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Distillery Tour at Aberlour

Distillery Tour at Aberlour, Speyside

This morning, I collected my guests from their hotel in Leith and then drove north,through Perthshire with first stop at Pitlochry for coffee. Then on further north to our destination of Charlestown of Aberlour on Speyside. Here we had a light lunch at the Pantry Restaurant followed by a short walk around town and then on to Aberlour Distillery to join the 2.00pm tour. Read more on Whisky Tour, Speyside, Scotland…

An Cala Guest House

An Cala Guest House, Grantown on Spey

 Today, was the final day of our three day whisky tour. The final two nights had been spent at the above very comfortable 5 star rated  An Cala Guest in Grantown-on-Spey  where we well looked after by hosts Val and Keith assisted by two delightful shitszu dogs. An Cala is Gaelic for refuge or harbour.

Our first distillery of the day was Aberlour which ranks a medium-large whisky producer in Scotland with a particularly strong presence in the French market assisted by the fact that ownership rests with Pernod-Ricard.

We joined a small group tour of just four persons under guidance of expert guide, Julian. Unfortunately, photography is restricted at Aberlour. We were, of course, entreated to the usual tour of the mashing, fermentation, distillation and maturation processes incorporating samples. The tasting at the end featured an unusual dimension in the form of specially made chocolates to complement each expression.

Image below shows some of the distillery buildings. Despite its considerable size, the distilling operation at Aberlour is operated by just a handful of employees. Read more on Speyside Whisky Tour, Scotland…

Loch Ness Monster

Loch Ness Monster, Scotland

This evening, I am focusing on the elusive Loch Ness Monster and its watery habitat which attracts many thousands of visitors each year whose spending underpins the local economy.  In modern times the ‘monster’ gained credibility as a function of the famous 1934 ‘surgeon’s photograph’ which was subsequently proved to have been faked ( a child’s toy).  To the best of my knowledge and belief no authentic and verifiable photographs or film of the monster have ever been taken which leaves the famous 1934 image as possibly the greatest PR stunt of all time, acting as catalyst for a huge tourist industry in the Highlands of Scotland. In simplistic terms the Plesiosaur, which the Monster is widely acknowledged to be, died out along with its dinosaur relatives many millions  of years ago whereas Loch Ness was created only about 10, 000 years ago at end of the last Ice Age. In any case the murky and peaty waters of the loch would not provide enough food for a breeding colony of creatures. Monster speculation aside, Loch Ness is a pleasant enough place and I do enjoy visiting the area, usually taking guests to Castle Urquhart which offers the best views of the Loch. Read more on Loch Ness Monster…