Sometimes the smartest idea is the most obvious. With so many whisky companies trying different creative ways to highlight a brand, it was refreshing to see an obvious connection – whisky and wood – as the theme for last week’s whisky event.
The person: Pierre Cronje, passionate about wood, a master craftsman at the top of his game. The place: Pierre’s showroom in Wynberg, Cape Town, home of pieces of pure elegance and quite a bit of history. The whisky: Glenmorangie, of course, as Dr Bill Lumsden, head of distilling and whisky creation at Glenmorangie, has a doctorate in wood management!
Guests started sipping on the signature Glenmorangie cocktail, the 10-year-old classic over ice with a twist of orange, while wandering round the showroom admiring the pieces on display. Pierre runs a world-class operation and if you are looking for items of furniture to last for generations, pay him a visit and succumb to temptation.
Pierre had us enthralled with stories of occasionally using wood salvaged from the depths of the ocean – such as the wood at the table where we were seated. Craig Dore, marketing director of distributors RGBC, said that Bill uses a more conventional source, primarily forests in the Ozark mountain range in America. Whisky fundis will be familiar with the lengths Glenmorangie go to in ensuring the integrity of its wood supply. They own several forests, controlling the supply from start to finish, and focus on sustainability and quality. While exciting, perhaps unconventional wood finishes are one of the features of the Glenmorangie range, the whisky should be judged on its signature product – the Glenmorangie Original. That is the whisky most familiar to whisky lovers and perfect way to introduce people to the range.
Two pairs of the new Glenmorangie sunglasses were given away as prizes. Made from staves from whisky barrels and retailing for 300 British pounds a pair, they are perfect for sitting outside, sipping on a Glenmorangie, watching the world go by.
The catering was by Dish Food – and the food was excellent.
Here is some more info from Vivid Luxury PR – with photos to follow.
Glenmorangie partnered with Pierre Cronje whose philosophy and passion for hand-made craftsmanship set apart by quality taps into the whisky brands’ affinity with wood. Wood is integral to the process and the flavour of Glenmorangie it is for this reason that the brand takes wood management seriously. Time, care and respect for the wood used in Glenmorangie casks gives the whisky its unique character.
WE WOOD, WOULD YOU?
To celebrate the wooden casks, which help create Glenmorangie’s unnecessarily well-made whisky, Glenmorangie and master craftsman Pierre Cronje, hosted a unique whisky and wood three course dining experience.
Wood is integral to the process and the flavour of Glenmorangie it is for this reason that the brand takes wood management seriously. Time, care and respect for the wood used in Glenmorangie casks gives the whisky its unique character. It is this process and painstaking dedication to creating a distinct and quality whisky derived from the finest oak casks in which to mature the whisky, which gives the brand its alluring Glenmorangie taste.
Glenmorangie partnered with Pierre Cronje whose philosphy and passion for hand-made craftsmanship set apart by quality taps into the whisky brands affinity with wood. It is this deep harmony with wood which contributes significantly to the final products for both the whisky and furniture than any other ingredient or process which was celebrated during the bespoke dinning experience held at Pierre Cronje’s showroom on Wednesday.
The evening followed up Glenmorangie International’s pioneering collaboration with Finlay & Co., manufacturers of unique wooden-framed sunglasses. In a first for the Scotch whisky industry, the British eyewear company has worked with oak wood from casks only ever used twice to age Glenmorangie Original for ten years. The bespoke sunglasses fashioned from these casks, honour Glenmorangie Original’s perfect balance and alluring complexity.
Marketing Director for the Really Great Brand Company, Craig Dore and Pierre Cronje himself were seated at the heads of the big yellow oak dinner table. The dining room décor – including the table set up – was inspired by wood, which allowed guests to see, smell and touch wood. For the starter guests were treated to a biltong tartlet served with a 10-year-old, while the main course was a braised flat rib served with the Quinta Ruban.
Whilst guests were enjoying their food Craig and Pierre led a fascinating conversation around wood; such as the effect of the climate/season when it comes to wood, slow growing European Oak and wood craftsmanship to name a few.
During dessert – orange and almond torte serve with Signet – Brand Manager for Glenmorangie, Stef Kondylis, shared some of the international awards that Glenmorangie has received and gifted guests with bespoke Glenmorangie gifts including Finlay & Co. sunglasses (worth around R6000), Glenmorangie Signet cufflinks and a Glenmorangie Pocket Square.