The Malted Muse Podcast

This is where it all began - a podcast inspired by other podcasts aimed at exploring the world of whisky.  the initial episodes are poor in many ways but as time goes by I started to interview more and more people in the world of whisky and it became some thing I was very proud of.


I then tried to take some whisky from cask to customer and documented it in another podcast called 'Whisky Selection'.  They are still available via jellycast and itunes. either search for 'themaltedmuse' and/or 'whisky selection or just click the links below.

How to listen to the podcast.

As much as I can I try and make each episode so that there is something for people at all points of their relationship with whisky.  However, there are episodes that have more in them for different levels of experience.  You do not need to listen to them all in order and may find the following groupings useful.  Or you can simple start anywhere you like.

Very new to whisky? Want to start from the begining? Try listening to these episodes first.

Episode 2 – How to taste whisky

Episode 3 – 3 Elements

Episode 6 – Labels and Chatsworth

Episode 29 – Peat and Whisk(e)y

Episode 47 – Wood and Wonders

Episode 56 – The Pure and the Still

Episode 57 - What?

Episode 69 – Chillin’ out


Had some experience but want to take it further? Try these episodes next

Episode 10 – SWA and Compass Box

Episode 12 – How to survive a whisky festival

Episode 15 – Whisky ratings good or bad?

Episode 31 – Poteen

Episode 41 – Age or Maturity

Episode 60 - All the proof you need

Episode 73 – A note worthy episode


I like to link stories with whiskies that are not direct stories about the whisky.  The link is more to do with how the whisky and story relate to each other.  They may share a characteristic or an element of significance etc.  Examples of these include –

Episode 4 – Tullibardine/the lone knight.

Episode 7 – Connemara and Hodden and Dodden

Episode 8 – Bruichladdich and the Fool of the World

Episode 9 – A Fishy Tale

Episode 16 – Ardbeg and the Corryvreckan

Episode 17 – Bushmills and Finn McCool

Episode 19 – Kilbeggan whiskey and the tale of Guleesh

Episode 23 – By George it’s whisky

Episodes 26 +27 – Tobermory and Ledaig

Episode 51 - The Penderyn is mightier than the sword


Episode one - Introduction

This is a short introduction episode, it generally sets out my intentions with the podcast and serves as a test broadcast.

Episode two – How to taste whisky

In this  episode I taste Teachers Highland cream.  I wanted to start with an easy to find whisky and make the points that it doesn’t have to be single malt or expensive and that a good tasting system will help get more from your dram.

Episode three – 3 elements

This episode was recorded mainly on location and introduces 3 elements that I feel are important to keep in mind – the smells and textures of soil, air and water.

Episode four – Tullibardine/the lone knight

This is the first story based episode and features a story written by my daughter Faith.  The story relates to the character of Tullibardine whisky.  Details of the distillery are also looked at.

Episode five – A selection from the collection

In an attempt to introduce myself I go through some of the whiskies I have in my own selection, these vary in style, nationality and cost.

Episode six – Labels and Chatsworth

Whisky labels can be difficult to read but can be a big help in understanding what you have in front of you. Also – on a visit to Chatsworth House I meet and interview Peter MacKay from

Episode seven – Connemara and Hodden and Dodden...

...and Donald O’Leary.  A traditional Irish tale set against the low down on Cooley’s Connemara.

Episode eight – Bruichladdich and The Fool of the World....

....and the Flying Ship.  A tasting of three Bruichladdich whiskies, information about the distillery and how it relates to a traditional Russian Folk Tale!

Episode nine – A Fishy tale.

The wonderfully characteristic Old Pulteney and a ‘true’ story about a ghost fish – sorry Andy.



Episode ten – SWA and Compass Box

On the one hand we have the SWA and on the other we have Compass Box.  One seeks to protect the industry and the other is full of creativity yet they both contribute towards this wonderful world of whisky – how do they manage that?

Episode eleven – Glenturret

One of the most visited distilleries there is yet overshadowed by the Famous Grouse.  A look at the distillery and a tasting session of four of its expressions.

Episode twelve – How to survive a whisky festival

Whisky festivals are great and so is responsible drinking.  This episode is a suggested guide to how to get the most out of events.

