Whisky Magazine Issue 81
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Kate Portman pulls her wellies on and heads out to the festivals.
There's only so much you can get from sitting at home sipping a solitary dram… It's the interaction with the whisky world that really enriches our drinking experiences. No wonder whisky festivals like The Spirit of Speyside, now in its 10th year, just keep on growing. Not only do they bring what you read about in these pages vividly to life in all its sensory glory but also provide the opportunity for some lively dialogue with fellow whisky drinkers and the whisky-makers themselves. That's why I was so pleased to see this convivial spirit of interactivity applied to a food and whisky pairing event at this year's Speyside festival, courtesy of The Glenlivet.
This evening reception at the distillery on the opening Saturday of the 2009 festival marked the launch of The Glenlivet's first whisky and food pairing book, A Spirited Match, featuring recipes from chef John Williams of The Ritz.
To showcase the dishes created by the executive chef of London's most renowned luxury hotel, you might have expected them to be served at a formal banquet, seated in a grand dining room.
However, this tasting marked a clear departure from previous whisky and food pairing events involving top hotel chefs. It was a much more informal gathering, where the various dishes were served to a group of festival-goers in an appetiser format alongside some drams where attendees could mix and mingle as they matched. The result was an animated discussion where guests shared their thoughts on the various ...