Distillery visits from Edinburgh

  • SlàinteMhath
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    Member SlàinteMhath
    Joined: 09.10.2016Posts: 134CollectionOslo Whisky ClubRatings: 153
    Hello my fellow malt mates,

    me and my wife are travelling to Edinburgh over Easter 2017 and we originally intended to participate in a group bus tour to Speyside visiting about 8 distilleries. As bookings for the mentioned tour are very few and the likelihood of the tour being cancelled is high, I am looking for alternatives to use the time as meaningful as possible.

    We intend to use Edinburgh as our 'base' although we can also imagine to travel to Glasgow or Elgin if that gives us better opportunities. We will not rent a car, as drinking and driving is not a very good combination.

    Hence, my questions:

    1. What day trips or distillery visits from Edinburgh or Glasgow could you recommend?
    2. Should we consider travelling to another location (Speyside?) to give us better opportunities?
    3. Which places are easy to reach by train/bus?

    Looking forward to hear some valuable advice from you!

    Cheers!

    That's what I do. I drink, and I know things.” (Tyrion Lannister)

    >>> Whisky reviews by Slàinte Mhath <<<

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  • bedlamborn Member bedlamborn Joined: 18.09.2016Posts: 611Collectionbedlamborns CollectionRatings: 21
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    @SlàinteMhath
    I have been thinking of using Rabbies small bus tours to some distilleries, as I visited Isle of Skye last year with them and they have good guides.

    https://www.rabbies.com/en/scotland-tours/from-edinburgh/day-tours/discover-malt-whisky-day-tour

    And they also have longer tours such as

    https://www.rabbies.com/en/scotland-tours/from-edinburgh/2-4-day-tours/speyside-whisky-trail-3-day-tour

    That is the only advice I can give to you. There are more whisky tours but I don't know about them.
  • horst_s Administrator horst_s Joined: 01.07.2014Posts: 507Ratings: 702
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    @SlàinteMhath
    I would have a look at Auchentoshan which lies close to the Erskine Bridge.

    I have no idea about the public transport system in the UK. We always drive by car and have some empty miniature sample bottles with us. Distilleries tend to be built at rivers in the countryside. Most of them are not easy to reach and taxis are quite expensive.
    Kind regards, Horst Luening, Master Taster, Whisky.com
  • SlàinteMhath
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    Member SlàinteMhath
    Joined: 09.10.2016Posts: 134CollectionOslo Whisky ClubRatings: 153
    , edited February 16 2017 at 2:42PM
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    I have been thinking of using Rabbies small bus tours to some distilleries, as I visited Isle of Skye last year with them and they have good guides.


    Thanks! We considered our options and booked the Speyside Whisky Trail (3 days). The tour includes:

    Dalwhinnie
    Benromach
    Cardhu
    Glenlivet


    Not sure why Cardhu is part of the tour - there are far better options around. Speyside cooperage and Gordon & MacPhail (Elgin) are also included. Following Horst's advice, we also booked tours to:

    Glenkinchie
    Auchentoshan


    Of course we will visit Cadenhead's in Edinburgh. Boy that will be a tough choice what bottles to pack into our baggage... Hello Norwegian customs!

    :banghead:

    Slàinte!

    That's what I do. I drink, and I know things.” (Tyrion Lannister)

    >>> Whisky reviews by Slàinte Mhath <<<

  • Mathis Member Mathis Joined: 26.10.2016Posts: 105Ratings: 33
  • bedlamborn Member bedlamborn Joined: 18.09.2016Posts: 611Collectionbedlamborns CollectionRatings: 21
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    You will have to let me know who the Rabbies tour were as I am thinking of booking it myself for this summer.

    I would love to visit Benromach and also Gordon & Macphail.

    So much whisky for yo to smuggle into Norway...


