Drop of Whisky

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Whisky For Everyone: Have Just Tried … Pittyvaich 12 Years Old ‘Flora & Fauna’

Pittyvaich (pronounced pitty-vek) is a little known and closed distillery that used to be located in the town of Dufftown – the heart of Scotland’s Speyside whisky region. It has one of the most short lived histories of any distillery. Pittyvaich was founded by Arthur Bell & Sons in 1974 to produce whisky for their popular Bell’s range of blends. It later became part of United Distillers (which in turn later became Diageo) and they had numerous other distilleries that did a similar job to Pittyvaich. They decided to close it down and the last whisky flowed from the stills in 1993. Since then, it has been used to distil Gordon’s gin for a short period in the late 1990s and also as a training facility for Diageo employees. The equipment was sold off to Clynelish distillery in 2002 and Pittyvaich was demolished and consigned to history.

Pittyvaich whisky is hard to find, even in specialist whisky retailers, and is becoming harder as time goes by and stocks diminish. Diageo still own most of the remaining casks and release this 12 years old single malt as part of their ‘Flora & Fauna’ range. This range showcases whisky from some of the lesser known distilleries in their portfolio. Pittyvaich is even harder to get from independent bottlers but some are available especially from Douglas Laing & Co and Gordon & MacPhail.

The colour of this 12 years old is a dark amber with a reddish brown tint, indicating a heavy sherry cask influence. The nose confirms this and is rich and sweet with heaps of dried fruit (think of raisins and sultanas), exaggerated malty cereal grains and caramel. It is highly aromatic with an interesting citrus note (imagine candied orange peel or marmalade) and is a touch reminiscent of a Cognac or Armagnac. On the palate there is again an obviously high influence of sherry cask. The rich sweet maltiness from the nose is battling with powerful dried fruit (those raisins, sultanas and candied orange peel again), a sugary sweetness (more like treacle than caramel this time) and woody spices (think of cinnamon bark or nutmeg). Underneath there are some darker, more bitter notes (imagine dark chocolate and espresso coffee). The finish is surprisingly short but intensely spicy (think of cinnamon again) and quite dry and woody. There is also a hit of raw alcohol, which is a bit unpleasant, but this is soothed a little by the other sherry cask characteristics.

Pittyvaich 12 years old is a strange one. It has all the lovely characteristics that you associate and enjoy from a sherry cask but they are too concentrated and exaggerated, which throws the whole whisky out of balance. The whisky is pleasant enough and it is worth trying if you get the chance, so that you can tick off a rare distillery and taste an example of too much sherry cask influence (for my taste anyway). If you can find a bottle, this should cost £55-60.

Whisky For Everyone: February 2019

Family Cask 1979 – The 1979 bottling is one of only three in the entire series that is not matured in a sherry cask (the 1952 and 1984 being the others). This is unusual for Glenfarclas as they are famous for their sherry cask matured whisky. This was matured in a bourbon cask and the colour is golden. The nose is lovely and delicate with toffee and vanilla prominent, with a fruity element coming through (think of oranges). On the palate, the whisky is surprisingly light with some gorgeous vanilla, something nutty (imagine coconuts), a hint of a warm spice (think of ginger and nutmeg) and that citrus fruit (reminding me of orange peel or marmalade). Even more vanilla came with a drop of water. The finish is long and creamy with the toffee in particular coming through. A very good and balanced whisky that offers a chance to try a lighter, bourbon matured Glenfarclas. This will cost approx. £200 for one of the 225 bottles.

Family Cask 1959 – One of the oldest bottlings in the collection, this will cost you around £650 for one of the 194 bottles. This has the more traditional Glenfarclas sherry cask maturation and after almost 50 years in the cask the colour is a very dark brown. On the nose, this blows you away with its richness. There is lots of the dried fruits (imagine raisins and cranberries) that you associate with sherry cask maturation, but there is also something spicy (a bit like cloves, I think). The overall feeling is that of an intense, rich Christmas cake! The palate is even richer with all of the elements from the nose being joined by something darker and slightly bitter (think of an espresso coffee and dark chocolate), some creamy vanilla and burnt sugar. This is very complex and feels thick in your mouth. With water, it demonstrates the creaminess more and takes the edge off the bitter qualities. The finish goes on for ever as everything combines for one last hit. An exceptional (but pricy!) dram that is not for the faint hearted or those who don’t like too much sherry cask influence.

Whisky For Everyone: Have Just Tried … Bladnoch 8 Years Old

Bladnoch (pronounced blad-nock) is the most southerly distillery that is currently operating in Scotland. It is located in a remote spot, close to the village of Wigtown, between the towns of Dumfries and Stranraer and is actually further south than parts of northern England, including the city of Newcastle. Bladnoch takes its name from the nearby River Bladnoch, which supplies the water for the whisky production, and was founded in 1817 by two brothers – Thomas and John McClelland. The distillery has had a chequered history and has been closed and re-opened on a number of occasions. There have been various financial reasons for this but most closures have ultimately been attributed to Bladnoch’s location.

A new range of whisky
The most recent closure was in the mid 1990s. The previous owners (United Distillers, who later became part of Diageo) closed Bladnoch in 1993 and the distillery was later purchased by Northern Irishman Raymond Armstrong in 1994. His aim was to help the flagging Lowland whisky industry that at the time only had two distilleries left – Auchentoshan and Glenkinchie – having previous had over 30. However, following various legal battles with Diageo, Armstrong was not allowed to begin production until 2000 and even then the production capacity was capped at 100,000 litres per year (full capacity is around 250,000 litres per year). Initially, old stock from the previous owners was bottled and released, before in 2008 the first single malt produced during Armstrong’s tenure was released. The current range is expanding and includes this eight years old, a lightly peated version and some special editions.

