And lo winter is upon you. The world turns and the night rises in hunger to gobble your days at both ends. The air takes upon itself the keen chill of steel, it nibbles roses into cheeks and draws your breath in wreaths.
Yet about you scurry – another dweller in the freezing northern wastes. Catching the comfort of some condensation-dampened bar like the muggy twinkle of old tinsel in half-forgotten memory. Your friends – both real and imagined – huddle with you; witnesses round the campfire of your foaming ale. They are comrades in your endurance, drinkers from a fellow mulled cup. While outside lies only cold and darkness, furrowed by the brightly strewn viscera of festive retail, the lights of which burn as coldly as the darkness they percolate. And so you step – a sorrowful leap of faith – from the precipice of autumn into the long arms of winter.
So, with that in mind why not chase away those winter blues with Whiskysponge’s second collection of 40 fun facts about whisky.
1: Did you know… Whisky was invented in 1836 by Bruce Forsyth.
2: Did you know… The newly expanded Glenlivet Distillery was based on the novel 1984 by George Orwell.
3: Did you know… The first whisky in space wasn’t Ardbeg, it was actually a large measure of Dalmore Cigar Malt that someone accidentally put in their mouth and promptly spat into orbit.
4: Did you know… The Islay Calmac Ferry has a small boat constructed entirely from spent grains from the Islay distilleries mash tuns. It’s called a ‘Lifedraft’.
5: Did you know… Ralfy is actually a Druid.
6: Did you know… Speyburn distillery is home three exceptionally frisky Salmon called Alvin, Simon and Theodore and they all have their own offices.
7: Did you know… Nikka have forgotten they own Ben Nevis Distillery on at least nine separate occasions.
8: Did you know… Donald Trump tried to buy Karuizawa Distillery and rename it Trumpruizawa but he was defeated in an arm wrestle by Marcin Miller.
9: Did you know… Scientists predict that by 2082 all remaining stocks of Drumguish will have to be contained within a tungsten-carbide exo-shell with a protective anti-matter outer core if we are to prevent the formation of a black hole here on earth. Or a Boutiquey Whisky Co Drumguish bottling – the jury is still out on which would be worse.
10: Did you know… The 1976 erotic Japanese/French art film ‘In The Realm Of The Senses’ was based on some early tasting notes of Hakushu 18 year old by Jasper Clementine.
11: Did you know… When Edradour Distillery failed to clean out their Low Wines & Feints receiver for seventeen years in a row, when they finally opened it up they found they had created Kanye West.
12: Did you know… The Auld Alliance in Singapore is predicted to be a Nuclear power by 2018.
13: Did you know… You can build your own blazing oil well at home by burying a super-soaker loaded with Loch Dhu in the ground and setting alight its subsequent jet.
14: Did you know… In less than five years time 90% of all whisky retailers will be older than 90% of the products they sell.
15: Did you know… Bowmore Distillery are hosting a new reality TV show in their Number 1 Vaults warehouse called ‘I’m A Whisky Nerd Get Me Into Here’.
16: Did you know… Noel & Joel are to have their own TV series in 2016. It will be a one-off special loosely based on the Hunger Games only with fewer winners.
17: Did you know… The upcoming Dornoch Distillery will be built entirely from Lego and be run by cats.
18: Did you know… The novel Finnegan’s Wake was actually written by Allwind Kilt when she spent an entire month in the shower while stricken with the Norovirus.
19: Did you know… The architect Charles Doig released a string of wax cylinder recordings of rap, r’n’b and dubstep works which were surprisingly unpopular in their day. His effects laden, multi-tracked rendition of ‘Kilning My Phat Pagoda Bitch’ is now recognised as an early masterpiece of the trance genre.
20: Did you know… Brewdog are widely expected to place a competitive bid to buy Diageo in February next year.
21: Did you know… Dark Mollesty – presenter of Whiskyshaft – was created when a waxwork of Captain Haddock was struck by lightning.
22: Did you know… Jill Bumsden’s White Paper was recently used by Jordan to blow Peter Andre’s nose after he had a tantrum in Lidl.
23: Did you know… A new film adaptation of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles starring all the employees at The Whisky Exchange is currently in pre-production. It will star Willie Bishop, Dr Chilton, Andy Pandy and Rocky V as Raphael, Donatello, Michelangelo and Leonardo respectively. The role of Master Splinter will be played by Enrico Linguini, while Berlinda and Raj will play Rocksteady and BeBop. The film will be directed by Dame Maggie Smith with a score by DJ Tim Forbes and is scheduled for release in December 2016.
24: Did you know… Drambuie is actually Gaelic for Discharge.
25: Did you know… Tampons are still considered a taxable luxury item in the UK because the Scotch Whisky Arsociation still refuses to acknowledge the existence of menstruation.
26: Did you know… The film Avatar was shot entirely on location in Bruichladdich’s paint storage shed out the back of warehouse 12.
27: Did you know… Since the introduction of distillers yeast to whisky production on Islay in the 1970s cases of Scurvy have more than quadrupled due to the lack of fruit in the Ileach diet.
28: Did you know… Fiddler’s Inn in Drumnadrochit was recently awarded the prestigious Golden Sting award by David Attenborough for its pivotal role in Wasp Awareness Year.
29: Did you know… Scapa Distillery was founded in 1885 and is widely regarded as playing a decisive role in France’s victory over the Chinese forces in Đồng Đăng in northern Tonkin during the Sino-French War. The fact that France later went on to claim victory over the Chinese at Kép the same year is also seen as no surprise whatsoever given the successful commencement of distillation at Scapa some weeks earlier.
30: Did you know… An Artichoke is anywhere between 30-34% Highland Park Dark Origins.
31: Did you know… The staff at Disaster Of Malt were the original inspiration for most of the puppets on Sesame Street.
32: Did you know… http://www.sausagefun.org by Oliver Kermit is the most accidentally visited whisky website on the planet.
33: Did you know… Aberlour A’Bunadh is the only whisky legally made from cocaine instead of barley.
34: Did you know… Macallan’s new distillery will have a large toilet facility stationed over a huge pit containing a library of all their old bottlings so that visitors and staff alike can literally shit all over their legacy.
35: Did you know… Diageo are getting quite close to just giving Victoria Barfly a lot of money to take her Scotch Chatter and ‘just go away’. they plan to later recoup their losses by crowdfunding her assassination.
36: Did you know… None of the staff at Bladnoch distillery have yet had the courage to tell the new owner it is not a yoghurt factory.
37: Did you know… Craft whiskies are mostly bollocks.
38: Did you know… The letters of last resort in Britain’s Trident nuclear submarines stipulate that if – upon surfacing – Lagavulin 16 year old and Talsiker 10 year old have both been replaced with NAS expressions the Captains are instructed to initiate total global thermonuclear war ‘on principle’.
39: Did you know… Jim Murray died in 2005 and Jim Henson’s creature workshop has been operating him around the clock 24/7 ever since. They even won several awards in 2010 for creating something ‘scarier than the Skeksis’.
40: Did you know… whisky tasted better when it wasn’t made by accountants who confuse efficiency with quality and ‘maturity’ with ‘vanilla’.