Knowing what you like to drink is great. But what’s also great is knowing a bit about your drink and where it came from – and what better way to get acquainted with your tipple than by actually making it yourself. It’s satisfying, super-show-off-able (let’s be honest: you’re going to ‘casually’ mention it to your friends) and – best of all – you get to sip on a superb sprit at the end of it all, crafted by your own fair hands.
As part of the all-conquering imbibing occasion that is London Cocktail Week, luxury Scotch maker Chivas Regal is returning with its enormously popular ‘Art of Blending’ sessions, held at its very cool dedicated Shoreditch bar The Blend, where an expert blender will help you identify flavours in whisky, then build your own. So while everyone else on their standard nights out are just drinking the stuff, you get to actually make your own. Pretty neat. Here’s why whisky is on everyone’s lips this autumn.
Whisky’s shaking up the bar scene
At places like Shoreditch’s Black Rock – where the whiskies are housed in cabinets – or Milroy’s in Soho, underneath the oldest whisky shop in London, a respect for the heritage of distilling is combined with a sense of adventure and fun. And joining them for a limited time only is Chivas Regal’s The Blend, a dark, sexy and slick den that’ll transport you from the East End to the Mad Men-esque whisky bars of Manhattan.
It’s your go-to social all-rounder
While the idea of a comforting fireside dram is appealing, the spectrum of whisky means it’s unmatched in versatility. London’s bartenders are mixing it into party-starting cocktails, and whisky-food matching is now very much a thing: it’s a great partner to roasted meats. Whether it’s a quiet date in a cosy pub or an epic night out, whisky’s there for you.
There’s a wealth of flavours in a glassful
You could write a thesaurus with a list of whisky-tasting terms. Don’t like the idea of spicy? Go for floral. Peaty too powerful? Try something fruity. With some of the more out-there descriptors including ‘greenhouse’, ‘seaweed’, ‘burnt toast’ and ‘teapot’, you can be sure there’s something to make you go ‘mmm’.
There’s a whisky for everyone
Ever thought, I wish I liked whisky? Here’s a fact: you do, you just haven’t found the right one. Yet. Now, you could spend your life sampling until you happen upon a match, or you could let a Chivas Regal whisky whiz give you a guided tour of your own taste buds, and create a totally bespoke blend that will open up whole new dimensions of flavour.
And we’ve got an even better way into the world of whisky
Unsurprisingly, 2016’s ‘Art of Blending’ events sold out, so you know what to do this year…
Chivas Regal’s 45-minute ‘Art of Blending’ experiences take place at The Blend, 133 Bethnal Green Rd, E2 7DG, until Dec 3.
Book at chivas.com/theblend.