Two excellent new sessions for your tasting fun, both led by our fine young Australian friend Mr Joel Eastman.
Whisky Squad #53 – Rivers of Speyside
The Speyside region’s so named for its river, the Spey. There’s a bit more to it than that though. There’s certainly more going on in the way of rivers, and that means more water sources for whisky to be distilled from.
Whisky Squad #54 – Changing some sub-Bourbon attitudes
We haven’t had an American whiskey session since July 2010, so by massive popular demand Joel and Jason have tightened up the straps on their thinking hats and assembled this (hopefully) delightful tasting escapade.
The February sessions both open for booking at 5pm on January 24th.
The 2013 Whisky Squad calendar is looking great, and to kick off the year we’re looking forward to presenting the following 2 sensational tastings:
Whisky Squad #51 – The Brown Spectrum (vol. 3)
A tasting at Berry Brothers and Rudd led by Robert Whitehead?! Practically no advertising required, really…
Whisky Squad #52 – Old and New
Billy Abbott leads us through a consideration of the effects of age. On whisky, that is.
The January sessions open for booking at midday on December 23rd.
Two final sessions for 2012 remain, and they are as follows:
Whisky Squad #49: Rum Squad – 7:30pm Thursday December 6th at The Gunmakers.
We’ll be taking one of our evening detours away from whisky and dipping into the murky and turbulent world of rum*, guided by the inimitable Stef Holt – who’s going to learn us a thing or two about what can be done with a bit of sugar, heat, and motivation.
* note: rum’s probably not murky or turbulent – they were just the first two adjectives I could think of.
Whisky Squad #50: Whisky Surprise – 7:30pm Thursday December 20th at The Red Lion, Crown Passage
Last tasting of the year has always been the “bring a whisky you’d like to share” night, and based on the roaring success & variety of the last two it seemed silly not to follow suit. A varied, fairly unstructured night guaranteed.
December tastings open for bookings Nov 22nd 10:30pm Australian Central Daylight Time, because Jason’s on holiday in Adelaide and he’s the one opening the bookings up. Hopefully that makes sense.
And, finally, it’s not strictly relevant but thought we’d share anyway – nice little interview about Whisky Squad has turned up on the wildly popular Whisky Marketplace TV podcast. Which is nice. Have a look: www.whiskymarketplace.co.uk/podcasts/007
As well as our usual 2 tasting sessions this month, we’ll be running an extra fundraising tasting now (as has become tradition) for the mens’ health charity movement that crams absurd moustaches into November – Movember.
So, the schedule looks like this:
Leading off on Nov 1st we have our very own Aussie Joel Eastman with a tasting that keeps up certain antipodean stereotypes:
Whisky Squad 47: The Extreme Whisky Tasting
Our mid-month tasting on the 15th focuses our topical lens on the often misunderstood & sometimes maligned whisky category of grain whisky. Phil Storry will be helping us understand more about just how much depth & delicacy can come from this industrially-produced spirit:
Whisky Squad 48: The Storry of Grain
And finally, with all proceeds being donated to the Movember charity, Darren Rook and Andrew MacLeod-Smith will be delighting us on the 29th with:
The Movember 2012 Tasting
Fingers on buzzers…
Bookings for November open at 7:30pm on Wednesday October 17th.
Coming up we’ve got 2 more lovely sessions for your delectation & joy, and bookings will open at 11am on Monday September 17th. Don’t miss out on these!
Taking Whisky Squad back to its roots of bringing together a selection of great whiskies with a possibly unexpected justification, Rob Whitehead from Berry Brothers & Rudd will be blowing minds in October with:
Whisky Squad #45 – Thursday October 4th – “More Whisky”
And to follow that, Billy Abbott will attempt to show us a thing or two about the sherry business, and help understand what types of sherry there are and how those might influence whiskies whose casks they’re aged in:
Whisky Squad #46 – Tuesday October 16th – “The Rain in Spain”
These tastings usually sell out pretty quickly, so best not hang around if you want a spot.
Here we go again with 2 more interesting & different Whisky Squad offerings – one demonstrating the breadth & possibility of flavours in the whisky diaspora through a new and exciting range of bottlings, and the other showing a few budget conscious choices and possibly some things to think about in the leadup to Christmas…
WS#43 – 6 Sep 2012 – Whisky By Flavour
The first September session sees our introduction to a new range of independently bottled spirits from Wemyss Malts – whose bottlings are more about interesting flavours than about provenance and distillery.
WS#44 – 20 Sep 2012 – The “Bang for your Buck” session
Later in the month and as we start to maybe thing about Christmas we’ve got a session dedicated to great value drinks that won’t break the bank – ideal things to suggest for that person who thinks you’ve already got everything.
Bookings open at 10am on Saturday August 18th!
2 slight departures from the norm for August – we’re doing a tasting OUTDOORS, and another non-whisky session…
WS#41 – 2 Aug 2012 – No points for saying grassy notes
A lovely Central London evening picnic, with a tasting of a fab selection of Lowland whiskies led by Andy and Jason.
WS#42 – 16 Aug 2012 – Boiled Wine
An opportunity to expand our brown spirits knowledge with a journey through the French traditions of Armagnac and Cognac.
Bookings open at 2pm on Friday July 20th!
We’ve got 2 new tastings lined up for July, and they’ll go onsale at 11:30pm on Monday June 18th! It’s been a really busy few weeks for me, so as they said in Spaceballs, “Here’s the short, short version!”
Thursday July 5th – WS#39 – “The Evolution of a Classic”
Ever been curious about whether whiskies change in character over the decades that they’re produced? If so, this tasting will be the perfect opportunity to discuss it – with a brand ambassador from one of the world’s most popular single malts!
Tuesday July 17th – WS #40 – “It’s a kind of magic”
Stepping back into that part of the Venn diagram that encompasses “Not Scotch Whisky”, this session in the Soho Whisky Club will have a special guest blasting us through a tour of some of his most magical drams.
Booking form / slightly better explanation.
Feast your eyes on the sessions we’ve got queued up for June! Fans of smoky whisky will be excited to know that we’ve got another smoke-centric session happening, and then the 2nd session in June is going to be a really fascinating glimpse into the workings and product from an exciting new distillery operation, which is part of one of England’s oldest breweries…
Ollie Chilton takes us for a wander through a lovely selection of smoky whiskies whose origins are shrouded in secrecy… Intriguing, isn’t it? (taking place at The Whisky Exchange at Vinopolis – booking form)
The first step of the distillation process is to make a kind of beer. So what happens when a brewer, whose specialty is beer, dips their toe into distilling? Ed Bates will be showing us exactly that! (taking place at The Bridge House, SE1 – booking form)
The May sessions are now fully booked – if you’d like news & info about future Whisky Squad tasting sessions, why not sign up for our mailing list, or follow us on Facebook or Twitter?
Two more shiny & new tasting sessions open for booking:
Special guest Phil Huckle’s going to take us through an area of the blend market that most of us probably haven’t had an opportunity to wave our nostrils around. A rare treat! (booking form)
We’ve learned an awful lot about whisky over the last 2 years, so we thought as a one-off exercise we might try shining our focus on an entirely different spirit that there’s a great deal to learn about. Just as whisky’s cast off by some as being a nasty, burny liquor that you have at parties when you’re a student, so too Tequila is rather 2-dimensionally seen as… well, a nasty burny spirit you have at parties when you’re a student. But there’s so much more to it. And that’s what we’re talking about. (booking form)