Have you heard of the Barber Shop?

Picture Credits: WhiskyGeeks

Have you heard of the Barber Shop? For those working in the downtown area, we are sure that you heard and knew about the Barber Shop. We are apologetic to say that we did not know about the Barber Shop until whiskyman, Fab Arm, invited us for a tour!

What is Barber Shop?

Barber Shop opened in the latter part of 2012 with the aim of serving only quality food and drinks. It attracted the working crowd with its fantastic service, good food and better drinks. Now that you know it is not a real barbershop for you to get a haircut, let’s explore its story in more details.

Barber Shop is part of the Timbre Group, a home-grown company that has been serving its multitudes of customers for the past 12 years. As an outlet that aims to please, Barber Shop serves up a menu of quality whiskies, rums, vodka, gin and cocktails. Behind the bar is a team of dedicated bartenders who know their products straight from the heart.

What can you expect?

Barber Shop is a low-key bar with extraordinary offerings. As a bar which supports local musicians, you can find live music from local bands every day of the week. These groups are handpicked by the owners and offer great music to go along with the food and drinks. Besides that, there are also good conversations to be had, so feel free to ask the knowledgeable team about anything from the menu!

Special Wednesdays

On every Wednesday, the Lindy Hop Dancers from Timbre Music Academy above Barber Shop will grace the dance floor together with Raw Earth as they performed together. From what we know, the joint-performance has been the highlight every week!

Raw Earth is a blues, rock and soul band from Singapore and they will charm you with music that is both old-school and full of flavour. The band strives to retain the soul and groove into their music to add the soulful of music into their performance! You can find more information about them here.

Moving Forward

Timbre and Fab have plans for Barber Shop in 2018, and it is progressing well. While we will not reveal what these projects are for the moment, we urge you to keep an eye out for them. They are exciting for all drinkers and music lovers. So, stay tuned for more!

Location: The Art House
Address: 1 Old Parliament Lane #01-03 (next to Timbre @ The Arts House), Singapore 179429

 

 

Like what you have just read?

Join WhiskyGeeks.sg as a member for FREE and receive our curated articles and videos in your mailbox every month!





[recaptcha]

6 whiskies suitable for the Chinese New Year Cheer

 

The Chinese celebrate the Chinese New Year (CNY) or Lunar New Year in February this year. As it is with all major festivals, there are some whiskies which are launched or released in limited edition bottles just for the celebration. In 2018, there are various whiskies launched for the CNY, such as The Macallan Double Cask with a CNY theme gift pack.

Our purpose is not to showcase every whisky bottle out there, but to highlight some of these bottles which we think are well-worth the dough that you need to spend to get these bottles. Some of them are even hard to come by, but we can always try!

In our opinions, these are the five whiskies/bottles which we think are perfect for the CNY celebration!

Johnnie Walker Blue Label – Year of the Dog

Johnnie Walker has been in the news recently, for their somewhat controversial decision to take a trademark for Jane Walker. We have discussed that previously, so we will not dwell on it anymore. What is more interesting is their annual zodiac bottle design for the Blue Label. This year, it is the year of the dog, and the bottle reflects it well.

As you can see from the picture, Diageo artistically covered the bottle on three sides with amazing images that symbolised both CNY and the Year of the Dog. There is even the striding man rolling a cask of whisky with a dog by his side. The pictures are exquisite and meaningful all at the same time. It is already in major retail stores and online stores, so if you are in the mood for a Blue Label, this is a bottle that you should buy!

Suntory Royal and Suntory Old

These are two different mid-tier whisky blends from Suntory, but we decided to put them together because their bottles are too beautiful to separate. Suntory releases special bottlings every year to commemorate the CNY since 1982, so it is no surprise that they came up with something exotic in 2018.

The new bottles pay tributes to the dog and showcase the loyal, yet playful nature of man’s best pal. Suntory housed The Royal in a ceramic container shaped like a dog, playing with a beautifully-designed ball. For the Suntory Old, the standard bottle shape applies, but the label showcases the same playful dog with the ball.

It is hard to buy either bottle due to their limit release in Japan only, but you can try Amazon or eBay if you love these bottles. If you have a friend in Japan, you can seek his or her help to search for the bottles too!

The Whisky Agency – Glenrothes 1997

These couple of bottles are part of a twin set that launched in Taiwan recently. While it is not part of a CNY packaging, it took inspiration from a favourite Chinese video game. Known in Mandarin as 仙劍奇俠傳 (The Legend of Sword and Fairy), it is a perfect gift for the CNY.

Picture Credits: WhiskyGeeks

The duo came with two different pictures of the Chinese video game main characters. The story links Chinese martial arts (wuxia), mythical creatures (shenmo), fantasy and love. It has an exciting plot and a somewhat controversial ending, but it is a beautiful game for those who are into role-playing games. For those of us who are only into whisky, the graphics on the bottles are appealing. They came in a beautifully-designed box, and the set includes the two bottles, two Glencairn glasses and two ceramic coasters!

