Why do you say Slàinte Mhath, and what does it mean?
Raising a glass is common practice in many pubs, bars and gatherings, whether it’s for celebration, commiseration or simply because it’s the end of a long week. There are so different ways to say "cheers" in many countries all over the world, however, in Scotland, it’s Slàinte Mhath!
Irish or Scots Gaelic?
The term Slàinte Mhath (Pronounced Slanj-a-va) is actually both Irish and Scots Gaelic. The way the phrase is pronounced is the same for both dialects, however the way it is spelt differs subtly. The Irish spell it Slàinte Mhaith. The phrase translates to "Good health" in both dialects, and if you want to respond to this using Scots Gaelic, you would say, "do dheagh shlainte" meaning "to your good health."
Where did Gaelic originate?
Scots Gaelic is believed to have come from a northern region of Ireland and was carried over to Scotland, particularly to the west coast and Highland areas in around the 4th or 5th century. The people who spoke Gaelic were referred to as the Gaels. The spread of the language grew to the Lowland areas of Scotland in the 8th century.
Why do we say Cheers?
Alcohol has been around for many centuries and so has raising a glass and toasting to good health. It is not exactly clear when and where this tradition originated from, however there is a theory that the practise of raising a toast may have derived from the Romans, who would raise a glass during ceremonies or rituals to honour the gods. A sacred liquid such as blood or wine would be used as an offering or even as a prayer for good health.
The Gaelic language is still spoken throughout the west coast and in some parts of the Highlands, and is experiencing a revival across the country from old and new speakers alike. Slàinte Mhath may just be a simple phrase, but it highlights and educates visitors from across the world about Scotland’s native language, and that’s something we can all keep toasting to!
Message from Daniel
All being well, in the coming days you’ll receive a package at Spanton.
From Beauly - Strichen midpoint.
Enjoy on occasion of:
while watching a good...
We’re shoulder to shoulder with you, always. And looking forward to seeing and being with you again.
A Present from Ballindalloch
Glencairn whisky glass
The Glencairn whisky glass is a style of glass developed by Glencairn Crystal Ltd, Scotland for drinking whisky. Originally designed by Raymond Davidson, managing director of the company, the shape of the glass is derived from the traditional nosing copitas used in whisky labs around Scotland. The glass design was concluded with the aid of master blenders from five of the largest whisky companies in Scotland. The glass first came into production in 2001. Since that time additional mini-Glencairns and Canadian Glencairns were introduced.https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glencairn_whisky_glass
A Present from Ballindalloch
Ballindalloch (Scottish Gaelic: Baile na Dalach) is a small village on the River Spey in Scotland.
It is known for its whisky distillery and for Ballindalloch Castle.
Until 1961 there was a station on the Great North of Scotland Railway
In Ballindalloch itself, there are two distilleries, Cragganmore distillery and Ballindalloch distillery. On the western edge of Ballindalloch is the Tormore distillery.
Ballindalloch previously had a railway station, Ballindalloch railway station that opened on 1 July 1863 and was part of the Strathspey Railway (GNoSR) but it closed on 18 October 1965.https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ballindalloch
Cragganmore is a Scotch whisky distillery situated in the village of Ballindalloch in Banffshire, Scotland.
Region: Speyside: Owner Diageo
Water source: The Craggan Burn
No. of stills: 2 wash stills, 2 spirit stills
Capacity: 1,520,000 litres
The distillery was founded in 1869 by John Smith on land leased from Sir George Macpherson-Grant. The site was chosen by Smith both for its proximity to the waters of the Craggan burn and because it was close to the Strathspey Railway. Smith was an experienced distiller, having already been manager of the Macallan, Glenlivet, Glenfarclas and Wishaw distilleries.
The Strathspey Railway is now disused and forms the Speyside Way long-distance walking route.
Cragganmore was marketed by United Distillers under their Classic Malts brand. United Distillers has since become a part of Diageo.
The stills used in the second distillation (the spirit still) of Cragganmore whisky are unique in having a flat top and being relatively short. The stills' shape has a definite effect on the taste and aroma (nose) of the whisky.
Laura Vernon is the current master distiller.https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cragganmore_distillery
Glenfarclas distillery is a Speyside whisky distillery in Ballindalloch, Scotland. Glenfarclas translates as meaning valley of the green grass. The distillery is owned and run by the Grant family. The distillery has six stills which are the largest on Speyside and are heated directly by gas burners.
