Simon King on Islay


The well known broadcaster Simon King stopped by the distillery for an informal tasting in the Laddieshop with Mary McGregor and Frazer Matthews earlier today.  He is on the island to research his impending wildlife holiday the “Islay Adventure” which will run from 15-22 May.  It is already fully booked.

Simon is also filming for an upcoming “Springwatch Special”, a long running BBC wildlife reality show which may go out at Easter.  He is particularly interested in Brown Hares at the moment.  These lovely big animals were probably introduced by the Romans but have recently been declining in the UK due to modern agricultural practices. Happily they still have a healthy population here on our Hebridean island.

This is the season of the “Mad March Hares”, when amorous males (called “Jacks”) pursue the females (called “Jills”) who fight them off until they are truly receptive to mating – a period which may only last for a couple of hours.  Certain fields are particularly popular with these long legged mammals, which like to congregate at Bybruaich Farm, right next to Lorgba where the grain for Octomore 6.3 Islay barley was grown.  This year however Simon has found that the biggest gatherings have been at Carn, opposite the campsite at Port Mor.

An Islay whisky enthusiast, particularly for the heavily peated expressions, the tasting was also the first time that Simon had had the opportunity to try The Botanist, our unique Islay Dry Gin. We trust he enjoyed it…  Slainte!

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