Whisky runs in Mark’s family. The biggest inspiration to him was his father, who for nearly 40 years, had been collecting Scotch miniatures. Over the years he collected more than 400 and had no intention of ever drinking them.
“My Dad noticed that the Angels were starting to drink a number of his miniatures, so he decided we should start drinking them rather than letting them have all the fun. Whenever we meet up, my Dad would pull out a few bottles and we would sit down and do some tasting. My taste for Whisky really grew from this.”
“The last few years I have started to really find a taste for Whisky, Single Malt Scotch in particular,” says Mark.
“I've had for a number of years, always owned a couple of Highland Park Whiskies. Being born in Orkney, it seemed appropriate. Only ever bringing them out for special occasions. My favourite being the 18 year old.” Mark’s current regular favourite is the 12 year old Scapa, another Orkney Whisky. “I'm really glad that Scapa distillery has reopened. I'm looking forward to visiting their new visitor centre when I'm home in August.”
Irish Whiskey is not excluded from his collection. He’s rather partial to Bushmills 10 year old, and Jameson is his favourite blended Whiskey.
As for the miniatures, there’ve been some good and some not so good: “There was only one that we just couldn't drink. And the cream of the crop was a mini bottle of 50 year old Mortlach that my Mum bought my Dad for his 50th back in 1987. Yes we did drink it, and it was good.”
"I get to know new Whiskies from a variety of sources. If I like a particular Whisky, then I'll probably try some of the others from their range. Sometimes I've just taken a chance in a shop, or I've bought some as recommended by Flaviar. I'm really delighted that my wife bought me a Flaviar tasting pack for last Xmas, otherwise I'd might never have heard of it."
Mark's children are still too young to be a part of Whisky tradition in the family, so he keeps his collection locked in the living room. But in a few years time, we can see three generations of the family gathering together and sharing one of grandfather's miniatures. Cheers!