What is a trip to Scotland without drinking a little scotch? Traveling with non-scotch drinkers, we weren’t willing to go too far out of our way to try some scotch (although, to be fair, you can’t throw a stone without hitting a distillery), so we jumped on the tourist bandwagon and bought the cheapest tour at the Scotch Whiskey Experience in Edinburgh. For 15L (about $20pp) we were taken on a 50 minute tour with a single scotch tasting at the end.
As we sat into the moving scotch-barrel seats, I couldn’t help but drawing a comparison to the feel of the Snow White ride at Disney World! This 10 minute “ride” takes you slowly through the entire scotch making process with a little “Assistant” who looks right out of Disney’s Haunted Mansion. It is a fun and digestable way to learn about scotch.
After the ride, we moved into a small theater where our guide narrated a video talking about the different regions of Scotland and the types of scotch made in each. We had an accompanying “Scratch & Sniff” card that brought the words & visuals together with our sense of smell. It was a really fantastic detail.
From there, we moved into a lab/bar setting where we learned more about the scotch and watched the most magical projection into a bottle of scotch that you could imagine. It was on par with Disney-level effects as well (IMO). Then the bar in front of us was back-lit to match the scotch’s we had smelled and learned about so we could place our glass on the region we preferred and they would pour our glass.
After the pour, we took our glasses into the tasting room which also happens to be the worlds largest private collection of scotch. It was a pretty beautiful sight to behold. They are serious about their scotch — you can’t even take flash photography because the light/heat could affect the scotch. I don’t think they really open/drink most of the scotch in the collection though… a few have lost a lot “to the angels share” as they call it (you may call it…evaporation). We all tasted our scotch (mine was from the speyside region)…and decided they would be delightful if we wanted scotch or enjoyed it….but alas, we were not a scotch group. If we HAD loved scotch, we could have extended our tour with 2-3 additional tastings.
For a group with no knowledge (and minimal interest) in scotch and scotch distilleries, this was the perfect tour for us. We gained knowledge we never knew we needed and were able to say we had scotch in Scotland. Check that box and call it a day!
Do you know which region of Scotland you prefer (Islay, Speyside, Lowlands, Highlands, Campbeltown) when it comes to Scotch? Comment Below!