  • SlàinteMhath
    Topic creator
    Member SlàinteMhath
    Joined: 09.10.2016Posts: 134CollectionOslo Whisky ClubRatings: 153
    , edited February 16 2017 at 6:58PM
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    Of course, I will write a little summary of the tour when I am back!

    Benromach is probably the coolest distillery on the list and I am planning to buy a bottle there (maybe the 15-year-old expression?) after I fairly enjoyed Benromach 10yr. Furthermore, I am thinking to buy an older Caol Ila bottled by Gordon & MacPhail or Cadenhead's, if my budget allows. Auchentoshan offers to bottle your own whisky straight from the cask (80 GBP) but I am not quite sure if it's worth the cash... Depends on the age, I guess.

    That's what I do. I drink, and I know things.” (Tyrion Lannister)

    >>> Whisky reviews by Slàinte Mhath <<<

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  • bedlamborn Member bedlamborn Joined: 18.09.2016Posts: 611Collectionbedlamborns CollectionRatings: 21
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    If you are lucky Benromach may have special bottlings only available at the distillery. I bought the Benromach 15yo when I visited London last year but it is still unopened :frown:

    Gordon & Macphail or Cadenhead should have some older Caol Ila. Must be some in Scotland.




  • SlàinteMhath
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    Member SlàinteMhath
    Joined: 09.10.2016Posts: 134CollectionOslo Whisky ClubRatings: 153
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    You will have to let me know who the Rabbies tour were as I am thinking of booking it myself for this summer.

    I still owe you my feedback on Rabbie's tour! It was a great trip and I can recommend Rabbie's without a doubt. Our guide was experienced, well-organized and a nice companion. We were a small group of 8 people from all over the world.

    Except for the Cardhu visit (better to visit Aberlour instead), I was quite satisfied with the overall program. If there is anything you are interested in, just let me know!

    Slàinte!

    That's what I do. I drink, and I know things.” (Tyrion Lannister)

    >>> Whisky reviews by Slàinte Mhath <<<

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  • bedlamborn Member bedlamborn Joined: 18.09.2016Posts: 611Collectionbedlamborns CollectionRatings: 21
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    @SlàinteMhath

    I missed you reply as I were in italy enjoying sun and wine :smile:


    Some questions as I am thinking of taking that tour later on this year in September.

    How long were each distillery visit? Did it feel rushed or good enough?

    Does the distilleries have special bottlings only sold at the distilleries?

    How was the Gordon and Macphail visit?


    Slainte :smile:


  • SlàinteMhath
    Topic creator
    Member SlàinteMhath
    Joined: 09.10.2016Posts: 134CollectionOslo Whisky ClubRatings: 153
    , edited June 24 2017 at 11:20AM
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    Some questions as I am thinking of taking that tour later on this year in September.

    How long were each distillery visit? Did it feel rushed or good enough?

    Does the distilleries have special bottlings only sold at the distilleries?

    How was the Gordon and Macphail visit?


    Distillery visits were well-planned and there was no rush at all. At most places, we had a private tour for only the participants of Rabbie's. Cardhu was only a tasting session, no distillery tour. I have written detailed reviews on all distillery visits which you can find on whiskybase (go to the distillery's name under my 'check ins' and then click on 'Shop & Tour'):


    Edit: Looks like whisky.com does not allow external linking to whiskybase. Just search for the distillery's name and you find my reviews anyway.


    Concerning distillery-only bottlings: there was nothing too fancy. Your best option to buy something special is when visiting the Whisky Castle in Tomintoul. The have their own range of independently bottled malts, for example a 20-year-old Highland Park at cask strength from Gordon&MacPhail which I found decent enough to buy a bottle of (£99).


    Gordon&MacPhail itself is certainly interesting though rather expensive. You find my review under 'shops' in my whiskybase 'check ins'.


    Slàinte

    That's what I do. I drink, and I know things.” (Tyrion Lannister)

    >>> Whisky reviews by Slàinte Mhath <<<

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