-> 2010 -> Friday Islay Picture #160 - Ugly Betty Still at Bruichladdich

Dihaoine, 06/Aug/2010

Friday Islay Picture #160 - Ugly Betty Still at Bruichladdich

Friday Islay Picture in stencil

Friday evening after a rather long week, enjoying a wee dram or two of Islay single malt whisky. I could enjoy an Islay gin in a few weeks time, but then again I don't think it's really something I would like. Still, the story of Bruichladdich distillery distilling some gin in their Ugly Betty Lomond still has created quite a bit of interest this week, so I thought this week's Friday Islay picture should be a picture of said still:

Picture of the Ugly Betty Lomond still at Bruichladdich distillery

I took this picture back in June 2010, at that time I don't think the still was ready just yet. As you can see on this picture of the Ugly Betty still taken on the same day it looked like they were still working on some of the fittings.

But since then quite a lot has happened:

With the rumours intensifying I wrote Bruichladdich Islay Gin in the Making? and soon further reports started to appear. The Herald wrote Island distillery gets a tonic from gin thanks to Ugly Betty and when they really got going the Bruichladdich Blog itself started the reporting: Islay Gintrification, Gin McEwan and Dirty Dottie meets Ugly Betty followed the first distillation of Islay gin with pictures and many details. The story quickly went around the world, among others this Ukrainian publication is writing about it (see the Google translation of the report).

Since then a press release has been published with some further details, some extracts I'll quote here:

Bruichladdich distillery has distilled a genuine, artisanal Islay gin, flavoured by an unprecedented 31 botanicals.

22 of the botanicals were harvested from Islay, including a rare subspecies of juniper, before being distilled in a unique and historic still.

“Ugly Betty”, the original and only Lomond still, was used for the first time in 30 years. Having been saved from a scrap yard it was specially adapted, including for the infusion of botanicals by alcohol vapour in the still neck. Running at an exceptionally low pressure, the still ran for a surprising 15 hours at a steady, gentle simmer, producing maximum flavour and texture. [..]

Jim McEwan said: “I was bit apprehensive because Ugly Betty and I hadn’t danced together before, but I was confident we could pull it off. You form relationships with stills because they all perform differently – some are cantankerous and others are easy. In the end it went like a Rolls Royce.”  [..]

2,500 cases (6/1) of the first release will be bottled at Bruichladdich at 46% with Islay spring water, with out chill-filtration, and will be available from the end of September.

That's all for today, have a nice Friday evening, may be with a good Islay single malt whisky? After all you can't get the Islay gin just yet…

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