Giving Thanks Around The World – Part II

David and I have been to Islay four times now. We're at the point where it just feels like home. You see the same people, the same places, drive the same roads, and drink the same whisky. It's fantastic. It truly is the spiritual home of Scottish single malt. Keeping with the theme this week, I'd like to do a special Islay edition of "Giving Thanks" to let everyone there know how thankful we are to have been accepted into your community with such warmth and generosity. Starting with the master himself—Jim McEwan, from Bruichladdich—whose rule for taking photos dictates that there must first be a warm-up shot, and in that shot everyone must try and look like a badass.

Thanks to the ferry and the courtious captains who always steer us to safety each time we leave from Kennacraig.

Thanks to the madman Jamie MacKenzie, who on our first trip to Islay let us run through Bowmore at midnight like we owned the place. We were drinking glasses of fermenting wash, for God's sake.

Cheers to Jamie's gigantic hands, as well. They're so big they make my small hands look like an infant's.

Thanks to Duffie as well, who ran the greatest whisky bar on Islay for many a year. He was always there to find us something great to drink.

A big thanks to Mickey Heads and all the boys at LVMH/Ardbeg who always make sure we're up to speed on all the latest happenings on the south end. We wouldn't be anywhere near the whisky shop we are today without your help.

Thanks to John Campbell and all the folks at Laphroaig for letting us bend your ear and talk Islay history each time we drive through.

Thanks to John, Anthony, and the team at Kilchoman who have taught us so much about maturity and what 100% Islay really means.

Thanks to Ian at Lagavulin for dragging us out into the bogs of Islay for a first-hand lesson in peat cutting. That was as Islay of an experience as we've ever had.

Thanks to the sweet ladies at the Caol Ila gift shop who gave us one of the greatest tours ever. It's really something when an 84 year old woman walks you around an old Scottish distillery.

And, finally, thanks to the numerous Islay guesthouses that have given us shelter, warmth, and—of course—gigantic plates full of various fried meats each morning for breakfast.

You'll all be in our thoughts this Thanksgiving holiday!

-David Driscoll

David Driscoll