Picture Credits: WhiskyGeeks

We ordered this set from Taiwan, and it is not easy to buy it here in Singapore or elsewhere in the world. Due to its nature as an independent bottling, these bottles are all limited edition.  If you are interested in obtaining a set, get in touch with us, and we will link you up accordingly!

Macallan Rare Cask Red

Finally, let us end the post with a familiar bottle.  The Macallan Rare Cask Red launched a few years ago to much fanfare. As the entry level to the prestigious 1824 Master Series, it is one of the most popular bottles for Macallan fans. For those who are new to the whisky scene, the 1824 Master Series showcased some of the rarest and most expensive modern Macallan bottles. You can find more information here.

The price reduces somewhat recently, so it is a good time for those who have finished their previous bottle to buy another one for the upcoming CNY!

Conclusion

More bottles celebrate the CNY, but these are five bottles which we feel are some of the most festive ones! Regarding affordability, we would suggest either the Johnnie Walker Blue Label or the Macallan Rare Cask, as both are not as difficult to obtain when compared to the others. You have to buy the Suntory bottles in Japan, so unless you have a friend in Japan, it is going to expensive if you buy them on Amazon or eBay! Similarly, for the TWA Glenrothes, you need to order the set from Taiwan, so shipping costs make the bottles more expensive then they should be.

 

Like what you have just read?

Join WhiskyGeeks.sg as a member for FREE and receive our curated articles and videos in your mailbox every month!





[recaptcha]

Is there such a thing as drinking too much whisky?

 

Is there such a thing as drinking too much whisky? It was a question that I asked myself when I felt a distaste for whisky towards the end of last year. It was a “horrors of the horrors” when I found myself craving for a glass of Bailey’s instead of a glass of whisky as my New Years’ dram.

“What have I done?” I asked myself. Nonetheless, the thought of drinking yet another glass of whisky put me off, and so I poured myself the Baileys.

My suspicions for the whisky fatigue

I am going to call what I experience as “whisky fatigue” as it does seem like the most appropriate name for it. I had a lot of whiskies to drink during a short period of 1.5 months. From Whisky Live Singapore 2017 to Whisky Fair TAKAO 2017, it was two weekends of indulgence. In between the two events, we also visited Nantou Distillery and drank Omar for breakfast! Following that, I attended various tasting events and finally ended all activities on 30 December 2017.

With all the whiskies in the blood, I suspected that the body had more than it could take, and automatically reject the idea of more. However, I think there could be more reasons, and so I asked around.

Results of my “asking around”

I chatted with a few friends in our community and received many different feedbacks. Many claimed that a dram or two each night before bed calms the nerves and help them sleep better, while others claimed that they have drunk whisky all their lives and never get tired of it. Some even suggested that I am perhaps, falling sick!?

Finally, I found someone who agreed with me. He is a good friend of mine, and he agreed that he, too, has issues with drinking too much whisky within a short time. However, he feels that it could be related to stress. His point of view is valid – too much pressure during the whisky tasting sessions resulted in a psychological rejection of enjoyment and reduced the joy of drinking whisky. When the brain associated unpleasant stress for a prolonged period, the brain linked whisky with stress. Therefore, whisky fatigue set in.

Internet research into whisky fatigue

After our chat, I decided to google whisky fatigue. What I found was disappointing. Most discourses speak of rising whisky prices as whisky fatigue, leading to a switch to other liqueurs. While I do not disagree that prices do have a part to play, it is likely not the only reason.

Conclusion

There is no satisfying answer to my question. The top three reasons are toxic in the body, psychological stress, and whisky prices. Are there more to this whisky fatigue which I experience? I would like to throw the question to our community here and overseas and humbly ask for your opinions. Please share your experiences with us and explore this phenomenal together!

 

Like what you have just read?

Join WhiskyGeeks.sg as a member for FREE and receive our curated articles and videos in your mailbox every month!





[recaptcha]

8 underrated whiskies we have tried so far

Our recent focus on whisky bars has led us on a discussion regarding the many whiskies that we have drunk in the bars in Singapore. We found that there are a lot of underrated whiskies that went unnoticed by most people because they are just not in the limelight. These whiskies are only put into the spotlight when whisky bars introduced them. Therefore, as a way to further help spread the joy of underrated whiskies, we decided to put forth eight underrated whiskies which we have drunk!

**Some of these whiskies are available in the local bars in Singapore, so you can always pop by for a dram!**

Mortlach Rare Old

We came across the Mortlach Rare Old during Singbev’s sales at Suntec City late last year and had more than just a taste of it. The oily mouthfeel, sweet and robust flavours and relatively long finish hooked into us, and we ended up buying a bottle. Mortlach Rare Old is an affordable entry-level single malt from Mortlach’s premium range, and it is such a decent dram that we need to tell everyone about it!

