Whisky is Scotland’s national drink. The fiery golden nectar of Scotch whisky is distinctive and sought after across the globe. Since Doune B&B is so conveniently located you can enjoy a wee dram or two at the Deanston Distillery or local pub and walk home under your own steam. Handy with the Scottish drink driving laws.
uisge beatha – ‘the water of life’
Whisky ingredients are unique to Scotland. Golden barley, clear pure water and rich and thick earthy peat cut from the moors. And for coastal whisky, salty sea influences bought in on the air.
There are two very different types of whisky: single malt and grain. Grain whisky is faster and cheaper to produce. Popular brands often blend a single malt with a grain – usually 60 – 70% grain to 30 – 40% malt. sales. Single malts are often used to flavour the blended brands, such as Bells, Teachers, Famous Grouse and others.
Single malts are in a class of their own.
Single malts are a different matter altogether. Each malt distinctively different for any other. There are fine nuances of aroma and flavour. Each is influenced by the type of peat used for drying, the choice of oak casks used for maturing and the water used for mashing.
How to enjoy your single malt.
“There are two things a Highlander likes naked, and one of them is malt whisky.” Scottish proverb.
Far be it for us to tell you how to enjoy your drink. Most say that single malts can only be fully appreciated when drunk neat. Personally, we like a drop or two of water it lowers the alcohol strength (just a tad) and makes it easier to smell and taste the complexities in the malt, particularly salty or fruity tastes. There are all sorts of discussions about how different water types themselves can alter the olfactory experience of the self-same malt. But we’ll save that for another day.
Ice apparently locks in the flavour rather than releasing it like its warmer cousin water. It also dilutes it too much, in our humble opinion. But hey, it’s your drink. Do with it what you will. (Add coke at your own peril the locals may be very vocal).
Family of single malts
There are just four groups of single malts; Highland, Lowland, Islay and Campbeltown.
If you’re island hopping – remember Speyside whisky
If you’re staying in Doune, chances are you are on your way to the islands or highlands. On the way take your time to experience a whisky tour in Speyside.
Touring Scottish distilleries provide an in-depth insight into the art of whisky-making. Dottted along the banks of the River Spey, on the eastern side of the Highlands, are no less than 84 distilleries recognisable to any whisky connoisseur. If you are worried about drinking and driving, never fear, there are 65 miles of The Speyside Way you can do on foot, deviating wherever you fancy for a dram. Speyside whiskys are noted for their elegance and complexity
Travel the meandering roads of Speyside across some of Scotland’s most diverse and stunning landscapes. It embraces and offers up the best our wee country has to offer. Look north to find white sands and dramatic dunes. Look south to the tall forests, rugged mountains and the of course, the mighty River Spey.
Scotch whisky experience in Edinburgh.
There are more whisky tasting opportunities in Scotland than you will have time. But if you are using public transport and having a day out in Edinburgh, the Scotch Whisky Experience is to be recommended. But, for a fuller experience including a history talk and tour wait until you get to Doune Bed and Breakfast. Take a walk down to Deanston Distillery with a pleasant walk along the river and view of the castle from the footbridge. Take a dram or two and a bite to eat at the restaurant. And wonder home imbued with the spirit of possibility. Wait, that might be the booze talking.