Scotland - Day 12: Wrapping it Up
Today was another productive day for our buying ambitions. Islay marked the end of our distillery visits, as our arrival in Glasgow marked the beginning of serious negotiations. We've probably secured another four to five casks today as I type this and we're hoping to grab a bite to eat with one last bottler before we're through. Tomorrow morning, bright and early, we'll walk out of the Edinburgh hotel, fly to London, buy our wives a ton of gifts from the Heathrow Duty Free, and then head for home. Unfortunately I can't reveal any more details at this time as to who we're meeting with because I would hate for that information to fall into the wrong hands. If a malicious party were to uncover our plans for world whisky domination it could lead to disastrous results (or some other retailer getting the leg up on us!).
At lunch today David and I tried to do a tally of what we think we'd acquired so far, pricing and availability not presenting an issue. The last few days have been quite fruitful, which has made decisions difficult. We can't come back with anything less thrilling than what we purchased last year, so all the marks need to be spot on. That, or they need to provide incredible value, which we think many of them will. Some casks may not make you leap from your seat in a fit of joy, but they may cause you to mutter, "Is that all I paid for that?"
We've got the Laphroaig 18 cask strength from Chieftain's that we secured early one, alongside an '84 Benriach that we know we've just got to have. Glenfarclas will definitely be getting some love with a few distillery direct purchases and we think Signatory is going to have a big return to K&L after a long absence - we think a young Longmorn, Benrinnes, and even a sherry cask of Glenlivet all have serious potential for under-the-radar hits, while older casks of Bunnahabhain and Glenglassaugh may prove to be quite popular. They also have a few big guns that may surprise everyone if we can coax the boys into releasing them. Kilchoman will be selling us a barrel, which one we're not quite sure yet, but it will be a sherry-aged whisky. There's a peated Bruichladdich in the works, and I'd expect to see an older refill-sherry cask of Aberlour make an appearance. It may even be possible that the much-maligned Glen Scotia manages to sneak its way into the mix as we may have located the best whisky ever to have been produced by that distillery (which is really saying something). You know we're taking a cask of Glen Garioch directly from Rachel Barrie, and there may be some secret Faultline rumblings in the works as well. I'd expect a few more peated barrels to pop up before all is said and done and perhaps some lighter Highland malts might make the final cut. So much to think about!
So this is the final update from Scotland. I hope you've had fun reading along with our adventures and I hope we can keep you all interested as we begin our pre-arrival campaign to help get you whisky fans better advance pricing for reserving ahead of time. More on this as the weeks go by.
See you all back in the states tomorrow!