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Category: Architecture

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© Ralf Kaiser

Photographer: Ralf

 

Postproduction: Ralf

Location: Cuba

Scotch – Scotch Whisky and Distilleries

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Scotch whisky, often simply called Scotch, is malt whisky or grain whisky made in Scotland. Scotch whisky must be made in a manner specified by law.

All Scotch whisky was originally made from malted barley. Commercial distilleries began introducing whisky made from wheat and rye in the late 18th century. Scotch whisky is divided into five distinct categories: single malt Scotch whisky, single grain Scotch whisky, blended malt Scotch whisky (formerly called “vatted malt” or “pure malt”), blended grain Scotch whisky, and blended Scotch whisky.

All Scotch whisky must be aged in oak barrels for at least three years. Any age statement on a bottle of Scotch whisky, expressed in numerical form, must reflect the age of the youngest whisky used to produce that product. A whisky with an age statement is known as guaranteed-age whisky.

The first written mention of Scotch whisky is in the Exchequer Rolls of Scotland, 1495. A friar named John Cor was the distiller at Lindores Abbey in the Kingdom of Fife.

Many Scotch whisky drinkers will refer to a unit for drinking as a dram.

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As of 23 November 2009, the Scotch Whisky Regulations 2009 (SWR) define and regulate the production, labelling, packaging as well as the advertising of Scotch whisky in the United Kingdom. They replace previous regulations that focused solely on production. International trade agreements have the effect of making some provisions of the SWR apply in various other countries as well as in the UK. The SWR define “Scotch whisky” as whisky that is:

  • Produced at a distillery in Scotland from water and malted barley (to which only whole grains of other cereals may be added) all of which have been:
    • Processed at that distillery into a mash
    • Converted at that distillery to a fermentable substrate only by endogenous enzyme systems
    • Fermented at that distillery only by adding yeast
    • Distilled at an alcoholic strength by volume of less than 94.8% (190 US proof)
  • Wholly matured in an excise warehouse in Scotland in oak casks of a capacity not exceeding 700 litres (185 US gal; 154 imp gal) for at least three years
  • Retaining the colour, aroma, and taste of the raw materials used in, and the method of, its production and maturation
  • Containing no added substances, other than water and plain (E150A) caramel colouring
  • Comprising a minimum alcoholic strength by volume of 40% (80 US proof)

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Alcoholic strength is expressed on the label with “Alcohol By Volume” (“ABV”) or sometimes simply “Vol”. Typically, bottled whisky is between 40% and 46% ABV. Whisky is considerably stronger when first emerging from the cask—normally 60–63% ABV. Water is then added to create the desired bottling strength. If the whisky is not diluted before bottling, it can be labelled as cask strength.

A whisky’s age may be listed on the bottle providing a guarantee of the youngest whisky used. An age statement on the bottle, in the form of a number, must reflect the age of the youngest whisky used to produce that product. A whisky with an age statement is known as guaranteed age whisky. Scotch whisky without an age statement may, by law, be as young as three years old. In the early 21st century, such “No age statement” whiskies became more common, as distilleries responded to the depletion of aged stocks caused by improved sales.  A label may carry a distillation date or a bottling date. Whisky does not mature once bottled, so if no age statement is provided, one may calculate the age of the whisky if both the distillation date and bottling date are given.

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A Scotch whisky label comprises several elements that indicate aspects of production, age, bottling, and ownership. Some of these elements are regulated by the SWR, and some reflect tradition and marketing. The spelling of the term “whisky” is often debated by journalists and consumers. Scottish, Australian and Canadian whiskies use “whisky”, Irish whiskies use “whiskey”, while American and other styles vary in their spelling of the term.

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The label always features a declaration of the malt or grain whiskies used. A single malt Scotch whisky is one that is entirely produced from malt in one distillery. One may also encounter the term “single cask”, signifying the bottling comes entirely from one cask. The term “blended malt” signifies that single malt whisky from different distilleries are blended in the bottle. The Cardhu distillery also began using the term “pure malt” for the same purpose, causing a controversy in the process over clarity in labelling – the Glenfiddich distillery was using the term to describe some single malt bottlings. As a result, the Scotch Whisky Association declared that a mixture of single malt whiskies must be labelled a “blended malt”. The use of the former terms “vatted malt” and “pure malt” is prohibited. The term “blended malt” is still debated, as some bottlers maintain that consumers confuse the term with “blended Scotch whisky”, which contains some proportion of grain whisky.

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The brand name featured on the label is usually the same as the distillery name (for example, the Talisker Distillery labels its whiskies with the Talisker name). Indeed, the SWR prohibit bottlers from using a distillery name when the whisky was not made there. A bottler name may also be listed, sometimes independent of the distillery. In addition to requiring that Scotch whisky be distilled in Scotland, the SWR require that it also be bottled and labelled in Scotland. Labels may also indicate the region of the distillery (for example, Islay or Speyside).

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Labels may also carry various declarations of filtration techniques or final maturation processes. A Scotch whisky labelled as “natural” or “non-chill-filtered” has not been through a filtration process during bottling that removes compounds that some consumers see as desirable. Some whiskies are placed in different casks—often sherry or port casks—during a portion of maturation. Since this takes place at the end of the maturation process, these whiskies may be labelled as “wood finished”, “sherry/port finished”, and so on.