Episode thirteen – Wee Dram Fest 2010

Its the Wee Dram Fest and a chance to talk with Adrian Murray from the Wee Dram, Peter MacKay from the Scottish Liqueur Centre, John Black from Tullibardine,  David Doig from Fettercairn, Ronnie Routledge from Glenglassaugh, Iain Scott from Springbank and Mike Whatmough for Arran.

Episode fourteen – An interview with Jim McEwan

Whilst at wee dram fest I had the honour of interviewing Bruichladdich’s Jim McEwan.

Episode fifteen – Whisky ratings – good or bad?

There are many places to find the scores that people give to whisky – but do they have real value or can they be a negative thing.  Here is an exploration of this issue with opinions from John Black, David Doig and Jim McEwan as well as others.  This episode also includes a review of ‘whisky in your pocket’.

Episode sixteen – Ardbeg and the Corryvreckan.

Ardbeg make some great whiskies including the corryvreckan.  This episode looks at the distillery, the whisky and poem about the corryvreckan.  Also a tasting session with my son Joe.

Episode seventeen – Bushmills  and Finn McCool

A look at the distillery (Northern Irelands only distillery) and the story that has to go with it.

Episode eighteen – Snow may fall crisp and even...

An episode of news and views but mainly about Glenglassaugh and Ian Buxton’s book about it.

Episode nineteen – Kilbeggan whiskey and the tale of Guleesh

To mark the Kilbeggan distillery producing again this episode tastes the whiskey, looks at the distillery and relates a re-telling of the tale of Guleesh.




Episode 20 - Czech Whisky WOW

 Hammerhead  a Czech whisky from 1989 and from behind the iron curtain – what a story.

Episode 21 - Wot no whisky? Get real it’s Christmas

A Christmas episode in which we mull wine, taste a Japanese whisky and also some Arak.

Episode 22 - Gin-gle bells

If Bruichladdich make a gin I will taste it – they did and I did – along with some homemade Damson Gin and a look back at the year.


Episode 23 - By George it’s whisky, well by St George actually

 A telling of the tale of John Barleycorn and some info about the English St Georges Whisky – and me singing – sorry.

Episode 24 - It’s a King Car Rally

A tasting of 4 Kavalan whiskies from Taiwan and a review of ‘Whisky Wit and Wisdom’.

Episode 25 - The Whisky road to Africa

My daughter starts her road trip to africa and I start to try and follow her with distilleries

Episode 26 and 27 - Tobermory and Ledaig

It takes two episodes to tell a story that goes with a distillery that has such an interesting past and two different whiskies. This includes tasting the old and new expressions.

Episode 28 - Whisky off the rocks, whisky with the bacon.

A look at Shackelton’s whisky and an experiment with fat washing.

Episode 29 - Peat and whisk(e)y

An in depth look at peat – how it is used and how it makes a difference.



Episode 30 – Greenore 18 yo and Turf Mor cask strength OMG

Tastings of two mind blowing whiskies with Brendon Ryan.

Episode 31 – Poteen

Useing some old books I take a look at the wonders of the white stuff.

Episode 32 – Whisky Live London

Whisky Live London 2011 and a VIP ticket – brilliant

Episode 33 – Cutty Sark

A look at this iconic brand with an interview with Ronnie Cox.

Episode 34 – Compass Box and Glen Moray

Interviews from whisky live London

Episode 35 – A taste of Cooley

Recordings and interview from a tasting event with Cooley’s Michael Morris.

Episode 36 – OMG (Oh My Glenlivet)

A look at Bruichladdich’s Biodynamic whisky and a feature about being a Guardian of the Glenlivet.

Episode 37 – Glen Grant

A look at Glen Grant whisky.

Episode 38 – Castles and Geese

A convoluted thread around Irish history and whisky. Including Knappogue Castle and Wild Geese.

Episode 39 – Japan

A land of culture and a look at it’s whisky – past and present.


Episode 40 – Glenbucket and Teerenpeli

The soul of whisky was born by those with small stills.  Glenbucket was the illicit still hidden in Colditz during the WWII whilst Teerenpeli is a Finnish whisky born from a brewery and a restaurant.

Episode 41 – Age or maturity.

 Which is more important – the age of a whisky or the maturity it reaches?  This episode explores this issue and looks at The Glenrothes as an example.

