Howling from the North: Wolfburn Distillery

February 8, 2017 by Keith Savage
Wolfburn Distillery, Thurso, Caithness, Scotland

Today I’m rolling forward with another distillery visit for Distillery Month here on Traveling Savage. Last week I wrote about Strathearn Distillery in Perthshire and announced my impending return to work there for a week at the end of this month, but today is all about the wild and windy northland. Caithness stands in the northeastern-most corner of Scotland, just across the Pentland Firth from the Orkney Islands, and makes one of the far corners of the North Coast 500. This is a gentle landscape… Read more...

The Mad Men of Methven: A Visit to Strathearn Distillery

February 1, 2017 by Keith Savage
Strathearn Distillery, Methven, Perthshire

Today marks the beginning of distillery month here on Traveling Savage, and I’m starting with a doozy. Before I get into the heart of my visit, I want to let you know I have some very exciting news that I’ll share at the end of this post. Keep reading!

Visiting every whisky distillery in Scotland is a solemn duty and privilege and a task unlikely to be accomplished any time soon. Every year new distilleries open, further adding to my dastardly workload. Kilchoman and Daftmill are a couple of Scotland’s more recent additions, and Strathearn Distillery, which just celebrated its three-year anniversary in August, is another one. Read more...

Battle and Beauty: The Pass of Killiecrankie

January 25, 2017 by Keith Savage
The Pass of Killiecrankie, Perthshire, Scotland

Some of Scotland’s most beautiful places are integrally linked with strife and bloodshed. Glencoe, arguably the most beautiful glen in Scotland, immediately comes to mind where a deplorable massacre occurred after the Jacobite uprising of 1689. That same uprising began at the Battle of Killiecrankie, where John Graham, 1st Viscount of Dundee and leader of the uprising, aka “Bluidy Clavers,” aka “Bonnie Dundee,” was shot and killed. Though the Jacobites won the day they were later defeated at the Battle of Dunkeld, another gorgeous place and one of my favorite small towns in Scotland. Perthshire has borne witness to much history, and the region has long been renown for its great natural beauty… Read more...

Cuil-an-Duin Country House: Where Boutique Luxury Feels Like Home

January 18, 2017 by Keith Savage
Cuil-an-Duin Country House, Pitlochry, Perthshire, Scotland

In the heart of Perthshire, directly in the center of a triangle formed by the wonderful towns of Dunkeld, Pitlochry, and Aberfeldy, stands one of the region’s finest accommodations. I had the chance spend a trio of nights at Cuil-an-Duin Country House at the beginning of this past November, and as you will see it’s hard to ask for a better base from which to explore the glory of forested Perthshire.

This part of Scotland, being just north of the cities and on the main route deeper into the highlands, is filled with all types of excellent accommodations, from B&Bs to hotels to castles. It seems to me to be a difficult place to start… Read more...

Picture This: The Queen’s View

January 11, 2017 by Keith Savage
The Queen's View, Perthshire, Scotland

The road to Loch Tummel hangs upon the hillside like a poem upon the lip. There is the warmth of fire on the hills in autumn. Gold and orange, copper and bronze, sloping upon green cleaving deep into the blue. Here at the eastern edge of the loch, the Queen’s View, where the mind and heart exult in harmony. Lambs call the ewes by the shore while November wind pirouettes on the water and draws the eye ever westward to brooding Schiehallion, Rannoch Moor, and Glencoe. The Queen in question was not Victoria, as she had assumed, but Isabella, the wife of Robert the Bruce, who stared west in that bright age and marveled at what was possible.