Spirit of Toronto 2011: Masterclasses Now Online – Scotch Whisky News

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Masterclasses Now Online

Tickets for the show go on sale Monday, April 4th through Roy Thomson Hall’s box office http://www.roythomsonhall.com/eventdetail?eventId=787¬†at which time masterclasses may be reserved when making your purchase. The full line up for this year’s Masterclass Series is now online, with an expanded line-up of twelve tastings sure to offer something for everyone. http://www.spiritoftoronto.ca/masterclass.html

So now comes the hard part… decisions, decisions. Without a doubt the most popular tastings are from ‘grand cru’ distilleries, and perennial favourites such as Glenrothes, Highland Park and Remy Martin have never disappointed. We are further chuffed to also be welcoming one of Scotch whisky’s most respected statesmen, Willie Tait from Isle of Jura.

The opportunity to meet the whiskymakers in person doesn’t come along often, so it’s equally tempting to savour 10 years of innovation with John Glaser of Compass Box Whisky, or taste cask samples of the whiskies John Hall uses to blend Forty Creek.

Others believe that variety is the spice of life: they will be handsomely rewarded by the independent bottlings of Gordon MacPhail being presented by Michael Urquhart. Fan favourite Regis Lemaitre will also be conducting his own Scottish tour, sampling peated whiskies alongside their non-peated siblings as he visits the islands of Arran, Mull and Islay.

Speaking of variety, this year’s series also includes a rum education courtesy of Ian Burrell, the UK Rum Ambassador. The chance to have him sample the solera aged Ron Zacapa, or Brugal finished in ex-Macallan casks, was just too good to pass. Rum is being touted as the new “malternative” so we look forward to having Ian profile the depth and complexity of whisky’s spiritual cousin.

Sticking closer to home, Matt Jones will be discussing the do’s and dont’s of handmade bourbon in a tasting that features top shelf American whiskey including the recently released Makers 46 that I just can’t put down.

And speaking of home, this year’s Spirit of Toronto presents a very special masterclass: “The Golden Age of Canadian Whisky” hosted by whisky writer and Malt Maniac Davin de Kergommeaux of www.canadianwhisky.org. Davin will be travelling back in time to 1950’s and 1960’s when Canadian whisky still reigned supreme.

The Fine Print

Early admission is $29 (HST included) and reserves seating in any one of the pre-show masterclasses starting at 5:30pm, with priority entry into the main tasting hall when the class is over. The remainder of the classes are scheduled for 7:00pm and 8:30pm and may be reserved at a cost of $10 (HST included) per person per class.

Seating is limited so if you are interested in a masterclass, do make your reservation as soon as tickets go on sale.

Please note that reservations in any one time slot are limited to the number of tickets purchased for the show. As an example, purchasing 2 tickets to the show entitles you to reserve a maximum of 2 masterclass seats at 5:30pm, 2 seats for the 7:00pm sessions and 2 seats for the 8:30pm sessions.

Visit the Spirit of Toronto at http://www.spiritoftoronto.ca/

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