It may not be an easy to find this single malt in regular bars, but you can ask whisky bars in Singapore if they carry the bottle. Otherwise, if you know anyone working in Diageo, you can try to wing an invitation to Diageo’s bar! If all else fail, you can still get a bottle at our local whisky shops or online at Master of Malt or The Whisky Exchange. The last we heard, Cold Storage is selling the Mortlach Rare Old at $60! It is a steal!

The Single Cask Macduff 19 Years Old

TSC Macduff 19 Years Old

The Single Cask is an independent bottler, and you can find a massive range of whiskies at their bar. One of the underrated ones which we want to share is the TSC Macduff 19 Years Old. We tasted it at an event, and we love it. We got a bottle at home too! The liquid boasts floral and citrus notes. At a higher abv of 53.5%, it is also a robust whisky with a little spice.

If you want to taste this whisky, simply head over to The Single Cask and ask Brendan for a dram of TSC Macduff 19 Years Old!

Caol Ila 2006 (S Spirit Shop Collection)

Caol Ila 2006 (S Spirit Shop)

S Spirit Shop is an independent bottler from Taiwan, and they bottled Scotch whiskies using unique labels that speak volume about the Chinese heritage of S Spirit Shop. The Caol Ila 2006 that we had was one of those whiskies in which you cannot forget after drinking it. Even though it is a young whisky at nine years old, it is so well balanced that we need more and more. It is also a limited release of only 76 bottles. If you love gentle peat, you got to try this one!

It is available at The Wall SG, and you can even taste the whole range of the S Spirit Shop Collection there if you are feeling adventurous!

Arran Amarone Cask Finish

Arran Amarone Cask Finish

The Arran distillery is located on the Isle of Arran and is the only distillery on the island. The core range of Arran is probably well-known to you but did you know that they have a variety of special releases too? The Arran Amarone Cask Finish is one of such release. Matured in oak casks and then finished in Amarone wine cask, the distillery bottled the whisky at 50% abv. The liquid boasts the nose of a sweet red wine, honey, pear and cranberries, a soft palate and a long fruity finish.

You can easily find a dram of this at the Quaich Bar. In fact, they have a whole range of Arran for you to try if you are keen!

Isle of Jura 8 Years Old

Isle of Jura 8 Years Old

The Isle of Jura is a little-known distillery in this part of the world, and we hardly heard of them. The eight years old expression is one of their older bottlings and is hard to find now in the current market. We were surprised by this dram to be honest because it has a nose of a typical Tobermory! Perhaps it is due to their shared identity as island whiskies. This was a blind tasting, and we honestly could not guess the distillery! It is, indeed, an underrated whisky.

You can try it at The Swan Song, which is a newly opened bar at Prinsep Street! We will be reviewing the bar soon, so keep your eyes out for it!

Littlemill 1990 (Fighting Fish)

Littlemill 1990 (Fighting Fish)

Fighting Fish Series is a range by Jack Wiebers, an independent bottler from Germany. The Littlemill 1990 here is an indie bottle of Fighting Fish, and it boasts a beautiful nose of sweet molasses, honey and berries. It is a well-balanced dram that leaves you wanting more. As Littlemill is a closed distillery, it is worth your time and money to try as many expressions of Littlemill before the stock runs out!

Get a taste of this Littlemill 1990 from the Fighting Fish Series from The Writing Club. You can find lots of other special bottles there as well as closed distilleries bottling such as Rosebank and Port Ellen.

Omar Single Malt

Omar Cask Strength Bourbon

We introduced Omar to our readers previously so we will not dwell too much on it. However, we felt the need to remind our readers that it is an underrated whisky. Besides their core range of the NAS single malt, they have a variety of single casks which you should try. One of our favourites is the cask strength bourbon. Aged about four years in ex-bourbon casks, the liquid is fragrant with vanilla and creamy sweetness.

While you can’t buy a dram of Omar Single Malt in Singapore right now, you can get them whenever you travel to Taiwan! They are available at both Taoyuan International Airport and Kaohsiung International Airport.

Säntis Malt Snow White No. 5

Santis Malt – Snow White No. 5

We wrote about Säntis Malt recently, and we hope that you have enjoyed the article. The last underrated whisky that we have for this post is the Säntis Malt Snow White No. 5. The apricot finish makes this whisky a gem as the nose, palate and finish create such a lovely experience! It is a pity that Säntis Malt is not yet readily available in Singapore yet, but I am sure that we will hear something about them soon enough!

While you may find it hard to get hold of this in Singapore, you can try your luck in Taiwan. If you want to try this, let us know, and we will see what we can do about it!

Conclusion

The eight whiskies above are some of the underrated whiskies that we tasted and love. We have five out of the eight bottles at home, so you can imagine how much we love them. How about yours? What are your underrated whiskies?

