Our travel to Dufftown, Scotland 17 December 2017

Starring:

Julian Vergov

Vladimir Karamazov

 

For a long time we wanted to visit Scotland. For the nature, the whisky and the Scottish people. And here came this travel. We were going to see everything we wished for. The destination was Aberdeen, and from there to the small town of Dufftown, with the oldest family distillery:

A Scottish cab driver met us at the airport. I couldn’t understand a word he said. He spoke Scottish, which is equal to Chinese for me. We stayed in the family house of William Grant – the founder and owner of the best whisky brands in the world. The house was fantastic. Everything there spoke history. Each object or furniture was antique and very valuable. Julian’s bag grazed a big lamp and the manager of house caught it just before it fell on the ground. Her hair literary stood on end, and with a masked calm she stated that everything in the house is a very precious antique. Another interesting thing was that there were huge quantities of whisky everywhere in the house. From 12 years old, all the way to 48 years old whisky. Each room had a bar with about 15 bottles of the best whisky of the family.

The next day we set off for the distillery.

This is the place where the whisky brands Glenfiddich, The Balvenie, Grant’s, Tullamore Dew, Monkey Shoulder, etc. are manufactured. For their production is used water from a spring on the land. This is the reason why William Grant had bought a large area of land, times bigger than the distillery, so only he would use the spring water and no one would overbuild around the spring and pollute it. This natural water is exactly the reason why these whisky brands are in the top 10 of the best, because the water defines the taste of the good whisky. First we visited The Balvenie distillery. An old Scotsman guided us. He spoke more bearable English, probably because of the foreigners he had to communicate with every day. In this distillery everything is made by hand, the production methodology is from the old times and everything is authentic. Our guide showed us all stages of manufacture – the barley grains staying in water, their fermentation, distillation and final bottling. When you see all this, you realize how complex the process is. As a present, they took us to the room where the whisky matures. There they gave us special bottles with our names on the labels, and allowed us to choose from which cask to fill them. We did it ourselves with a special tool. After the tour a professional tasting of several types of this whisky brand followed. When a professional points out to you where to direct your senses, you really start to feel the fine tastes and smells of the whisky. And then you see the big difference between the age, the casks it matured in, etc.

After lunch we visited the other big distillery where Glenfiddich whisky is manufactured. It is entirely modernized, though the technology has remained the same. After this tour there was again a tasting of the different ages of this whisky brand. We got presents from this distillery too – 15 year old whisky with our names on the labels.

Scotland is extremely beautiful place, full of history, beautiful nature and quality whisky. I’m glad I caught a glimpse of all this and felt the typical Scottish atmosphere.

I recommend the following whisky:

  • 15 year old Glenfiddich
  • 12 year old Grant’s
  • Monkey Shoulder

All three are very mild and aromatic. They are suitable for people who like the milder tastes.