Our tasting notes
This eight years old is bottled at 46% ABV and should cost around £30-35 a bottle. It is available from specialist alcohol retailers or www.bladnoch.co.uk. The colour is a pale yellow, almost straw-like, and the nose is very pleasant, clean and light. There is immediate cereal grain notes and these lead the nose, before allowing other aromas to come through – included in this is plenty of oak, vanilla, a distinct grassy note (think of straw or hay), a hint of citrus zestiness (imagine lemons) and a whiff of alcoholic spirit. With time, the nose sweetens and introduces some honey and increased vanilla notes. The palate has a similar feel, with a good balance and intensity that really gets your saliva going. It is again led by a heavy cereal grain influence with a plenty of vanilla and oak. The distinct grassiness of the nose is slightly more understated and the sweet honey and juicy, acidic citrus zest again coming through with time. Also, some almonds and hazelnut notes are present and these give the palate a creamier and slightly heavier, oilier feel than expected from the lighter, fresher nose. The finish has a decent length, beginning sweetly with honey and vanilla before becoming drier with plenty of woody oak, acidic citrus zest and dried grasses. It feels bittersweet by the time it fades.

What’s the verdict?
This is a decent dram that has a lot of character for a whisky in the lighter style. It would be a great Summer drink or as an aperitif whisky on a warm day. This Bladnoch eight years old may be a little light for some or a bit too grainy and grassy for a beginner but is clearly well balanced, well made and well matured. If you haven’t tried Bladnoch whisky before then this one is a good introduction to the distillery and well worth a try.

Gifts For Whisky Drinkers

Speaking as a whisky drinker myself, I know that it’s not exactly difficult to choose a gift for one. A nice bottle of single malt will always be gratefully received. However, if you’re not sure just what type of whisky your gift recipient might enjoy, or if you just want something that’s a little different – and a little more permanent – you still have plenty of options. Here are just a few suggestions:

A Whisky Flask

Any whisky lover will be delighted to receive a whisky flask – also known as a “hip flask” – as a gift. These are very handy if someone wishes to enjoy a wee nip of whisky whilst they’re out and about. They can also be very decorative.

Don’t worry too much that your gift recipient might already have one. There are so many different styles and materials to choose from that a small collection of hip flasks is a very desirable thing to have.

You also have the option of personalizing your gift by having it engraved should you wish. A quality whisky flask will last for years – and your whisky lover will toast you every time they have a little drink to keep the cold out.

A Whisky Decanter

Whisky decanters make really classy gifts and, just like the hip flasks discussed earlier, they will last for years. You can opt for a decanter on its own, which is a very acceptable gift, or you could choose a decanter and glass set.

Once again, if you wanted to, you could have your gift personalized by having a message engraved on it.

Whisky Glasses

A good whisky glass can really enhance the whisky tasting experience. A nice, cut crystal tumbler, one which is a nice size and weight, always feels good in your hand when you’re sipping a good highland malt.

Special “nosing” glasses – also known as “copitas” and “dock glasses” – are becoming very popular as well. They have a very distinctive tulip shape which channels the aroma of the whisky to the taster’s nose. Some of them come with glass discs which are placed over the mouth of the glass for a few minutes after swirling the whisky about. That traps the fumes and makes it easier for the taster to savour the bouquet.

These glasses were first used by merchants and vintners at the docks to sample wines and spirits before agreeing a price – hence the alternative name of dock glass. They make an unusual gift which is sure to please any whisky lover.

Books About Whisky

Even the most dedicated whisky lover will struggle to sample all of the whiskies available worldwide. There are thousands of different varieties. A nice, well illustrated, book on whisky would be a good choice as a gift. It will let your whisky fan plan his next tipple well in advance.

If All Else Fails

Those are just a few suggestions for you. There are plenty of other options available. And, if all else fails, a bottle of eighteen year old single malt will always go down well.

Whisky For Everyone: Have Just Tried … DYC Spanish Whisky

Have just tried … DYC Spanish whisky

We found this blended whisky on our recent trip to Spain and having never heard of it, thought that we would give it a try. DYC is the abbreviated company name of Destilerias y Crianza del whisky, which opened Spain’s first whisky distillery in 1959. The distillery is located in the town of Palazuelos de Eresma in the Castilla y Leon region to the north west of Madrid and has the capacity to produce a massive 20 million litres of spirit per year. The whisky is marketed to be low budget and is popular in Spain as it is much cheaper than Scottish, Irish or American whiskies. It is designed to be mixed with non alcoholic beverages and be easy drinking in the hot weather. A one litre bottle will cost you between 10-12 euros (about £8-10). This regular DYC release is a blend of malt and grain whiskies that have been matured in crianza red wine casks. So we had to try it!

I got a strange look from the bar woman when we ordered it straight and she almost insisted that we had some cola with it. She then proceeded to pour me the rest of the bottle which must have been the equivalent to a quadruple shot (or a quintuple, if that’s a real word) and this left me wondering what we had let ourselves in for and how popular this stuff really was? How long had she had that bottle sitting there? Had she won a prize from her boss for finishing the bottle off? This cost me only 7 euros! The colour is a very pale gold and the nose is very light with almost nothing there. There is a bit of vanilla and caramel with a whiff of alcohol and petrol (never a good sign, but then we were sitting outside next to a main road!). On the palate, it is again very light with the vanilla notes prominent and also something herbal (think of fresh cut grass) coming through. The finish is short, very sharp and almost acidic. We were both pleasantly surprised that it was actually quite nice! It doesn’t have the complexity of other whiskies that we have tried but was thirst quenching and we could see how it was popular in a hot climate, maybe with ice or a mixer. This is a simple blended whisky with minimal character (we thought there would be more influence from the crianza wine casks, as this is a full bodied red wine that should add more fruitiness) but one that is easy drinking, refreshing and dirt cheap. If you are ever in Spain, it is worth a try.

Once The Mashing Process Is Complete, The Drying Starts

Scotch has undoubtedly been elevated to the top spot of most popular spirit however it is said that if that spirit was not made in Scotland then it has no right baring the name. The land itself lends to this spirit and what is taken s naturally replenished.