 

Like what you have just read?

Join WhiskyGeeks.sg as a member for FREE and receive our curated articles and videos in your mailbox every month!





[recaptcha]

Is Jane Walker going to bring gender equality?

 

The whisky world is filled with amusement and criticism when news of Diageo submitted a trademark application for “Jane Walker” hit the Internet. The drinks giant applied to the United States Patent and Trademark Office earlier this month and stated that Jane Walker is for “alcoholic beverages except for beer”. There was also news that labels submitted to the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) show a drawing of a woman similarly dressed as the famous striding man logo and a bottle label named “The Jane Walker Edition”.

The Internet has been blazing with both praise and criticism for the gender-specific trademark application. Some have come forward to applaud the move as a reminder for gender equality. Others have feedback that it is a backwards move to spread gender inequality and biases further.

Is Jane Walker going to bring about gender equality?

Gender equality is a long-suffering debate that gets nowhere, so far as we can see it. Men claim one side of the story while the women argue the other side. There is no end to this argument. We would rather see a general inclusion of human beings, accepting every one of us as an individual.

Jane Walker, if done right, can indeed bring about a general inclusion of human beings. It is, however, a very tricky move that needs extreme planning. Is Jane Walker going to be a different blend? Will it be weaker or stronger than Johnnie Walker? Is the liquid going to be the same? Will Jane Walker become a core range or a limited release? Is the expression planned for release globally or only in the United States of America? The questions are endless.

Nonetheless, the answer to each question will determine if Jane Walker will succeed. What if Jane Walker is a new blend that is more floral, fruitier or sweeter? How would the world respond to that? Or maybe Jane Walker could be a heavily peated whisky that is floral and sweet at the same time? What will the world think?

Countless combination for Jane Walker’s success

We believe that numerous combinations can build Jane Walker’s success on the world’s stage. The global community is waiting impatiently for Diageo to reveal their plans and share the new trademark with us. The revelation is likely to make or break the new Jane Walker Edition. Diageo is known for its work in promoting gender equality in the workplace, as well as running campaigns and projects to empower women around the world.

The news of Jane Walker comes in a period where sexual harassment is trending in the news, mainly founded in the allegations made against Hollywood movie producer, Harvey Weinstein. Will Jane Walker help women around the world, or will she be seen as another sexist plot against women? We hope for the former!

Reactions from around the world

While we wait for news from Diageo, here’s a top response from Jump Radio. Listen to Jesse and Jenna as they present to you: The New Jane Walker Whisky Ad.

 

Like what you have just read?

Join WhiskyGeeks.sg as a member for FREE and receive our curated articles and videos in your mailbox every month!





[recaptcha]

 

 

Bruichladdich Black Art Series Tasting Event

Picture Credits: Bruichladdich

Bruichladdich is starting 2018 fast and furious, with many events lined up with various bars. The first event of the year for Singapore started with a Black Art tasting at The Single Cask. Chloe Wood, Bruichladdich’s Asia Pacific Brand Ambassador, led the session. It was a sell-out session, and the crowd at TSC was excited to see Chloe in person. The brand manager of Bruichladdich, Rachel Tan, was also in attendance, and she even brought along home-made butter cakes drizzled with Port Charlotte icing! There was food as well, so it was indeed a little party that we were happy to be a part of.

Starting the session with some history

Attentive participants listening to Chloe

A tasting session could not proceed without a bit of history to set the tone right, and Chloe did not disappoint as she waxed lyrical about Bruichladdich’s history. It was a somewhat stormy history, with struggles and closures that were all too real. Started in 1881, the Harvey brothers built Bruichladdich and resolved to run the distillery using state-of-the-art technology at that time. Spirits ran pure and floral from their stills, and Bruichladdich whisky proved that Islay could make unpeated whiskies.

Bruichladdich Distillery in 1881 (Picture Credits: Bruichladdich)

Troubles soon befell the distillery. A fire broke out in 1934, and William Harvey passed away in 1936. With William gone, the distillery fell into the hands of various entities before getting mothballed in 1994 by Jim Beam.

The distillery saw new hope when Englishmen Mark Reyneir and Simon Coughlin sought to buy the distillery in 2000. Chloe shared an intriguing story in which Mark and Simon were told to “scramp off” by the men who were taking care of the distillery when they tried to gain access to Bruichladdich to take a look. Mark and Simon persisted and finally managed to buy the distillery with 8,000 maturing casks for £6m. 50 investors were involved in the purchase.

A New Hope

With Mark and Simon on the helm, Bruichladdich took a turn for the better. In 2001, the duo decided that they will use purely Scottish barley for their distillation. The most significant achievement, however, was the decision to mature all their whiskies within the distillery’s compound!

