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Peat Smoke and Spirit (Anglais) Broché – 6 juin 2005

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

Andrew Jefford writes so beautifully that I suspect he could make a history of galvanised steel bolts seem graceful and absorbing. And so this is not simply an appreciation of whisky, but a voyage into the history and geography of a tiny Scottish island (Daily Mail)

The attention to detail and thoroughness of this book brings the distilleries so vividly alive that you can almost smell the whisky. Thoroughly recommended to whisky connoisseur and dabbler alike (Birmingham Evening Mail)

There's no better book about these whiskies than Andrew Jefford's PEAT SMOKE AND SPIRIT... Jefford is an excellent writer... In PEAT SMOKE AND SPIRIT, Andrew Jefford has written a compelling narrative that succeeds on every level (Mid-Atlantic Brewing News)

Présentation de l'éditeur

Those who discover malt whisky quickly learn that the malts made on the Isle of Islay are some of the wildest and most characterful in the malt-whisky spectrum.

In PEAT SMOKE AND SPIRIT, Islay's fascinating story is uncovered: from its history and stories of the many shipwrecks which litter its shores, to intimate descriptions of the beautiful wildlife, landscape and topography of the island. Interwoven through these different narrative strands comes the story of the whiskies themselves, traced from a distant past of bothies and illegal stills to present-day legality and prosperity. The flavour of each spirit is analysed and the differences between them teased out, as are the stories of the notable men and women who have played such a integral part in their creation.

PEAT SMOKE AND SPIRIT is the last word on Islay and its whiskies.

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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Un livre a réserver aux fans des whiskys de Islay. Ceux qui sont prêt à se frotter à un long ouvrage pour avoir quelques informations peu connues délivrés par un expert des malts tourbés. Attention, le monde du whisky bouge à toute allure et bientôt nombre de ces informations seront obsolètes...
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Navré si mon titre sonne comme une publicité, mais je trouve vraiment ce livre fascinant et impressionnant, très documenté (y compris avec des données techniques précises) et en plus (as far as my English knowledge ability to judge this is concerned) très bien écrit, imagé et plein d'anecdotes précieuses...Chaudement recommandé!

Un passionné de whisky depuis plus de 15 ans...
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Excellent ouvrage sur l'esprit d'Islay et sur une présentation détaillée de ses distilleries. A lire absolument pour tout amateur de whisky tourbé :-)
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Islay's whisky are my favourites, so it's a real pleasure to read (with some difficulties, I'm french...) and learn about this scotland in scotland.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) HASH(0x95194a98) étoiles sur 5 22 commentaires
22 internautes sur 22 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x951224f8) étoiles sur 5 Captures the true spirit of the Hebrides 13 juillet 2007
Par James Ferguson - Publié sur
Format: Broché
If you want a taste of the Western Isles of Scotland then there is no better book than Peak Smoke and Spirit. Andrew Jefford has distilled a lot of history into these chapters, capping off each chapter with a tour of one of the seven remaining Islay distilleries, among them Lagavulin and Laphroaig. You don't necessarily need to know the Islay whiskies to appreciate this book, but it helps. Jefford invites his readers to have a dram of each of the whiskies in reading the chapters, as he taunts you with the many aromas produced by these fine single malts as they are drawn from their oak casks. In the tradition of great Scottish writers like Neil Ascherson and Edwin Muir, Jefford takes in the terrain of the island as well as its history, following rivers along their courses to the distilleries and noting the flora and fauna along the way, so that you get a sense of the origins of these famous malted whiskies. He describes the processes in the distilleries in easy to follow terms, along with illustrations to distinguish between the types of vats employed. It was interesting to me that these distilleries were rather small operations, keeping their long standing traditions alive despite the numerous ownership changes over the years. Jefford notes that it was often difficult to get the distilleries to divulge their "secrets," despite it being virtually impossible to replicate these tastes even if you knew all that went into these whiskies, which is why these distilleries have all struggled over the years to maintain their markets. Jefford also describes the various clan battles over the centuries for control of the islands, and how the Hebrides were virtually a nation of islands onto itself at one point, forming a bridge between Irish and Scottish Gaelic culture.
9 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9512254c) étoiles sur 5 An amazingly thorough, detailed and entertaining look at Islay 7 novembre 2011
Par Brad Maestas - Publié sur
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
My favorite whisky vlogger Ralfy Mitchell suggested this book as one of only a few must-have whisky texts. In a sea of books on whisky, it is not such an easy task to suggest but a few. Many of the available books can be quite expensive so it's not just a matter of redundancies but of finances as well!

