A gin festival is being launch this summer in the heart of Scotland’s most famous and prolific malt whisky-producing region. The team behind the Spirit of Speyside brand, which already stages the highly successful spirits events, is now celebrating the area’s rapidly-growing gin industry.
Spirit of Speyside: The Gin Experience takes place from July 12 to 14 and will offer a unique opportunity to taste locally produced gin and meet the makers.
A surge in demand for tickets for the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival generated sales of £209,449 in the first 24 hours of release – with 173 events completely selling out in that time. Ticket sales hit a high, beating last year’s total by more than £55,000, and making it another record-breaking launch for the festival.
Whisky lovers snapped up the opportunity to gain behind-the-scenes access to distilleries that are not usually open to the public, as well showing strong demand for dining events, VIP experiences and connoisseur tours. Ticket sales went live at 12 noon on Tuesday, February 5. The first hour was frenetic, with a spend of £170,492 and 95 events selling out in that period.
Heritage, travel, education, music, food and drink, socialising – whatever interests you might list on a dating site, you’ll find an event to match during the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival, including speed dating.
It might not be about romance, but if you adore whisky, a one-to-one with some of Speyside’s most highly esteemed whisky experts could be just the ticket.
Whisky aficionados who descend on one of the world’s leading whisky festivals have many hobbies and interests – and one will be sharing his love of donuts and drams at the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival 2018.
The event ‘Here’s Johnny’ is more The Simpsons than The Shining, given donuts are Homer Simpson’s favourite food, and comes all the way from the USA, courtesy of Californian, Johnny Baldaray. He’s commissioned a specialist donut maker in Edinburgh to create some delicious delicacies to sample alongside half a dozen whiskies.
It’s an environment that has sheltered illicit whisky makers of the past, and it’s one of the best places in Britain from which to study the night skies – little wonder the natural landscape has a starring role in the 2018 Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival.
The festival programme boasts its greatest ever mix of events exploring the natural environment that has spawned some of the world’s best-loved whisky brands.
From rugged hills to fertile plains, trickling burns to fast flowing rivers, the unspoilt nature of Speyside’s landscape can be explored on foot, by canoe or on board an eight-wheeled Argocat during the five-day dram-fest.
A record-breaking number of whisky drinkers from around the globe are to determine Speyside’s top drams in one of the industry’s best-loved award schemes. The Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival Awards is stopping off at 18 different venues with its roving judging sessions – 10 more than it visited last year.
Whisky drinkers in Canada, the USA and Europe – as well as the UK – will be asked to cast their vote following a blind taste test of eight malt whiskies that have been distilled in Speyside – Scotland’s most prolific whisky-producing region.
The expanded number of venues taking part in the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Awards sessions underlines the international appeal of the event and how much it resonates with people around the globe, says Festival manager John Blyth.
116 events sell out in first 24 hours as ticket sale value increases by over £30,000
Ticket sales for the 2018 Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival have set new records, with almost 5,000 tickets valued at £154,000 being bought within 24 hours of them being released.
The early sales rush galvanises the festival’s reputation as one of the world’s leading whisky celebrations, with 116 events completely selling out within the first day of the tickets going on sale.
The chairman of the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival has been honoured for his outstanding commitment to promoting Scotland’s national drink. James Campbell, a volunteer who has been chairman of the Festival for the past five years, has been inducted as a Keeper of the Quaich – one of the industry’s top honours.
Mr Campbell was one of very few inductees at the ceremony not to be employed by a distiller – and is only one of a handful of Keepers who does not work directly in the industry. He is the first chairman in the event’s 19-year history to receive the honour.
In the third part of The Speyside Whisky Festival, I mentioned the wonderfull Cragganmore distillery. After a very interesting tour, we had a litte tasting of their whisky, plus two surprises from the warehouse, Drams & Scran.
The tasting was held in the luxurious surroundings of the Cragganmore Club Room. A romantic room filled with the smell of history, old furniture, good whisky and Kevin. A lovely range of whisky with good looking delights, mouthwatering. But let’s move on to the whisky and the tastingnotes. Cragganmore gained one more fan since, me.