Sunday, 6 May 2007

Malty mania

One very happy Red
Originally uploaded by Lidwit.

Okay so we've covered some of the walking stuff on Islay... all well and good as that was the main purpose of the trip. The Moonwalk is approaching and we definitely need the training. But reason number two was definitely the draw of the peat. There are an astonishing number of distilleries on this little island and we made a point of getting within visual distance of at least a few. First on the list was Laphroaig - Red's tipple of choice. She says she enjoys the medicinal quality... haha - I think it smells like hospitals myself. Way too much bromide in there for me but it is definitely a favoured drop by many.

Port Ellen, Islay

The thing to bear in mind of course, is that peat is everywhere on Islay. You only have to look at the colour of the burns as they bleed into the sea to realise just what a rich resource it is. Small wonder there are so many distilleries when you think about it.

Our first glimpse of these was from the ferry as we arrived. There are four distilleries on the south of the island that serve as mile markers along the coast.

Ardbeg distillery

Lagavulin distillery

Laphroaig distillery

Port Ellen, Islay
And the now closed, Port Ellen, although the Maltings in Port Ellen are still very much alive pumping the glorious smell of peat smoke into the air and providing the remaining distilleries with their principle ingredients.

Bruichladdich distillery

Of course no trip would be complete for me without a wander past Bruichladdich. Humina humina. Yup I like it light and sweet and the free taster of their 12yr old malt put wings on our feet for the return walk to the hotel that day. It's what's known as piggy heaven - you take something you love and just wallow in it. Some people like mud - me I prefer a dram... hic!

Think Pink

So all in all we did not too badly - we missed Kilchoman, Bunnahabhain and Caol Ila but that just gives us even more of an incentive to return... oh yeah like we really needed another one. Meanwhile we take great pleasure in remembering our Think Pink haze of delirium as we hiccupped our way back to the hotel for dinner... oh yes... and more whisky... hic!

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