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Whisky and London

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Whisky and London

Postby malthead » Thu Mar 31, 2005 3:21 pm

:?:
Hi wondering if you could help me! (you may have covered this before so please excuse me if you have) but i am going to be heading to London for about a week and wondered if anyone could reccomend any good bars to enjoy a whisky in. I already know the shops Cadenheads, RMW, Milroys etc but am looking for a place to drink?

Any suggestions would be most appreciated.

Cheers
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Postby posterboy » Thu Mar 31, 2005 3:48 pm

Scotch Malt Whisky Society has a bar/restaurant/facility in London. If you check the website, you should be able to locate it. I don't know if it's a members-only place, but its probably worth asking considering the selection of hard-to-find malts will likely be very impressive.
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Postby bamber » Thu Mar 31, 2005 4:00 pm

I've looked around but have not really found anything good *except* the SMWS bar (I spent about 8 years drinking and clubbing in London). I'm pretty sure it's members only though.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Thu Mar 31, 2005 4:41 pm

You could always join SMWS, enjoy the bar and take a few bottles home with you. If you do join, be sure to google up a list of their distillery codes, otherwise you'll never know what you are drinking.
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Postby mr_a_non » Thu Mar 31, 2005 4:53 pm

The three options for the best whisky are Salt (corner of edgeware rd and seymour street). It is a trendy bar with music. Serves lots of cocktails but has 150+ single malts. Certainly worth a visit.

On Piccadilly the Athenaeum hotel has a far more relaxed hotel bar with 100+ malts. This one is for a more sedate evening.

The Library Bar at The Lanesborough Hotel (Hyde Park Corner) is like a blast from Victorian London with a pianist in 7 nights a week. It doesn't have as many malts as the others, it is more of a cognac/armagnac place, but the atmosphere is amazing.
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Postby robs42 » Thu Mar 31, 2005 10:22 pm

Hi malthead,

Firstly, if you are in London next week, pop into RMW, identify yourself , and I'm sure I can find some nice whiskies for you to taste.

Secondly, unfortunately, I'm pretty sure the SMWS is members and their guests only. However, there are two good whisky bars in London apart from the SMWS. As has already been mentioned, the Salt bar has a very good selection, but it ain't cheap. The better option is Boisdale of Belgravia - check out their website for the address and details. They have a very decent selection of malts, as well as Cuban cigars and a good in-house jazz band.

One last thing, in case you didn't know, another good place to shop for whisky is Vintage House on Old Compton Street - they have a good top-of-the-range selection and if you like Macallan, they usually have some interesting bottlings of it from their own casks.

Hope this helps
Robby
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Postby JimHall » Thu Mar 31, 2005 11:02 pm

The Commonwealth club in Covent gardens.... if you can get in.
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Postby malthead » Fri Apr 01, 2005 8:54 am

Cheers Guys,

Thanks for the recommendations keep them coming - I was in the Boisdale in Victoria last week - nice place and another one was the new one in Trafalgar square, so just looking for some new places - never know when a bar is going to have that elusive malt tucked away!

Once again cheers guys and any more recomendations would be greatly appreciated.

Slainte
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Postby JimHall » Fri Apr 01, 2005 12:49 pm

Nick Brown wrote:You could always join SMWS, enjoy the bar and take a few bottles home with you. If you do join, be sure to google up a list of their distillery codes, otherwise you'll never know what you are drinking.


Nick
Do you know how reliable the list is ?
I just wondered where the Whisky Portal had obtained the information as the SMWS don't seem publish it or make it common knowledge.... I have spoken to society members who didn't even know that it exists.
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Postby mr_a_non » Fri Apr 01, 2005 1:22 pm

From the descriptions of the whiskies, you can, with a little inclination and research, find them out for yourself. Having checked about a dozen on the list when I first got a copy I found them all to be correct.
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Postby malthead » Fri Apr 01, 2005 1:26 pm

i can garaunteee that the whisky portal list is 100% correct - I am also a member of the society and have been for several years.

slainte
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Postby Deactivated Member » Fri Apr 01, 2005 1:28 pm

I can't vouch for the list in its entirety but I've not spotted any problems with it. The distillery notes for each bottling seem to give pretty heavy clues - as far as listing distillery locations, histories and quirks. It only really takes a few minutes of googling (at worst)to identify each distillery. I guess someone just took the time to do this for all of them. I'd be prepared to go along with the list.

I presume that neither the distillers nor SMWS want the whiskies to be unidentifiable, they just want to make the point that they are not standard distillery expressions.
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Postby posterboy » Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:24 pm

SMWS members receive the list of distilleries (with corresponding code numbers) upon joining the society. I have a copy at home.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Fri Apr 01, 2005 4:49 pm

I got a map with a list of the distilleries by number. This gives very heavy hints, but some can't be deciphered readily without looking up various additional references. But nevertheless, they haven't made it terribly difficult to trace the origins, just hard enough that they can't be accused of marketing their bottlings under brand names.
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Postby Lawrence » Sat Apr 02, 2005 12:26 am

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Postby Jan » Sun Mar 12, 2006 1:40 pm

Was in London last weekend - but unfortunately I did not get to spend time in any decent whiskybar.

I went to Boisdale, Victoria, but the place were fully booked and the bar overcrowed to say the least. Word of advice: If you expect to dine there, it would probably be a good idea to book in advance. It did look very inviting though. :(

After this disapointment, I went to The Atheneum on Picadilly…. Only to find that the whiskybar were closed due to refurbishment. I then tried to locate the library bar / lanesborough hotel, but witout any luck. By then it was getting quite late and I was tired after a long day, so back to the hotel, where I relaxed in the bathtub with a Balvenie Founders Reserve for a while…


Cheers
Jan
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