Bruichladdich Distillery (Picture Credits: Bruichladdich)

 

Maturing casks at Bruichladdich Distillery (Picture Credits: Bruichladdich)

Things ran smoothly until 2011 when the distillery fell into a financial crunch. The traditional methods of distillation and storage of the casks within the distillery had drained the finances. Mark and Simon struggled to pay the passionate workers and resolved to bring in more funds for the distillery.

Saviour in the form of Remy Cointreau

Remy Cointreau came in with the funds of £58.5m in 2012 and saved the distillery from getting mothballed. With the money, Bruichladdich could once again function with maximum capacity and even increased their production output from 750,000 litres to 1,200,000 – 1,500,000 litres from 2013 to 2017.

Remy left the running of the distillery to the knowledgeable men and women on Islay and provided the support whenever needed. With a team of dedicated whisky makers and a management that is willing to support them, the distillery is scaling for greater heights in the coming years. In fact, Bruichladdich is looking into a possibility of starting their own malting facility in future!

The Whisky of the Night

From left: Bruichladdich 1990, Black Art 4.1, Black Art 5.1

With the intriguing history behind us, Chloe took us through the flights of the three whiskies in front of us. First up was the Bruichladdich 1990/25 years old, followed by the Black Art 4.1 and finally the Black Art 5.1.

Bruichladdich 1990/25 years old

Bruichladdich 1990/25 years old

 

The Bruichladdich 1990/25 years old has a unique history that spans three generations of master distillers. Adam Hannett created the expression using casks brought in 2001. There were two paths to this liquid.

First Path:
– Refill American Bourbon cask, 17 years
– Fine French Claret, Bordeaux Grand Cru Cask, five years
– Spanish Sherry, Pedro Ximenez from Fernando de Castilla, four years

Second Path:
– Refill Spanish Sherry butt, 18 years
– Spanish Sherry, Oloroso from Fernando de Castilla, seven years

Adam then married the casks together to create the Bruichladdich 1990/25 years old.

Tasting notes of Bruichladdich 1990/25 years old

The dark amber of this expression promises a sherry bomb and makes us fall in love with this sherried whisky even before we tried it. The nose is fragrant with dark fruits and chocolate. Raisins, sultanas, dates and apricots float together with hints of vanilla. The palate follows with chocolate cream, raisins and dates. Layered underneath is a soft and light fruitiness that comes from the spirit. The smooth and oily mouthfeel makes this whisky elegant and very palatable. The finish is long with sweet sherry and chocolate. The mouthfeel gets drier towards the end.

Black Art 4.1

Bruichladdich Black Art 4.1

The Bruichladdich Black Art 4.1  is Jim McEwan’s last release of the Black Art before retiring. There is a story behind the Dark Arts..ahem, I mean Black Art. Back in the days when Adam was learning the craft from Jim, he asked Jim what was in some of the casks that were brought in from the outside after smelling an other-worldly perfume in the warehouse. Jim smiled and said, “Ah, well, that’s a secret never to be divulged…that’s where the magic lies.” Adam paused and then replied, “Jim, this isn’t distilling that you do, it’s alchemy – the dark arts…”

And that, my dear readers, was how the Black Art was born. Jim created the first Black Art in 2009. Black Art 2.1 in 2011, 3.1 in 2012, and Black Art 4.1 in 2013.

Nobody except the master distiller knows what went into the Black Arts – and they keep the secret forever. Even Mark and Simon are not let in on the secret. The bottle was blackened, and coated with mystical signs. It is a success because the Black Arts are so different from the other Bruichladdich series.

Tasting Notes of Black Art 4.1

Black Art 4.1 is another 1990 vintage with the liquids spending at least 23 years old in their respective casks. Bottled at the natural strength of 49.2% abv, it is a non-chill filtered and colouring free whisky.

The nose is fragrant and robust. Raisins, sultanas, red wine float gently together. A pleasant, warm spice tingles in the background. The palate is oily and soft, with a slight tingle of spice on the lips. Sweet caramel, raisins and cream coats the palate beautifully. The finish is long, sweet and a little dry.

Black Art 5.1

Bruichladdich Black Art 5.1

The Black Art 5.1 is Adam’s very first Black Art creation. It causes him many sleepless nights, constant worry and self-doubt. However, his belief in his teacher and mentor, Jim, and his knowledge gleaned from his long years of learning the craft, spurred him forward to create Black Art 5.1.

When Jim gave Adam his recipe for the Black Art 5.1, Adam dutifully took and ignored it. Adam wanted to repay his mentor and friend by creating a Black Art that is worthy of the knowledge that he learned from the legendary master distiller. His immersed respect for Jim demands for nothing short of that.

His hard work paid off, and the Black Art 5.1 is a hit with many fans in the world. The elegant and soft expression won the hearts of many, and it was indeed, a tribute paid to both Adam and Jim.