Scotch whisky is said to be a nobleman among spirits brought about primarily by what mother earth has to offer. This makes it a popular drink for the naturalist among us. Scotland is so abundant in natural recourses from the moors of peat to the endless flowing fields of barley and wheat which is why it is the perfect place for brewing this tasty drink.

The fine art of distilling has traveled generations; each step of the way gaining knowledge and refinement as distilling and maturing the fine malt gives way to what it is now. There are two kinds of whiskies in production in Scotland today thanks in part to the creation of the still in 1831. One of those is the single grain variety and the other is the blended malt variety.

In the past there was only single malt whisky. Now there is malt whisky made from several grains which are blended to create the final product. This malt is bottled in select quantities which are referred to as single malt. Some of the more famous blends are now blended with whats known as a grain whisky.

Distilleries are in the heart of the country side and use the ingredients of the land. Some grow their own wheat and barley to control what they use in production. Some use reputable farmers to which give great service for a good cause creating some of the finest spirit in the world.

The use of natural springs and rivers is very common practice as well. As a matter of fact the Skye River runs right through the region that holds the title of malt capital of Scotland. Once the mashing process is complete, the drying starts.

There have been bottles of fine scotch coming from Islay in the very south of Scotlands shoreline going for as much as $7,000.00. A very select liquor store in Rhode Island placed this product on the shelves and within 24 hours 20 bottles where snatched up. This is a definite indication of the sheer quality that the company stands buy and promotes with pride.

Mars Iwai Tradition Blended Whisky

Mars Iwai Tradition Blended Whisky 720ml 40% is a Japanese blended Whiskey. The blend comes from both malt and grain, and it is distilled at Japan’s highest distillery, located in a mountain range of Nagano, at 798 meters.The Mars distillery was originally founded in Kagoshima before it moved to Nagano.

This blend is named after Kiichiro Iwai. He is a mentor of Masataka Taketsuru. As a 14 year senior graduated from the same technical school, Iwai brought Taketsuru into the same brewery, then became his mentor in the company. Along with others in management, Iwai sent Taketsuru to Scotland to learn the art of whisky-making. As the first Japanese to learn the art, Taketsuru returned to Japan and presented a whisky-making report- the Taketsuru Notes- to Iwai. Taketsuru later went on to found Nikka Whisky, and then created Suntory Whisky. Years after that Iwai founded Mars Shinshu distillery with Taketsuru’s notes. As the mentor of The Father of Japanese Whisky, Iwai is referred to by some as The Silent Pioneer of Japanese Whisky.

Colour: Dark caramel

Nose: Very strong scent of grape. Very similar to Brandy or Tawny port.

Taste: Very high in viscosity. You can tell its richness that comes from its oily characteristic when you chew it in your mouth. It is very sweet indeed. Again, initially one can find strong similarities in it with grape-based spirits. However, things can become quite different upon second tasting.

Finish: Upon finish, the aroma that comes back to the nostrils resoundingly similar to Bourbon whiskey. Then on that second tasting, the taste of Bourbon overtakes the initial fruity characteristic of Iwai.

Verdict: The blend is very easy to go down. It is very fruity, and has many layers to its taste. While it is very pleasant I am just not sure if I can say I enjoy a whisky that turns into grape-based spirit like Brandy or Port when it enters my mouth. It is just too unwhisky for me.

A Beginner’s Guide To Whisky – Part 3 – Canadian And Japanese Whisky

Food and Cooking»
A Beginner’s Guide to Whisky – Part 3 – Canadian and Japanese Whisky
Updated on July 31, 2016 Nesbyte moreContact Author Canada
A light, sweet style of whisky, Canadian Whisky (no “e”) is easy to drink even in the warmer months. As a result, Canadian whisky blends well with mixers. One notable aspect of this whisky is its remarkable consistency. In Canada, whisky bottled a decade ago should taste the same as the whisky bottled today.

Canadian law tend to be somewhat lax in terms of labelling, at least when compared to its American neighbour to the south. Apart from having to be distilled in Canada with cereal grains (though it’s typically rye) and aged for a minimum of 3 years.

Canadian law also permits a number of names; Canadian whisky may be called Canadian Whisky (funnily enough), Canadian Rye Whisky, or Rye Whisky.

Although Canadian whisky has lost popularity with American drinkers over the years, it still sells volumes at home and across the globe.

Grain: Malted Rye, Corn

Age: Min. 3 Years

Styles: Single Malt, Blend

Who can forget Bob Harris (Bill Murray) struggling through his photo shoot in Lost in Translation? “For relaxing times…make it Suntory time”.

The Japanese whisky industry couldn’t have asked for better advertising. The Japanese have been producing their own style of whisky since the late 19th century, and it’s only recently that their whisky has achieved global recognition. It’s about time too; the Japanese love whisky.

Japanese whiskies are largely comparable to the Scottish style – possibly as this is the nation’s favourite whisky. They are produced throughout the country as both single malts and as blended varieties. Flavours range from salty and peaty to oily and fruity depending on the particular distiller.

Grain: Barley, Wheat

Age: N/A

Styles: Single Malt, Blended

What next?
I hope you enjoyed those less well known whisky producers. If you did, you may be interested in the other articles that make up this guide:

SpiritsA Guide to Tasting and Drinking Scotch Whisky
by dommcg5

Whisky For Everyone: De-Ciphering The Glenlivet Code

The Glenlivet, the famous Speyside distillery, have announced a new limited edition single malt for this Summer but it is one with more than the usual hint of intrigue. The Glenlivet Cipher has been released with virtually no information attached, except the legally required alcohol strength of 48% ABV.

No tasting notes, no details of cask types or maturation (other than it is a unique combination never used for The Glenlivet before), no age statement and no indication of colour or style due to the striking black opaque bottle. The bottle and packaging give clues of flavour and aroma but little else.

The Glenlivet distillery has always been innovative since it was founded in 1824 by George Smith. It was the first distillery in the Speyside region to be granted a distilling license under the new Parliamentary Excise Act of 1823 and this approach has led to The Glenlivet becoming the world’s best selling single malt brand when it overtook long-standing leader Glenfiddich in mid-2015.

