Haggis, a hundred times, haggis!

Being American, I have come to realize that a number of laws we have were created based on hyperbolic (and often unfounded) fear. America’s founding is littered in the “live and let live” or “don’t tread on me” type mindset but as of late, it seems everyone is trying to tell everyone else how to live, specifically through legislation. With all of this in mind, I’m here to talk about one of the most heinous food bans we have in America…

Haggis.

Banned from import into America in 1971 because it contains sheep lung, haggis is little more than a leftover-sheep-meat-mashup that I’d affectionately compare to scrapple. It has a very similar texture to scrapple but is (in)famous for being served encased in a sheep’s stomach. Once removed from it’s stomach-y packaging, it’s very often prepared in a myriad of ways. Let’s explore some of those ways!

Below, we have haggis making an appearance on nachos in a nifty little pub called “Scotch & Rye” in Inverness.

They also have popcorn haggis…

At this point you’re hopefully thinking “man, oh man, I need some haggis in my life!” but I’m afraid you’re probably thinking “This guy’s gone of the deep end about some Scottish scrapple!” Either way, this haggis inspired train ain’t stoppin’! Let’s head up to Helgi’s in Orkney and see how many more ways we can have it!

Below we’ve got some haggis fondue!

And what’s this? Haggis mac and cheese? I think so!

This next sandwich is known as a Haggis and Whiskey Rarebit Sandwich.

Rarebit (which rightly sounds like rabbit) doesn’t actually contain any rabbit. It’s just a fancy name for a savory melted cheese sauce over bread. The only thing that makes the above sandwich different from a normal rarebit sandwich? You guessed it: HAGGIS. ❀

Continuing the haggis mashup below is a haggis grilled cheese from a tiny coffee shop called Square root cafΓ© in Keith!

You might be thinking “Grilled cheeses are okay but I only love pizza.” Well you’re in luck! That’s right, at Black Isle Bar in Inverness, you can get HAGGIS PIZZA Y’ALL.

This haggis train is slowing and I’m sad to see that but I only spent a week in Scotland this time around so there was only so much time for haggis lol. Below is the most classic way to enjoy haggis. It’s “Haggis, Neeps, and Tatties” which is haggis, rutabaga, and potatoes. Thanks to the Kirkwall hotel in Orkney for the beautiful table setting.

And last but certainly not least, just plain haggis. I actually had planned to have a scotch egg at this spot (The Classroom in Nairn) but alas, they had just taken it off the menu. So a side of haggis had to do.

And there you have it. Hopefully my rabid enthusiasm for this delicious delicacy drives deep the dedication to find good food and enjoy it as many ways as you can. Like whisky, food can be just as interesting and thanks to laws that don’t inhibit the way it’s made, it can be even more interesting than whisky. Wait, there are laws that can inhibit the way it’s made? Ah, welcome back to America.

Distilleries from above…

Annnnndddddd BACK from Scotland! For the second time, I’m sitting at home unpacking my luggage and reminiscing about all of the memories that were just created. From the distillery visits to the friends made to the whiskies shared to the haggis devoured, Scotland was an incredible (but short) time! Luckily, this time around, I ended up taking a drone to Scotland to compliment the slew of pictures I took and I just wanted to share those here before I post them anywhere else. (Granted, if you follow ScotchNSniff on IG, you’ve no doubt seen these in my stories AND the video footage)

The first distillery visited this time around was Highland Park and due to a number of technical difficulties (read: fear of breaking the law), I actually didn’t get any pictures of the distillery from above. Just one lack luster video of the distillery and it’s dunnages before I quickly brought the drone down.

The second distillery visited was Glenrothes. Unfortunately, Glenrothes isn’t open to the public so getting the tour was a hookup but I made sure to take a ton of pictures that can’t usually be taken. Here’s that drone shot:

Gorgeous isn’t it? You can see the still house on the left of the pagoda and the dunnages on the right side in different colored roofs.

The third distillery visited was Macallan and though I had mixed emotions about seeing the new distillery, I’ve come to grips with what it is they’re trying to do as a brand. That’s all I’m going to say about that for now.

The concept of a distillery that matched the rolling hills was accomplished by the design of same people who designed terminal 5 at heathrow in London (and 140 million pounds). It’s definitely overwhelming and a dauting distillery to visit. If you’ve never visited the old distillery, I think you might like this one. Definitely let me know if you’ve visited and how you feel about it.

