Charles Maclean MBE on whisky ‘flippers’, Port Ellen rebirth, Tasmanian whisky & more: S10E7

Charles Maclean has achieved global recognition and no shortage of accolades in his more than 40 years of writing about whisky.

He’s a Master of the Quaich – the highest honour in the Scotch whisky industry – and a member of the Whisky Magazine Hall of Fame. In fact, he was also the magazine’s founding editor.

Our guest this episode of the Drinks Adventures podcast, Charles has written 18 books and counting on whisky. His magnum opus, Malt Whisky, was first published in 1997.

It’s been translated into nine languages and was the recipient of a prestigious Glenfiddich award, and his 2003 book Scotch Whisky: A Liquid History won the James Beard Award for ‘Best Wine and Spirits Book.’

In June 2021, Charles’s services to Scotch whisky were further recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list when he was appointed as an MBE – a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.

Charles Maclean MBE

So, join me this episode as Charles and I discuss some of his career highlights, his love/hate relationship with writing, and what it’s like to taste ultra-aged whiskies retailing at more than $100,000 a bottle.

He shares his insights on the age-old debate of blends vs single malts, the resurrection of the legendary Brora and Port Ellen Scotch whisky distilleries, and his opinion on Tasmanian whisky, after visiting in 2019.

More:
Dave Broom, veteran whisky writer: S5E6
Morris Whisky, a major force in Australian single malt: S10E4
Joadja Single Malt Whisky, with Valero Jimenez: S6E8

Author: James Atkinson

Journalist specialising in the food, drink, travel and hospitality arenas. Australian International Beer Awards 2017 Media Award Winner and Certified Cicerone®.

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