“Listening to Ghillie share her passion and knowledge about world food is always captivating, she’s the ultimate tour guide to food from around the globe”
Pennie Latin, Senior Producer and Presenter. BBC Radio Scotland


Welcome to my Podcast

Spirit & Spice

Please join me for some entertaining fly-on-the-wall style chat with characters talking about food and drink in Scotland and beyond.  Every month you’ll have the opportunity to listen to recordings with authors, chefs and producers; whisky and gin distillers; and with people  in communities with a story to tell.  The aim of the podcast is to bring you voices from far and wide to give you an insight into what is going on, what is being produced, how people think and, possibly, how they survive – basically any tenuous link to food and drink! Please tune in or download and share!



Rory Stone

Mould, dynamite, dizzy fruit flies, Fat Cow and Minger

Rory Stone, the best Cheddar maker in Tain, takes me around his mouldy old dairy and tells me how and why he makes quirky mould-ripened cheeses, some of which could be lazy pseudonyms for members of his wife’s family!.



Sumayya Usmani

A ‘peculiar’ childhood, freedom in the kitchen, a penchant for young men

Author, broadcaster and cookery teacher, Sumayya Usmani, talks about how her childhood on board merchant ships from Pakistan may have led her on a different path – several marriages and a law career she hated to the discovery of food writing and freedom in Scotland.


Islay Spirit with Billy Stitchell, Simon Coughlin, James Donaldson and the legendary Jim McEwan

Carry On Dramming with Bruichladdich Highballs, Cartwheels on Jura, spirit-filled Wellington Boots and the Botanist Gin

On a trip to the beautiful island of Islay for the first Taste Islay Jura festival to celebrate the local food and drink, Ghillie meets some of the whisky characters and heavyweights  – Billy Stitchell, former Master Distiller of Caol Ila; Jim McEwan, former Master Distiller of Bruichladdich; Simon Coughlin (former owner of Bruichladdich and now Chief Executive Officer for Remy Cointreau) and James Donaldson (forager for The Botanist Gin) – and gets an insight into how important whisky is for the island as the distilleries and village communities are intertwined.



 Orkney characters and Foraging Fortnight 

Fish skin bikinis, the bush toothbrush, gin-flavoured cheese, goose burgers and the Orkney spirit

During the Orkney International Science Festival and Foraging Fortnight, Ghillie had the opportunity to talk to several local characters and contributors to the events – Liz Ashworth, Ann Rendall, Anna Canning, Callum McInnes and Richard Shearer – who share their stories and expertise. With thanks to Foraging Fortnight for supporting the Orkney podcasts and to Selenaarte for the image of Stromness.



Alan Winchester at Scapa Distillery

Whisky tasting, whisky tales, Scapa and The Glenlivet

During the Orkney International Science Festival and Foraging Fortnight, Ghillie can’t resist attending a special tasting at Scapa Distillery with the legendary and entertaining, Alan Winchester, formerly Master Distiller at The Glenlivet, and a quick chat with Mick Swanney who is part of a small team making the delicious fruity spirit.



Liz Ashworth and the Barony Mill

Neolithic grains, Strictly Come Dancing and Orkney Bannocks baked every day

During the Orkney Science Festival, food writer and historian, Liz Ashworth, takes Ghillie to the Barony Mill where the ancient bere barley is still traditionally ground and is firmly rooted in the community. With thanks to Ellen Hay, Margaret Phillips, Issy Grieve and Karen Budge for sharing their knowledge and stories and the Foraging Fortnight for supporting the Orkney podcast series.



Rosemary Moon

Buffalo feasts, whisky confessions, fine women and the buffet of life

On a visit to Orkney for the International Science Festival, Ghillie enjoys a special dram with renowned cookery writer, Rosemary Moon, who shares her passion for whisky, food and the big buffet of life!



Kirsten and Al Gilmour

Grandad’s pickles, pissing contests, illness and strength

From her grandad’s pickles to winning awards for her busy cafe in Aviemore, Kirsten Gilmour has come a long way from that little girl on the farm in New Zealand. She has shared her story and recipes in the Mountain Cafe Cookbook, but her success has been bittersweet as she and her husband, Al, have had to face the challenges of his cancer and treatment while trying to keep her passion for food and the cafe alive. Kirsten and Al talk candidly about how this has affected their lives.


Claire Macdonald

Eating Dirty with Scotland’s First Lady of Food

Ghillie joins Claire and Godfrey Macdonald for lunch with their dog Darcy.  As Claire unleashes her thoughts about food, producers and chefs in Scotland, Godfrey reveals that life as the High Chief of Clan Donald is not all about splendid castles and champagne!


Ann Miller

Hairy legs and whisky with Ann Miller, International Ambassador for Chivas LTD

Gather your bottles and glasses and join us for a chaotic whisky tasting masterclass in Ghillie’s whisky barn. Ann is guiding us through Glenlivet’s newest whisky, Captain’s Reserve, as well Glenlivet 18, Nadurra matured in Oloroso sherry casks, Braeval and Alt a Bhaine.



Yemisi Aribisala

Aphrodisiacs, snails and hairy women

Yemisi Aribisala author of Longthroat Memoires has a lively chat to Ghillie about Nigerian culinary culture at the Edinburgh International Book Festival. There’s more to snails when they come out of their shells and a whole new business could brew on the Island of Barra.




Jim Walker

Fishing, community and being close to nature

Walkers Shortbread is his life and his passion, but Jim Walker is also a community man and feels that his business and Speyside are intertwined. Relaxing with a dram, Jim chats to Ghillie in her whisky barn about humble beginnings becoming multi-national on a bit of good quality butter, flour and sugar!



Gilli Allingham

Mrs Garlic says “it’s chic to reek”

The Really Garlicky Company is both a surprise and a delight. Who would have thought that some of the best garlic could be grown in Scottish Highlands? Ghillie catches up with Mrs Garlic, Gilli Allingham, one half of the husband and wife team, to find out why on earth they thought of growing garlic when they could have stuck with potatoes, barley, cattle or sheep!


Ozlem Warren

Swimming with watermelons and how to lure a husband 

Before she appears at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, cookery author and teacher, Ozlem Warren chats to Ghillie about her fond memories of growing up in Antakya in southern Turkey and how cooking aubergines at Stirling University led to marriage!



Lee Craigie

Eating like a feral animal, eating for physical fuel, eating for fun

Food plays different roles in the life of Lee Craigie. Nomadic storyteller, elite racer, bike adventurer, mountain bike champion and Active Nation Commissioner for Scotland, Lee is a cycling legend. As long as there is food and a bottle of wine in my pack, I feel inspired to hop on a bike and head for the Highland Trail with her!