Of the distilleries I visited, both in Northern Ireland and Scotland, this is one that has public access and guided tours. As if it were a museum, with the friendliest staff, you are explained to the smallest detail of the manufacturing process of all whiskeys. In the final part of the visit, there is a tasting. The visitor is offered whiskeys from all other distilleries. When asked for the reason, it can not be clearer: "We do not just show the product in a location, we show the product of a whole country: Scotland". However whiskey they produce is excellent, especially the special edition of 21. A place to have fun, learn and relax ... But above all a very good atmosphere.
On the outskirts of Doune, by Stirling, lies one of the weirdest distilleries in Scotland. Along the river Teith, is this big red brick building, where the first thing that you notice is that we do not see anyone anywhere, when entering the reception we realize that visits are by appointment, which is not common in Scottish distilleries, which are usually prepared for constant visits. Secondly, the shop was closed, which makes no sense. Given that their products are not the most famous of Scotland (not even close), the secrecy is hard to understand. At least we could smell the distillation of malt (roasted barley), which gave us to understand that if you do whiskey there. We left feeling as strange as the place or corner if ... That if the landscape, beautiful.
In the center of town and heir to the monastic tradition, is the cellar and liquor factories of St. Aidan, by virtue of a craft continuing to make wine and spirituous liquors based on fruits, like strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, herbs and other natural elements. The most popular product is called Mead, a wine made of honey and other ingredients that are supposedly traditional secrets. This drink, enormously popular during the Middle Ages, with a mild delicious flavor, has remained alive and popular thanks to the work of this company over the past decades. There is another liquor, Liquor St. Aidan, which is kind of Baileys but paler and softer, also very good, though not as original or traditional as Mead. We also find traditional beers, made with imported recipes or introduced by the Vikings. In short, a place to take into account in any visit to Lindisfarne. Relax and try new tastes, as old as the island itself.
Even though the distillery is in the area of Perthshire, it is advised to access it from Stirling . Tt's not the most attractive, but everything changes when we go inside. A shop with an impressive range of all types of products related to the distillery, which also makes a good malt beer. The visit is also great. A city storytelling factory and explanation of the manufacturing processes of whiskey and beer, and jokes, a kind and relaxed atmosphere. At the end of the tasting is when they begin to tell their suppliers first Spanish barrels are mainly Jerez de la Frontera, as they have a whiskey (wonderful) aged in sherry from Jerez, and one (that only make them and is amazing) aged in barrels Moscatel wine. The distillery has been there since the eleventh century, with various forms and initially as brewery. But his last owners (1994), adapted to an environment that was familiar to the visitor, with a pleasant visit and whiskey production, which in my case, is the best in the country: different, selected and personality. For me, if not the best, is one of the best ... if we discover the world of whiskey, Tullibardine 1488 (its full name as a souvenir of the visit to the distillery of King James IV), which is a wise choice.
What's more Scottish than whisky? That's what I thought, too, so I took advantage of our visit to the Highlands and visited a distillery. Glencoyne, near Glasgow, is one of the most famous distilleries. Even though I'm not very fond of whisky, I decided to try it and learn a little more about it, besides the fact that it warms the stomach. The distillery in Glencoyne is like a postcard. It's an old building with a beautiful pagoda, fireplace, barrels, and the fountain, from which the water comes for processing. There are guided tours every hour that are very interesting, as long as you understand the guides, who speak with Scottish accents. But If you stay focused, you should be alright. The tour lasts about 45 minutes, in which they will explain, step by step, the process of making whisky. There's a gift shop where you can try one or more whiskys. According to the tour guide, you have purchase it in the beginning. For me, trying the 10 year was enough. A highly recommended experience.
Known locally as the Queen's Distillery, Royal Lochnagar has a history related to Queen Victoria and the use (and proximity) Balmoral Castle, the summer residence of the current monarchy. Currently this distillery is owned by a consortium of distilleries that a few years ago came together to become stronger and avoid possible closures. The tour is very enjoyable and the people there are very helpful. Their product is strong malt whiskey. I must admit that it is not my favorite but it is of very good quality. However, many are unaware that it produces a very unique malt whiskey specially for Balmoral Castle. It is obvious that this is the British monarchy's whiskey and often used for parties and similar events. I tried both and must admit that this second (called "Balmoral") by far exceeds the first. This has a Victorian origin. Queen Victoria visited a whiskey distillery and special custom, which according to the locals, this ensured the distillery could keep running. Another important thing - the distillery is near the river Dee and in the middle of a forest, which makes finding is not easy, but the landscapes are beautiful.
How can you go to scotland and not visit a distillery? The tourism in which everyone falls on these trips is necessary and also interesting to know the process and development of any beverage, distillery history and the brand. You forget it all after 5 minutes but you do not care much as the organizers don't seem to realise whilst they go on telling you about how old the place is and how important is the name in the area and all that... very well and when we tried the whiskey?.