If you had to define Scotland in a few words, what would you say? You would probably talk about the Highlands, about kilts and castles, and maybe about whisky.
Scotland produces some of the best whiskies in the world and Scotch whisky is a product with its own personality, unlike like any other in the world, many times imitated but rarely surpassed.
Scottish distilleries have the custom of allowing visits, so if you travel to Scotland, do take a whisky distillery route, you won’t regret it. It is also an excellent opportunity to try great whiskies without having to buy the whole bottle; some of them are really expensive.
Although there are distilleries throughout Scotland, the most important production whisky resides in Speyside, the River Spey in the north of Aberdeen, in a spectacular setting, where castles crown the landscape. The entrance to this route, departing from Aberdeen, will lead us to the north, where the Grampian Mountains are.
From Benromach continue with a visit to the Museum of Dallas Dhu Distillery, which offers a great perspective of the history of whisky and its elaboration.
Then you can get to Glen Moray and then to Strathisla, the birthplace of the famous Chivas Regal, or Glen Grant another of the most famous distilleries in Scotland.
If you want to know more about the production of whisky, get to know the house rules of Speyside Cooperage and how they make and prepare the barrels in which some of the best whiskies will age. Of course, keep in mind that these are not the only artisans who make barrels to age the whisky, some of the best known brands buy used barrels of sweet wine, such as Sherry, Porto or Sauternes to take advantage of the aromas remaining from the wines aging in them.
We continue with the distilleries: almost all of them have a tasting room available for visitors where, for a good price, you can try in situ some of their whiskies, some are even specially made to be sold only at the distillery. So take advantage and visit as many as you can: from Glenfiddich to Glenlivet and distillery Cardhu that manufactures the whisky with the same name.
TIP: All towns in the area have some tourist bus service for visitors hosted closer to the villages to the most attractive distilleries. Bus prices are good and tickets easy to book, as there is usually no overbooking.
Do you drink whisky? If so, what is your favourite brand?