Episode 42 – Whisky Live Dublin 2011

On the way to and from Whisky Live I spent some time at the Temple Bar Pub and at the Irish Whiskey Collection in terminal 2 at Dublin airport.  There was also some time at Whisky Live of course.

Episode 43 - The mighty Midleton/ the diddy Daftmill

Set amongst massive technical problems and huge bills this episode is a moment of joy in a chaotic world for me.

It features more from Dublin 2011 with an interview with Barry Crockett from Midleton and Heidi Donolon talks about Powers John’s Lane Release.

The episode finishes with some information about the Daftmill distillery.

Episode 44 - Vehicles and vessels

 There are more people in the world of whisky than just distillers.  In this episode I talk to a traditional merchant,, a modern merchant,, a whiskey society,,  and a glass maker

Episode 45 - Maiden Voyages

This episode looks at the new releases of Titanic, Compass Box's Great Kings Street artist's blend and the next issue of Whisky Magazine  . Also an interview about Tullimore DEW and another about Van Winkle .

Episode 46 – From Temperance to Teeling

This episode ranges from me talking about temperance and etheromania through to interviews with Alex Chasko and John Teeling.

Episode 47 – Wood and Wonders

A packed episode with talk about wood effect and char, an interview with Bill Lumsden, views about the new Royal Salute, news about Cornish Whiskey, World Whisky Day and a little bit of peachiness

Episode 48 - Going with the flow  

This week I look at the contrast between the dramatic history of Scapa Flow and the gentleness of its whisky.  The second half of the podcast features Ben and Joe from The Absolute Peach comedy podcast as I introduce them to tasting whisk(e)y


Episode 49 – With a song in my glass

The episode I should not have made – I know little about music but I do know that music and whisky can go very well together.  Also some news about Bruichladdich, Tamdhu, St George and trading in Korea.  http://www.slanecastle.ie



Episode 50 - Arran

This episode has an interview with the great Euan Mitchell and info about Arran whisky.  It also contains an angry rant about what I think is a serious issue along with other news and views.

Episode 51 – The Penderyn is mightier than the sword.

Penderyn is a unique wysgi and one I have wanted to talk about for some time.  I also managed to find a great place to taste it in.

Episode 52 – One year old !!!

 Themaltedmuse podcast reaches its first birthday.  How better way to celebrate than talking with the man who inspired it in the first place – Mark Gillespie from Whiskycast.


Episode 53 – What a picture !

This week I talk to Darren Rook from Village of the Drammed and Curtis MacEachern from Scotch Cinema, along with some news and a listener shout out.


Episode 54 – Ridley and Ryman

Two over the phone interviews, the first with writer Neil Ridley and the second with Roger Ryman with details of the new Cornish Whiskey.

Episode 55 – A new leaf

There is news of new things and an Interview with Mark Reynier from Bruichladdich where we talk about a leaf!!


Episode 56 – The Pure and the Still

Some news and an interview with Pierre Thiebaut about the forthcoming Pure festival – a festival of whisky and music.  Followed by me talking about stills and preceded by Scotch Cinema.

Episode 57 – What?

I am away in the Dominican Republic for two weeks and am having some technical problems.  I am still thinking about whisky and ask the question – What is whisky?

Episode 58 - Taking things in my stride


From my holiday destination I take a look at the striding man himself - Johnnie Walker.

Episode 59 – Börger Books and Below abv

Yes I am still going on about my holiday.  This time with a fake interview, 2 book reviews, some tasting notes and a little news.



Episode 60 – All the proof you need

A listener email inspires me to consider the issue of bottling strength.  Also – a number of other items and announcements.

Episode 61 – Taking the Pisco?

Whisky is not the only spirit with heritage and pride.  This week I look at Peru’s national spirit and consider the similarities and differences between whisky and pisco.  The episode starts with me talking to Joel Vargas Laime and is followed by an interview with pisco expert Miguel Solari.

Episode 62 – A touch of Class-ification.

The recipes for Pisco Punch and Pisco Sour followed by some thoughts in response to a listeners question about region.

Episode 63 – The unfinished podcast

No it is not an episode about whisky without finishes – it is an episode that I did not finish – sorry.  It’s all explained in the podcast.

Episode 64 – He’s not heavy, he’s my Balvenie.

