Top Ten Whiskies of 2015

The first full calendar year of writing this blog has been a great experience, and over the past twelve months, I’ve sampled some bloody superb whisky.  In fact, I’ve tasted very little bad whisky.  So, with us reaching the end of the year and everybody being in a reflective mood, I thought I’d take the
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Octomore 07.2 from Bruichladdich

At this year’s Islay Whisky Festival, I finally did something I thought I’d never do – I broke my Octomore virginity.  Regular readers of this blog will know I’ll take a sweet, fruity Speyside malt over a peat monster any day.  But with drams of Octomore available at Bruichladdich’s festival open day for just £5
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Bruichladdich High Noon

I might have said in Tuesday’s post that the Islay Whisky Festival wasn’t all about the whisky but that doesn’t mean that I didn’t taste some cracking drams.  Each year, the eight distilleries on Islay release a special edition whisky which can only be bought on the island…well, most of them (I’m looking at you
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Islay Whisky Festival 2015

Despite being a big whisky fan and a west coaster, 2015 marked the year that I finally made it to the whisky island of Islay.  The small island – located off the Kintyre Peninsula – has whisky at its core, with eight distilleries across its rugged 25 miles.  In celebration of this, each year, the
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Bruichladdich Port Charlotte Scottish Barley

Bruichladdich is fast becoming one of my favourite Scottish distilleries.  Labelling themselves as “Progressive Hebridean Distillers”, the distillery successfully combines traditional values, with a willingness to experiment.  This ethos has been forged by former Bowmore manager and master distiller Jim Ewan, who has managed to completely revitalise the brand.  Jim announced his retirement this week,
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The Rise and Rise of Scottish Gin

Think gin and you immediately think England, or be more specific, London.  It was first brought to the UK from Holland by William of Orange when he took the British throne in 1689.  The tipple remained popular right through to the early 20th century, hitting its peak in the 1920s and 1930s, when it was
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Bruichladdich Classic Laddie

Juxtaposing traditional values with the willingness to experiment, the approach to whisky making embraced by Bruichladdich Distillery is one which the entire Scotch Whisky industry could learn for. Under the stewardship of Whyte & Mackay, the distillery was neglected during the 1980s and 1990s, before being bought over by Murray McDavid in 2000.  With the
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