Malt Whisky Society of Finland
on tour with MCLEANSCOTLAND
First day; meet everyone at Glasgow airport. Load up the coach and away we go! The group arrive back of 1.30pm so we didnee have too much time left - first call; Auchentoshan Distillery for a tour and drams. What does it mean to be the only Triple Distilled Single Malt In Scotland? Auchentoshan new spirit is the highest distillate of any single malt distillery in Scotland, strong notes of fruit and citrus are revealed, making Auchentoshan the smoothest, most delicate tasting single malt scotch whisky. And that is why Auchentoshan is highly acclaimed across the world since 1823. Och we did agree! A grand tour and a coupla tastes then back on board for scenic wonders to rival the drams, as we headed through the "rest and be thankful" mountain pass, next stop; Loch Fyne Whisky Shop in Inveraray. Richard did us proud, opening specially for our group and giving us a wee taste of Inveraray! One of the best whisky shops I know, and certainly THE best on the west coast. While the group enjoyed a dram or four, I called in on a friend in town for a cuppa tea! For a half hour stop, we lasted over an hour in the shop! Aye well ... From Inveraray we then travelled to our hotel in Tarbert - a nice wee place on Loch Fyne. A good dinner and guess what? more drams!
Day 2; an early start as we headed doon to Campletoon to visit Springbank. A really good tour taken here which everyone enjoyed 100%. Followed of course by sampling. We took the 1pm ferry to Islay, landed, met Lindsay (chatted with Lammie) and caught another ferry to Jura. Local buses we had arranged, met us and took us directly to Jura Distillery for a special tour. And what a tour it was, the usual (but longer) distillery tour, followed by at least 6 cask tastings from Willie (manager) in the warehouse, hell that was good. Even then, as we went back to the shop, we had 4 more drams, a wee carry out each with a bottle in! Many thanks go to Willie Cochrane and Fiona for a brilliant - unforgettable tour and visit. A wee bit knackered we all set out for the ferry, where our coach was waiting on the other side and off to Bowmore for the night, dinner and drams followed. Can you see a pattern emerging here? I think Lindsay knew what was in store now for tomorrow!
Day 3; Caol Ila, Bruichladdich and Bowmore today - all starting with Bowmore, I (Paul) was a wee bit peeved here, as they would not allow us to start earlier than booked, even though it was a group private tour booked well in advance, and ... they let us wait in the rain for ten minutes at the door, at the end of this after buying many product, no bar code for a jacket we wanted, not the best start. Caol Ila followed, much better! quick tour as requested and drams, great! Doon all the way to Ardbeg, och they were so busy we only stayed for photos (an unscheduled visit anyhow). Back to Bowmore and after a telephone call to our hotel, collected butties, water and crisps for the journey to Bruichladdich. Another excellent tour here, we were treated very well, I must say personally (Paul) I am no much for gin, tried it though, courtesy of Willie. A long stay then back to the hotel to rest, or thats what they all thought, we had arranged with Lindsay for her to play the pipes, it went down really well with everyone! More food and drinks followed, of course... will Lindsay ever be the same? I can honestly say, a good day had by everyone. I retired to my bed handy, well - I did have some work to do (thanks Liz, do I ever get a holiday?).
Day 4; taking the early ferry back to Kennacraig, time to relax (recover) on the 2 hour crossing. Back on dry land we headed to Glasgow, dinnae spare the horses Alistair! We had an appointment with Jan at Douglas Laing & Co. We split up into two groups, one did a quick city tour and the other a drams tasting tour! We then swapped aboot, er, I stayed with Liz (who had now arrived to join the fun complete with broken foot and on crutches) for both sessions, well, someone has to! Luggage in at the hotel, a quick change and shower before heading oot into wild Glasgow, the Mussell Inn actually for a pre planned whisky dinner. A pal of ours met up, brought some bottles and we sat doon to a grand dinner with a dram at each course, what a way to go! We all enjoyed great food, some beers and (thanks Don) 6 drams as our finale session.
Day 5; och well, time for all to head home, see you again for more drams! A late start for Liz and Paul, before the train back to Perth, with a thought; are those Fins as mad as the Swedes? We love em all. Mika, you and the society are welcome anytime, in fact we have booked Islay again for October.
Paul. Many, many thanks Paul to yourself, Liz, Alistair and Lindsay on Islay for the fantastic Scotland experience our members got during last week! Superb arrangements, excellent overnight stay picks - we will be back again soon!!! MIKA.
Hello Paul! The tour was so amazing!!! I think you'll be seeing a lot more Finns since we had such an amazing time... :) I've only now realized where I was, and the whole trip seems like a dream, it was a dream come true. Take care!! Linda ps. say hello so Lizz for me, she was a riot :)