Prince Charles shows penchant for martinis during Scottish distillery tourJanuary 20th, 2009 - 11:17 am ICT by ANI
London, January 20 (ANI): Prince Charles showed his penchant for martinis when he sipped gin and tonic during a visit to William Grant & Sons” distillery near Girvan in Ayrshire, Scotland.
The Prince of Wales discovered how the spirit is made during the tour.
Inside the palace, where Hendrick’’s gin is produced, he was shown the huge stills containing the alcohol, and 11 bins of the botanicals that were added to it to give it flavour.
According to reports, Charles lifted the lids of a couple of bins to test the flavourings.
Some of the ingredients included juniper berries, coriander seeds, and angelica root.
He was even seen sniffing and sipping a glass of gin, which was given to him with cucumber slices.
“He was quite curious because he didn”t know the brand. He was very interested in the details of the distillation process and the provenance of the botanicals,” the Telegraph quoted Xavier Padovani, of William Grant & Sons, as saying.
“He mentioned that he drinks gin martini from time to time. He smelled a glass of Hendrick’’s and tasted it and he said he quite liked it. He was very nice,” Padovani added.
John Ross, technical manager at the distillery, said: “He spoke to me about the botanicals and I thought he was very knowledgeable on the whole subject of botanicals. He was extremely approachable and very knowledgeable and asked very pertinent, shrewd questions.”
Peter Gordon, chairman of William Grant & Sons and a member of the fifth generation of the Grant family, showed Charles around the 380-acre site.
He took the Prince to see the new Ailsa Bay malt distillery, Scotland’’s newest distillery that began production last autumn and was officially opened on January 19.
A glass of raw alcohol was also handed to the Prince from a case where it is kept before it is ready to be matured.
Brian Kinsman, 36, a blender who has worked for the company for 12 years, said: “He was keen on it. He was actually going to taste it but we said he should not because it’’s 70 per cent alcohol. He said it had got a fruity character and he seemed to appreciate what that meant.
Kinsman added: “He asked us about the whole blending process and the training to become a blender. He was surprisingly informal and nice to chat to.”
Charles, known as the Duke of Rothesay in Scotland, was also shown the cooperage where casks are maintained. (ANI)
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