Warsaw 2016

The third edition of Whisky Live Warsaw was characterized by diversity

This year's edition of Whisky Live Warsaw, held on 14-15 October at Hotel Courtyard by Warsaw Marriott Airport, gathered over 35 hundred lovers of the amber colored liquor. The event covered two floors. The first floor, where the festival store and food pairing sessions were arranged. The second floor was a setting for 55 exhibitors from 15 countries. Representatives of countries widely associated with whisky production - Scotland, Ireland or the United States - were among those present. More exotic countries, India, Australia, Colombia or Russia, were also among the participants. Apart from the large enterprises, small craft distilleries from the United States and originators of Wolf Distillery, the Polish whisky start-up, were present. The launch of the national distillery is planned for the end of next year. Many of the stands showed off premiere bottles. Due to the wider range unique whiskies and other liquors (such as rums available at some of the stands), the liquor offer available for tasting was incomparably more interesting than last year.

Many attractions awaited the event's participants - apart from tasting, many various types of whisky from around the world, the guests could also try many "sweets" based on this liquor. "The Taste Station" tempted with a wide range of sweets and... ice cream, and the Polish master of latte art served coffee cocktails spiced with a noble accent - Glenfarclass 10 YO. The final element of Whisky Live Warsaw was tasting of the giant cake in the shape of a Kavalan barrel.

The organizers also took care of the details, very important at such festivals. Water, both in bottles and jugs was accessible all around the premises. It was used for drinking and thinning the amber liquors, rinsing drinking glasses (which were in fact distributed to festival participants at the entrance of WLW 2016).

This year, the special guests of Whisky Live Warsaw were Dominic Roskrow and Ingvar Ronde. The first, known to a wider audience as the author of the book "1001 whiskies", the other - the editor of a classic "Malt Whisky Yearbook". Both authors were signing their publications. The Courtyard hotel also welcomed: Jan Beckers - the ambassador of Douglas Laing, a world-renowned independent bottler and Steven Sweeney - president of the Polish division of Scotch Malt Whisky Society.

A new point of the festival were closed food pairing sessions co-hosted by Jarosław Walczyk, president of the Chefs' Club Foundation and other professionals in the field. The participants tasted: lamb rillettes, beef in bison grass, veal tripe, sturgeon, duck and creme anglaise. Each dish was served with a different type of amber liquor. The session was accompanied by a talk on the whiskies used during cooking. There was also room for competitions and a fixed component of the festival landscape - the closed Master Class sessions, much expanded compared to the previous Whisky Live Warsaw event. There was a total of eight Master Classes - three on the first day and five on the second, including a Glenfarclas session entitled "a journey through the decades" where whiskys from the '60 '70 '80 '90 were presented by another special guest of the event - George Grant, the owner of the distillery, and a member of sixth generation of the family.

This year, the Whisky Live Warsaw organizers also hosted Polish bartender masters from the renowned Diageo Reserve World Class competition, who held marvellous cocktail workshops for the guests.

Until the very end of the festival the identity of the liquor to become the festival's bottle was kept in secret. It turned out to be the Irish Teeling, special edition Madeira Single Cask.

The event is undoubtedly growing year by year - as indicated by the numbers of attendees and the venue bursting at the seams. It is then of no surprise that mention of a new larger location for the next edition of Whisky Live Warsaw was heard backstage. We are thus impatiently awaiting for the date and location of next year's festival.

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