Monday, December 17, 2012

Scotland, Part Three: Whisky Tasting.

After a full morning touring the Castle, Nicholas and I were in search of a quick lunch. We strolled down the Royal Mile from the castle, passing by all of the tartan-selling souvenir shops. (This is probably why I'm obsessing over a plaid Christmas!)

We ended up in the Grassmarket neighborhood and I spotted this restaurant, Mussel and Steak Bar. For some reason, mussels sounded perfect, so in we went!

^1/2 kilo of mussels in a shallot, garlic, white wine and cream sauce

After lunch, we made our way back to the Royal Mile, stopping in the shops along the way.

 Look who we found playing in the street!..

Our next stop was some whisky tasting at the Scotch Whisky Experience. This was a great way for us to learn more about whisky - not only do you get to hop on a ride that takes you through the process of making whisky, but you get to taste whisky from different regions of Scotland! Fun.

 These were the barrels that we rode around in!
After the ride, we learned that the different regions produce unique flavors in the whisky based on what is in the air. For example, whiskies from the Islay region have a salty taste because it is on the coast...

The finale of the "experience" was in a room that housed the largest collection of whisky in the world... thousands and thousands of bottles! And, we (of course) tasted more whisky in here!
^It reminded me of wine tasting (which I'm very familiar with!) because you look at the legs, and the color and clarity, etc.

^See how some of those bottles look a bit empty? The whisky that evaporates overtime is known as the "Angel's Share!" And, the angels over Scotland love their whisky!
^Oh, and in this room we paired our whisky with a bite of sea-salted chocolate!

Slainte Mhath! 
(Which means Cheers or Good Health in Gaelic!)

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