After almost two decades of everything flowing Scotch whisky’s way, two big nasty clouds are about to darken the horizon—Brexit and the Trump-imposed 25% tariff on single malt exports to the US.
One of my favourite lost whisky distilleries was actually one in Courier Country, namely Stronachie, situated between Milnathort and Path of Condie in the Ochil Hills.
In earlier times, duty free shops at airports and elsewhere were magnets for just about everyone.
If one has the money and the time, one can seek out many wonderful whiskies to be enjoyed, be they single malts or blends or blended malts or (in rare instances) single grains.
It is almost 80 years since the start of the Second World War, an event that had a huge – and in the final analysis benevolent – impact on the Scotch whisky industry.
There seems to be a strange, semi-obscure world of science and medicine that forever appears to be seeking yet another reason why we should shun alcoholic drink. The latest manifestation was a paper published some weeks back stating that even one pint of beer or glass of wine adversely affected a person’s “sense of agency”.
I have frequently commented on the Scottish boom in new distilleries, whether whisky or gin. Yet it pales beside the current Irish distillery boom.
Kalamazoo is a town in Michigan, midway between Chicago and Detroit, known to millions thanks to the Glenn Miller hit, I Got a Gal in Kalamazoo.
Located 20 miles south of Dublin, Powerscourt is one of Ireland’s finest stately homes, has one of the world’s top 10 gardens and, since last year, boasts its own whiskey distillery.
Some 22 years ago I toured Ireland researching its 30-plus lost distilleries for a book. Among them, I recalled two vividly – Tullamore in Co Offaly and nearby Kilbeggan, Co Westmeath – because they were still standing but utterly abandoned and dilapidated. So it was a joy to revisit them recently and see both back in operation.