Excitement is building for Whiskies of the World in San Jose (#WOWSJ) on March 30th and in San Francisco (#WOWSF) on March 31st. San Jose has grown and we moved the event to a larger venue, the GlassHouse at 2 S. Market Street. That means more room for more whisky.
#WOWSF happens on the San Francisco Belle Yacht (remains docked) at Pier 3. VIP is already sold out, but general admission tickets are still available. Click here for San Francisco hotel partners. Announcing the San Francisco Masterclasses: (You must have a ticket for the main tasting in order to get into a seminar) masterclassessfo2017.eventbrite.com
- Beauty and the Beast: Glenmorangie vs Ardbeg: Travis Tidwell:
- Last Great Malts: Gabriel Cardarella
- Whisky Mixology: H Ehrmann from Elixir
- Sonoma County Distilling: Adam Spiegel
- Cigar/Whisky Pairing: Thomas G. Brock
and the San Jose Masterclasses:
- 50 Shades of Spey: Alexander Murray Independent Bottler: Cameron Johnston
- Last Great Malts: Gabriel Cardarella
Links to buy tickets: San Jose 3/30/2017 ; Sponsored by Silicon Valley Magazine San Francisco 3/31/2017 : Sponsored by SF Magazine Current list of participating brands San Jose; San Francisco Early bird tickets are now on sale for Texas and Atlanta events! Whiskies of the World Houston (#WOWHOU) will take place on Thursday, September 14th, at the JW Marriott Galleria Whiskies of the World Austin (#WOWAUS) is Saturday, September 16th, at the JW Marriott downtown. Whiskies of the World Atlanta (#WOWATL) is Saturday, November 4th, at the Westin Buckhead Lets talk about it! Be sure to use the hashtags when talking about the all the WOW shows on social media. Each time you post with the correct hashtags, you will be entered in a drawing to win a free ticket to that show. We will select one winner the week before the show. If you have already purchased your ticket which we recommend you do, we will refund it. Post and follow on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. We have some world class whiskies coming to each show and would like to highlight a few more this issue. If you missed any issues of our newsletter, please be sure to look at the archive here for more information about your favorite whiskies.
The Last Great Malts from Dewar’s
The Last Great Malts is a branding of 5 single malts that are all part of the Dewar’s blend and owned by Dewar’s. They are Aberfeldy, Craigellachie, The Deveron, Aultmore, and Royal Brackla. Dewar’s has a long history, a heritage rich with stories, secrets, and of course full of delicious Scotch. The Last Great Malts represents some of the single malts used in Dewar’s, the single malts that are just too good to keep only for blending! Aberfeldy is the signature malt in Dewar’s, that delicious, fruity, sweet whisky! They call themselves the “golden dram” in part because the water they use to make the whisky is richly laden with minerals, including GOLD! Craigellachie is an old fashioned malt, still made using worm tubs for condensing, which give it a meaty, sulphury taste that is cherished by many a Scotch fan! The Deveron can be found in other countries as Glen Deveron and McDuff, but from now on will be known simply as The Deveron. It is made by the sea and the bottle is a frosted green that evokes found sea glass on the beach. It is delightfully smooth and calls you back for another taste. Aultmore is “of the Foggie Moss” and has the nickname (and also can be asked for locally) as “a nip of the Buckie Road”. These names allude to a Scotch which is somewhat mysterious and unknown to most of the world, yet well known where it is made. It is flavorful, and a great value for the quality you get. Only three Scotches have had the “Royal” designation. Brackla received theirs from King William the IV, uncle to Queen Victoria, in 1833. Queen Victoria renewed the warrant in 1838. A Royal Warrant means that this whisky is a favorite of the royal family and chosen by them as an “official” whisky of the court. This is a sherry finished whisky and is fairly straightforward in its notes of vanilla, pepper and dried fruits. Though Aberfeldy and Craigellachie have been available in the US for quite some time, the other three are relatively new to US markets. Make the Dewar’s table a first stop at Whiskies of the World to see for yourself why they could not be kept a secret any more.
