About the film

In this journey through the lesser-known parts of Scottish whisky culture, we follow spirits writer Dave Broom on his quest to gain a deeper understanding of his national drink. While whisky has never been as popular, it is often seen in the context of being a brand which sits outside people’s lives. It’s often thought of as a drink which speaks of the past rather than engaged with a dynamic present. 

Dave, who grew up in Glasgow, has been writing about spirits for over thirty years, but whisky is his particular passion and a subject on which he has many strong opinions. This film traces his journey back to the roots of whisky and show how it is an integral part of a wider Scottish culture, rather than just a product.

He will speak to key players in all aspects of whisky – farmers, distillers, bar owners - as well as artists, writers, chefs, poets and musicians.

The Amber Light shows that Scotch is (and has always been) a cultural product, part of a ‘cultural terroir’. It unpicks some of the myths and half-truths which have adhered themselves to whisky, reclaiming the unheard, the funny, the offbeat and surprising truths that lie beneath.

The journey takes us from Glasgow to Islay, to establish why Scotland makes whisky in the first place, its links with the land and medicine, and how today’s farmers are reviving ancient practices.

From there, we head north to Speyside, where we tell whisky’s story as it begins to evolve into the spirit we know today. Then it’s on to Fife, with its rich musical community and forward-thinking distillers, before ending in Edinburgh, examining the rich links between Scotch and literature and discussing whisky’s future.