Today we finally, after two years of living in the Highlands, went and did a tour of a whisky distillery. We'd been to Glenfiddich distillery before, just to wander around the grounds and have coffee and cake in their cafe so that was the distillery we chose.
The tour took roughly an hour and a half and was very interesting. The statue shows the founder William Grant with his wife.
William Grant built the first buildings of the distillery in 1887 with his sons and daughters and the original building is where the cafe now lives.
We got to see all the different stages of the distilling process and the buildings are very warm and there is a very strong smell in the air, varying depending which part of the process is going on.
These barrels are huge, and some are recycled as houses at Findhorn Eco Village (Previous Blog Post).
This is just the top bit of the barrel, you will see the rest shortly.
A bubbling cauldron of whisky in the making.
This is when we went downstairs and you can see the rest of one of the barrels with our very informative tour guide beside it.
These are the stills that complete the process of making whisky before it is put into casks.
Whisky selfie - we weren't allowed to take photos once we were down amongst the stills.
At the end of the tour there was a whisky tasting of three different aged whiskys. Ken doesn't drink so we got a mini bottle to replace his tasting, and despite really hating the taste I thought I would give it a go and see if my taste buds had changed since the last time I tried it. My first memory of trying whisky was when I was a nurse in Tasmania, and an elderly gentleman who was in hospital for Christmas wanted to share a drink with me - thankfully I got to pour, so mine was mainly water, rather than whisky. How times have changed, as I don't think that would be allowed these days. Even though it tasted awful, I'm glad I did it as it made him smile.
The whiskys were 10, 12, and 15 year old malts.
Guess what - I still really hate the taste of Scotland's national drink.
The stag is the emblem of Glenfiddich and the word in Gaelic means valley of the deer.
Each year the distillery hosts Artists in Residence and some of the art they create is dotted around the site, whilst others are hidden away in private rooms.
This is the great fireplace in the cafe - we had to go in and have a drink and a piece of cake to get the awful taste of the whisky out of my mouth.
I loved these door handles going into the shop - very intricate and tactile.
The shop sells all sorts of things apart from whisky, and they also have a section where you can bottle your own.
A tiny little Bramble Jelly sitting in front off the stag antlers made out of waste wood by one of the past artists in residence.
Family selfie - it only took a few attempts to get us all almost looking in the right direction.
We hope you've enjoyed this visit to a whisky distillery, and until next time, I'll leave you with this really interesting fact - there are over 20 million casks of whisky maturing across Scotland.
Pamela & Ken