'Agree With Everything - Deny Nothing - Embellish All

Friday, June 17, 2005

Life Imitates Fantasy

Last winter, over an exceedingly convivial Danish lunch-party in northern Scotland (think lots of different varieties of herring, even more varieties of aquavit), the Northern Professor, someone I shall only refer to as 'Anarchic Uncle Alan' & myself hit upon the pleasingly deranged fantasy of reviving the Cumbrian whisky industry. The what? I hear you ask.
Like much else about my native county there's a lot that is apocryphal or at least delusory about Cumbrian distilling. But Alan had discovered that there were at least three whisky distilleries in England in the 19th century and concluded they must have been Cumbrian. Investigations in Whitehaven confirmed the existence of at least two - one of them in Senhouse Street. But it seems these distilled rum from cargos of molasses shipped over from Antigua, a Cumbrian oddity that probably deserves a post of its own. The whisky trail had gone cold: if Cumbrian malt ever existed, it had left no trace of its passing.
However, it seems that someone called Andrew Currie has been inspired, or mad enough, to attempt what we had only dreamed.
The only criticism I have of this wonderful enterprise is that we'll have to wait three or four years to find out how the stuff tastes.
Anticipation is already mounting.
Does anyone know the Cumbric for 'Cheers'?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

There was a fair amount of whisky smuggled over from Scotland into Cumberland, in earlier times, before the Act of Union.

17/6/05 7:44 pm  
Blogger Nick said...

Anon, I understand from people of my parents' generation that during WW2 the coastal towns did a thriving trade with neutral Ireland, boats fully of whiskey arriving in the harbours every night . . .

19/6/05 8:24 am  

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