I have many other entertaining and wonderfully-photographed books on whisky but by far, this is the most fulfilling intellectually. Chock full of etymological analysis and biological and historical facts, it must certainly rank as one of the most exhaustive texts on Islay (and its whiskies) to date. I must admit that I initially found the extensive bits about some of the early clan figures and their feuds a bit dry but after careful reading and absorption, it fit right in with the all-encompassing nature of the book.

I still had some questions regarding specifics of the distillation process and this book answered every one. It covers just about everything you'd ever want to know about the basics and delves further into the individual idiosyncrasies of each distillery. What are the particulars of Lagavulin's condensers? What are the lyne arm angles at Bunnahabhain? What are the spirit cuts at Laphroaig? All this and more are revealed in minute detail. Mr. Jefford also tackles some of the more controversial aspects of whisky production including the influence of peat levels in the water source, what role (if any) seaside maturation plays and the preferences for wood or stainless steel washbacks, among many other things.

Mercifully, this is not simply a dry technical text either so just as much energy is put into exploring the geology, natural history, weather and culture of Islay and its people. Perhaps an updated version is in order since quite a bit has changed since the book was written however it is still a fascinating book and if you're a lover of single malt, you'd be doing yourself a big favor in owning it.
11 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x95122828) étoiles sur 5 Islay Bible 28 mai 2007
Par Jan Klerks - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This book is about the Scottish (Inner Hebrides) island of Islay and it's famous peated whisky. In sixteen chapters, the author pays attention and tribute to each of the seven distilleries, alternated by typical Islay topics such as history, nature, weather and even shipwrecks.

If you're into Islay whiskies you have to like this book, there's no other way. The book was written by one either, and it shows. Hence it's easy to forgive the vocabulary, which isn't exactly simplified English at times, but then again whisky is no simplified drink either. And yes, the best way to get into the book is with a dram (or two) by your side. If you were ever looking for a comprehensive read about Islay and its whiskies, this is it.
5 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x95122d50) étoiles sur 5 Well Worth Reading! 18 mai 2011
Par JonDS - Publié sur
Format: Broché
Whisky aficionados who enjoy reading about the beverage they are consuming may want to consider adding this work to their library. Why?

For starters, author Andrew Jefford offers some good background information about whisky distillation. His description of wash and spirit still design is relatively brief yet quite informative. I learned more with his words than from many of the other, more expensive, books in my library. While knowing the ingredients and brewing process is pretty basic, the narrative is interesting and refreshing. Then, he covers distillation in a way that other whisky writers just don't quite match.

Turning to the core of the book - about Islay. Quite impressive! He's sandwiched descriptions of each distillery in between background material about Islay. About as close as one can get without actually going!

The descriptions of each distillery were quite thorough with both history and information on the style used by each. Jefford helps the reader to understand that whisky is an art rather than science. There is so much that we don't understand about what goes into a memorable whisky - and Jefford helps us to understand why through his descriptions of each operation. The water is often cited by distillers - not necessarily according to what he writes. The amount of peat, the grain and so on all may or may not be a factor and this book gives a good feel for that reality. At the end of each distillery's chapter is a list of hard facts - quite useful when making comparisons or considering whether to purchase a particular whisky. Also interesting is that he is able to be critical about a distillery without being negative - if the reader isn't reflective some good points might even be overlooked.

The chapters about Islay's people, history and geography are valuable - whether one does or doesn't visit this unique part of Scotland.

My greatest complaint is the book's lack of a detailed map or maps. Fortunately, my copy of the Islay Ordnance Survey map (#60) made up for that lack. Without the detailed ordnance map the oh-so-many different places that Jefford mentions/describes can get jumbled in the mind. I recommend having a copy of the ordnance map if you like detail.

One last thought, I usually inhale books at the rate of several a week. It was impossible with this one - it took me about three weeks to get through "Peat Smoke and Spirit". I didn't mind and never felt like giving up. It was just that there is so much to digest. I'm not complaining - to me that's the sign of an excellent work. I must confess that I skipped over some of his vocabulary - usually I run to my dictionaries. He seems to be using colloquialisms that have yet to find their way into dictionaries - well, ok - that's his style.

So thank you very much Andrew Jefford, you've brought me almost as much pleasure as has a glass of Ardbeg distilled in the `60s! I recommend this book!
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x95122d68) étoiles sur 5 Next Best Thing to Being on Islay 29 décembre 2009
Par Tim M - Publié sur
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I didn't know much about the tiny island of Islay before, other than I liked some of the whiskies that came from there. Thanks to this book, I feel like I've been there on vacation! Mr. Jefford covers the history of the island, current events, and a fairly detailed description of each of the several distilleries currently in operation (which thanks to his writing, he's now made me want to buy a bottle or two from each of them!). If you're at all interested in Islay or its main claim to fame, this is a great book to grab.
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