THEY say that when you leave Scotland you either come away loving whisky, or completely loathing it.

I’m afraid to say that despite having spent seven years living in Scotland’s second most northerly city, I fell well and truly into the latter camp. It’s just not a drink that ever spoke to me – and I gave it a damn good try during my time in the Silver City, I assure you.

So I have to confess to being a little sceptical at ordering the Isle of Arran Cheese Shop’s Whisky Cheddar. But with Burns Night last week (an event marked in my household each year to commemorate the very happy time I spent north of the border) I was keen to remind my colleagues in the office that there’s more to me than my Devon heritage – which occasionally manifests itself in unexpected vocal outbursts. Plus, I was fairly sure I wouldn’t get away with serving up an entire haggis on the newsdesk.

Luckily the Isle of Arran Cheese Shop deliver – and rather swiftly too – so even my last minute planning meant my single cheese arrived in good time last week. At £4 per 200g, it’s not bad value either, and comes in a rather attractive pale yellow wax truckle. It’s one of 13 different cheeses the island dairy offers, with other popular varieties including Arran mustard, raspberry infused cranberry, and crushed stem ginger cheddar.

But my scepticism for the whisky variety remained rife – partly due to giving the other half a caddy of Jack Daniel’s whisky fudge a few years ago which was described as being distinctly unpleasant. But knowing the Scots’ love of whisky and cheese, I hoped this would have prevailed and resulted in the perfect marriage.

And that is certainly what they have achieved. The cheddar – made on the island farm since 1991 – is deliciously rich and creamy and immensely moreish. Having devoured my fair share of Scottish cheddars (the majority of them dark red, such as the strong Orkney Cheddar) I wasn’t expecting it to be quite as smooth.

As for the whisky, well, as someone who fundamentally doesn’t like the taste of whisky, it may come as a surprise to learn that I pushed a long-suffering colleague out of the way to get my mitts on the final piece on the board. The flavour of the Lochranza Whisky is definitely there, but the taste is more in the warming sensation that comes with the cheese, so it is far from intrusive or overpowering.

The Adver team – many of them whisky lovers themselves – were also suitably impressed. It scored very highly with former Aberdeen Evening Express journalist and food critic veteran Barrie Hudson who said it would be the perfect after-dinner accompaniment for a serving of haggis, neeps and tatties. It also earned me some serious brownie points from new editor Pete Gavan (which, after offering him vegan cheese during his second week on the job, were much needed).

Maybe I need to give whisky a second chance. But I would be more than happy to enjoy a slice or two of this cheddar in its place to toast old Rabbie Burns.