The best known Canadian whisky in the world is also one of the best selling whiskies in the world: Crown Royal. While only three Scotch whiskies have been given the designation of Royal, Crown Royal was designed from its start for Royalty. In 1939 King George IV and Queen Elizabeth (the current Queen Elizabeth’s parents) came to Canada and Samuel Bronfman, then of Seagram’s, wanted to craft a whisky to give to them to honor their visit. He expertly blended over 50 whiskies to create Crown Royal and presented it to the Royal couple and stocked their train that took them across the country. It wasn’t until 1964 that it was introduced to the US and other countries. In recent times many delicious variations have been introduced, like the XO which is the original blend which is then finished in Cognac casks from the French Limousin forest, or the Monarch, introduced in 2014 to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Royal visit that started it all. At Whiskies of the World, start a new tradition of your own by trying all of their fine expressions!
Though not always called Woodford Reserve, the distillery where Woodford reserve is made is the oldest Bourbon distillery in Kentucky, built in 1838. Dr. James Crow, a Scottish scientist, is called the “Father of Bourbon” and was employed at the “Oscar Pepper Distillery” as it was known then. He perfected much of the process used in making bourbon today, including sour mash and aging in barrels. This would be enough accolades for any distillery, but Woodford Reserve is also the only Bourbon distillery using pot stills for part of their distilling. (Some of their spirit also comes from column stills, the usual method for distilling bourbon.) These pot stills originated in Scotland. Another rather unusual thing is that the warehouse for aging is made of stone rather than wood and therefore the temperature fluctuates more slowly and the spirit is heated and cooled at a more regular pace than many other bourbons sitting in barrels in Kentucky. Finally, Woodford Reserve is the official bourbon of the Kentucky Derby, and releases a special Derby expression every year. At the Kentucky Derby you may have to pay $1000 for a Mint Julep made from Woodford Reserve, but a taste of this fine whiskey is included when you buy a ticket to Whiskies of the World in San Francisco.
The Single Malt that started it all! People in Scotland were making whisky long before it was legally permitted. In 1824, it became legal and George Smith, the founder of the Glenlivet, applied for a permit to change his illicit distillery to a legal one. Other distillers were mad that he did this as they hoped that if no one would apply for permits, it would not become something that had to be done. George Smith famously carried around two pistols to protect himself and his people from the angry distillers. Today The Glenlivet, named for the river in Speyside near where it is located, is the best selling Single Malt in the US and the second best selling in the world! There are 12 Whiskies regularly produced that cover a wide variety of wood finishes and even some peat flavors! The Glenlivet 12 is the standard against which many measure Scotch whisky. It is the one Scotch that you will find in almost every bar and if someone has tried Scotch, most often this is the Scotch they have tried. It is consistently smooth and easy to drink, and with the classic Speyside flavors of honey, heather, and vanilla, it is a complex, fruity malt. Additionally in the Classic range you have the 15, the 18, and the Founders’ reserve. The Nadurra collection emphasizes the whisky making tradition of the 19th century and is non chill filtered, often focusing on the wood flavors from the casks. Whiskies of the World in San Francisco welcomes The Glenlivet and encourages you to make this one of your first stops of the evening.
Sonoma County Distilling Company
California is known for making great wines, and some of the conditions that allow that to be true help make it a great locale for whiskey making as well. Sonoma County Distilling uses non GMO grains from California, Canada and the UK, and hand fires their pot stills, watching the process carefully and crafting whiskey slowly by hand, from grain to glass. They describe their new make spirit as “a viscous, high ester-driven” fluid ready to age in barrels from Minnesota and Missouri. Their cornerstone product is their Rye, but they also make a bourbon and a wheat whiskey. These tasty offerings are treats that are found mainly in California, and chances are you have not had the pleasure of trying this whiskey yet. Another fine reason to buy your WOW tickets today and indulge in the pleasure of finding new favorites among some old friends. Master Class With Adam Speigel, Owner of Sonoma County Distilling Join Adam Spiegel, Owner and Head Distiller of Sonoma County Distilling Company, to learn about his approach to crafting grain to glass whiskeys. As California’s first premier whiskey-focused distillery, Adam will discuss what sets their rye, wheat and bourbon whiskeys apart from what is made in Kentucky. He’ll share why utilizing direct-fired copper alembic pot stills, the finest grains for their mash bill and a unique barrel aging program makes all the difference in their limited-release whiskeys, each reflecting the exceptional terroir of Sonoma County. Adam will be presenting this class at Whiskies of the World in San Francisco on March 31st. Sign up when you buy your ticket!
This is just a small sample of the 100’s of whiskies you can try at a Whiskies of the World event. There is something for every taste, and it all comes together in one great evening! Don your kilts, your dinner jackets and party dresses and come on out for an unforgettable night of whisky!
Cheers, Douglas Smith ~ Event Director Whiskies of the World