The Friends of the Quaich whisky club, Vancouver Island, Canada,
What an incredible whiskey adventure. Great hotels, great whiskey venues, great food and fabulous company, as well as terrific tour guides Paul and Liz and a big mention to our wonderful bus driver Mark, who showed us more of Belfast than even the locals have seen. We stayed in castles, dined in castles and imbibed in castles, Clontarf allowed us easy access to all of Dublin, and the staff were great, as was the whiskey tasting. After three days in the capital city and a wonderful reception by The Lord Mayor we were off to points south and yes much more golden spirit.
Tulamore D.E.W after wonderful whiskey and a warm glow we were off to Cashel and then to Kilkenny. Tonight we spent a lovely evening as guests of Robbie, (a charming fellow), at Dylan’s Bar and a special discount for patrons of Mclean’s Tours, well done Paul. Today we toured Kilkenny Castle, Waterford Crystal was next, then off to the Middleton Distillery for a marvellous deluxe Irish whiskey tasting, we won’t mention how many whiskies, there must be a law against it, and oh do try the Middleton Barry Crockett, wow! We stay at the Middleton Park Hotel tonight and they prepared the most succulent grilled salmon, we Canadians pride ourselves in the art of salmon cooking, but this was first class cuisine. Up in the morning and off to Galway, with a stop at Blarney Castle to climb then kiss the famous stone. No whiskey tastings today, but we invent the ‘Bus Tasting’, and so indulge while stopped and is much enjoyed by all, all except for Mark our driver and we do save a little for him when is driving day is over.
A short drive to Kilbeggan Distillery and another deluxe whiskey tasting, this time Tyrconnel, Connamara and Kilbeggan, Connamara the only peated whiskey distilled in Ireland and wonderful stuff it is, try the Turf Mor, you won’t regret it. After a drive to Donegal we stop at Lough Eske Castle, a five star hotel, living the good life here. Off to the Giants Causeway and then down to Bushmills Distillery, another super whiskey tasting, we even get some ‘New Make’ (Paul found it under the bar, shame on him), anyway it was great, a private room and I have to admit, one couldn’t drink all that was offered, one has to pace themselves responsibly. After staying the night in Portballintrae (lovely spot), we’re now into day six and still lots to see and do, a short drive to Belfast and the Titanic Exhibition, a very interesting two hours spent, well worth it and then Mark’s amazing tour of Belfast. Now we’re off to Drogheda, (after another Bus Whiskey Tasting) and an evening at the Scholars Inn, just lovely and the food excellent, try the Pork Belly appetiser, to die for. A visit to Slane Castle for yet another tasting of their house whisikies. Two nights in Drogheda and a special whiskey tasting in the hotel and a meet and greet with His Worship the Mayor of the city. Alas we are starting our last day as we drive from Drogheda back to our starting off point of Dublin, we check into our hotel and then, yes, we’re off to Jameson’s for another deluxe tasting, a great way to end our fabulous, wonderful, amazing Irish whiskey adventure.
thanks again to Paul, Liz and Mark for making our time in Ireland the most memorable of trips, we will never forget our wonderful time spent with all of you. Cheers, Mike Baird
Friends of the Quaich May 2016 tasting. Our hosts: David and Scynthia Jomini. The “Friends” get together each month for a whisky tasting, as friends of ours, they send us their reports, here is the latest news from Canada.
Canadian Rockies Highwood Distilers. Batch 001. 46% ABV. 21 yr old. Nose: Orange zest rides a surging wave of butterscotch. Rich and full with wafting vanilla, a floral bouquet. Palate: Sweet Orange zest, Oak and creamy butterscotch Bon- bons. Finish: Medium-long to long. A refreshing citrus zest with oak on the tail.
Next up: Deveron, Highland 12 yr old. 40% ABV. Nose: Licorice, Apples and oats. Sweet spices. Palate: A core of butterscotch with malt and apple strudel. Finish: Licorice, spice, vanilla and soft oakiness.
Lastly: Loch Lomond Peated single malt. 46% ABV. White Oak barrels. Nose: Pungent. Wonderful fruity nose of pears and honey. Palate: Sweet smokey, taste of fruit and peat Finish: Smoke and peat.