Highlights online this month include:
- The ultimate member experience: Samantha Rothbart was one of 13 SMWS members from around the world who won a global competition to travel to The Vaults in February and take part in a cask selection process for our annual Gathering event. Here, she describes the experience and what it meant as a Society member.
- Maverick Moments – Against the grain: The Society was already 23 years old when it finally bottled its first single grain whisky – changing perceptions for something that had previously been neglected and under-appreciated. Julien Willems tells the story of how the SMWS came to embrace single grain.
- Festivals preview: If it’s April that only means one thing for whisky lovers – festival season is right around the corner. And The Scotch Malt Whisky Society will be out and about with events and tastings at Speyside, Campbeltown and of course on Islay, with a full week of whisky-fuelled fun.
- Distillery profile – Falkirk: Duncan Gorman visited the new distillery to chat with founders Fiona and George for the Society’s Whisky Talk podcast. Enjoy these excerpts or tune in to Whisky Talk for the full episode.
- SMWS Alumnus – Craig Johnstone’s whisky journey: From East Lothian to Tasmania and back to Scotland, Craig Johnstone has worked across the whisky industry for the past 20 years. Today he works for Edrington as master blender for The Famous Grouse, a role he came to via a stint as a distillery tour guide, a distillery manager and a few years behind the bar at the Society’s Members’ Room at 28 Queen Street. Mads Schmoll caught up with Craig at the 106 Sample Room to find out more about his whisky journey.
- Whisky history – Turning the tide: Although 1983 saw the foundation of the Society, in many ways the year was a low point for the overall Scotch whisky industry. Gavin D Smith reports on how the tide began to turn, with a rise in single malt offerings, visitor centres and of course the single cask.
- Society insight – additional maturation: For almost as long as The Scotch Malt Whisky Society has been in existence, we have not only been bottling whisky taken from a single cask – we’ve been actively managing the whisky’s maturation.
- Share a dram with…Emily-Jayne Barker, Event Co-ordinator, 28 Queen Street
- Partner bar overview – Society homes from home: From speakeasy barbershops to candlelit bank vaults, there’s something for everyone at a Scotch Malt Whisky Society partner bar. Find your nearest Society watering hole or see how many you can tick off on your next holiday. There are many great ways to indulge in a Society single malt, and each partner bar offers a completely different and memorable experience, as Duncan Gorman explains.