The proper way to drink your whisky

Edward Tsumele

Edward Tsumele

This week I considered myself very lucky. I was invited to a private whisky-tasting experience and was able to sample some of the world's leading whiskies, including the World's number one seller, the 12-year-old Glenfiddich Ancient Reserve.

I also had the privilege of seeing heads turn towards my table at the Caffee Della Salute Restaurant at Mandela Square, Sandton, as I sampled the 15-year-old Glenfiddich Solera Reserve, the 18-year-old Glenfiddich Ancient Reserve, and of course, the 40-year-old Glenfiddich Ancient Reserve.

Ian Millar, the global ambassador of Glenfiddich Distillery in Scotland, and their head, Cooper Don Ramsay, explained that the art of brewing is quite intricate.

"The quality of whiskies depends a lot on the type of wood that has been used. The best wood, which is oak, comes from the US," Millar explained.

I was also initiated into the art of drinking whisky in a classy way. Often, just like several other new whisky drinkers, I am used to having my whisky on the rocks. But according to Millar, this is not the best way to drink whisky.

Millar says it is preferable to have your whisky under room temperature, and dashing it with water ensures that the drink does not lose its aroma and flavour because it remains constant with water instead of some melting ice. Millar says people should drink whisky to chill out and not to be sloshed as is often the case with a lot of drinkers.

The taste is good, but these whiskies come at a price, with the 12-year-old selling at R250, the 15-year-old at R380, the 18- year-old at R550 and the 40 -year- old at R18000 per bottle. At the Caffee Della Salute Restaurant, you can also buy at tot for R950 for the 40-year-old whisky.

By the time I finished tasting all the four whiskies, I somehow started seeing stars all over the place. What a privilege!

lAll these whiskies form part of the Whisky Alive Festival running at Sandton Convention Centre until tomorrow.