The Macallan Whisky Tasting

>> Sunday, 28 November 2010

Scotch? Whisky? Scotch? Whisky? *
What on earth is this amber coloured liquid that leaves a warm trail down your throat?

Well, my friend Heather and I were lucky to investigate this on November 23rd at the Macallan whisky tasting held at 99Sudbury in Toronto.  Macallan and Matchstick partnered up to host a fabulous 2 night, (4 round) event (we were in the first tasting on the first night) in which we had the opportunity to taste 5 of the Macallan's scotches.

The 10 year old, the 12, the 15, the 18 yr old Sherry oak and finally cask strength.
The whiskies were also paired with some fantastic cheeses, olives, nuts, meats and really was quite the spread.  The venue itself was quite swanky and fit the association one tends to make with what a scotch tasting should entail.  I have to say the entire evening was just a really well run and organised event.
Each sample was accompanied by an extremely informative powerpoint, including a very funny montage of what was happening during those specific years.

The Macallan Distillery has been around since 1824 (which likely means it was operating much longer before that, but not legally..which is why most scotch distilleries were ran up in the highlands of avoid the taxman we were told with a cheeky wink by the Canadian Macallan representative) and has quickly become not only a premium whisky, but a premium luxury whiskey with a 64 yr old whisky in a Lalique decanter recently auctioned at Sotheby's for $460,000 US (with proceeds going to charity:water too!).

As someone who lived in Scotland for two years, I definitely appreciated the variety of years presented & the flavours present in each whisky. The Canadian spokesperson for Macallan, Marc Laverdiere, was a great speaker and Heather and I had a chat with him after the presentation about female scotch drinkers.  He told us that 30% of scotch drinkers are women, which came as a surprise.

My favourite was the 18 yr old..smooth, clean and not a hard burn as I sipped it...the cool thing about the 18 yr old  is that it has been matured in sherry oak casks from Spain (most oak casks generally come from North America) and has hints of dried fruits, ginger, toffee and vanilla.  The terrific thing about Macallan whisky is that there is no artificial caramel colouring involved (most scotches colour their whiskies..which mean they must stay out of sunlight in order to keep well). Those lovely amber tones in the Macallans are completely natural and are a result of their unique casks and fabulous ingredients.

All in all, Heather and I had a fun night out in the city and some great scotch and treats!  The next time you are looking for a great gift for that single malt lover in your life, definitely pick up a bottle of the Macallan.

*only whisky made in Scotland can be called scotch ;)


Hello?? Is This Thing On?

>> Tuesday, 16 November 2010

I am so sorry to have neglected you over the spring/summer/fall.
You know when life just gets in the way of doing the things you've been meaning or wanting to do?
Yeah, that's kinda what happened.  But, I'm back now and next week I have a whiskey tasting to go to with Macallen Whiskey courtesy of that will be my first 'official' post back!

Until then....these are the things I meant to tell you about...
    I drank a lot of tea (David's Tea & ironically enough Gretzky's Green Tea (which I originally bought as a joke because of the ridiculous packaging and it actually turned out to be pretty good!))
    Soda bread with currants (which I hate, but made anyway thinking I might have some sort of revelation that I like currants. I still don't)
    Had a first date at the Black Bull in Toronto and consequent dates around the neighbourhood... 
    Drank coffees at the Dark Horse Cafe in Toronto
    Found a little chocolate shop and tried out some unique chocolate
    Drank nearly a gallon of apple cider
    Made hazelnut cupcakes for my *gasp* 36th birthday
Celebrated the World Cup by taste testing a bunch of Walker's World Cup flavoured crisps

Convinced my cousin Kim to eat Vietnamese food

Made curd (seriously people...I made curd!! Keylime curd to be exact and black raspberry raspberries that I had painstakingly collected myself)...the curd then became swirly tartlets.

Made tons of pasta with very simple toppings (lots of fresh tomatoes, garlic, basil, olive oil and feta..divine!)

  • Tried out a few new sushi places
  • Consumed Irish Stew made with Guinness out on a chilly, albeit summery patio at the Waterfront Pub
  • Drank various kinds of ciders and ales at C'est What
  • Planted spaghetti squash...fried up and ate some of the blossoms
  • Had drinks with friends and dates at various locales in the city..and they were great!
  • Planted heirloom tomatoes, basil, cilantro, lime basil, sugar snap peas
  • Drank lots of peach-basil sangria and still did not manage to photograph it
.....and managed to lose 30 pounds doing it all!


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