​​​  Whisky Blog
    Romancing The Malt

            Love letters 
to an ancient and noble craft

About Me

Who or what is Oakandgold?
​​A voyage to liquid enlightenment
My name is Stuart Evans and I am privileged to live in the heart of whisky country 'Speyside Scotland'.​hello and welcome to my blog.

Until Jan 2015, whisky was purely a fascination and hobby for me. I devoured books, visited distilleries, collected bottles and artifacts and of course savoured many a delightful dram. My day job revolved around quality assurance and quality control but after a eureka moment whilst , you guessed it, nursing a glass of fine malt, I thought, why not combine my wealth and years of experience in the quality field with my love of whisky.  Not long after this revelation I gave up my daily 5 hour commute and embarked on a new stage of my life and career path and became 1 of the 10,000 people directly employed in the Scotch Whisky industry.

My wife Denise commented that I spend so much of my time either working with or talking about whisky that I should share my experiences and musings in the form of a blog, hence Oakandgold which I launched April 2016.

My original plan was to take a slightly different path to the normal blogs and well trodden, almost formulaic methods of reviewing and scoring whiskies, or at least provide an alternative to compare with the accepted standard. To be honest I had a vision of what I wanted to achieve but I wasn't exactly sure how I would approach this. The blog is very much still in its infancy, taking its first faltering steps in the big wide world of whisky but it has quickly formed organically into what I can only describe as 'love letters to an ancient and noble craft' 

I'm a disciple to whisky, an eager sponge desperate to absorb knowledge and share my thoughts and experiences (preach the gospel) on all things whisky through text and photographs.

I love with a fierce passion the history, traditions and craft skills developed over many centuries that lead to the water of life being so reveared and established as an icon in the spirit world. However I also applaud those who push the boundaries and challenge the established way of thinking in order to take this ancient artform to new and unexplored territories. 

More importantly I haven't embarked on this passionate mission of self and wider community enlightenment purely in the hope of receiving free samples and services. In fact the majority of items and experiences that I review will have been paid for from my hard earned salary. I believe this approach gives a far more honest unbiased, independent, customer lead point of view.  
That's not to say that if you are a business and like my approach and would like me to review one of your products or services  that I wouldnt consider it.
Please feel free to contact me if you wish to commission a review.
Regardless of the source I will be clear with my reviews as to whether the product or service has been provided free of charge or has been paid for.

Whilst on this journey I will attempt to challenge and dispel some of the long ingrained (no pun intended) preconceptions and discrimination with regards to age, blends, origins, transparency and much more.

I genuinely hope to encourage non believers to come along for the ride and join the good ship whisky to embark on their own voyages to liquid enlightenment. 

In order to capture the essence and magic of whisky I will cast my net far and wide. I will start from the epicentre of Speyside, rand slowly reach out across all corners of the world and in the event of communication with voyagers from other dimensions, out into the universe.

I will share my findings, thoughts, opinions and musings on 
whiskies, processes, distilleries, related visitor centres, specialist shops, auction sites, events, publications, new release offers and more.

Of course I will also embrace like minded sites and point visitors in their direction.  Kindred spirits such as Master of Malt and their 'That Boutique-y  whisky company' range, as well as Compass Box and the 'Scotch Malt Whisky Society' all who have taken refreshing and original approaches which challenge the norm. 

Why Oakandgold?
The name pays homage to two  elements of the maturation process.  
Oak is the wood that play such a vital role in giving the whisky its flavour and colour.   European white Oak (Quercus Robur) and American white Oak (Quercus Alba) are amongst two of the most commonly used woods. 
Not forgetting Quercus mongolica, also known as mizunara oak, this type of wood is used in the Japanese whisky industry.....more on that later.  

Gold refers to the transformation of the new (clear) spirit, during its maturation in an ex bourbon American Oak cask,  where it metamorphosises into the beautiful shimmering shades of gold after interacting with the wood.

The legal stuff
All opinions expressed on this site are entirely my own.
They are not biased to or aligned with any company or product that I may have any direct or passing association with, either in a professional or consumer capacity.  I will never put my name to something that I haven't actually written or experienced.  If and when I post information from other sources I will always give full credit to the author and site. I will never divulge information or put details into the public domain that would potentialy  compromise my employers image or reputation or have a negative effect on their commercial activities.

Finally please remember to enjoy yourself but take a responsible attitude towards drinking alcohol.

For more information on responsible drinking please visit

Thank you for visiting my blog