Now The Glenlivet Cipher continues the brand’s innovation. Like Alpha, Cipher’s predecessor from a couple of years ago, the whisky challenges common perceptions by removing obvious stimuli. This time the mystery and challenge is increased by a user-friendly and interactive digital element.

By visiting cipher.theglenlivet.com you can create your own aroma and flavour profiles for Cipher and also pit your wits against Alan Winchester, the Master Distiller of The Glenlivet. It is plenty of fun and really gets you to analyse the whisky both on the nose and palate. Do not worry as Alan is on hand to assist you with some useful tips.

Once you have chosen your six aroma and flavour characteristics, the results are collated into a graphic cipher and your selections compared to those of Alan to reveal how close you are. You can then share across various social media platforms using #TheGlenlivetCipher and @TheGlenlivet. As you can see above, my score was terrible (48%) so I think Alan’s job as Master Distiller is safe for a while longer …

“I am laying down the ultimate test and am pleased to invite people to join us on a journey of flavour discovery. I will be checking social media throughout the campaign to see who manages to crack the code and unlock the tasting notes of this new enigmatic single malt. So get tasting, share your comments online and stayed tuned.”
Alan Winchester – Master Distiller at The Glenlivet.

The Glenlivet Cipher is available now from selected specialist retailers across 25 world markets including Canada, Taiwan and the UK. The recommended retail price is £85 or $US120. The full details of Cipher will be revealed to The Glenlivet Guardians by Alan Winchester later in the year. In the meantime, why not join in and create your own aroma and flavour profile at cipher.theglenlivet.com?

Mars Iwai Tradition Blended Whisky

Mars Iwai Tradition Blended Whisky 720ml 40% is a Japanese blended Whiskey. The blend comes from both malt and grain, and it is distilled at Japan’s highest distillery, located in a mountain range of Nagano, at 798 meters.The Mars distillery was originally founded in Kagoshima before it moved to Nagano.

This blend is named after Kiichiro Iwai. He is a mentor of Masataka Taketsuru. As a 14 year senior graduated from the same technical school, Iwai brought Taketsuru into the same brewery, then became his mentor in the company. Along with others in management, Iwai sent Taketsuru to Scotland to learn the art of whisky-making. As the first Japanese to learn the art, Taketsuru returned to Japan and presented a whisky-making report- the Taketsuru Notes- to Iwai. Taketsuru later went on to found Nikka Whisky, and then created Suntory Whisky. Years after that Iwai founded Mars Shinshu distillery with Taketsuru’s notes. As the mentor of The Father of Japanese Whisky, Iwai is referred to by some as The Silent Pioneer of Japanese Whisky.

Colour: Dark caramel

Nose: Very strong scent of grape. Very similar to Brandy or Tawny port.

Taste: Very high in viscosity. You can tell its richness that comes from its oily characteristic when you chew it in your mouth. It is very sweet indeed. Again, initially one can find strong similarities in it with grape-based spirits. However, things can become quite different upon second tasting.

Finish: Upon finish, the aroma that comes back to the nostrils resoundingly similar to Bourbon whiskey. Then on that second tasting, the taste of Bourbon overtakes the initial fruity characteristic of Iwai.

Verdict: The blend is very easy to go down. It is very fruity, and has many layers to its taste. While it is very pleasant I am just not sure if I can say I enjoy a whisky that turns into grape-based spirit like Brandy or Port when it enters my mouth. It is just too unwhisky for me.

Single Malt Whisky Specialties

New-comers in malt whisky retail are usually from re-opened distilleries, or working distilleries which never before bottled their whisky as Single Malt. Many famous whisky brands play marketing on high-level and put limited editions on sale. However, new ideas also emerge. Such new ideas in the past decades were the introduction of Cask Strength Malts, Vintage Editions and Wood Finish variants, all of them show the creativity and innovation in the Scotch whisky industry. Cask Strength Malts are whiskies bottled straight from the ageing barrels, so their abv is usually between 43 vol% and 60vol%. These are sometimes not even chill-filtered carefully, so can include much more aroma ingredients. Vintage Editions are bottled mainly by independent bottles (eg. Gordon & MacPhail) and identified by the year of bottling, instead of the period of ageing. The Wood Finish range is an invention by the Glenmorangie distillery, which came out with Port Wood Finish, Sherry Wood Finish and Madeira Wood Finish couple of years ago, followed by Cote D’or Burgundy Wood Finish recently. These are Glenmorangie Single Malt Scotch whiskies matured in American oak wood casks for 10 years, then transferred into Port, Sherry, etc. casks for a further period of maturation. The nature and history of the casks greatly influence the flavour and character of the whisky. The Glenmorangie Wood Finish range is an exceptional range of malt whiskies which can be served confidently at any time, but is best served after dinner.

A kereskedelemben ujonnan megjeleno single malt whiskyk vagy nemregiben ujranyitott leparlo uzemek parlatai, vagy olyan leparlok termekei, amelyek eddig meg sosem ertekesitettek whiskyjuket palackozva. A hires whisky markak kihasznaljak a marketing trukkoket es idoszakonkent “limited edition” sorozatokat dobnak piacra. Mindemellett uj, eredeti otletek is napvilagot latnak. Ilyen, a skot whisky iparag kreativitasat es innovativ hozzaallasat jelzo otletek voltak az elmult nehany evtizedben a ‘Cask Strength Malts’, a ‘Vintage Editions’ es a ‘Wood Finish’ variaciok elkeszitese. A ‘Cask Strength Malts’ olyan skot single malt whiskyt takar, amelyet az erleles befejeztevel, vizzel valo higitas nelkul, egyenesen a hordokbol palackoznak, igy ezek alkoholfoka rendszerint 43% es 60% koze esik. Ezen whiskyknel a hutve-szures gyakran nem tokeletes, igy sokkal tobb aroma-anyagot tartalmaznak. Tobbsegeben fuggetlen skot whisky palackozo es forgalmazo cegek (mint pl. a Gordon & MacPhail) keszitik a ‘Vintage Editions’ kategoriaba tartozo evjarat szerint palackozott whiskyket, amelyeknel a leglenyegesebb azonosito nem az erleles idotartama, hanem a palackozas “evjarata”. A ‘Wood Finish’ variaciok a Glenmorangie distillery ujdonsaga, amely tobb evvel ezelott keszitette el a portoi, sherrys, illetve madeira boros hordoban erlelt kulonleges sorozatat, amelyet nemregiben kiegeszitett a Cote D’Or Burgundy boros hordoban erlelt malata whiskyjevel. Ezek valojaban az amerikai bourbon whiskys hordoban 10 evig erlelt Glenmorangie single malt whisky nehany evig kulonleges hordoban (portoi boros, sherrys, stb.) tovabberlelt valtozatai. Am a kulonbozo hordok eltero multja es tulajdonsagai nagyban meghatarozzak a benne erlelt whisky izvilagat es karakteret. A Glenmorangie ‘Wood Finish’ variaciok egy kulonleges sorozata a skot single malt whiskyknek, amelyek batran fogyaszthatok barmikor, am legjobb este egy finom vacsora utan.

