As I said, my father loved whisky and maybe that stick in the back of my mind. So, when I visited the Scottish Whisky Museum in Edinburgh in 1998, I was struck by the wonderful flavours and "creations" that masters could produce from different regions and different aging. It reminded me of how each wine estate can implant a special character and identity to their wines. I realised then that Whisky is not just the blended whiskies I knew up til then, but there is a world of flavours I haven't discovered yet.
I was hooked and started to read on this age old tradition of the Scotch. It helped of course, to have a brother-in-law studying in Cambridge, who mae sure that I recieved a different single malt on his visits to South Africa. Through him, I had the privilige of a period of ten years, to have tasted most of the well-known and major sinlge malt whiskies, as well as more rare and special editions. I recieved for my 50th birthday, two 25 year old whiskies which I treasured for many years.
Unfortunately, nowadays I have to rely on local import, "sin" tax and availability, but I do continue to taste and review wonderfull whiskies.
I have also paired whiskies with desserts and certain pipe smoking tobaccos, bringing out the best in each as the flavours are enhanced, leaving you with a long lingering satisfaction of the finer things in life.
I'm privileged, knowing that so many only know blended whiskies (not that they are bad, but not always so full of flavours and nuances like single malts). I still have much more to learn and have not tasted everything, but wherever I go, I try to educate my fellow broterhs fo the Quelch, to enjoy Whisky; not only to consume; to drink responsibly. After all, when intoxicated, all that special flavours are gone. Oh, and not to spoil a single malt with tonic water.
Leave a comment; point me to more teaching. I'm always open to learning more of this tradition.