A perfect 24 hours – 8 whisky tastings!

Many years ago in Havana after an outstanding party, I invited my self along to the “Smuggler’s Run” that Dominic Roskrow and Dave Broom were doing round Scotland.  Back in Cape Town unfortunately work intervened and I did not make it. But that adventure is on my bucket list.  I see that there is another adventure planned, as this press release from Compass Box shows…

Compass Box Whisky Co. and The Whisky Shop join forces for whisky tasting ‘World Record’

2 Great Men, 3 Great Whiskies, 8 Great Whisky Shops, 24 Hours, 683 miles!

To mark the arrival of their trio of award-winning whiskies – Great King Street, The Spice Tree and The Peat Monster – across the 19-strong empire of Whisky Shops, boutique whiskymaker Compass Box is embarking on a journey from Inverness to Brighton, via 8 cities, 8 Whisky Shops and 8 different tastings, in an attempt to set a whisky tasting world record and raise money for charity along the way. The twist? The whole tour will happen in just ONE day.

Whisky Shop Managing Director, Andrew Torrance, explained: ‘We are delighted to list the Compass Box range in our stores from Spring this year. When we were discussing a launch plan we thought the best way to bring the magic of these whiskies to our consumers was of course to let them taste the product. What better way to do that than in one day! Inverness to Brighton in one day. I’m really looking forward to it and I know our customers will get right behind the challenge. Like all the best ideas, it was hatched over a good dinner and a glass of whisky.’

As four-time winners of ‘Whisky Innovator of the Year’, Compass Box is no stranger to uniquely ambitious ideas. But is this the most extreme thing Compass Box Founder and Whiskymaker, John Glaser, has ever agreed to do in pursuit of his art? “I have to admit to staying up pretty late a few times in support of our whiskies, but usually this take places in a very civilised bar rather than a van. Regardless, I can’t wait for this night. If it gets more people to understand our craft approach, enjoy what we do, and learn more about the wonders that whisky has to offer, then it is worth every one of the 1440 minutes on the road”.

John Glaser will join Whisky Shop’s Whiskeria Magazine Editor and acclaimed whisky expert Dominic Roskrow on this joint tour, starting with a one-minute-past-midnight tasting at The Whisky Shop in Inverness on Friday June 15th and finishing in Brighton with a grand finale at 11.30pm the same day. In-between, the whisky industry’s ‘odd couple’ will visit Edinburgh, Newcastle, York, Birmingham, Oxford and London.

At each venue, Dominic and John will illustrate Compass Box’s unique approach to whiskymaking with a tasting of the Great King Street – Artist’s Blend, Spice Tree and Peat Monster, while focusing on a different side of the world of whisky. They will serve variations on the whisky Highball and talk about the history of blended whisky as dawn breaks over Edinburgh; breakfast on Spice Tree with haggis in Newcastle; investigate the best whisky and food matches over a whisky dinner in Oxford; and discover the magic of the finest whisky cocktails in London. The grand finale will entail a glass of something very special under the stars on Brighton’s seafront.

John and Dominic will be encouraging whisky fans and Whisky Shop’s W-Club members to come along and join in the fun at each venue, while everyone – wherever they are in the world – can follow the journey on Twitter @CompassBox and @TheWhiskyShop and their Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/CompassBox

As Dominic Roskrow put it, “If truth be told, none of us know whether it’ll work out or not. Heaven knows who’ll turn up in Edinburgh at 4.30am and I have this vision of being stuck in a traffic jam in Crawley as midnight approaches. I was asked the other day if anyone has done anything like this before. I said don’t be stupid!”

Venue Time Theme
Inverness 12.01am Classic tasting and grand départ
Edinburgh 4.30am The history of Blended whisky and the rise of the Highball
Newcastle 8.30am Breakfast pairings (haggis and Spice Tree, kippers with Peat Monster)
York 11.30am The Art of Blending
Birmingham 3.30pm Oak – the magical ingredient
Oxford 6.00pm Food & whisky matching – cheese, seafood, spice
London 9.00pm Whisky Cocktails
Brighton 11.30pm Something special to finish!

To sign up to any one of these events customers just need to contact The Whisky Shop in the city where it is taking place. All attendees will receive a commemorative T-shirt and all ticket proceeds will go to charity.

ABOUT COMPASS BOX (www.compassboxwhisky.com)
The Compass Box Whisky Company is a boutique Scotch whiskymaker and craft blender, started in 2000 by John Glaser. Compass Box produces and bottles a range of Scotch whiskies, available in over 25 countries around the world. A four-time winner of the Whisky Magazine Innovator of the Year award, Compass Box is known throughout the whisky world for quality, innovation and passion for great whisky. The Compass Box signature range of whiskies includes Asyla, Oak Cross, The Peat Monster, The Spice Tree and Hedonism. They also produce limited release whiskies annually, and Orangerie, a Scotch whisky infusion.

American ex-pat John Glaser started Compass Box Whisky Company from the kitchen of his west London home in 2000. Having started his career on a path to become a winemaker, then re-routing himself through the corporate world and ending up as marketing director for Johnnie Walker in London, Glaser has a unique perspective on both the creation and the marketing of Scotch whisky. Glaser established Compass Box based on his commitment to evolving practices in the industry to make great Scotch whisky more approachable and relevant to more people. From the beginning, his vision has been to create one of Scotland’s finest and most exciting whisky companies, re-establishing the standards for quality and style in the industry.

The Whisky Shop is the UK’s largest Independent Whisky retailer with 20 stores stretching from Inverness to Brighton. Their aim is to de-mystify the whisky category and be the friendly face of whisky on the High Street. They carry over 300 whisky products and welcome over 2 million customers every year to their website and shops.

Dominic is currently the Editor of Whiskeria and responsible for editorial content at The W Club. He has been a freelance whisky writer for six years, and has specialised in whisky for more than 10. He is a former Editor of Whisky Magazine, and currently covers world whiskey for The Whisky Advocate, making him the only journalist to work for all ‘big three’ whisky titles. He has just published his fifth book, 1001 Whiskies To Try Before You Die, and his sixth, The Whisky Opus, is out in August. His latest project is founding a new trade association for craft distillers across the world. Which just goes to show that from this whisky tasting tour to the new association it really is possible to travel from the ridiculous to the sublime!