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Keepers of the Quaich

Single Malt Ambassadors

Dear Friends,

I am writing today because I wanted you to be the first to know that, after much thought, I have decided that the time has come for me to step down as Laphroaig’s Distillery Manager. For a long time, I’ve been travelling between Islay and the mainland to be with my family. Especially after the last two years we’ve all experienced, I’ve decided to make a permanent move to be closer to them and to take up a new challenge at an independent distillery company, so I will be relocating from Islay in mid-November.

As you can imagine, this was not an easy decision for me. I have been at Laphroaig for more than a quarter century, and I’m proud to have been the longest-serving Distillery Manager in its history. Following in the footsteps of legends like Ian Hunter and Bessie Williamson has been the privilege of my life.

More than anything, I would like to thank the Friends of Laphroaig for all your support throughout my 27 years at Laphroaig and my nearly 16 years as Distillery Manager.

It’s support that comes in all sorts of forms – from helping me grow the visitor experience at the distillery, supporting the creation of core whiskies in our range, sharing your ideas on what would make good Cairdeas bottlings, always being honest about how you would like Laphroaig to be. Over the years, we have created a Laphroaig tartan, celebrated together at our bicentennial events all around the world, sung with the Laphroaig choir, met on Islay at Feis, and throughout the year, and best of all, we’ve shared many drams of Laphroaig together.

Laphroaig is an amazing whisky and brand that has and will continue to be part of my life, just as Islay will. I will always remain a Friend of Laphroaig myself and will continue to come back to visit my plot and collect some rent.

I am also sure that thanks to your passion and loyalty, Laphroaig will remain the most renowned and beloved peated single malt on the planet and will continue to go from strength to strength. Over the next two months, I’ll be working closely with our expert Distillery team to hand over the reins and a new Distillery Manager will be announced in due course. I know you will welcome them with open arms, as you welcomed me.

It’s an honour to call myself a Friend, and I wish all of you the very best.

Sláinte.

John Campbell, Distillery Manager
Photo of John Campbell, Distillery Manager
Laphroaig

KOTQers Badger, “Boiler”, and Norse gather at The Tortoise Club – sampling from their single malt lineup: Glenfiddich 18, Oban 14, and Dalmore 15.

I’m just going to cut and paste this article for you all.   Fun.

 

Pope Francis said whisky is ‘real holy water’ in censored clip

Pope Francis's comments were censored ahead of a new documentary

Pope Francis’s comments were censored ahead of a new documentary

A CLIP of Pope Francis holding Scotch whisky and saying it is “the real holy water” was censored ahead of a new documentary about Scottish seminarians in Rome.

The clip showed the Pope accept a bottle of Oban malt from some Scottish student priests at an event at the Apostolic Palace last year.

Vatican media said the quip should be cut from the film before it could be broadcast this weekend.

Director Tony Kearney who made the one-hour documentary Priest School for the BBC with his company Solus Productions said they’d filmed the Pope’s meeting with the students during the 18-month project.

Kearney said the Pope was “really down to Earth with them all” and didn’t opt for the usual procedure when handed the bottle of whisky as a gift.

He said: “When they handed him the bottle, instead of just handing it to his assistant as he normally would with a gift, he held it up and said ‘questa e la vera acqua santa’ – which means this is the real holy water.

“He guffawed with laughter and it was a real ice-breaker with the students and put everyone at ease.

“But we’d agreed that the Vatican’s media office would be allowed to approve all of our footage before we broadcast it.

“So we sent them the files and when they sent it back that bit of him saying that was cut out.

“We were really annoyed at first, but they insisted they didn’t want the Pope to be seen to be endorsing whisky.”

 

While visiting the Scotch Library at the Westin Kierland in Scottsdale, AZ Brother Rambler executed his duty as a single malt ambassador, as a member of the KOTQ – Chicago, in exemplary fashion. I recount his tale here…

“I went back to the Scotch Library with a group of fairly inexperienced people. The guy was going through his spiel on single malts: nosing, tasting, etc. He recognized that I knew what I was doing and said at one point to the group, “there’s only one rule of single malt, and I’ll let this gentleman tell you what it is.” So, I naturally said the rule that the KOTQ – Chicago was founded upon, “all single malts are good…it’s up to you find the good in it”. He was going in a different direction (was going to say there aren’t any rules and you should drink it how you enjoy it), but then said, “I like that rule a lot, going to use that in the future.” Rambler: being an Ambassador everywhere!