Hans wraps up his time on Speyside with a special catch on the River Spey, and a special tasting at Glen Moray

Sunday morning started a tad dreary and we had breakfast at leisure. We had lunch with another whisky couple: Donald and Susan Colville, working respectively as global brand ambassador for Diageo and visitor centre manager at Benromach distillery. They brought their little eight-month-old bairn Freya and we jointly baptised her with a very appropriate tool in the library of the Craig.

Which brings me to the catch of the day – with the help of Willie MacDougall, formerly known as distillery manager at Oban, Dalwhinnie, Teaninich and a couple of other distilleries, but currently owner of CUthere Taxis in Aberlour, we caught a beautiful big silver quaich in the River Spey, just past the iconic Telford Bridge.

Later that afternoon Willie’s wife Jess brought us to Glen Moray distillery, where we co-hosted a fine tasting with the enthusiastic and very knowledgeable Iain Allan, assistant distillery manager and brand ambassador for this delicate and sweet single malt. We presented three SMWS bottlings of said distillery and three cask strength official distillery bottlings in the presence of 27 guests. Most of them were locals from Forres and Elgin, but we also welcomed whisky lovers from Italy, Germany and Greece.

This was the line up, in order of appearance:

SMWS Cask No 35.155: Cello not Piccolo, a 14-year-old from a second-fill sherry butt

Glen Moray 1994 bourbon cask, 22-year-old

SMWS Cask No 35.156: A sweet and cereal songfest, 14-year-old  from a first-fill bourbon hogshead

This was followed by shepherd’s pie, after which followed a short tour through the distillery.

Glen Moray 1994 peated cask, 22-year-old

SMWS Cask No 35.159: Waves of intensity, a 21-year-old from first fill toasted oak

Glen Moray 1994 sherry cask, 22-year-old

All went home happily around 9:30 pm. We were taken back to the Craigellachie Hotel where we attended a stand-up comedian act performed by Dave Broom and Ziggie in the Quaich bar, filled to the brim with whisky enthusiasts who know their music and their whisky.

Well that is it, at least for us. It is Monday morning on 1 May now and we are preparing to head home after one of the best episodes of the festival ever.

A big thank you to all these people in and around Speyside who did their very best to welcome and entertain thousands of visitors from all over the world.

See you next time!

Hans