I’m far from being a whisky connoisseur but I do know that when a new distillery wants to produce its own whisky it will take some time. Legally the spirit they distil must mature in oak casks for three before it can legally be called “whisky”.
The first legal distillery on the Isle of Raasay, in northwest Scotland near Skye, began distilling in September 2017, which means the good folk there won’t be bottling the first legal Isle of Raasay Single Malt Scotch Whisky until 2020.
This left them with a challenge. They needed to find other sources of income to help keep the distillery going.
Visitors are therefore welcomed to tour the distillery and are encouraged to stay at Borodale House, the newly restored Victorian-era villa that now serves as a luxury whisky hotel, executive lounge and visitor centre.
In addition, they bought in some malt whisky from another distillery to demonstrate their whisky skills and to create a taster of what’s to come. In the case of the Isle of Raasay Distillery they blended two expressions from one distillery; one peated, one unpeated and then finished it in French oak Tuscan wine casks.
Creating this type of whisky is not anything new, it’s similar to what many other nascent single malt producers do.
For me the stroke of genius and the real distinctive comes in the name.
They called it, While We Wait. When I first heard it just made me smile.
Having now tried the whisky I can tell you I think it’s pretty good too, but as a self-confessed non-connoisseur don’t just take my word for that, it’s won numerous awards.