BUS Whisky Visit
After the second COVID-19 Lockdown it was finally time to go "on holiday" again. Well holiday is a big word, just a short week out in our own country.
One of the stops was at the https://www.buswhisky.com/
The BUS Whisky Distillery is part off an Estate that houses a Camping, B&B, Restaurant and more ... all trying to work as much with Local Produce and be as green as possible.
Standing in front of the big farmhouse you can see the main entrance, as well as Warehouse 1 on the right. Here are some of the older casks stored and waiting to reach a respectable age of 5 years, 10 years or maybe even older..
And while you walk around to the side entrance you will see the Big Tree that is part of the Logo on the bottles.
We were welcomed in a bar area and we got a quick introduction about the History and Possibilities at the estate.
After the introduction it was onwards to the Distillery, and this is something you will not recognize if you have looked through my other visit pictures. On the left picture in the right corner you will see the mill. The estate grown barley, that gets malted off site, will be milled here. From the Malt Bin at the front of the middle picture, the malt will be moved to the Mashtun on the background of the middle picture. On the most right picture you see the mixing unit to mix the barley and water. Yes, it is a drill.
The water for the Mash comes from the Boiler on the other side of the wall ... the water is heated with the cooling water of the still. This re-use of the heat/water is a part of the intention to be as sustainable as possible. The two big containers on the floor are the Washbacks. Each tank contains 1000 liter of wash.
And then in the corner you will see the still. A still that finds his history of the Kirsch Distilling days. The still is part pot still which feeds directly in the column still. On Sunday there was no production and we were told that the new make will be coming from the little pipe in the bottom right corner. Two buckets would catch the 14 liter of new make spirit that would come from the 200 liter wash per run. The buckets would be hand carried to the marriage tuns in Warehouse 2. At the time it did not sink in, but Monday morning from the breakfast room we could see that the distilling was started. A quick chat with the distiller Bram revealed that new make spirit would be running in 30 minutes. So after another coffee we returned to the Still House to find the new make spirit running in the (two) buckets... and the new make spirit tastes good and sweet. Promises to be fine whisky in 3 or more years.
On your way out you will pass a little kitchen. On the counter top you will see two tubes which are used to catch the Foreshots and Tails of the run. Each approx half a liter. The foreshots will be added 9 more times to the still process and the tails continuously.
From the Still House it is a short walk to Warehouse 2. When you enter you get the sweet smell of something good going on. At the front right (out of picture view) the marriage tuns are positioned. The buckets of new make, approx 400 liter per week, are married until there is enough to fill the barrels and casks. In warehouse 2 are the "special" maturations closely watched on their progress. A third warehouse off-site, but still in "Brabant" is holding the Bourbon Barrels for maturation.
After a last sniff and look of the Warehouse we return back to the Bar Area where we review the visit while enjoying a dram of the 3 Year Old BUS Whisky. And obviously I had to take the obligatory picture at the Distillery Front and make a purchase of a small souvenir to take back home to complete the visit. Big thanks to Mario who guided us through the history of the Heische Hoeve and around the BUS Whisky Distillery.
As we booked the B&B Arrangement a 4 course dinner was included. A selection of starters was followed by a soup. For main I had the Whisky Burger, and Inez the Entrecote. Unfortunately we managed to finish a fine selection of desserts before I remembered to take a picture. So you will have to imagine a similar setup as the starters, but now including a Whisky Chocolate Mousse, Some Ice cream, and other delicious treats.
The last two pictures are the Breakfast with all sorts of fresh and local products (Bread and Cereal from Draff remains). All in all a worthwhile visit and overnight stay at a very warm and welcome location.
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