This week I play the whole interview with Balvenie’s Andrew Forrester as well as another ‘malt minute’ from Scotch cinema.


Episode 65 – Glenglassaugh

This week find out how Colin Dunn gave me the horn, my feedback on the Balvenie Tun 1401 batch 2 twitter tasting and an interview with Glenglassaugh’s Ronnie Routledge.

Episode 66 – Movember and Wee Dram Fest Part 1

The Whisky Guy Darren Rook talks about this years Movember whisky, Then Wee Dram’s Adrian Murray starts the first set of recordings from this years Wee Dram Fest.  Interviews include Peter Donnelly from Glenfarclas and John Black from Tullibardine. Audio quality may vary.


Episode 67 – Wee Dram Fest 2011 Part 2 and much more.

Part 2 of the interviews from Wee Dram Fest 2011 plus a host of news and reviews.  This episode includes Diageo’s Colin Dunn and Jura’s Willie Tait.


Bonus Episode – Have you got 20p mate?

A masterclass in comedy from Ben from the Absolute Peach Podcast (arrogant! ) – Also news about a hunt for some free whisky.

Episode 68 – Are you having a laugh?

A chaotic episode in which I consider links between whisky and comedy. Includes extracts of chats with Ben Young from The Absolute Peach podcast and my son Sam from Light Switch Theatre Co.

I also announce the release of the first whisky under The Malted Muse label.

Bonus Episode – A stand up sort of guy.

The last in the comedy whisky series – a chat with my son Sam of the Light Switch Theatre Co.


Episode 69 – Chillin’ out

Ice may be cool but it causes division in the whisky drinking world.  This week I talk to Jim O’Brien from Sipping Stones, Andy Gemmell from The Macallan and Dereck Brown from Famous Grouse.



Episode 70 – Dubh Glas (Douglass)

 A bit of news – including an update about The Malted Muse’s own label whisky and a chat with Grant Stevely founder of Dubh Glas distillery.

Episode 71 – You too can be a whisky blender

This week I talk to Andy and Drew from and their new venture that allows you to create your very own blended whisky.


Episode 72 – Cumbria My Lord Cumbria

A lost interview from Wee Dram Fest2011, an interview with Paul Currie about a development in the Lake District and a Last minute chat with Dominic Roskrow.  For a free podcast that is good value isn’t it?


Episode 73 – A note worthy episode

Writing and reading tasting notes is not always easy – to try and understand it I talk to Matthew Smedley and Dominic Roskrow.


Episode 74 – A Georgeous Glenfarclas

This week I look at Glenfarclas by reviewing Ian Buxton’s book ‘Glenfarclas, An Independent Distillery’ and by talking to George Grant.


Episode 75 – Ian Buxton

This week I taste the new Glenglassaugh first cask revival with my son Joe.  I also talk to whisky author extra ordinary – Ian Buxton

Episode 76 – Podcast! What podcast?

A short apology about the disruption in service.

Episode 77 – What the LDC is that?

It’s late, it’s rough but themaltedmuse podcast is back with news about a new London distillery.


Episode 78 – That’s got whisky covered.

An interesting listener’s question, a chat about whisky design awards and the chance to help support this product.

Episode 79 – That’ll Teach yer

Possibly the first whisky I ever tasted in my life and the first whisky tasted on this podcast series – I talk to Alistair Longwell Distillary Manager at Ardmore about Teachers Highland Cream.



Episode 80 – The cask in hand

Brining a whisky with my own label to market has not been easy. With news about a large drop in the price of a bottle – here is the behind the scenes story.

Episode 81 – When is a door not a door?

When it is Death’s Door White Whisky.  This week I talk to John Jeffery from Death’s Door Spirit. I also give some St Patrick day news and information about investment in the London Distillery Co.

Episode 82 – A special small bottle and a bit of a ramble

This week is a small episode with some big personal news and a ramble about the place whisky holds.

Episode 83 – Small stills

An important episode that aims to clarify legal issues that could make craft distilling in the UK more likely.

Episode 84 – It’s hammer time.

This week I talk to Highland Park’s Daryl Haldane about Thor and also to Dominic Roskrow about the ‘W’ club.

Episode 85 – A new age of discovery

It has taken a lot of doing but this week has interviews with Jamie Milne from Glenfiddich and Blair Bowman about World Whisky Day.

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