Scotland is famous for its whisky and there are two good reasons for that: they make it very well, and a wee nip will warm you against that famous Scotch mist and cold.
The question then is how do you find a good Scotch? There are many different types – it’s an art-form, similar to knowing your wine.
One place in Edinburgh where you can learn a lot and taste quite a few is The Scotch Whisky Experience. It’s located on the Royal Mile, not far from Edinburgh Castle, so after you’ve seen where the kings and queens of history lived, fought and caroused, you’ll want a taste of what they drank.
There are guided tours going on every day that last all day long at the Scotch Whisky Experience. You’ll learn about how the smooth liquor is made, sample the various aromas so you can decide which one suits your palate the best, have a taste and see the world’s largest collection of Scottish whiskies. You’ll even go on the whisky barrel ride.
If you already know your Scotch you could take the Platinum Tour which is all about whisky tasting, or The Taste of Scotland tour which matches food to whiskies. If you’re a real fan, take the Morning Masterclass in which you get to compare the different whiskies: Blended, Single Grain and Single Malt. You even get to sniff newly made whisky and compare and contrast it with the age varieties. If you want to prove to everyone how well you know your stuff, take the once a month course at The Scotch Whisky Training School at the Scotch Whisky Experience. At the end of the day you’ll receive a Certificate of Expertise.
To calm down after all those heady fumes, you can head into the award-winning Amber Restaurant which has a seasonally-changing Scottish menu. It’s the best of Scotland’s food and drink. Try wild salmon or highlands beef, neeps and tatties, perhaps even haggis. In the evenings the whisky bar can serve you a pre-dinner cocktail with the taste of Scotland, by which of course I mean whisky.