Whisky Show 2012
Just under a fortnight ago TVG met at Tattersalls Club overlooking Hyde park for the 2012 Whisky Show presented by Ivan and co from World of Whisky. We arrived at 4.30 on Friday evening and we’re glad we got there early because the rooms were packed within a few hours and we’re told the line on Saturday ran out the building and around the corner!
The spread was overwhelming to say the least, we had no idea where to start. Luckily an old friend of TVG was working the bar which was serving the winning Glenmorangie Cocktail, a fusion of whisky and milk with a honey truffle reduction. Not sure if it was the best thing to kick off an evening of whisky drinking but an interesting drink non the less. Our mate at the bar told us what to look for and we instantly headed over to World of Whisky ambassador Dan Woolley’s table to try the Benromach 10yo. We followed the crowd and ended up chatting to a number of Australian distillers producing world class whiskys including Lark, Sullivans Cove & William McHenry and Sons. We moved to Glenmorangie and sampled their range which unfortunately wasn’t featuring the ‘Signet’ on the day. When you’re in room with 200 bottles to sample, you’ve got to be selective so we ducked and dived around the place picking out things we all wanted to try. If I’d had the chance I would have returned on Saturday because there was just so much on offer, essentially you could have done one room on the Friday and the other room on Saturday. Overall we thought it was a big success and a great move for whisky in Australia, we were also very impressed with the Australian distillers, creating world beating whisky to be proud of! Unfortunately I’d been unwell all week and my proficiency in stomaching nip after nip was poor but I thought I’d present some of my highlights from the event.
I’m going to kick things off with a whisky I’d heard good things about but only really been introduced to once prior to the event. The Monkey Shoulder is an excellent ‘Go-to’ whisky, extremely palatable and blended from a fine selection of Speyside whiskies. Whisky is like wine, there’s the ones you like and the ones you don’t. No one can tell you otherwise. We were very content sipping our Monkey Shoulder and at $43 it’s a serious contender.
If I’m going to go Islay it’s got to be Laphroaig and the Quarter Cask was hot on my list to try. It’s hard not to associate your preference to particular brands with good times and this is a brand that sings good times to me, a whisky that’s delivered again and again in numerous situations. The Quarter Cask is everything you’d expect and more from the peat master, a foray of charcoal and embers – like a drinking out of a chimney sweeps boot. Somehow the sweet spice is nestled perfectly amongst the weight of the smoke and delivers that classic Laphroaig taste.
Loved the bottle of the Lark Distillers Selection Single Malt. Another Australian highlight with phenomenal length. Delicious notes of caramel, orange and port. It’s robust and delivers like a whisky should, with confidence.
The Benromach 10yo is a Speyside delight with a rich Sherry influence and a delicate wisp of smoke. Maybe I’m being a little soft with the word wisp but I wanted to try and capture the essence of smoke because it was truly perfect for those that enjoy Speyside malts over Islays. This Whisky is elusive and unknown in Australia which is part of the reason the Whisky Show is such a great event – exposure. This was my highlight of the night, in my opinion a sublimely balanced whisky with a perfect addition of smoke.
Photos by Paul Cush.