The Islay Festival, 2019
This year sees The Single Cask journeying to the Isle of Islay for our first ever Fèis Ile!
The Islay Festival is a celebration of everything that makes the island such a brilliant place, with music and malt at its heart. For almost twenty years now Islay’s distilleries have been closely involved in the festivities, opening their doors to visitors, hosting special tours and tastings, and of course bottling some exceptional (and very exclusive) whiskies.
As it happens we’ve been bottling a few special whiskies ourselves recently, a few of which have come from Islay. Brendan and I are no strangers to the island’s repertoire of powerful and peaty drams, always on the lookout for the next unique cask that will provide our next hit of all things smoky.
Every now and then things just work out, and in this instance we were looking at bottling some of these intriguing casks at exactly the same time as our good friends at The Whisky Lounge were making plans for their annual Fèis Ile whisky tastings. Just a couple of conversations later and here we are, packing our bags and preparing for a week of good drams, cracking ceilidhs and… sunshine? Fingers crossed.
Both myself and Brendan will be travelling the island all week, bringing with us a number of special bottlings to share for the first time. We’re keeping our cards close for now, but it’s safe to assume we won’t be pulling any peat-heavy punches, so if you’re on the island and looking to try some twists on your favourites, come and find us!
We’ll be hosting some tastings on the tall ship, the Flying Dutchman, with The Whisky Lounge in the middle of the week, after our own wee tasting in Islay’s Museum of Natural History on the Monday. It’s not often Brendan and I get to work together as we tend to be on opposite sides of the planet, so we’re looking forward to sharing some drams with our fellow Islay fans and elaborating on how we search for our unique spirits.
This year will also see the festival’s first exhibition focused entirely on independent bottlers, hosted by Dramfool in the Bowmore Hall, and we’re delighted to be joining in. Guests will receive a special Glencairn glass and have the chance to sample numerous indie bottlings of Islay/Jura whiskies (including of course some of our own!).
Details of all of these events can be found via the links below. Even if you can’t make it to any of these specific tastings, be sure to get in touch via Instagram or Facebook If you’d like to meet the team!
Drams with Tom & Brendan - Islay Museum of Natural History
Monday 27th May, 2pm - 4pm
Tall Ship Tastings with The Whisky Lounge
Tuesday 28th & Wednesday 29th May
The Indie Whisky Fèis Ìle with Bruce Farquhar (Dramfool) & Feis Ile
Bowmore Hall, Thursday 30th May, 12pm - 5pm