Saturday, March 10, 2007


Bits and bobs hanging around this month include a three in a row triumph for The Pot Still which was named Whisky Bar of the Year in Whisky Magazine;s Icons of Whisky competition.

Regulars and staff at the aforementioned howff were stunned when hard man turned blues player Steven Seagal ambled in on Thursday night. The bold Ken swiftly arranged an impromptu tasting session for Seagal, who was playing Renfrew Ferry.

Chivas has produced a 16YO expression of its much understated Longmorn as it seeks to reposition it as a 'super-premium malt'. It will cost £50.

March 21 is the date for a challenge hosted by Andy Bell at Oddbins in the Retail Park at the bottom of Crow Road. Andy's pitting a selection of Balvenie drams against a number of expressions from Bruichladdich. Contact the branch for tickets.

The bus is booked for the Auchentoshan visit on Saturday, March 31. Only 12 clubsters will be able to go on the day. We have nine names so get your names in if you want to be the last three. The bus will pick us up at The Pot Still in time for soup and sandwich lunch at Auchentoshan at 1pm. The Master Blender tour kicks off 45 minutes later. There will be an opportunity to try some very old Toshans as well as a visit to the shop, so bring your credit cards. Price of the tour is £40, but the club is getting it for £25. Bus is £130, divided by the number of souls on it.

Robin Russell of Robbie's Drams in Ayr is planning a follow up to his 2006 Whisky An' A' That event with an even biggest whisky fest in May - and he's keen for club members to join him. This year's event is on Saturday, May 26, from 12 to 6 in Ayr's Carnegie Reference Library.There will be food and hunners of drinks from a mix of exhibitors, including marketeers, producers and distillers, with celebrity guests and speakers. Tickets are around £12 but you'll get more than a few drams for that. If you fancy it, let me know. It's a while since we've had an away day.

Right, that's the weeding done (not by me obviously!!) so I'm off to supervise the car getting washed. 8-))


AN intrepid duo from the club defied the rail strikes to attend the Edinburgh relaunch of Balblair as a premium single malt. As you know, Balblair comes from the company that also produces Old Pulteney, one of the club's supporters this year, although they are very different beasts. Held in The Dome, a former banking hall, the great and the good gathered with Toshie and the Blackster to sniff, sip and swallow a trio of malts released as vintage expressions. The 1979, 1989 and 1997 came from three casks out of 1062 sampled by distillery manager John Macdonald and blends manager Stuart Harvey. A new bottle and packaging inspired by the distillery’s Pictish links will help the malt stand out on the shelves.

The three expressions are:

Balblair 1979­ ­ - amber in appearance with radiant golden honey highlights. Warm aromas of honey, toffee and vanilla that come from the long years of maturation in American oak barrels. Cloves, oranges, bananas and pears can also be detected. Sweet, honey vanilla flavours combine with cloves and spices leading to a rich, full-bodied, long-lasting, finish. Retails at £84.99.

Balblair 1989 - mid-amber in appearance with honey-gold highlights. A full-bodied malt with aromas of raisin, green apple and hints of banana and lemon. The American oak barrels lend a warm toffee, vanilla fragrance. On the palate there are raisins and fruits with a rich spiciness leading to a long, complex and ultimately smooth finish. Price £39.95

Balblair 1997 - subtly amber in appearance with rose-golden highlights. Full-bodied and fused with the aromas of pineapple, apricot and lemon to create a long-lasting sweet finish. On the nose, the American oak barrels produce an inviting, spicy fragrance. Hints of oak, spice and raisin combine with the sweetness of vanilla to create a long-lingering, creamy smooth finish on the palate. Yours for £27.99.