By Rob Allanson

Welcome to Whisky Magazine

Well by the time you read this in the UK I will be somewhere in Scotland on a Triumph Bonneville visiting a few distilleries to make Journey’s Blend. If you are in the States or elsewhere I will probably be recovering.To say I am looking forward to this epic editorial adventure would be an understatement, but there are certainly a few thousand miles to go before the end, which is the slight daunting part.I had a slight taste of the distances on a recent run up to see the new still at Glenmorangie. The run went well and my little Korean packhorse loaded up to the gunnels with a roll bag and soft panniers did me well there and back.It took, including a stop in to see my dad and a wonderful brunch, nearly 12 hours.There is definitely something about travelling by bike that you don’t get when you take the car. I was sitting in an eatery at Blyth service station when a couple walked in, helmets in hand and jackets on. They were from Norway and were heading up to Edinburgh on what looked like an old Triumph America. We had a good natter about distilleries and drams we had known and loved. Don’t see that with car drivers… One of my favourite bits of the trip up was sweeping through the Black Isle at dusk to get to the Anderson pub at Fortrose. The scenery, the light scent of the sea and the promise of a good beer and whisky made those last few miles wonderful.As for the Anderson, if you are ever in that neck of the woods drop in for a glass or two, or even stay. The food, dinner and breakfast, is glorious and you might just learn something at the bar if Jim is holding forth. I know I did.I now have a new beer friend called Aventinus from Schneider. A dark wheat beer that is simply knee melting.After a pleasant night’s rest and a breakfast to stop me til tea time, I struck out the final leg up to Tain and Glenmorangie.I don’t know what it is but riding over bridges, especially the one over the Cromarty Firth, just feels odd. Left and right out of the visor is all water, the brain says nooo not right. A funny feeling.One thing I did learn on this journey was a new aspect to parental love. When I got to my dad’s I had been caught in a couple of serious downpours and my boots had leaked. Dad took my wet socks and gave me some dry ones – serious bliss!The visit to Glenmorangie was pretty impressive, range tastings across Ardbeg and Glenmorangie, including the fabulous Supernova, and a serious indepth look at the liquid from Glenmo from the wash right through to feints. Really techy but very informative. Blue cheese anyone? OUR CURRENT TIPPLE GREAT WHISKY BARS OF THE WORLD Current tipple of choice: This edition is a little different as it’s not the drink we are concentrating on but the venue to drink in.We all have our favourite places to drink, whether it’s sleek and stylish or traditional and quiet. The aim of our bar guide is to help steer you find new places across the globe where you can enjoy a dram.If for some reason your guide is missing please email: jenna@paragraphpublishing.com