Glenfarclas Visitor Centre
Owner: J. & G. Grant
Water source: Ben Rinnes
No. of stills: 3 wash stills, 3 spirit stills
Capacity: 3,000,000 litres
The distillery has a production capacity of around 3.5 million litres of spirit per year. Normally four stills are used for production with two kept in reserve.
The distillery has approximately 68,000 casks maturing on site, in traditional dunnage warehouses, with stock from every year from 1953 to the current year. Glenfarclas produce a traditional Highland malt with a heavy sherry influence.
There is evidence that the distillery first started operations sometime before 1791. The distillery was first granted a licence in 1836 when it was run by Robert Hay. On 8 June 1865 it was bought by John Grant and is still owned and run by his descendants, making it truly independent.
John Grant sent his son George G. Grant to run the operations at Glenfarclas. In 1890, on the death of George G. Grant, his widow Elsie took over the licence for the distillery.
At some time over the following years, Elsie handed active management of the Distillery to her sons John and George. The Grants formed a partnership with Pattisons Ltd in August 1896 at the height of the whisky boom. After the crash that followed, the Grants resumed full ownership of the distillery. John retired due to ill health in 1913 and George became sole proprietor. In 1947 Glenfarclas became a private limited company, owned by George's sons, George S. Grant and John P. Grant.
John L.S. Grant, who joined Glenfarclas in 1973, is the current Chairman. His son George S. Grant is Director of Sales. The company was named Distiller of the Year by Whisky Magazine in 2006.
Since 2006 Glenfarclas has been distributed in the UK by Pol Roger Ltd. In 2008 the company began sponsoring horseracing with the Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Chase at Cheltenham. In 2011, the 40-year-old 46% vol. expression was named "Scotch Whisky Single Malt of the Year" in the 17th Annual Malt AdvocatenWhisky Awards.https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glenfarclas_distillery
Speyside single malt
Speyside single malts are single malt Scotch whiskies, distilled in Strathspey, the area around the River Spey in Moray and Badenoch and Strathspey, in northeastern Scotland.
Whisky producing regions of Scotland
The two best-selling single malt whiskies in the world, The Glenlivet and Glenfiddich, come from Speyside. Strathspey has the greatest number of distilleries of any of the whisky producing areas of Scotland. Dufftown alone has six working distilleries with an annual capacity of 40.4 million litres of spirit.https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speyside_single_malt
My Usual Dram
The association of the Baillie name with Speyside go back to General William Baillie and the English Civil Wars. He campaigned all over the East Coast of Scotland in his role at Lieutenant General of the Scottish Covenant Army circa 1645.https://www.ravenecho.com/articles/48/
In honour of this association I hit upon this Whisky.
Glen Moray distillery
Glen Moray distillery is a Speyside distillery producing single malt scotch whisky. Situated on the banks of the River Lossie in Elgin, Moray the distillery started production in September 1897. It was sold in 2008 by the Glenmorangie Company Ltd. to La Martiniquaise.
Glen Moray distillery
Location: Elgin, Moray
Owner: La Martiniquaise
Water source:River Lossie
No. of stills: 3 wash stills 6 spirit stills
Capacity: 3,300,000 litres per annum
Glen Moray:Type Single malt
No Age Statement - Classic
Glen Moray started life as West Brewery in Elgin run by Robert Thorne & Sons, and was converted to a distillery with 2 stills in 1897. Following a fire and extensive rebuilding program at their Aberlour Distillery, the company focused on production of Aberlour whisky, allowing the Glen Moray distillery to run down. It was closed in 1910. The distillery was purchased by the owners of the Glenmorangie Distillery, the MacDonald and Muir families at some time during the 1920s. The distillery received 2 additional stills in 1958 and at present has an annual capacity of around 2,000,000 litres.
The company now belongs to La Martiniquaise which uses part of its production in their blended Whisky Label 5, along with its Starlaw distillery in West Lothian. The distillery was expanded in 2012 to produce 3,300,000 litres annually from 3 wash stills and 3 spirit stills. 2016 has seen further expansion and development of the site with a growth in production to around 5,500,000 litres annually predicted.
The Malt Whisky Trail Map
The distillery has a visitor centre which offers tours and tastings year-round. Details can be found on the company website here: Distillery Tours
Scotland's Malt Whisky Trail is a tourism initiative featuring seven working Speyside distilleries including Glen Moray, a historic distillery (Dallas Dhu, now a museum) and the Speyside Cooperage.https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glen_Moray_distillery