Tasting Notes of Black Art 5.1

The amber colour of 5.1 reminds us fondly of the 4.1. The nose is full of sweet fruits – mango, pineapples and apricots – and warm spice tingles the nose with some spike. It is, however, light and elegant with no unpleasant bite. The palate is consistent with the fruitiness and yet coupled with oak influences of vanilla, honey and soft cinnamon spice. The finish is long and fruity.

After-hours Chat

The tasting session ended soon after the Black Art 5.1, but the party was not over yet. With Port Charlotte cakes and jolly laughter, the party continued with Chloe chatting with various participants. We also stole Chloe’s time for a short chat, and I took the chance to get a picture with her too!

It was an enjoyable session, and we enjoyed ourselves thoroughly. Oh, and we got ourselves a fantastic Bruichladdich polo tee each!! It was reasonably priced at $25, so we just grabbed it while it last! The next WhiskyLive is going to have a lot of Bruichladdich “ambassadors” wannabes walking around for sure! Hahaha…

If you want to know more about Bruichladdich and their ranges of whiskies, click here and here to find out more!

Stay tuned as there will be more coming in February!

 

Like what you have just read?

Join WhiskyGeeks.sg as a member for FREE and receive our curated articles and videos in your mailbox every month!





[recaptcha]

Bruichladdich x The Cheese Ark Tasting Event @ LMDW

 

Whisky enthusiasts are familiar with chocolate and cheese pairing. However, have you thought of pairing whisky with cheese? La Maison du Whisky is hosting an extraordinary event at the end of January featuring a unique combination of Bruichladdich’s whiskies and The Cheese Ark’s artisanal cheese.

What is the event about?

This event will showcase an exceptional whisky and cheese pairing using the core expressions of Bruichladdich’s Islay whiskies, and old, authentic cheese made from the villages in Europe. Chloe Wood, Bruichladdich’s Asia Pacific brand ambassador, who is also an Islay native, will join hands with the passionate founder of The Cheese Ark, Syu Ai Ming to bring you on an explorative journey of both unexpected and explosive flavours.

The tasting will include the following whiskies from Bruichladdich:

  1. Bruichladdich Classic Laddie (Scottish Barley)
  2. Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2010
  3. Port Charlotte Scottish Barley
  4. Octomore 10 (2nd Edition)

Complete details of the event

Date: 31 January 2018
Time: 7 pm to 9 pm
Venue: La Maison du Whisky
Address: 80 Mohamed Sultan Road #01-10
Price per ticket: $65

With exceptional whiskies and good, old cheese curated just for you; this event is bound to thrill you like never before! Book your seat here and look forward to an enjoyable evening!

 

Like what you have just read?

Join WhiskyGeeks.sg as a member for FREE and receive our curated articles and videos in your mailbox every month!





[recaptcha]

5 Things that Reflect why Whisky is Life-changing

 

A brand new year deserves some reflections on the past year and what we learnt from the full 12 months that we survived. Geek Choc and Geek Flora recently sat down for a session of reflections for 2017/2018. Our conversation veered off towards whisky and life. We discovered that there are so many similarities!

It was a somewhat interesting discussion, and hence, we decided to post our thoughts on it. This post is dedicated to all whisky drinkers out there in the world.

Whisky and Life

Our musing took us back to our younger days when we first started learning to drink whisky. Our small group used to have this saying, “Life is like a glass of whisky, you appreciate it, and then you drink it.” As we reflected on 2017, we concluded that there was some truth in it. In life, we must learn to appreciate what we have, and then, we drink up all the good and the bad that life throws at us. There is no use in complaining about how tough life is. Someone else out there is probably having a harder time.

It was at this point that it hit both of us hard that whisky is life-changing. If we apply what we learn about whisky in our daily lives, we are likely to be happier human beings! We came up with five things about whisky-drinking that we can apply in our daily lives.

Look at the colour

When we drink whisky in a Glencairn glass, we tend to check out the colour of the whisky we are having. Swirl it around the glass to see the tears and hold the glass up to the light for a colour check. We take time to appreciate the beauty of whisky.

In life, we rush from one activity to the next; hardly stopping in our steps to watch the sky and clouds. We forget the flowers, the beautiful sights we can see in architecture and even the people close to us.  If we can “look at the colours” of our lives in the same way we look at the colour of our whiskies, we could, perhaps, appreciate our lives better. Show more care for the people we love and show our appreciation for the beauty around us. Be thankful that we have a roof over our heads and a beautiful country to live in.

Nose the whisky

The next step in appreciating whisky is to nose it. We nose the whisky in the glass because we want to capture the aromas and guess how the palate will be. We love the nose because it invokes so much imagination of how the whisky will taste. It gives us a sense of longing to put the liquid in our mouths.

If we can slow down the activities in our lives, and stop to smell the flowers the same way we nose the whisky, we benefit from the slower pace. By asking you to smell the flowers, we are not saying that you should go to a park and physically smell all the flowers there! What we are suggesting, is to slow down and be mindful of the people around you. Every person whom you come along is a blooming flower; how we treat that person will result in either a bigger bloom or a wilted flower. It reminds us that we have to be polite and appreciative of the people around us.

