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You can call it Disreputable protest.
She fell from the sky, hitting the late Queen Elizabeth II on the shoulder.
The Queen was cruising through the fields and hills near the River Dee near Balmoral Castle in the Scottish Highlands in the early fall of 1995. What bothered Her Highness wasn’t a piece of space debris or a latch engine from a plane above her.
It was a protest. dead.
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The bird flew. But then her maker – and the queen – meet at about the same moment, both drowning out of thin air.
The Queen was stunned and slightly bruised. But other than that, he was unharmed. This is ironic because one of the Queen’s favorite tips was The Famous Grouse, a blended Scotch whiskey produced at the Glenturret distillery in the southern Scottish Highlands.
It is unclear whether the bird that crashed into the queen was really the famous stabbing itself.
But the accident made this particular bird the most famous grouse in all of Scotland.
Outside the whiskey of course.
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The famous grouse was one of the most famous whiskeys so dear to the Queen. Her late sister, Princess Margaret, enjoyed The Famous Grouse so much that a few bottles were often shipped in before she traveled. UK embassies around the world have also been known to stock The Famous Grouse if Margaret passes by.
Queen Elizabeth granted The Famous Grouse a “royal note” in the 1980s. This is a special case that the Crown rewards for some businesses and corporations for providing goods and services to members of the royal family.
The British seem to have taken a cue from the Queen. The famous grouse is historically the best-selling Scotch in the UK.
The famous grouse was known as “grouse” until the early 20th century. Then the name was changed.
And “The Grouse” became famous.
The other malts that make up The Famous Grouse come from Highland Park in the Orkney Islands to the north, Macallan in the Speyside and Glenturret area mentioned above.
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While The Famous Grouse may represent one of the most immersive salon dramas at Balmoral, the Queen and her predecessors also embraced “local” libations.
One mile southeast of Balmoral Castle is the Royal Lochnagar Distillery. Royal tells you everything you want to know.
Prince Albert purchased the land around Balmoral in the mid-19th century for his wife, Queen Victoria. The islands and valleys of the Scottish Highlands allowed members of the royal family to escape the public scene in London. It is said that Queen Victoria admired the expressions that were produced on the road from Balmoral at the new distillery.
Victoria granted Royal Lochnagar a Royal Order in 1848.
Royal Lochnagar, 12, is a creamy, custard-like expression you’ll often find on American shelves.
Today, the multinational Diageo Corporation owns Royal Lochnagar. Diageo produces everything from Captain Morgan to Guinness to Beams. It also has 28 distilleries in Scotland, each of which helps make one of the most famous blended Scotch on the planet: Johnnie Walker.
You might find a few drops of whiskey made with Caol Ila, Talisker, and Cardhu at Johnnie Walker. But you can bet there are a few Royal Lochnagar spots in Johnnie Walker, too.
Diageo has produced a special “Game of Thrones” range of whiskeys from several Scottish distilleries. Among them was Pete Baratheon, a 12-year-old barley honoring the Stormlands range on Westeros’ east coast.
Queen Elizabeth adored the Scottish Highlands and the lands around the Moral. She and her family would retreat to Balmoral from July to October each year. The late Queen, a skilled athlete, enjoyed horse riding in the highlands. She enjoyed fishing and even deer hunting.
But barley from the Scottish Highlands isn’t the only drama the royals enjoy.
Next, take a trip southwest to the Inner Hebrides. There, you’ll find Islay, who calls herself “Whiskey Island.”
When it comes to whiskey, Scotland has “Two Napas”. Speyside is the largest area located in the north. Then there is Islay.
Commemorating Queen Elizabeth II as King Charles III ascending the British throne
Bomore (pronounced boh-MOHR, with emphasis on the second syllable) is one of the oldest distilleries in Scotland. The government first licensed Bomore in 1779 – although it is believed that the Bomore was distilling illicit whiskey long before that.
Bomore produced special casks for Queen Elizabeth only in 1980. But it was never bottled until 2002. The Crown, known as the Queen’s Cask, auctioned a few bottles each year for charity.
The United Kingdom will undoubtedly witness a host of new customs and traditions during the reign of King Charles III.
Includes preferences in Scotch whisky.
Highland barley such as Royal Lochnagar and The Famous Grouse are more floral and sweet. But the expressions from Islay are energized by notes of peat, smoke, charcoal, ropes, and even marine themes.
Laphroaig (pronounced luh-FROYG) is located on the southern tip of Islay. Laphroaig features one of the most unique nose and panel displays in the industry. There’s a little banana, clove, and surprising sweetness in a sip of Laphroaig. But Laphroaig is a strong malt. Laphroaig fans sometimes compare their tastes to magic tag, dressings, iodine, seaside campfire, and seaweed.
I really described to you the essence of Laphroaig as “the math homework ink from the ’70s grade school copy machine.”
Laphroaig 10 is the standard version from this distillery and is readily available in the United States.
King Charles III addressed the Scottish Parliament for the first time after the death of Queen Elizabeth
Lavverage was given a royal order by King Charles, as Prince of Wales, in 1994. Charles Islay and Lafroghe have specifically visited on multiple occasions. And while in recent years Charles has done a touring job at rival Laphroaig in Islay, Ardbeg, Royal Lochnagar and the northernmost distillery on the mainland, Wolfburn, Laphroaig has been said to be the king’s favorite drama.
Specifically, Laphroaig 15 – if you can find it.
They may be kings. But a royal visit to a distillery doesn’t always have a royal effect.
The Queen opened the visitor center at the new Isle of Aran Distillery in 1997. It was the first legal distillery to open in Aran in 160 years. Elizabeth set sail for Arran on the last voyage of the royal yacht Britannia, now moored in Leith, Scotland.
The distillery displays a photo of Britannia heading to the island across the Firth of Clyde on the way to Arran.
But the Queen’s visit may not have resonated.
During a visit to Aran in 2018, this reporter asked to know the location of the plaque indicating the Queen’s pilgrimage. Several of the distillery’s staff scrambled to see if they could locate the bronze plaque, commemorating Elizabeth’s visit.
Unfortunately, the embarrassed workers could not.
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I can only guess one thing:
The painting may have been removed by a notorious protest.