Right here are the most effective towns to go to in France.

Arranging a holiday break to France? Study our expert help guide the very best metropolitan areas, such as guidance on Milan, Turin, Bologna, Genoa, Palermo, and Naples, like the Amalfi Coastline and Sorrento. Additionally, you will find a list of visit operators offering city splits. Rome, Florence and Venice are about three of the world’s best metropolitan areas. The only issue is understanding learning to make the best of a pay a visit to: with this, our on the web professional spot instructions provide all of the key information and referrals you will want.

But it could be completely wrong to ignore Italy’s many other key towns, which provide abundant traditions and background, outstanding architecture, and great dishes. If Rome, Florence and Venice are world-class, then ¬Milan and Naples are certainly not considerably right behind: nearly as abundant culturally, and simply as luring with regards to consuming, ingesting and as springboards for other Italian locations. Nonetheless, Milan can come as being a delight to individuals informed about Rome and Florence and wanting a lot of identical, for this really is a a lot more north European town in feel and look. Seems aside, even so, Milan has superlative buying, having and social destinations, notably the Duomo, the Scala opera property along with the Pinacoteca di Brera art work gallery. There is also Leonardo’s Last Supper, but be careful that it must be so faded you may well are in agreement with Aldous Huxley, who in 1925 described it as being, “the saddest artwork in the world”. Milan is yet another significant transport center – Lake Como, as an example, the prettiest of the Italian Ponds, is simply more than 30 minutes away by coach.

Although less popular than Milan or Naples, Turin, near to the boundary with France, and Bologna, inside the north Emilia-Romagna location, are places in which some other country could be proud, and need to be frequented more. Turin is an unforeseen treasure, using a beautiful baroque cardiovascular system packed with cobbled streets, dishonest arcades and chic ancient cafés. As being the capital of Piedmont, a gastronomic place par quality (truffles from Alba, the wines of Barolo), it is additionally a great spot to eat and drink, while offering three first-position social points of interest. Bologna, as well, can be a fine gastronomic center, with a pleasing and limited-knit medieval middle of brick arcades, towers, chapels, palaces and interesting museums.

There are many quite fantastic training books for boys to flourish sensible

While I commenced this operate, my item had been a mere compilation. There have been a lot of great training books for men, actually in blood flow, but nothing that i idea unexceptionable; and a lot of them included sentiments which I could not say yes to. I sat down, as a result, aiming to make selections coming from the choicest aspects of every one, and get ready an unexceptionable and realistic manually operated; a very 1 once i needs to be able to see at the disposal of any youngsters locally. During the advance of my task, on the other hand, I discovered significantly less that was wholly as outlined by my own personal sentiments, than I had estimated. The effect was which the project of putting together, was given up; plus a function ready, which happens to be chiefly genuine. You will find, it is correct, some quotations from ‘Burgh’s Dignity of Human being Character,’ ‘Cobbett’s Tips to Teenagers,’ ‘Chesterfield’s Advice,’ and Hawes’ Lectures; but also in common things i have resulting from other performs is re-composed, and a lot altered. For this consideration it had been imagined unwanted to consider government bodies within the body from the function. The truly amazing goal of the Small Man’s Manual, is the development of those persona in our boys as should certainly give them the worthy and valuable and happy members of an incredible republic. For this finish, the article author penetrates typically in the ways of increasing the brain, the manners as well as morals;-plus the appropriate control over small business. A little something is likewise reported on amusements, and undesirable habits. When it comes to matrimony he has, nonetheless, been quite more complete than anywhere else. The significance of this institution to every youthful man, the ways of making it precisely what the Author created, along with these incidental evils which sometimes go along with or abide by-many of them in horrible retribution-the vices which usually oppose His benevolent functions, are carefully shown, and promise the unique attention of each and every younger visitor. The rapid transaction of a big version in this work, as well as the basic tribute of consumer praise which is honored to its benefits, in lieu of closing your eyes from the Web publishers or Article writer to protect against active imperfections, have, on the flip side, only deepened their sensation of obligation to provide the present version as ideal as you possibly can; with no discomfort happen to be spared to accomplish this finish. Several new sections are combined with the tasks, and some of the past have already been abridged or prolonged. An escalating need for the Fresh Man’s Information, evinced by the sales of over five thousands of copies with the job in a few many weeks, have induced the web publishers to provide a third release, with many amendments and additions because of the author; who may have also derived important suggestions from gentlemen of high literary and ethical status, to whom the tasks had been presented for assessment.