Take a small sip before taking a bigger sip

We tend to drink in a two-steps method to get the full palate of the whisky when we drink. A small sip to coat the mouth and adjust the palate, before we take a bigger sip and hold the liquid in our mouth for a while to get the flavours. It is a helpful way for us to get the full picture of what the whisky is offering, and we think that it applies to life too.

We resolved to take things slower and do things in a two-step method as well. When we work, we want to handle the small things first before taking on the bigger challenge so that we will not be overwhelmed. By managing our workload, we make sure that we are not overly stressed and that helps to reduce mistakes and produce quality work. In the same way at home, getting the simple chores out of the way first can pave your energy to tackle the bigger tasks that need to be done.

Holding the Liquid in the Mouth for a full flavour

As mentioned above, we like to keep the liquid in the mouth for a short while for a full character. It helps us to detect the subtleness of the whisky and also explore the different aromas that we can get. At the same time, it coats the palate beautifully for us to appreciate the finish of the whisky after swallowing.

We thought that this is a useful method to use for communication in our daily lives. If we could hold the unkind words for a moment and think about the impact those words will have, we may not say it at all. In this hectic lifestyle that we lead, it is common for us to hurt another person’s feelings by merely uttering some unkind or thoughtless words. We damage the relationship and sometimes, even damage our reputation. It was indeed an excellent way for us to be kinder in 2018.

Taking Note of the Finish

The last step in our whisky appreciation is always about the finish. We check to see if the finish resonates with the nose and the palate and whether it is pleasant, dry, oily or otherwise. It is also the conclusion of the whisky tasting notes, and it helps us to consolidate the nose, palate and finish into what we call the balance or body of the whisky.

We liken the finish of whisky to our memories and past experiences. Just as a finish define the whisky, our memories and past experiences represent us, both the good and the bad. The good ones keep us going while the bad ones make us tougher. How we deal with bad memories and experiences also help us to learn and grow.

Taking small steps forward in appreciation

It was a thought-provoking session for us, and we hope that it has made you think harder as well. We can all take small steps forward in learning appreciation – for whisky, for life or both. There is no time to lose, and we are determined not to let 2018 slip away without us making the necessary changes in our lifestyles to include a “whisky-drinking session” in our everyday lives!

If you think that this is useful for you, please share the post and spread the word. Sharing is Caring, isn’t it? 😀

 

Like what you have just read?

Join WhiskyGeeks.sg as a member for FREE and receive our curated articles and videos in your mailbox every month!





[recaptcha]

Five Whisky Bars in Singapore that WhiskyGeeks recommends

 

Some of our readers asked if we have a favourite whisky bar to go to in Singapore, while others asked for recommendations of the whisky bars that we frequented. We thought that instead of answering them one by one, we would do a little post to answer all these questions. 😀

As many of you already know, the whisky bar scene in Singapore is getting more and more crowded for a small country. As the number of whisky drinkers increases, the whisky bars popping up in Singapore are growing too. However, some of these bars may not always make the mark for a whisky lover.

WhiskyGeeks do not profused to visit all the whisky bars in Singapore, but this is something that we will try to do now and then this year. It is a perfect time to have an article on whisky bars in Singapore since our readers are asking and it is also the next article after our first bar feature.

Without further ado, let us start the journey then! Please note that we list the bars in alphabetical order.

 

Quaich Bar

Picture Credits: Quaich Bar South Beach

Quaich Bar is the oldest whisky bar in Singapore, having celebrated its 10th years anniversary in 2017. They have a fantastic history and one which you can easily find out more in our interview with the owner, Khoon Hui.

Quaich Bar has two locations. Their flagship store is over at the Waterfront Plaza, besides the Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel. The second bar is at the newly openly South Beach Avenue. Both bars offer whisky lovers a considerable choice of whiskies from Scotland as well as new world whiskies from South Africa and India.

Address: 

Quaich Bar Waterfront Plaza: 390A Havelock Road, Waterfront Plaza, #01-09/10, Singapore 169663

Quaich Bar South Beach Avenue: 30 Beach Road, #01-16, Singapore 189763

The Auld Alliance

The Auld Alliance (AA) impress us with its pure opulence of the place. Decorated like a grand British library of a wealthy man, the AA is the perfect place to wind down. In this bar, you find exquisite whiskies from official bottlings to independent bottlings. As the AA also bottles whiskies under its name, you will find a range of whisky that is bottled for the AA.

One of the most memorable dram that Geek Flora had in the AA was their bottling of a LittleMill. If you happened to be in the vicinity, you should visit the AA for a dram or two.

