Sue Says

February 29th, 2016 | Posted in: People

As I write this I’m just about to head off to Islay for the re-opening of Neil Morrison’s Lochside Hotel. I think he thought he was on Grand Designs… trying to refurbish 12 bedrooms, a restaurant and whisky bar in 7 weeks! But I am sure it will have been worth all the stress. Next month we’ll have a design feature on the new look hotel…

buchanan_optCongrats to Sue Buchanan (left) she will be the next female President of the BEN. Only it’s forth, as Angus Meldrum pointed out to me the other night. The first was the lovely Audrey McCrudden, I followed in her footsteps in 2004 and then Sue Allen was next. Obviously, Audrey apart, we all have one thing in common…our names! I’m sure Sue will enjoy her tenure.

At a dinner recently I was trying to persuade Paul Waterson to be more positive about the licensed trade in general. He asked me “What do you want me to do, lie?” That’s not what I want him to do, but perhaps it is time the SLTA focussed, at least 50% of the time, on people who are ARE seeing their businesses grow. I kept putting forward various names of people who were doing well, but he kept saying “well they are not really licensees they are restaurateurs!” So if you are good at selling food too, that doesn’t make you a licensee? Perhaps it is time for a new organisation made up of forward thinking on-trade entrepreneurs who will really fly the flag for the trade?

I took a wee road trip to Aberlour and Rothes recently to see two hotels, The Station in Rothes and The Dowans in Aberlour. I have to say the quality of both hotels was outstanding. I also hear that the owner of the Craigellachie Hotel is planning on replicating its Copper Dog pub in Dubai…with staff from the pub going out to get the pub up and running. It will be opening at the end of March… I wonder whether I could squeeze in a visit to Dubai for a design feature?

We ran our Whisky Speed Tasting event at Oran Mor recently. It was the first one we have done for a while, but as usual it was great to get feedback from our guests. There is nothing better than someone saying “I didn’t think I liked whisky, but I really enjoyed that…. Now I’ll order it at the bar!”

Next month we launch our 2016 awards, our 21st event. Time has certainly flown in!


New owners at Braeval Hotel

Thu 16th May 2019

Paul and Lyndy Geddes have taken over the Braeval Hotel and Bandstand Bar and Restaurant in Nairn. Lyndy was previously a director in an omb... Read more.

Max McFarlane joins the Ardgowan Distillery team

Thu 16th May 2019

Whisky maker Max McFarlane has joined the Ardgowan Distillery team – with a plan to create and release a new series of whiskies later thi... Read more.

McEwan’s Lager relaunches

Wed 15th May 2019

The new look McEwan’s Lager launches in on-trade this month.... Read more.

Today’s your last chance to enter the Glenfarclas Highland Single Malt 105’ Cask Strength Cocktail Competition!

Wed 15th May 2019

Today’s the cut-off for entering the Glenfarclas Highland Single Malt ‘105’ Cask Strength Cocktail Competition – so get your... Read more.

Brand News: Avva Scottish Gin

Wed 15th May 2019

CASK FINISH GIN FROM AVVA SCOTTISH GIN AVAILABLE TO TRADE CUSTOMERS FOR THE FIRST TIME The latest release of Cask Finish Gin from the brand ... Read more.

Brand News: Loch Lomond Whiskies

Wed 15th May 2019

Loch Lomond Whiskies’ Loch Lomond 12 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky has triumphed at the Bartenders’ Brand Awards, including the to... Read more.

Mixologists causing a stir

Tue 14th May 2019

Today we profile DANIEL ELPHINSTONE of Orchid in Aberdeen and DAVID GODDARD of Bar One, Inverness.... Read more.

Mixologists causing a stir

Mon 13th May 2019

Today it's the turn of DIMI SAVVAIDIS The King of Islington Dundee and DANNY MCMANUS Kelvingrove Cafe Glasgow .... Read more.

WEST Brewery initiates employee ownership scheme

Mon 13th May 2019

WEST Brewery founder Petra Wetzel has established a Share Incentive Plan (SIP) and placed an initial 10% of the company’s shares into... Read more.

SCOTTISH GOVERNMENT’S 20P DEPOSIT RETURN SCHEME GETS MIXED REACTIONS FROM LICENSEES AND TRADE BODIES

Thu 9th May 2019

The Scottish government‘s Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) of 20p has been branded ‘ridiculous’ by one licensee, while others t... Read more.

New look for The Ploughman

Thu 9th May 2019

The Plough constellation is also known as The Big Dipper and the new-look bar at The Ploughman in Peterculter is hopefully set for anything ... Read more.

HIDE YOUR WHEESHT

Thu 9th May 2019

So far, the secret location of Glasgow’s only underground speakeasy, Wheesht, has been kept under wraps. ... Read more.

Mixologists causing a stir

Thu 9th May 2019

This month we profile 10 of the best and today it's the turn of Jamie Swift of Edinburgh's Dragonfly and Sarah Berardi of Draffens in Dunde... Read more.

Dundee’s Blue Room

Wed 8th May 2019

AJ McMenemy, the operator behind the Dundee-based Macmerry 300 group that owns The King of Islington, Abandon Ship and Bird & The Bear has o... Read more.

Mixologists causing a stir

Wed 8th May 2019

This month we profile ten of the best, and today it's the turn of ELLIE RAESIDE of Tonic in Edinburgh and JOHNNY MORRISON of Blue Dog in Gla... Read more.

SUE SAYS

Tue 7th May 2019

Straight talking from our very own publisher, Sue Young!... Read more.

How rosy is the Cider category in Scotland’s on-trade?

Tue 7th May 2019

If cider had an emoji it would be one with a big smile and two plump shiny apple-red cheeks because in Scotland cider is experiencing both v... Read more.

Mixologists causing a stir

Tue 7th May 2019

This month we profile ten of the best, staring with STEFANIE ANDERSON of Bon Vivant in Edinburgh and JEFFREY BERRAOUI of Tippling House in... Read more.

Design Focus: ST ANDREW’S BREWING COMPANY, CAIRD HALL

Fri 3rd May 2019

The Beatles and Frank Sinatra are just two of the big names that have graced the stage at Dundee’s Caird Hall and now it’s playing host ... Read more.

Design Focus: Damm 27

Thu 2nd May 2019

Edinburgh’s Damm 27 is the brainchild of operator, Andy McCartney, who is leasing the bar from Star Pubs and Bars, who have spent £300k o... Read more.