Whisky Talk

By The Scotch Malt Whisky Society

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Welcome to Whisky Talk! Hosted by Richard Goslan, editor of The Scotch Malt Whisky Society’s members magazine Unfiltered, we'll be introducing you to some of the people who make whisky, the places it comes from and the characters who bring it to life.

Episode Date
Episode 16: Lagg Distillery on Arran
The SMWS paid a visit in early 2019 to the Isle of Arran to check on the progress of the new Lagg distillery on the south of the island, which will be the 'peated' sister to Lochranza distillery in the north.
May 18, 2020
Episode 15: Ardmore distillery
Ardmore distillery is nestled in a remote corner of Aberdeenshire, and isn't usually open to visitors. Thankfully, distillery manager George Forsyth and the team threw wide its doors to the team from Unfiltered on a memorable visit we made in 2018.
May 05, 2020
Episode 14: Raasay distillery and island tour
Making whisky on the Isle of Raasay is a modern success story that is down to determination and hard work, but it's also bringing new life to an island that has seen more than its share of hardship in the past, as Richard Goslan discovers.
Apr 28, 2020
Episode 13: From filling casks to fighting coronavirus
With demand for hand-sanitiser outstripping supply, distilleries big and small have been playing a key role in providing frontline care workers with essential supplies. Richard Goslan caught up with the team at the Glasgow Distillery Company to find out about how they’ve been able to help out.
Apr 15, 2020
Episode 12: The birth of Leith's Bonnington Distillery
Its construction has been delayed because of archeological finds and it finally started distilling as the coronavirus pandemic took hold in the UK. But the stills are running at Bonnington distillery in Leith, and the team are looking to a bright future.
Apr 08, 2020
Episode 11: Charlie MacLean's SMWS whisky masterclass
Charlie MacLean is not only a leading authority on all things whisky, he's also a long-standing member of The Scotch Malt Whisky Society's Tasting Panel. In this episode of Whisky Talk, he describes his role on the Society's Tasting Panel and provides a masterclass in the appreciation and evaluation of single malt whisky.
Mar 18, 2020
Episode 10: Masataka and Rita Taketsuru, A Whisky Love Story
It's 100 years since Rita Cowan fell in love with her family's Japanese lodger, Masataka Taketsuru, when he stayed with her family while studying Organic Chemistry at Glasgow University. They were married in January 1920 and by the end of the year they had spent time at Hazelburn Distillery in Campbeltown before setting sail for Japan, where Rita supported Masataka's dream of creating a little bit of Scotland in Japan. Whisky Talk tells their story, with the help of Scottish Distillers Association chairman Professor Alan Wolstenholme, whisky writer Dave Broom, co-ordinator of Mandarin Chinese at Imperial College London Ruth Herd, chief blender at Nikka Distillery Tadashi Sakuma and Dr Niall Mackenzie from the Adam Smith Business School at the University of Glasgow.
Feb 06, 2020
Episode 9: Sam Heughan
Whisky Talk travels to Glencoe to catch up with Scottish actor Sam Heughan, otherwise known as Jamie Fraser in the historical time travel series Outlander. We find out about his passion for Scotch, his own new whisky project, as well as the travel and history documentary he’s shooting around Scotland with Outlander co-star Graham McTavish – who plays the role of Dougal McKenzie.
Nov 07, 2019
Episode 8: Jerez
Join us on a journey to Jerez, to immerse ourselves in Spain’s Sherry Triangle and explore the synergy between the worlds of whisky and sherry. We visit cooperages to find out about the booming industry to build and season casks for the Scotch whisky world, tour the region’s bodegas to sample an astonishing range of sherries, and talk to the characters working in partnership with the world of Scotch to help bring us the sherried whisky style loved by so many.
Nov 01, 2019
Episode 7: Leith's whisky history, Tomatin and Tamdhu
Join us to find out more about Leith's whisky history with a walking tour of the area, with the Society's Vaults members' room at the heart of it. Then we'll head north to visit Tomatin distillery and general manager Graham Eunson, before travelling into the heart of Speyside to catch up with Tamdhu's manager, Sandy McIntyre, to hear about that distillery's change in fortunes.
Jul 31, 2019
Episode 6: From Glen Scotia to Jura and Islay's Ardnahoe
The Scotch Malt Whisky Society travels from Glen Scotia in Campbeltown, where Iain McAlister explains why there's a new buzz around the distillery, to Jura to meet distillery manager Graham Logan and finally on to Islay to chat to Stewart Laing, who has recently realised his dream of opening Hunter Laing's new distillery on the island, Ardnahoe.
Jun 20, 2019
Episode 5: Whisky pilgrims at the Islay Festival
Join The Scotch Malt Whisky Society in the splendid surroundings of Islay House, where members and whisky pilgrims have gathered for the Islay Whisky Festival and the Society’s Open Day. Whisky Talk meets members who have travelled from around the world, and catches up with SMWS ambassador Matt Bailey before he presents a sensational ‘Old & Rare’ masterclass. Special Guest: Matt Bailey .
May 29, 2019
Episode 4: Tobermory, The Golden Dram and the Northern Pole of Inaccessibility
In this episode, we catch up with Tobermory distillery’s master blender Kirstie McCallum, find out about the documentary Scotch – The Golden Dram from its director Andrew Peat, and hear from an adventurous Scotch Malt Whisky Society member about his preparations to walk to the as-yet-unreached Northern Pole of Inaccessibility. From the Scottish islands to the Arctic Circle, pour yourself a dram and settle down for the latest episode of Whisky Talk.
May 18, 2019
Episode 3: Sandy Hyslop
Sandy Hyslop, director of blending at Chivas Brothers talks to our Spirits Manager, Euan Campbell from his sample room in Dumbarton near Glasgow. Hyslop has spent a lifetime working in whisky and is responsible for some of the most iconic names in the whisky world from Chivas Regal to Ballantine's and Aberlour A'Bunadh. But how did his whisky journey begin? Tune in to find out.
Apr 29, 2019
Episode 2: Pip Hills & The Flavour Revolution - Pt 2
Mar 18, 2019
Episode 1: Pip Hills & The Flavour Revolution - Pt 1
Welcome to the first ever podcast of The Scotch Malt Whisky Society. Hosted by Unfiltered editor Richard Goslan, we'll be introducing you to some of the people who make whisky, the places it comes from and the characters who bring it to life. This is Whisky Talk. Scotch Malt Whisky Society founder Pip Hills talks about the early rebellious days of the Society. Recorded at The Vaults in Edinburgh on Monday 18th February 2019, the talk was part of Pip Hills & The Flavour Revolution, a special event where the first ever Society bottling, 1.1 was opened and tasted. Pour yourself a dram and have a listen!
Mar 18, 2019