Most expensive whisky is fake

A dram from the unopened bottle of “Macallan 1878” sold for the four-figure sum at a Swiss hotel in July – making it the priciest glass of single malt ever flogged. But whisky experts smelled a rat after news of the sale broke and Sandro Bernasconi, of The Waldhaus Hotel in St Moritz, called in investigators to examine the £230,000 bottle. The high-end grog was sent off to be tested by boffins at Oxford University – with shocking results. Carbon dating showed the booze to be a near-worthless blended Scotch dated no earlier than 1970 – a hundred years younger than it was claimed. The label was also riddled with mistakes, while the cork looked too new and the bottle was made of modern glass. The unsuspecting victim of the scam was Chinese tourist Zhang Wei, 36, who has now had his cash refunded. Bernasconi flew to China to apologise and personally pay back the dosh. The hotelier said: “When it comes to selling our customers some of the world’s rarest and oldest whiskies, we felt it was our duty to ensure that our stock is 100 per cent authentic and the real deal. “That’s why we called in the investigators RW101. “The result has been a big shock to the system and we are delighted to have repaid our customer in full as a gesture of goodwill.” The bottle was bought around 25 years ago by Bernasconi’s father when he was manager of the hotel. It is not yet known where the hotel got the bottle from or who was responsible for the fraud. The eye-watering price paid for the seemingly rare vintage caused a stir among experts who questioned its authenticity. The label on the dark-coloured glass bottle said the whisky was distilled in 1878 and matured for 27 years. It claimed to be “guaranteed absolutely pure by Roderick Kemp, proprietor, Macallan and Talisker Distilleries Ltd”. But experts said the glass used for the bottle was similar to ones made in 2002 and “Kemp” apparently didn’t own Macallan and Talisker at the same time. And there was no trace of a company called “Macallan and Talisker Distilleries Ltd” in the whisky industry records. Bernasconi called in Fife-based Rare Whisky 101 (RW101), one of the world’s leading authorities on rare whisky. Results from Oxford Uni’s Research Laboratory for Archaeology and The History of Art suggested a 95 per cent probability the liquid was made between 1970 and 1972. Other lab tests by Tatlock and Thomson showed the spirit was most likely a blended Scotch made of 60 per cent malt and 40 per cent grain. Ken Grier from Macallan brand owner, Edrington, said: “We take this very seriously. “We praise the work that our partners, RW101, are doing to bring awareness of any fraud to light. “We would urge consumers to buy from reputable sources at all times.”

Taste Luxury At Tuscany Villas

Villas in Tuscany are the most luxurious and beautiful. So, if somebody wants to taste the true luxuriousness of Italian style then Tuscany villas are definitely keep your promises. The Tuscany villas are surrounded by beautiful landscapes, olive grooves, and beautiful gardens.

Tuscany villas would be delighted to suggest and plan an itinerary to help you in discovering Tuscany. The Tuscan villa affords a swimming pool with views of the hills blanketed with forests and vines growing strong below the hill. The gazebos in the garden provides guest with a shield from the sun and relaxing setting. The Tuscan villa also features a kitchen, dining room and living room and a double bedroom with its bathroom equipped with a shower on the ground floor. The gardens feature a multitude of trees and striking colored indigenous flowers.

The private swimming pool is the perfect location to enjoy perfect scenery. An area frozen in time, and a pleasure to explore, it is something that gives you long lasting experience. The vine clad hills around Florence are dotted with farmhouses and villas and turrets of baronial castles create a picturesque setting fit for fairytale.

The rooms inside these Tuscan villas have high ceilings, large windows, and beautiful scenery. You can find the marble bathrooms with Jacuzzi, hand shower and several other luxurious bathing facilities. The Tuscany luxury seaside villas in chic coastal resorts for those who would prefer to rub shoulders with the International jet set after a hard day’s sunbathing. The city centre apartment in Tuscany’s art cities are for those who fancy a spot of culture or even designer shopping. A Tuscany villa rental is the ideal way to experience the region as it provides a comfortable base from which to explore while also providing the perfect place to rejoice and share after a day of adventures.

If you want to taste the Italian food and wine, then your selection of Tuscany villa will be the right place to dine in, because they provide you chefs who make classic Italian food in plenty. If you want to learn the making of Italian food then you can surely take help of chefs, they will teach you the best method of cooking Italian food.

Enjoy the beauty of Tuscany, they will offer the best ever holidays, good food, and enchanting and delicious taste of wine. No matter which part you want to stay out the area, all of which offer convenient access and proximity to the local area as well as a host of facilities to ensure that your stay in your villa is perfect. You can get villas offering varying degrees and levels of luxury depending on your needs and budgets, such as private pools and even staff services.

There are many beautiful and fascinating areas in Tuscany, some of which include Siena, Pisa, and Florence, as well as the Chianti wine region, Maremma, and others. You can enjoy a choice of villas in and around these areas, putting you within easy reach of the attractions and sites and enabling you to enjoy affordable luxury in convenient and beautiful surroundings.

Alan Youghal acts as a consultant for Tuscanyholidayvilla and for more information see,Tuscany Apartments,Villa rental Tuscany,Tuscany Umbria Villa Rentals.

The Glossary of Wine Tasting – Part 1

Wine has a culture around it that is intimidating. Whether attending a wine-tasting event, or popping a cork for a snazzy evening with your date, you want to be able to talk about wine without sounding like an uncultured oaf. Here is a handy clip-n-save guide to all the fancy terms we use to describe a wine’s flavor. Now you can sound like the snootiest wine snob on the block!

Note that flavor and smell go together. So some terms mean more about the odor (bouquet or aroma) of a wine than its flavor.

Acidity – The sharp or sour flavor; compare the taste of sharp cheddar cheese. All wines should have some acidity, but not too much. A wine with too much acidity is sour and may be oxidized, producing vinegar. Too little acid and the wine will be flabby and dull.

Balance – A wine is balanced if it isn’t too much of any particular characteristic. You want the three components of fruit, tannin, and acid to be in harmony. Be the Zen master!

Body – This describes how concentrated the wine feels in your mouth. A full-bodied wine will have heavy flavor and feel denser, a light wine will taste and feel more like a fruit juice.

Broadness – A wine is said to be broad if it has a full spectrum of tastes and aromas. The more broad, the more complex. The less broad, the more simple. Intellectual types like a wine that is broad and fascinating, so they can play wine professor and bore everyone with half an hour of wine jargon.

