The answer is 'yes' at the Road Hole Bar in St Andrews
There is a new manager at the infamous Road Hole Bar in St Andrews – whisky aficionado, Regis Lemaitre, who has almost twenty years experience working in Scotland's whisky and drinks' industry.
Regis, from Vittel in France, originally worked at the resort in the 1990s – and his passion for the dram led him to set up his own whisky business running tastings and tours all over Scotland.
The reputation of the five red star resort has lured him back to the Home of Golf. Regis explains: "I adore the place – and over the last few years, the resort has won considerable praise for their extraordinary work creating one of the world's most exceptional five star destinations. Who wouldn't want to be a part of this incredible story?"
But it is not just the bar that will be Regis' domain. He will be managing the entire fourth floor including the award-winning Road Hole Restaurant, working with Young Scottish Chef of the Year, Ross Marshall. Regis says: "The team of chefs working across the resort are incredibly talented – and they have the brilliant Simon Whitley, Director of Food & Beverage, as their mentor. It is a fabulous recipe – and I am very excited to be joining them."
In addition to his day-to-day role overseeing the delivery of food, drink and customer service, Regis will also be in charge of training and development of staff, including mentoring younger members of the team. It is a challenge he relishes, explaining: "This is a step change for me, to move into a management role. I have been lucky enough to work with some inspirational people – so if I am able to pass on even a little of what I have learned to a new generation, that will be a real pleasure."
Regis is often involved in judging whisky competitions – including this year's blind tasting for the World Whisky Awards. He says: "Tuesday is 'World Whisky Day' and I can think of no better place to be than in the Road Hole Bar, overlooking the Old Course, undeniably in the home of the greatest collection of malts." He adds: "I have no qualifications other than many, many years of getting to know and love Scottish whiskies." And it is his passion that shines through: "We have at least one whisky from 124 distilleries ... some of which are no longer in existence. They may have closed down, been mothballed or demolished, but we have tracked down some of the most exquisite whiskies in order to be able to answer 'yes' when a customer asks for a dram from their favourite distillery."
Regis concludes: "To find myself as the custodian of this iconic bar with 260 whiskies representing every Scottish distillery is an honour – and I very much look forward to welcoming guests from St Andrews, from Fife, from across Scotland and from around the world to the unique experience that is The Old Course Hotel's fourth floor." And asked to name his favourite whisky? "That is easy. The one that is bought for you!"