Kudos to Auchentoshan Distillery – they sure know how to organise an excellent whisky festival!

On Saturday, whisky fans descended in their hordes on the distillery. And Auchentoshan responded with the warmth and ease of an accomplished and practised host – very impressive, given that this was their first whisky festival.

A whisky festival wouldn’t be a whisky festival without some drams to taste: besides Auchentoshan’s own whisky (boyohboy is the Three Wood yummy!), parent company Morrison Bowmore brought along supplies of Bowmore and Glen Garioch to share.

It’s been a long time since we had some Bowmore. Quite why so long, I’m really not sure, especially after renewing our acquaintance with it on Saturday. It’s good. And we shall be stocking up shortly!

Glen Garioch, on the other hand was completely new to us. Indeed, the Founders Reserve that they were allowing people to taste was new to everyone! I loved the taste. Not so keen on the aroma, though. I couldn’t pinpoint exactly what it was that bothered me about it – all I could so eloquently come up with was “too perfumy” and “it’s affecting the wrong part of my nose”… you’d think that maybe these were the ramblings of a drunk person, but no, I was still completely sober at this point!

Also available to taste was Auchentoshan’s new range of ales – the lighter Summer Gold and the darker Triple Conditioned ale. I can’t comment personally on these as I don’t drink beer, but if the happy faces of my drinking companions were anything to go by, Auchentoshan’s head distiller Jeremy Stephens did a fine job!

In between tastings of various tipplings, we wandered round the farmers’ market, watched a chainsaw sculpture of a thistle take shape, and were enthralled by the cooperage demonstration (seriously, Jim Reilly should have his own TV show – he’s very entertaining with a great sense of humour!).

Auchentoshan Whisky Festival - Chainsaw Scultpure
Auchentoshan Whisky Festival - Cooperage Demonstration

Despite Auchentoshan’s careful planning with repeats of events, we managed to miss both mixology demonstrations. Totally our fault. I think we were paying homage to the casks in the specially opened warehouse at the time.

Auchentoshan Whisky Festival - Warehouse
Auchentoshan Whisky Festival - Bottle Your Own

And, we also didn’t avail ourselves of any of the master classes that were on, largely due to budgetary constraints (see the donate button below, people? We shamelessly but nicely beg of you to be generous so that we can do some of these next year. There is going to be a next year? Right? Auchentoshan? Pleaseohplease?).

All in all, even though we didn’t get to see and do everything, we saw and did a lot. Auchentoshan – you done good! Thank you!

If you’re curious to find out more about the distillery, visit our Auchentoshan page. And if you’d like to taste their whisky, you can buy a bottle of Auchentoshan here.