Excerpts from issue 43/15 14 May 2016

whiksy bottles

Preparations are well in hand for the 2016 Whisky Festival aka Fèis Ìle. Events have been organised across the Island from Saturday 14 May to Sunday 29 May. All the distilleries have nominated open days, but are also open for the rest of the week for visits and tours. Popular with visitors are the special bottlings which can only be bought on the island.
There are dances, ceilidhs, concerts and lots of other events to suit all tastes. Our centre pages carry a full programme for the whole week. The population of Islay can expect to double during the festival, with visitors who stay for the whole of the week and some day trippers who combine a visit to a distillery with a sailing on a CalMac ferry.

Thanks to islay whisky shop for assistance with the above photo

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Islay Community Council road issues

Catherine Gilchrist writes:
Islay Community Council (ICC) has been trying to get answers from Argyll & Bute Council to a number of questions re Islay's roads.
Initially we queried the formula for allocating funds to the roads. The formula is basically length of road times population. ICC feels this is not appropriate for Islay as it fails to take account of the volume/weight of industrial traffic on our roads. So far there has been no response to that. Islay traffic is much heavier than the other islands (mainly tourist traffic). Equally, we suspect that our roads are at least as busy as the road to Campbeltown, yet that road is trunked, hence is maintained by the Scottish Government.
We have now been told that all Islay's roads are maintained to withstand a weight of 44 tonnes, with the exception of three locations ie the Glen Road at Mulindry, the old loop road at Bridge House/Island Farm and the Strand access road. All of which leaves us wondering why they crumble at the edges and develop pot holes continuously.
We have invited both Pippa Milne and Jim Smith of the Roads Directorate to attend a meeting here in Islay and we are delighted to say that they will attend a Community Council meeting on Wednesday 18 May at 7pm in the Service Point, Bowmore. All welcome.
Islay Community Council (ICC)'s AGM was held on Monday 9 May. The committee elected is as follows.
Chair - Glen Roberts; Vice Chair - Islay McEachern; Secretary - Catherine Gilchrist; Minutes Secretary - Guenda Young; Treasurer - John McGillivray.
The Council was pleased to welcome five new councillors bringing the Community Council up to its quota of sixteen.
The new councillors are: Garry MacLean, Ian Hutchison, Kerry Baker, Barbara Woodrow and Rachel Whyte.

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a table - a cookbook of whisky and good food
martine nouet

Martine Nouet's recently published cookbook, 'a table - whisky from glass to plate' will be very popular with foodies and whisky lovers alike. It takes an original slant on whisky as an accompaniment to good food and its use in the cooking itself.
The book is full of good advice about how to use whisky in the cooking process and each of the sixty recipes include suggestions about which whiskies would best match the particular dish.
The recipes themselves are divided into three sections, starters, main courses, desserts and cheese and are illustrated by exquisite photographs by John Paul.
"Pairing whisky and food, is all about finding harmony and balance," says Martine. "Choosing the appropriate whiskies to match dishes requires exactly the same efforts as with wine. You need to have some knowledge about the drink. The rest is practice and a question of taste and sensitivity as the technique is entirely based on sensory evaluation."
Martine, originally from Normandy in northern France has now made Islay her home.
Festival visitors to Islay will be able to buy a copy of 'a table' at the Celtic House in Bowmore or at the distilleries. You are sure to bump into her at some event or other during the festival week. If you do, congratulate her on writing and publishing a fine book.

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Downhill mountain biker
ethan mackenzie

Rae McKenzie writes:
Bowmore downhill mountain biker Ethan McKenzie has been busy taking part in the first Scottish and British races of the season in the Borders and Dumfriesshire. He is competing in a new age group this year and is up against some of the fastest young riders in the UK. He is pleased to have broken into the top 20 with a 17th place finish in last weekend's race at Innerleithen, despite losing his chain near the top of the track.
His next race is in mid-May on the World Cup track in Fort William and he is racing with the kind support of Islay Buildbase, Cyclefix Ltd and Gamut USA.

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NEXT ISSUE ON SALE 28 May 2016

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islay info

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islay community council

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Islay Diary 2016

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