As you may well know I am currently working on my dissertation (that’s why there is not much happening here lately). The thing is on distillery visitor centres and their role in brand marketing – can’t really say any more yet, I want it to be a surprise.

I thought that since I can’t really spare any of my time and do work for you at the moment, maybe, as a weird switch of roles, you could spare 2 minutes of your time and help me a little! What do you think?

I created this wee questionnaire which will help to support some of my findings or, perhaps, will send my thesis packing and destroy my life.


Please answer the questions only if you have ever visited a malt whisky distillery in Scotland and went on a guided tour around the facility (whisky-related but non-distilling attractions, such as The Scotch Whisky Experience, do not count). If you have visited more than one distillery, please answer the questions considering your most recent visit to a Scottish distillery. Please do not take the survey if you are younger than 18 (in the UK) or below the legal drinking age in your country.

Some of the answers you provide may require for you to skip questions. Please follow the instructions in brackets next to the answers you give.


[poll id="43"]

If you went on a standard tour…

[poll id="44"] [poll id="45"] [poll id="46"]

If you went on a ‘special’ tour…

[poll id="47"] [poll id="48"] [poll id="49"]


[poll id="50"] [poll id="51"]


[poll id="52"]


Thanks a million!



  1. Survey complete – good luck!

  2. Guess I ought to clarify, that the ‘standard tour’ at Aberlour does include a tasting at the end, but there are no higher-status tours available as far as I know.

    Only noticed you’d specified ‘tasting tour’ under the special ones after I replied…

  3. Hi there,

    Lucas I was influenced by the guides at Oban and Royal Lochnagar.

    They knew their stuff and you could feel the dedication and identification with their whisky. They took their time to answer questions and the time to chat about whisky after the tour.

    At Strathisly it was much the sam but what irked me was that at the time you could not try their malt!

    Chivas Regal in all its form but not a bottle of Strathisla at the time.

    That has changed I have been told.

  4. Thank you, guys!

    ASWatch, thanks for the heads up, I made the ‘special tour’ option a bit clearer now. Hopefully.

  5. the questions answered (Islay)

  6. I was showed around daftmill on my last distillery visit and he won’t even bloody sell me anything


  7. What a fascinating study, Lucas. I’ve also linked whisky into my education when I conducted my own investigation into the language of whisky tasting notes and whisky-related poetry for my A-levels.
    My results for your study are to do with the Signature tour at Aberfeldy. I would’ve bought the limited edition single cask but, after putting my name down and them then not getting back to me, I decided £170 wasn’t a sensible expenditure for a 19-year-old student. You didn’t give a category for that!
    I’ve just posted up my own criteria for an engaging and worthwhile distillery experience on the blog (the only way I can judge and differentiate from the 49 standard tours I’ll be taking as of next month). I don’t know if it might interest you (academically and personally). I go into some detail as to why I favour certain aspects of time spent at a distillery. Please check it out if you have time!

  8. The visit was to Bruichladdich and the main reason for not liking it was the weekday, saturday. Every tourist on Islay interested in a tour on saturday goes either to Laddie or Bowmore, so there was a crowd, big one. And there was no production going on, wich was also a letdown.
    Not buying anything came down to the number of whiskies available, if you don’t know them from before, they are just way too many. Too overwhelming, but the ones we had where great.
    Second reason, it was our fifth distillery in 3 days, and all the others where great; Ardbeg, Laphroig, Bowmore and Kilchoman.
    At Bowmore we had the VIP-tour and got to see the warehouses and meet the warehouse manager, and taste from the casks, and I was inclined to buy the on site only, limited edition they had there, but instead I found a Port Ellen I could afford.
    For someone interested and fairly educated in whisky production, the tours get rather boring in a while, but I do make one purchase at all didtilleries I visit, and that is a nosing glass. They all look the same, except Ardbeg’s, and make a nice meory of the visit.
    I think the most important thing for the brand is that you actually feel welcome, and maybe even special when you get there. I do travel rather far to get to them, so this is important to me.
    At Lagavulin, we met closed doors, after trying to call them all morning. They are not at my shopping list anymore.
    I am also of the opinion that more of them should have an option for the ones more than averagely interested. Wich Laddie has, on weekdays, in their defence.

    As an end note, i’d like to recommend the whisky bar at the Lochside Inn, Bowmore. An exceptional number of Islay whiskies, well worth the trip from Norway. He even had an Ardbeg -74, “… but I’m not opening it, hehe!”

  9. I just got back from a distillery tour of Scotland where we had fantastic tours, but we’re a pretty heavy-duty group of scotch drinkers and were lucky enough to get some VIP tours. The only one that wasn’t that way (out of the 23 or so we toured) was the one Diagio tour we did. We toured Clynelish, which interestingly enough also included a look in the windows at Brora–talk about a juxtaposition. We still bought whisky there, though, the ones we could only buy at the distillery.

  10. I’ll take my first tour end of May, so I expect your conjoint results beforehand. ;-)
    Good luck with your dissertion!

  11. I try and visit a diffferent distlllery whenever I am in the area. The last one was The Glenlivet, which I had visited many years previously. Because it is such a large and busy complex they have a more rigid structure to the tour, and no photos. They had just finished the addition of the new stillhouse which has been constructed to fit in with the original buildings but with a lot of glass. Unfortunately we did not get to see it close up. The tasting at the end included several choices which was a pleasant surprise and in some ways made up for the more functional tour. I have yet to meet an unpleasant or unfreindly tour guide in all my visits.
    Good luck!

  12. Done, I apreciated the politically correct questions but you did not put too much cultural elements. Being italian I would espect to find “a nice sexy girl smiling to me” as answer for “What were the factors that influenced your good opinion”

  13. Answered your questionnaire – I hope your dissertation goes well! It must be due soon, I would assume?

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