Next up was anCnoc in the charming area of Knockdhu. It’s a small but fierce distillery. Churning out good tasting whisky with just a few guys running the entire operation. Plus, the distillery manager Gordon is an hilarious human being.

The last distillery visited this time was Balblair! What a ton of fun John McDonald can be when he’s sharing the history of the distillery and where they’re headed now that they’ve switched up their bottlings from vintages to the age statements (less confusing for the customer to calculate ages). Here’s a gorgeous shot of Balblair from the sky.

They’ve got a ton of storage for barrels!

So there you have it! Scotland was a great time and I hope to share more from the trip but for now? Just these few aerial images for your eyes to feast on.

Slainte.

-Sniff

 

A walkthrough of the Macallan 1824 Master’s Series

Today we’ve taking a small video adventure with Macallan national brand ambassador Nicolas Villalon. I really hoped that this video would be educational, accessible, and not overwhelming to a beginner whisky enthusiast… let me know what you think in the comments below or on YouTube!

SNS Blind Tasting (w/Glenfiddich!)

This event was a TON of fun to host with Glenfiddich Ambassador Tracie Franklin. Unfortunately, because she’s from Glenfiddich, we were only able to use Glenfiddich products in the video. FORTUNATELY, we are ScotchNSniff and we’ll be making more of these in the future with other brands!!

Enjoy this video! If you liked it, let me know your favorite Glenfiddich offering!

SNS in Scotland (Day 3)

Day three.

I know, it’s been hundreds of days since I updated you on the Scotland trip from May of 2017 but I’ve been busy with a lot of things including new youtube videos and tons of IG content so if you’re not following on YT and IG, you know what to do πŸ˜‰

Day three in Scotland was Glenfiddich Day lol. A day spent at “Disney world” of distilleries. The pictures will do most of the talking but I’ll try to add as many interesting details as I can remember!


A view from the parking lot.


On the far side of the parking lot there’s a really nifty looking tree created from barrel staves. A lot of distilleries have pieces of art at their entrance but this was pretty unique in terms of size.


This mini-lake is actually warm due to its part in the distilling process…


Where I wanted to be πŸ˜‰


The hustle and bustle of getting ready for visitors.


The entrance of the visitor center reeks of history and polish.


If every bar looked like this….


Ludo, the King of the Ambassadors, is our tour guide for our first stop at Kinninvie. Kinninvie, Balvenie, and Glenfiddich all sit on the same grounds separated by short distances.


Kinninvie is just a warehouse with stills in it at this time.


Back to the tasting room in Glenfiddich for a special tasting…


A mash tun as seen from the tasting room!


Ludo explaining what we’re tasting and why.


Lunch in the Malt Barn.


I ran over to the gift shop after lunch because I knew it’d be closed if we tried to visit the shop after the tour.


The Glenfiddich handfilling station where you can fill your own or have one of the kind employees fill one for you. This week was a part of the Spirit of Speyside week so Glenfiddich only had peated whisky on tap.


A little video about the distillery to start the tour.


Lorna, our tour guide, was an amazing wealth of knowledge.


There are malt mills… and then there are GIANT malt mills.


You can see the tasting room window on the left. This is just a closer view of the mash tun above.


Piping in real spring water!


Big, beautiful washbacks holding what is soon to be a 9% alcohol “beer”, essentially.


❀


In most still rooms, the blue painted things mean “low wines” or “wash still” or the first distillings of that wash (beer) we spoke about earlier. Low wines clock in around 20-27% alcohol and are distillied a second time in spirit stills. Red painted things tend to mean that they’re coming from the spirit stills at anywhere from 70-80% alcohol. Finding the sweet spot of the spirit still’s output is the goal of every distillery.


The grounds are gorgeous.


Water from the Robbie Dhu spring if you’d like some!


The backside of the dunnages.


Heading into the Glenfiddich Solera vatting warehouse.


You’re not allowed to take pictures in the vatting room but I snapped a quick one as we were leaving.


The vent for the kiln styled malting floors of old.


Nifty flowers.


Lorna giving us details about the bottling room.


Lorna walking us through the Solera 15 deconstruction and the process to blend our own 15 year πŸ˜€

Et voila. There were some things I left out