Scotland Feed

Here are some new spirits launching. The text is taken from these brands' press releases. Berentzen Wild Cherry Liqueur Berentzen announces the introduction of Berentzen Wild Cherry Liqueur, a light fruit liqueur with the flavor of wild cherries. Made with fresh, all-natural ingredients, Wild Cherry joins Berentzen Apple and Berentzen Pear. Berentzen, founded in Germany in 1758, has been producing high quality liqueurs for more than 250 years. The core of every Berentzen flavor comes from 100% winter wheat. All natural flavors are then added. Berentzen Wild Cherry (16% Alc./Vol.) is available nationally. Available in 750ml and 1L sizes, Wild... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

This is some seriously cool stuff! A few weeks ago I tasted waters sourced from Scotland's Highlands, Speyside, and Islay regions and noticed how they brought out different flavors in scotch whisky. Bowmore's master blender Rachel Barrie recently performed a similar experiment, though she didn't name the source of the waters. But it turns out they were pretty similar to the waters I tasted, and her results echoed my own. I love not being totally wrong. But the truly exciting thing is if we combine the results of her tasting with what I've learned about regional waters of Scotland, we... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

In my search for information about water sources used for various spirits as part of the Water Project, I came across Uisge Source, a company that bottles waters from different regions in Scotland. The waters from Speyside, Islay, and the Highlands are meant to be representative of the waters used by distillers in those regions to make scotch; for dilution of drinks in the bourbon-and-branch style. As I learned in the book Whisky on the Rocks, even distilleries next to each other may have different water sources, so it shouldn't be assumed that all the distilleries in an area use... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

I attended Whiskies of the World in San Francisco this April and made a few discoveries. Here are some notes. Tasting Highlights: Exclusive Malts (and independent bottler new to the US) Littlemill 1988 24 year old was terrific. Mezcalero mezcal batch #7, which will be out soon, uses three different agaves. It is delicious. Gordon and MacPhail Old Puteney 21 Year Old was terrific, and Old Pulteney's own 21 and 30 year old expressions were a treat as always. Samaroli is an Italian independent bottler of both rare rums and scotch whiskies. I tied a Bunnahabhain and a Caol Ila... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

In my studies of water in spirits and cocktails, I picked up the book Whisky on the Rocks: Origins of the 'Water of Life' by Stephen and Julie Cribb. The book is about the geography of Scotland and how that influences the water sources for scotch whisky. It turns out Scotland's geology is pretty varied between very old (2900 million years) and new (60 million years), with large faults that divide the country into different areas, rift valleys, metamorphosed Dalradian rocks, schists, volcanic islands, and more. I don't know what most of those words mean either. Distilleries in Scotland draw... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

As I mentioned in a post about my visit to Laphraoig, only a few scotch whisky distilleries do their own malting. Floor malting is the historic technique of preparing barley for fermentation; turning it into malted barley. Most of the 100 distilleries in Scotland purchase malted barley from commercial malting plants, and most (all?) of the distilleries that do floor malting also purchase additional malt from commercial malters. Read more about floor maltings here. Today I just read about another scotch whisky distillery re-starting their floor malting, so I thought it would be good to create a list. Distilleries that... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

In June I took a short trip to Islay, Scotland to see how Laphroaig single-malt scotch whisky is made. Islay is an island off the coast of Scotland known for its smoky, peaty whiskies. What Laphroaig does differently from other scotch producers, as you'll read, is: Floor maltings Separation of malt flavoring (with peat smoke) and malt drying An uneven number of pot stills Quarter Casks Floor Malting Laphroaig is one of six scotch makers that floor malts some of its own barley. Floor malting is the historic technique of preparing barley for fermentation. Most of the 100 distilleries in... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

In tomorrow's post I'll share technical details about how Laphroaig single-malt scotch whisky is made, but how about today we just look at some pretty pictures of Islay, Scotland? Most of these were taken in Port Ellen, not far from the Laphroaig distillery. Port Ellen Hotel, Where I Stayed The big blue building is a grain silo for the Port Ellen maltings Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.