Buttery – A taste that is creamy and rich. It also has to be not too acidic. Only certain wines have buttery as a taste goal – notably Chardonnays. Like Marmite, you’ll either love it or you’ll hate it.

Cedar – A taste specific to Bordeaux wines, a cedar taste will be the faint aroma of a cedar chest and an herb-like flavor. Smack your lips and act surprised.

Clean – A simple wine without any taints or traces of quirky flavors. Your average bottle on the shelf at a supermarket is factory-produced and therefore very clean. May also be derogatory, to say that a wine is boring or uninteresting.

Extract – The solid matter left over from the skin and pulp of the grapes, and hence only present in red wines. A wine with heavy extract will have a full body; a wine with even more extract will be jammy.

Finish – The aftertaste. A wine that leaves a strong, lingering aftertaste is said to have a satisfying finish. The finish may be any one of the characteristics of flavor; what’s important is how long it lasts.

Flabby – Boring, flat, dull, uninteresting. This is an insult to the wine; reserve it for the most buttery or fruity wines, or ones that are truly dull. Boxed wine from Walmart.

Flinty – Another characteristic that’s used to describe one specific wine. Flinty, as the name suggests, has a taint of flint stone, and is only found in Chablis wine, especially when it’s young. Cock an eyebrow and act intrigued.

Fruity – Obviously, this is the taste of fruit. Most wines have some taste of fruit, since grapes are themselves a fruit. But fruit shouldn’t always be the dominant taste characteristic of the finished wine. Wines that taste too fruity may be flat, dull, flabby, or too young.

Ian Love runs a great Australian Wine Club and is the owner of Online Wine specialist West Valley Wine.

A Scottish spring wedding at Winton House

An interview with the bride’s parents
Eileen and David Black held a Scottish wedding for their daughter Kirsten and her fiancée Scott Kavanagh at Winton House in late March 2010. It turned out to be a beautiful early spring day with the daffodils in full bloom after a hard winter, a perfect day for a romantic wedding at this venue in Scotland.

David and Eileen explained why they chose Winton House for their daughter’s wedding and told us how the day went.
1. Why did you choose Winton House for your daughter’s wedding?
“David knew Winton House having used the meeting venue in Edinburgh before for a corporate team-building day. Our daughter, Kirsten, wanted somewhere which had a large country house or castle feel to it and Winton was ideal.
“We chose Winton because they allowed us to do what we wanted. Unlike other venues, they weren’t prescriptive about the band, the menus and other important elements of the wedding. We felt comfortable and at ease there, and it has a lovely warm ambience.
“Winton also restricts the number of weddings it hosts which meant that only one or two guests had been there before.”

2. Who were the guests at the wedding? Where did they travel from?
“The guests were primarily family and friends from the Edinburgh and Fife area, seventy-eight in total. Kirsten’s cousin from Portland in Oregon, USA, travelled the furthest.”

3. What was the format on the day?
“It was very traditional. The chief bridesmaid stayed with us on the eve of the wedding. Kirsten and her entourage used the facilities at the romantic wedding venue in Scotland on the Saturday morning to get ready and guests arrived early in the afternoon.
“Most of the male guests wore traditional highland dress and the ladies all looked fabulous in their colourful frocks.
“There was a civil ceremony in the beautiful drawing room with sun streaming in through its south-facing windows. That was followed by photographs and a drinks reception, then we were piped in by a lady piper for a fantastic meal in the dining room.
“We had smoked salmon to start with followed by roast beef then sticky toffee pudding, all prepared from fresh local produce by Elizabeth, Winton’s award-winning chef.
“The evening’s entertainment was a combination of ceilidh band and popular covers performed by the band. “My daughter and son-in-law, now Mr and Mrs Scott Kavanagh, stayed at Winton House overnight in one of its eight bedrooms.”

4. What was the feedback from guests?
“Everyone we have spoken to was tremendously complimentary about the Edinburgh Castle Hotel, the format and the food. It was an incredibly memorable day.
“It felt like your own private party. The Romantic Wedding Venues Scotland was spectacular and the food was excellent. Guests also enjoyed going for walks in the gardens before and after dinner.”

5. What comments do you have on the quality of Winton’s hospitality?
“We were very well looked after from the moment we were shown around.
“On the day itself we couldn’t fault a thing. Everyone was very welcoming and caring. Harry even spent time pushing my grandson’s pushchair around the house.”

6. Is there anything unique that makes Winton stand out?
“The fact that the house itself is actually someone’s home and feels just like someone’s home. The atmosphere in the house is exceptional.”
Thanks are due to Graham Carnie for allowing Winton to use some of the wedding photographs he took on the day. For more information please visit http://www.grahamcarniephotography.co.uk

Lewis Carroll

Coffee Cake – Traditional, Cultural And Fashionable Dish For Parties

Cake is the important part of most of countries’ food culture. This has been centuries old traditional serving on all of the special occasions and functions but the craze for it is still intact. When we plan to host a party, our very first concern is cake. When we go through the available options, coffee cake emerges as the best option because of its many specialties.

Coffee cake can be stored for the months in frozen condition. It is liked by the one and all because it contains no harmful ingredients. If you get it from prestigious bakeries after placing special order, you may get it without any preservative or color too. However, cakes are available in such a wide range that selection of the best is really a tough task.

Traditional Cinnamon Walnut Coffee Cake is a yummy way to create unique image of sensible host. Its brown shade with golden yellow traces makes it special looking. The major ingredients are eggs, sour cream, pure Bourbon Vanilla, cinnamon streusel and whole walnuts. If you are expecting large gathering, place the order for large size otherwise regular size of 28 oz is sufficient for 10 – 12 people. It can be stored up to four months.

Cinnamon Streusel Butter and Sour Cream Cake is another good options for any occasion. It is made with real butter, sour cream, quality walnuts, high end cinnamon and sugar. 48 oz size pack is enough to be served for 12-16 people. Cinnamon Streusel Butter and Sour Cream Cake is free from artificial flavoring, trans fats, preservatives or artificial coloring. It needs slight chilling before slicing otherwise there are chances of crumbling. Slight warming and butter toping creates a yummy gourmet serving collects all around appreciation for you. There are many more options; you just need to do some surfing over the reputed cake suppliers’ offerings.

