...Hi back again...
I don't back so much during these last months...My free time it's spended on seeing the 6 Nation Matches in a pub or on anything else who occupies more and more time, but please Forgive me Forum members!
Ron, i write this post because the last year on my holiday on Islay i do that type of tour. And i remember a cost less than 22Â£. 18 Â£ exactly...
22 it's a "good increase"...But, i don't know if it's justified,You think?
However, if you want someinfo on the tour write me when you want. For this i can answer soon as possible...
it's too late for my travel report, when i'm finish it? I have enjoyed the Islay time, and don't have hurry to complete it, but i'm at good point.
you can putit online with the sub-title "for wet your appetite..."
In a simple word: Perfect.
Now imagine a tour without the crowd of other visitor (last year only me and my girlfriend...) not guided from a simple employ.
We was guided by Edward McCaffey, the distillery manager.
He lead us from the courtyard.There he tell an introdution to Bowmore before going into Malthouse.
There he explain all the process, not only explain as the normal guide do.He broke a seed,i.e., describe scientifically the malting.
Demonstrate himself turn the barley and then invite you to try, with the two typical hand-instruments.He open the kiln-door and explain how the warm air exicate the malt.Start the engine and you feel the air trough the barley.
Then goes down to the kiln furnace (at that time not in use) and explain the use of peat. During the transfer from a section to another it's always rich of explanation of all of your question.The visit include also a view of how the distillery work.In example, how they recycle the hot water to create energy and then recycle it.The washroom it's also very interesting as you surely know and also there a lot of explanation.
In the still room (at that time working) he explain with a demonstration how the spirit still works and take a picture of us in front of (what a kind man!)
After tre production section he do a little stop at his office to carry some items for the next stop: The Mighty Vault No.1
Inside there is a sort of a little room with some exposition of cooper instruments and an interesting closet with a big "25" fire impressed.
After a little explanation there he open the door and lead you deep in the Vault.
There explain the difference from a wood to another and more things about it.
To help to understand well, they open two cask for you!
One cask it's a bourbon cask 13 year old (not on sell on market a Bowmore 13 YearsOld), and a sherry cask of 15 years old.He spill from both cask into a tasting glass and do a tasting session before give you the glass for personal tasting. The interesting thing it's that he also carry the new make spirit ina clean trasparent bottle,and we taste also it (you know that normally it's hard to taste it ina distillery...)
He lead you in fron of the oldest cask at the distillery where a sort of excitation it has taken to me. Many old cask, with the sign of former proprietor, cask old more than 40 year...A PARADISE!
Then, when exit the vault he guide us in the visitors have guided us to the visitor center, where to the girl of the bar it has said makes us to taste what that we wanted. In order we taste : Limited Edition 16 YearsOld Port Finish, 15 Years Old, 17 YearsOld and a superb 18 YearsOld.
The tasting session was increased in atmosphere by the Visitor Centre itself, a sort of museum of Bowmore history with many item exposed with a wonderful view of the sea, that you can feel more if go out on the terrrace.
This is our last distillery tour on Islay, and absolutely the best.
At a cost of 18 Â£ per person, not 22 (you can see it on Bowmore website), but believe me WELL spended.
If you are a whisky always growing lover as me, it's a MUST this visit, then you forget that you spent the money for it.
The tour last almost (and more) an hour, depending on how many times you take picture, or video or make question...
(Off Topic: After this, for us, the best tour was Bruichladdich (the more traditional) Ardbeg and Lagavulin. Laphroaig it's off-competition because it's my first love, but i think they can do something to increase the quality of the tour, and the new visitor lounge it's always a start...)
I hope this post can be helpful to you and to all think to visit Bowmore on the next time on Islay...
An excellent account of the tour Rudy, many thanks for that. All the more reason to book myself a Craftsman tour and I noticed you also convinced Singlemalt-Danny to do the same.
You mention the 18 pounds on the bowmore website and you are correct about that, but when I received the latest distillery opening hours info i noticed it was 22 pounds. I guess I made the updates a bit faster then they did
The Maggie is one of Ealing studios lesser known comedies. A wily old skipper of a Western Isles 'Puffer' and his motley crew lead all who come into contact with them a fine old time! Many scenes on Islay!