Whisky Boys – Back to School (again), Week 3

How time flys when your’e having fun!!

It’s Tuesday 27th September and Whisky Boy Nicola has just picked me up to drop her husband Scott and myself off at Croy train station for our weekly trip into the Glasgow Metropolitan College.

It’s week 3 of our Advanced Whisky Trail course being run by renowned Scotch Whisky writer, industry expert and Master of Malt, John Lamond.

Our evening kicked off with the majority of the students (most of us mature students) purchasing a signed copy of John’s new book “Le Snob Whisky“, this book can be pre-ordered on Amazon prior to it’s launch on the 1st October 2011, priced at £8.09.  Why not buy a copy now, register for the initial Scotch Whisky Trail Course in January 2012 and ask John to sign it for you!!

After the flurry of activity at John’s desk was over, we moved quickly onto this weeks topic:

Regionalisation – Does it Exist?

We started by looking at the Whisky regions of Scotland as defined in Statue on on 1st December 2009, the Act carries the boundaries as follows:

(a) “Campbeltown” comprising the South Kintyre ward of the Argyll and Bute Council as that ward is constituted in the Argyll and Bute (Electoral Arrangements) Order 2006;

(b) “Islay” comprising the Isle of Islay in Argyll;

(c) “Highland” comprising that part of Scotland that is North of the line dividing the Highland region from the Lowland region;

(d) “Lowland” comprising that part of Scotland that is South of the line dividing the Highland Region from the Lowland region;

(e) “Speyside” comprising the wards of Buckie, Elgin City North, Elgin City South, Fochabers Lhanbryde, Forres, Heldon and Laich, Keith and Cullen and Speyside Glenlivet of the Moray Council as those wards are constituted in the Moray (Electoral Arrangements) Order 2006

and

the Badenoch and Strathspey ward of the Highland Council as that ward is constituted in the Highland (Electoral Arrangements) Order 2006

From here we discussed some of the characteristics normally associated with these Scottish Regions, this included Dry & Light Lowland Whiskies, Sweeter & Full Bodied Highland Whiskies and Dry & Sea Tainted Whiskies from Islay.

From here we moved onto my favourite part of the evening, you guessed it, “The Tasting”.

This weeks tasting was a bit different, we were all given 6 Whiskies to taste and through the use of The Aberlour Wheel and Diageo’s Single Malt Whisky Flavour Map, we were to identify the region associated with each Whisky, there was also an odd one out, a Whisky that would be different from the other 5, would we be able to find it??

After some serious nosing and tasting, myself and Scott agreed that Number 3 was the odd one out, both agreeing that due to it’s peaty, smoky smell & taste, this could only be from Islay, and possibly from the Bruichladdich Distillery.

We were unsure of some of the others but based on Number 6 being identified as a Highland Whisky and possibly a Dalmore, we both decided that there were 5 Highland Whiskies and 1 Islay Whisky. After openly discussing the nose, palate & finish of each Whisky amongst all the students, John revealed the results of each Whisky:

1. Tobermory 10 Year Old
2. Arran 10 Year Old
3. Bruichladdich Waves
4. Old Pulteney 12 Year Old
5. Dalwhinnie 15 Year Old
6. Dalmore 12 Year Old

advanced-whisky-trail-blind-tasting-week-3

John we tip our hats to you yet again, for providing another fine selection of Whiskies for us to taste. Even Scott the Whisky Apprentice is starting to develop a taste for Whisky and was quick to help me finish off the Bruichladdich Waves in exchange for his Dalwhinnie 15 Year Old.

Next week (4) sees us at the half way stage of the Advanced Whisky Trail Course and we will be looking at Glasses and Their Influences.

If you would like to try any of the Whiskies Scott and myself tasted this evening, use the shop window below and remember to tell them that the Whisky Boys sent you!!

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