Address:

9 Bras Basah Road, RendezVous Hotel Gallery, #02-02A Singapore 189559

The Single Cask

 

The Single Cask, or TSC for short, is a cosy, little bar hidden in the corner of Chijmes. Brendan, the bar manager, runs the show with his trusty cocktail expert, Ronin. TSC offers you a home away from home with its cosy decorations and friendly bartenders. You wouldn’t go wrong if you pop by TSC for a dram or two after work because the bar offers comforting whiskies all around. What is unique about TSC is the fact that they are an independent bottler. The eye-catching square bottles that hold the golden nectar bottled by TSC are quite a sight to behold because they are going to challenge how you think whisky bottles should look like! Besides a massive range of independent bottling, TSC also offers up a killer menu of cocktails made by Ronin! If you are a cocktail lover, you need to head over too!

Besides, TSC is also an SMWS (Scotch Malt Whisky Association) bar so if you are keen to find out more about SMWS, chat with Brendan!

Address:

30 Victoria Street, Chijmes Caldwell House #01-25, Singapore 187996

The Wall SG

 

We featured The Wall SG in our monthly newsletter for January, and if you have yet to read the article, you can find it here. Jeremie Tan runs the show here together with his colleagues to provide not just whisky, but also food pairing. The kitchen packs a punch here, and if you are looking for a bar with REAL food, The Wall is your perfect place to go! This bar showcases an amazing range of Japanese whiskies as well as a healthy range of Taiwanese independent bottlings of Scotch. Jeremie is also a friendly guy who will ensure that you are super comfortable whenever you are in his bar! There are also exciting new events coming up for The Wall, so do check out the bar feature post for more details!

Address: 

76, Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088497

The Writing Club

The Writing Club is one of the newest whisky bars in town, and we were invited to their closed-doors Christmas party last December. A posh bar with British decorations and super friendly bartenders, you can find a welcoming troop here! The bar offers a range of whiskies that is bound to please. There are the regular official bottlings, and then there are the rarer bottles from mothballed distilleries. The bar also serves up fantastic cocktails that wouldn’t let you down!

The bar owner, Soo San, also acquired some special expressions from Taiwanese independent bottlers, so if you are looking for something different, head down to The Writing Club!

Address: 

390 Orchard Road, #02-10, Singapore 238871

Some last thoughts…

While the above five bars are some of those which we go to most often, WhiskyGeeks is planning to visit new bars soon. We encourage our readers to try out new bars if you are still not sure of the whisky profile that you like. It is a better option to try whisky at a bar to decide if you want it instead of paying for a bottle only to realise that you do not fancy the taste profile.

That’s all for now, folks! Until the next time!

 

Like what you have just read?

Join WhiskyGeeks.sg as a member for FREE and receive our curated articles and videos in your mailbox every month!





[recaptcha]

An exclusive invite to Diageo’s Bar

Whisky Selection at Diageo’s Bar

Geek Choc and Geek Flora visited Diageo’s bar in late December 2017. One of the employees whom we got to know at Singbev’s recent sales in Suntec invited us. The bar is newly renovated and opens to the employees and their friends just one week before our visit.

The Journey to Diageo’s Bar

The procedure to get into the bar was somewhat exclusive. After our security check-in at the office lobby, our host ushered us to the bar where we registered ourselves as “Friends of Diageo”. After all the necessary check-in, we headed straight for the bar (hidden behind a curtain)!

Mr Johnnie Walker

We were greeted with a grand walkway (attached to a pantry) before we hit the bar. Once we entered the bar, Mr Johnnie Walker was there to greet us. The bar counter was also right in front, with seats all around.

Geek Choc in deep conversation with our host at the bar

It is a beautiful place that is artistically decorated to give a homely feel. We understood that Diageo opens the bar to friends of the employees on Thursdays and Fridays of every week from 6 pm to 8.30 pm and they can invite up to three friends at one go. It is a good initiative and one that we appreciate! The drinks at the bar are free-flow (except the JW Blue Label), and there is a menu for cocktails too!

Comfy tables and chairs behind the bar

We had a wonderful time with our host as we chat about nothing in particular but the conversation veered towards whisky (of course)! We understood that the bar displays some rare and old whiskies through the chat and we were determined to check them out! So, before we left for the night, we went to take a closer look.

The Rare Gems in Diageo’s Bar

Here’s what we found!

Display on the left of the bar

 

Display on the right side of the bar

 

Part of a whisky-making kit

 

Johnnie Walker 1920 Edition

There are indeed rare gems to be seen here, especially that Johnnie Walker 1920 Edition! While that is not for sale, our host reminded us that we can always go for the Johnnie Walker Ghost – the only blended whisky with liquids from mothballed distilleries!

Alas, good times always end too fast. It was 9 pm too soon, and we had to go. It was a short visit but one that inspires us to continue our whisky journey with all of our readers.

 

Like what you have just read?

Join WhiskyGeeks.sg as a member for FREE and receive our curated articles and videos in your mailbox every month!





[recaptcha]