If the cakes are served with real strong coffee in designer coffee cups, the fun in celebration goes to new heights. If you are going on tour, don’t forget to have pair of coffee cup along with cake. Nice branded cup in your hands creates image apart from others present at picnic sites. Insulated cups keep your coffee hot for hours without spilling a drop out. The long curved handle is designed to make the user’s grip firm. The choice of colors is entirely yours, entire rainbow colors are the options for coffee cake enthusiasts.

James J. Steve is writing the articles for coffeecakes. It offers gourmet gifts that include our best selling gourmet coffee cakes, coffee cake, whiskey fruit cake, fruit cake, coffee cup, stollen cakes and much more.

Tasting Chocolate as a Kind of Drug?

It can be a little shocking news for you that most of our loved and traditional food is not actually good for your health. Chocolate is a point of case. With about 12 pounds of chocolate consumed annually by US consumers, you can see how unhealthy this caffein-added chocolate bring to you and millions of others.


History of Chocolate

Let’s start with a little history lesson to better inform you on how there could actually be some benefits of dark chocolate. Chocolate has a long history, dating back to around 600 AD when the Mayan Indians established cocoa plantations in the Yucatan region of Mexico. The Mayans and later the Aztecs created a chocolate drink called ‘xocoatl’ or ‘chocoatl’ which originated from cocoa beans taken from cocoa trees. This ‘chocoatl’ drink consisted of chocolate flavored with vanilla and spices and had the consistency of honey. Chocolate was only consumed in liquid form at this time.


The Dutching Process

When the Europeans were introduced to chocolate it was still in its purest form. This changed in the early 1800s when a Dutchman by the name of Coenrad Jahannes van Houten discovered that if you added alkali-potash to the beans before they were roasted it would neutralize the acid or bitter taste of the natural cocoa.


While there were some obvious benefits of the “dutching” process, the biggest problem was that because of that process the most important benefits of dark chocolate were being removed.


Chocolate in the Raw

One of the most important nutrients being eliminated during the “dutching” process was flavonoids. Flavonoids are antioxidants found in raw fruits and vegetables that help to slow down the oxidation or aging process in our bodies. Therefore, the most healthy chocolate is raw or unalkalized.


What About the Fat?

Cocoa butter, like its name suggests, is the natural fat of the cocoa bean. For years it was believed that cocoa butter was a harmful ingredient found in commercial chocolate products. New research now shows that cocoa butter is actually a “neutral” fat, meaning that it does not increase blood-cholesterol levels.


Worried About Caffeine

Would you believe that natural chocolate has little or no caffeine. However, more and more manufactures are adding caffeine to their products, so check the label before buying.


Bitter is Best

To receive the benefits of dark chocolate, you must find it in its purest form. The typical processing of the cocoa bean kills at least half of the antioxidants found in the pure cocoa bean. Try to consume products that contain at least 70% pure cocoa powder.


Drink of the Gods

The Aztec Indians placed great importance on chocolate, believing that chocolate was consumed by the Gods in paradise and that the cocoa seed was brought to earth as a special blessing for the people by the God of the Air. The last Aztec emperor, Montezuma, reportedly drank only ‘chocoatl’. He was supposed to have drunk up to 50 goblets of chocolate a day.


Fact or Fiction

More and more research is being done on the health benefits of raw unprocessed cocoa. Thousands of medical studies can be found by going to www.googlescholar.com and searching for dark chocolate studies. The science is there ready to be discovered and what a great discovery it is. Doctors will soon be prescribing chocolate for all our ailments.


Article Source: http://ezineseeker.com/?expert=Wendy_Bentley

Take A Break In The Scottish Borders

The Scottish borders are a beautiful area full of picturesque towns and villages, historic sites and rolling green hills, the perfect place for a short break in Scotland. If you are looking for relaxing countryside with a mixture of popular attractions, friendly people and interesting places then the Scottish borders could be just the place for you.

This is an extremely historical part of Scotland and all the settlements in the Scottish borders have great claims in the history of our country. Kelso is no different with the town originating from Kelso Abbey – a magnificent building. King David I agreed to allow monks to construct the abbey near to his castle at Roxburgh in 1128 and although the abbey remains the castle does not apart from a few ruins. Buried deep in the realms of history this amazing castle was to be the death of King James II when a large cannon exploded and killed him in 1460.

Apart from historical buildings there are lots of attractions and activities in and around the beautiful town of Kelso. The beautiful Floors Castle, more of a stately home, is the largest inhabited house in Scotland and has magnificent gardens well worth spending an afternoon in. The very substantial town square in Kelso is full of interesting shops and places to eat, and wandering around Kelso is an enjoyable day in itself. Kelso is also a good base to explore the surrounding area and other towns and attractions in the Scottish borders.

No short break in the borders of Scotland would be complete without a visit to Jedburgh. Jedburgh is a small and beautiful town in the Scottish borders and also boasts a truly magnificent and historical abbey, built in 1138. The very position of Jedburgh, a matter of 9 miles from the English border, made it a hotbed for conflict between Scotland and England. Known for its beautiful gardens and scenic riverfront walks, Jedburgh is very popular with all tourists who visit the area.

For Rugby fans the name Melrose will mean everything, as it is the home of Rugby Sevens, and indeed a fine ambassador for the game in Scotland. Another famous abbey is located in Melrose and this abbey is probably one of the most photographed churches in the whole of Scotland. Although most of the abbey dates from the 14th century, the abbey was originally constructed in 1136 and destroyed by Richard II in 1385. Melrose has a lot to offer the tourist and is a must see location in the Scottish borders.

For accommodation options in the area including many hotels in The Scottish Borders to choose from, as well as hundreds of hotels across Scotland, visit Hotels in Scotland.

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