A bonnet for business

A new invention could tackle the Angels' share
By Jim Spence
Bonnets have traditionally ensured that heat stays in the body, and doesn’t escape through the head.
Now an ingeniously simple device designed by a Dundee company, may ensure that a similar saving principle applies to whisky in the cask.

Named ‘The Scotch Bonnet’, it has been designed and patented by the firm Sangobeg. Director, Ross Morrison, explained: “It came about because we’re in the whisky industry, we build maturation bonds, so we see what happens in a maturation bond. It was one of these things, it was so simple and we thought would it work?”

The next stage in the development was to persuade the industry to trial the device. Given that no one ever complained about having more whisky, the ‘Scotch Bonnet’ might be set to ensure that each and every cask of the water of life provides just that: more.

Morrison explained the principle behind the device: “It doesn’t stop the maturation process, it cuts down on the release from the barrel.”

Morrison said the brainwave occurred, as is often the case with great ideas, during a convivial and inspirational discussion in the wee small hours, with some close friends over a few beers and a few ‘nips’ of whisky.

With a big potential winner on their hands the Dundee firm has ensured that they will profit from it, if as they hope, it really takes off.

Although Morrison is confident of the success of the Bonnet, he’s been in the business long enough to be phlegmatic about the possible downsides.

Morrison added: “If it works it is multi national and massive, and if it doesn’t work it’s a tax loss.”

Time will tell if the Dundee firm have a winner on their hands, but if they do, then the city’s old traditional song, ‘Up with the bonnets of Bonnie Dundee’, seems sure to get a rousing airing, in celebration of an invention which whisky devotees the world over, can raise their glasses to.