THE TOUR; just a quickie whisky trip! The guys arrived Thursday 26 April at Edinburgh, Paul was there to meet them and all set off for Speyside. Calling in first at Perth to Greggs for some food, then away again to Speyside, first real stop; GLENFARCLAS DISTILLERY. Wet and windy today but the tour went ahead and the lads really enjoyed it, also the drams at the end! A good start to the trip - ready for more now.
Next stop was at the superb Speyside Cooperage. Watching the coopers work is a real eye opener for many people, you just don't imagine how fast they work or how they do it, a skill for sure, the lads enjoyed it here, Rolf had a go at building a cask, say no more on that score. Next - GLENFIDDICH distillery. A coffee before the tour, a quick hello and begging for freebies from Bert, then away on the tour. Paul met them at the tour end and helped them enjoy their drams (3). It was still raining! Checking in now at the hotel, another drink (beer this time) before wandering over to the Highlander Inn for dinner. The guys enjoyed a few of the drams on offer, all had dinner and sat back satisfied with the day. As Paul headed back to the hotel - aye, more work to do - the lads had another dram.
Friday 27 April; the day started in more rain! A 40 minute trip to KNOCKDHU distillery, a bloody grand tour taken by Ally, good man, good tour and great craik. A viewing of all aspects of this distillery from old to new, a tour they were not expecting, its so unlike Glenfiddich or any other distillery, warts an all! Dust an dirt, great! Drams followed of two aged drams and a new spirit dram, it was Gordon who joined us for this, a few things to collect by paul, thank you's and goodbyes as we departed for the next section of the day. DUNCAN TAYLOR ... a tour of the warehouse, bottling plant and of course a taste! All enjoyed the Black Bull blend, so much so bottles came away with us, thanks to Mark, Duncan and Euan for their time here, the lads found the visit interesting. From here to food, Deans was full of senior citizens on a day oot, so we drove to the CO OP in Dufftown for butties as a carry out. Now back to Perth, but no before another distillery, this one; DALWHINNIE. A tour and triple taste here before arriving in Perth, check in - see you later in the pub lads. Paul was meeting up with Liz tonight for a drink and to meet up with the lads again ... for some reason we never saw them! So Liz and Paul just shared a few drinks, she stayed at Pauls place in Perth making it easy for tomorrow's tour.
Saturday 28 April; Trying to get Liz moving was a struggle! Once the monster was up it was easier, met the lads at their hotel and set out for Crieff. We arrived at GLENTURRET Distillery, ah... cracked open a bottle of the Black Grouse Alpha Edition for a wee taster. All agreed it was a really good blend and one they liked, even Liz! Off they went on the tour, Paul headed up for a cuppa tea (he was still driving) and a chat to Pat (she is lovely), after a brief shopping spree Liz and the lads headed up to Paul, where we had a further 4 drams and a Ginger Grouse waiting. A good visit. Before we left, we enjoyed a brief dabble with Clontarf Irish Whiskey (Paul has a bottle with him and everyone had an expanding dram cup/key ring). As we drove onwards through the Perthshire countryside, we stopped at St Fillans at the loch for another couple of drams Alpha and Clontarf again! Then lunch at Killin, great food and aye, you guessed another drink. Moving on ... we drove to Dewars and enjoyed another Grouse in the car park, sorry lads at Dewars! From here to EDRADOUR Distillery, where Andrew and his wife (and kids) welcomed us in, a very brief tour followed a tasting session, I can actually say no one liked the Chardonay finish much. Then back to Perth for a spruce up. As the lads cleaned up, Liz fell asleep at Pauls! Waking the divel again, collected the lads and headed up to Broughty Ferry. It was Rolf's birthday, Liz had set up a dinner with a few friends in her local pub, so after drinks at the Fishermans pub, we moved to the Ship for more and our dinner. You had to be there to know what went on, a good few laughs, good grub and all watched Liz slowly sinking after too much lemonade! Paul drove the group back to Perth.
Sunday 29 April; away to Edinburgh at 10am. A quick tour by car of the old and new towns, dropped off the boys and Paul headed to go see the Old Firm game on telly. Celtic were robbed! rather than 7 nil they ended up with a 3 nil win. Och well, a great end to the game, some Glasgow humour for yer; as the Rangers fans were leaving the ground, the Celtic Park tannoy came on with "when will we see you again?" by the Three Degrees, if you dont get it, we cannee tell you, what a laugh! All met up at 3.30 and headed back to the airport, farewells and haste ye backs all over the place. Another grand tour done and dusted.