Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Oh, what a night! Whisky Live Syndey

Late December, back in ’63 had nothing on the frivolities and fun experienced at the first international Whisky Live Expo held last Saturday night. The Sydney Overseas Passenger Terminal was a fitting location, allowing us to enjoy and sample our drams whilst overlooking Circular Quay and the Sydney Opera House. In total, five of the original Distant Thunder Whisky Club members were able to make it along, with three new members also joining in on their first D.T.W.C. experience. I would like to summarise this post with my most memorable moments of the evening:

(1) Free Whisky! Entry to the event gave you a total of 10 whisky tasting tickets and four beer tasting tickets. These were to be rationed/apportioned across the evening. However, some savvy D.T.W.C. members quickly learned the secret to making these tickets go further than they should. Engrossing the whisky pourer into deep conversation regarding whiskies often enabled you to try one or more varieties without them remembering to ask for your tickets at all. Looking at my ticket stub, I still have 5 tasting tickets remaining and I can assure you, my intake was far, far greater than that. Proven, of course, by the pains in my head around 6am the next morning.

(2) Ardbeg: I spent more time at the Glenmorangie/Ardbeg stall than any other. For me these two whisky’s are close to my favourites, and I love it how they are owned by the same company (Louis Vuitton Mo√ęt Hennessy). I was able to try the following whiskies:
  • Glenmorangie Quinta Rum
  • Glenmorangie Signet
  • Ardbeg 10
  • Ardbeg Uegadail
  • Ardeg Blasda
I also purchased a bottle of the Ardbeg Uegadail, however they had run out of stock, so I am now eagerly awaiting its arrival in the post. The surprise for me from this stall was the Quinta Rum. A smooth, mellow Glenmorangie, more in line with the flavours from The Original. Not as strong in flavour or aftertaste as the Lasante.

(3) Best in Show – Glenfarclas 25: Ironically, after speaking to the guy from the Edradour stall for a good 20 minutes, he kindly offered us a tip and said the best whisky here to taste tonight was over at the Glenfarclas stall. If memory serves me correctly, the Glenfarclas 25yo was A$220 per bottle? And our friend was not wrong on the taste. This for me was the most superb whisky of the evening. It was very lightly smoked, not peaty at all, just an undercurrent of smokiness. There was no harshness in the aftertaste, so I don’t think it was very alcoholic. The flavours were lovely and mellow and I could see myself on a freezing night in front of a fire, finishing off this bottle.

Thanks to all old and new club members for making this such an enjoyable evening. I’m sure the ‘grassroots’ atmosphere of this expo will become more sophisticated and organised in future. Let’s just hope that the organisers had enough interest to ensure we actually do see this event back again next year!

El Capitan,