Whisky Advocate

Links to Drinks

by Jeff Williams

There is no better experience in the game of golf than a magical round on one of Scotland’s exhilarating links courses followed by a chaser of Scotland’s finest whiskies. Swings and swigs, drives and drams, “mashies” and mashes, the blend is, well…intoxicating.


Links golf—played on hummocky sandy soil close to the sea—has been the classic form of the game since the early 1500s. That’s when, historians have deduced, golf was played with some formality in St. Andrews, Scotland. At first it was likely shepherds batting around stones to while away the time near St. Andrews Bay. Now the Old Course at St. Andrews is considered the home of golf and Scotland the Mecca for links golfers worldwide. There is no reason to dispute that.

There is certainly no disputing that Scotland is the epicenter of the whisky world, home to over 100 distilleries producing the world’s best-known brands. For lovers of links and lovers of whisky, the symbiosis between these two passions is never in fuller flower than in Scotland.

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