 

Text by Wikipedia

Pictures by Ralf Kaiser

 

Calender available: Whisky Calendar

Lighthouses U.S. Pacific Coast – State of California

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Point Cabrillo Lighthouse, California

© Ralf Kaiser

Point Cabrillo Light is a lighthouse in northern California, United States, between Point Arena and Cape Mendocino, just south of the community of Caspar. It has been a federal aid to navigation since 1909. It is part of the California state park system as Point Cabrillo Light Station State Historic Park.

It should not be confused with the inactive Old Point Loma Lighthouse or the active New Point Loma Lighthouse in San Diego, both of which lie within the grounds of Cabrillo National Monument and are sometimes referred to as the Cabrillo lighthouse.

 

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Point Arena Lighthouse, California

© Ralf Kaiser

Point Arena Light is a lighthouse in Mendocino County, California, United States, two miles (3 km) north of Point Arena, California. It is located approximately 130 miles (210 km) north of San Francisco in the Fort Point Group of lighthouses. The lighthouse features a small museum and giftshop. Guided tours of the light station as well as self-guided tours of the grounds are available daily.

 

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Point Reyes Lighthouse, California

© Ralf Kaiser

The Point Reyes Lighthouse, also known as Point Reyes Light or the Point Reyes Light Station, is a lighthouse in the Gulf of the Farallones on Point Reyes in Point Reyes National Seashore, located in Marin County, California, U.S.A.

The park’s adjacent Lighthouse Visitor Center features exhibits about the lighthouse and the park’s marine life and natural history. Visitors can climb down about 300 steps down to the lighthouse itself, weather permitting. The main chamber of the lighthouse, known as the Lens Room, features the Fresnel lens and clockwork mechanism, and is open to the public on a limited basis.

 

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Pigeon Point Lighthouse, California

© Ralf Kaiser

Pigeon Point Light Station or Pigeon Point Lighthouse is a lighthouse built in 1871 to guide ships on the Pacific coast of California. It is the tallest lighthouse (tied with Point Arena Light) on the West Coast of the United States. It is still an active Coast Guard aid to navigation. Pigeon Point Light Station is located on the coastal highway (State Route 1), 5 miles (8 km) south of Pescadero, California, between Santa Cruz and San Francisco. The 115-foot (35 m), white masonry tower, resembles the typical New England structure. Because of its location and ready access from the main highway, Pigeon Point entertains a large number of public visitors.

The lighthouse and the land around have been preserved as Pigeon Point Light Station State Historic Park, a California state park. The lighthouse is also listed on the National Register of Historic Places and designated as a California Historical Landmark.

 

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© Ralf Kaiser

Point Vicente Lighthouse, California

Point Vicente Lighthouse is a lighthouse in California, United States, in Rancho Palos Verdes, north of Los Angeles Harbor, California. It is between Point Loma Lighthouse to the south and Point Conception Lighthouse to the north. The lighthouse is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

 

Calender available: Lighthouse Calendar

Lighthouses U.S. Pacific Coast – State of Oregon

 

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© Ralf Kaiser

The Yaquina Head Light, also known early in its existence as the Cape Foulweather Lighthouse, is a lighthouse on the Oregon Coast of the United States. It is located in Lincoln County, near the mouth of the Yaquina River near Newport at Yaquina Head. The tower stands 93 feet (28 m) tall, and is the tallest lighthouse in Oregon.

 

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Cape Arago Lighthouse, Oregon

© Ralf Kaiser

The Cape Arago Light (formerly known as Cape Gregory Light) is a lighthouse located in Charleston, Oregon. It is located 2.6 miles (4.2 km) north of Cape Arago.

 

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Heceta Head Lighthouse, Oregon

© Ralf Kaiser

Heceta Head Light is a lighthouse located on the Oregon Coast 13 miles (21 km) north of Florence, Oregon, and 13 miles (21 km) south of Yachats, Oregon, United States. It is located at Heceta Head Lighthouse State Scenic Viewpoint (a state park) midway up a 205-foot-tall (62 m) headland. Built in 1894, the 56-foot (17 m)-tall lighthouse shines a beam visible for 21 nautical miles (39 km; 24 mi), making it the strongest light on the Oregon Coast.

The light is maintained by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, while the assistant lighthouse keepers’ house, operated as a bed and breakfast, is maintained by the U.S. Forest Service. The lighthouse is 2 miles (3.2 km) away from Sea Lion Caves.

 

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Cape Blanco Lighthouse, Oregon

© Ralf Kaiser

Cape Blanco Light is a lighthouse located on Cape Blanco, Oregon, United States in Cape Blanco State Park.

 

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Coquille River Lighthouse, Oregon

© Ralf Kaiser

Coquille River Light (formerly known as Bandon Light) is a lighthouse located near Bandon, Oregon, United States. It is currently maintained by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department as a part of Bullards Beach State Park.

 

Calendar available Lighthouse Calendar

Lighthouses U.S. Pacific Coast – State of Washington

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Cape Disappointment Lighthouse, Washington

© Ralf Kaiser

The Cape Disappontment Light is a lighthouse on Cape Disappointment near the mouth of the Columbia River in the U.S. state of Washington,

 

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North Head Lighthouse, Washington

© Ralf Kaiser

North Head Lighthouse is an active aid to navigation overlooking the Pacific Ocean from North Head, a rocky promontory located approximately two miles north of Cape Disappointment and the mouth of the Columbia River, near Ilwaco, Pacific County, in the U.S. state of Washington. It is part of Cape Disappointment State Park,

 

Calendar available: Lighthouse Calendar

 

© by ralf kaiser 2016