch whisky.
But he made his name working in two of the world's most famous whisky and golf bars, at the Old Course Hotel at St Andrews and at Gleneagles Hotel.
His success has been extraordinary. Having been appointed assistant bar manager at St Andrews he was promoted to manager within two months and has not looked back since.
Unsurprisingly he is very proud of his achievements there.
“In 1997 the Road Hole Bar which I had managed for more than five years at that point won the biggest accolade possible at the time,” he says.
“It was the first hotel whisky bar of the year in Scotland. It was achieved because the bar stocked an expression of every distillery in Scotland, proprietary or independent bottling. And it included open, closed, dismantled and mothballed, we had at least one expression on the shelf.” Regis moved on to Gleneagles, where during three years he developed the whisky range. But he really came in to his own four years ago when he founded Whisky Mad, working as an independent consultant and whisky educator. His work takes him across England, Belgium, Luxembourg, France an...