[Ansteorra-rapier] Whiskey class

Charlie Ribron II landf at airmail.net
Sun Jan 13 00:42:45 PST 2002

Two years ago, I had 2 shots of the smoothest scotch I have ever drank in my
life in Kansas City Kansas. The sports bar had a huge bottle hook up above
the bar and for $150 a shot you could have a shot  the bottle had some
writing on it but I can read Galic, but one old guy read it for me and has
you quess it was uisge beathe and it had the date 1539. You may say harsh
but the drink I had was smooth. They like you said didn't have modern
distilleries but they had a lot of time making they spirits and they worked
it out to make a good drink.
Ld Carlos
-----Original Message-----
From: Brendan McEwan <brendan_mcewan at dhope.net>
To: ansteorra-rapier at ansteorra.org <ansteorra-rapier at ansteorra.org>
Date: Sunday, January 13, 2002 1:25 AM
Subject: RE: [Ansteorra-rapier] Whiskey class

>Just because the modern distilleries did not exist does not mean
>did not exist.  Licensing a distillery did not happen until the 1600's(in
>Ireland).  The oldest licensed distillery is Bushmill, I believe, founded
>1608 but...
>I found this with one search on the first line.
>Scotch whisky can trace its roots back to the ancient Celts of more than
>years ago. The name they gave to it was 'uisge beathe' - the water of life.
>Certainly the whisky that they produced was stronger and much harsher than
>what is now produced today, as they only had knowledge of crude
>processes. The production of Scotch whisky came about because there was no
>effective way of storing beer over a long period of time, and distilling a
>liquid into a spirit drink was a way around this.
>The earliest evidence of major Scotch whisky production was in 1494 when
>Friar John Corr received enough malt to produce over 1000 bottles of 'aqua
>vitae' (Latin for 'water of life'). The large-scale production of it had
>begun to take place primarily because it was considered a good medicine,
>providing relief from a wide variety of ailments, and also warming the body
>on a bitterly cold Scottish winter night!
>By the late 1600's the government had realised the immense profit making
>potential of Scotch whisky, and began to tax it. This led to an almighty
>struggle over at least the next 150 years between the excise men, in favour
>of legal Scottish distilleries paying tax, and the people who ran illegal
>Scottish distilleries, often in the Highlands of Scotland. Often raids on
>illegal stills would involve the military and the excise men were
>to smash up any equipment that they found. They were fighting a losing
>battle though. To give an idea of the scale of the problem, in 1777 there
>were 8 licensed distilleries, but at least 400 unregistered. Smuggling was
>rife, and the Highlanders used all their creative means to ensure that as
>much illegal whisky was distributed as possible. Smugglers sometimes faced
>the death sentence, so it was a real battle of nerve and wit.
>This is not to say that the licensed Scottish distilleries were not selling
>a lot of whisky though. Indeed in the late 1700's they were selling so much
>south of the border that they were affecting the gin sales of England, no
>mean feat in those times. The distillers of England's then favourite spirit
>drink, gin, used their powers of persuasion to get the duty on Scotch
>being sent to England increased. This led to one of the biggest Scottish
>distilleries, Stein and Haig, to declare themselves bankrupt. In turn there
>was another increase in the distribution and consumption of that harsher
>spirit drink, illegal Scotch whisky.
>A compromise was reached in 1823 when legislation made producing Scotch
>whisky a profitable venture, and all though this didn't completely wipe out
>illegal production it was a giant step in forming it into the great
>that it became.
>Scotch, or any "whisky" for that matter is nothing more than a distilled
>ale(malted(partially germinated) barley, water, and yeast).
>-----Original Message-----
>From: ansteorra-rapier-admin at ansteorra.org
>[mailto:ansteorra-rapier-admin at ansteorra.org]On Behalf Of Chris Zakes
>Sent: Friday, January 11, 2002 6:54 PM
>To: ansteorra-rapier at ansteorra.org
>Subject: [Ansteorra-rapier] Whiskey class
>At 07:37 AM 1/9/02 -0800, you wrote:
>>[ Picked text/plain from multipart/alternative ]
>> This is to let all know that one additional class is being included that
>is not listed.  It is a Scotch tasting class at the end of the day after
>all fighting is over.
>I realize I'm probably being a stick-in-the-mud, but... I did a bit of
>digging at http://www.scotchwhisky.net/distilleries/index.htm. *None* of
>the distilleries I looked at  date before 1800. Why are we having a class
>on a subject that's 200 years post-period?
> -Tivar Moondragon
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