Graduating from beer guzzling to refined whisky drinking is tough. Like all alcohol, whisky is an acquired taste that — as with all alcohol — you’ll only get the hang of if you really, really want to. Having a brotherhood to urge you on in your newfound hobby might help as well.
Last June 5, we discovered Whisky Society Manila at the first local celebration of international Ardbeg Day at Yes Please at The Palace. The event launched the maiden Ardbeg Committee in the Philippines through a private tasting of Ardbeg’s key expressions: Ardbeg 10, Uigeadail and Corryvreckan. Together with Ardbeg’s brand ambassador, Hamish Torie from the distillery’s Whisky Creation Team, the event featured a VR experience highlighting the three key expressions and the Ardbeg distillery.
Whisky tasting involved sniffing, swishing the glass around to check for consistency, and giving it a good sip. Tastes can range from smoky to spicy to sweet — Goldilocks would have a field day. The point is to find one that’s “just right.” There’s really no right or wrong answer here. As for the Whisky Society, it looked like they loved everything, judging from the cheers and manly banter.
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Ardbeg is The Ultimate Islay Single Malt Whisky. Established in 1815, Ardbeg is revered by connoisseurs around the world as the peatiest, smokiest and most complex of all the Islay malts. Despite its smokiness, Ardbeg is renowned for its delicious sweetness, a phenomenon that has affectionately become known as “the peaty paradox.”
During the 1980s and 1990s, Ardbeg suffered from an uncertain future and it was not until the brand was purchased by The Glenmorangie Company in 1997 that the Distillery was saved from extinction. Since then, the Distillery has risen like a phoenix and today Ardbeg is well established as a niche, cult malt, with a passionate following.