THE ARBIKIE ETHOS
David Stirling on the ethos of Arbikie.
You may have heard of the saying “It’s not where you’re going, it’s how you get there” and at Arbikie we couldn’t agree more.
I read renowned American bar director, Jackson Canon’s Letter to a Young Bartender which contains the quote: “Remember you are not the drinks you make, you are not the glasses you polish, you are not the people you train nor the bars you build. You are who you are and what you believe. If you are a bartender, you will know it, and so will the world.” It is a great read and it certainly resonates with what we are doing here.
One of our team on the farm, Jim Buist, has worked with our father and us for over 30 years. I remember us working as kids during the school holidays harvesting potatoes. I think I probably came up to Jim’s knee back then and the fields and tractors all seemed huge and the baskets of potatoes very heavy. By the time my brothers and I grew up, we knew about 140 varieties of potatoes and the qualities of each.
Jim embodies what our farm to bottle business is all about… commitment, responsibility, hard work and a deep knowledge and experience of the land which we draw upon today.
As we developed our plans and the distillery build took shape, you could see the excitement on Jim’s face as our plans started to come together. Now he can see his efforts resulting in our produce being in a bottle or cocktail glass. There is a lot of pride in this for all of us. Being a family business is the core of what we do.
Our story is all about where the worlds of Jackson Canon, Jim Buist and our distillery team meet. We all have a passion for making a difference. So when a choice is being made as to what spirit people wish to use or enjoy, everyone can be sure that there has been a labour of love involved at Arbikie.
A great source of inspiration and creativity for the team is from the surrounding Angus region. It is an area of distinctiveness, where crystal clear waters flow through the Angus glens, the rolling fertile soils to the golden sands of Lunan Bay and the deep blue seas off the East coast of Scotland. Its wealth of history and heritage has attracted the Royal family and inspired famous writers, sculptors and artists from around the world.