Awards & Events

Live over London - the biggest show in town

Whisky Live London has grown into a major event attracting hundreds of whisky lovers from across Europe
By Dominic Roskrow
The sold out signs out days before the event started, packed masterclasses and the addition of new events – Whisky Live London was bigger and better than ever before.And the event, now in its fourth year in London, is diversifying as a general interest in whisky of all kinds attract a younger audience and a bigger percentage of women.Whisky Live London took place in the Horticultural Halls in Victoria, London, over two days and attracted nearly 1600 people.With an awards dinner the night before the show opened and the City Inn, Westminster as partner hotel, the event had more of a focus than in previous years. To mark the opening of the event, the City Inn opened its new whisky bar, stocked with premium whisky chosen by Whisky Magazine writers.The event itself attracted some of the best whiskies in the world, with Scottish, Irish, American, and Japanese distilleries represented in the main hall.Masterclasses included a fascinating introduction to Springbank’s new brother, the Glengyle ditillery, from Frank McHardy, popular masterclasses from Chivas Brothers on the jewels of Speyside, from Bowmore’s Colin Dunn, Glenmorangie’s Bill Lumsden, The Macallan’s Bob Dalgarno and Laphroaig’s Robin Shields.Special tastings treats were provided by Ian Henderson and Andrew Symington of Edradour and Signatory, and by Jens Tholstrup of William Grant & Sons.And there was a touch of razzmatazz too, with David Stirk proving himself to be a natural stand up comedian, the Easy Drinking Whisky Company team sampling blends of all sorts of strange whiskies, and Richard Paterson unveiling his latest ‘show.’For the first time there was a retailer at the show, and a whisky cocktail challenge attracted competition from some of the top barmen in London.Whisky Live is now held in four countries and there are plans to launch it in three more next year, including the United States.This year, Whisky Live Glasgow takes place in Glasgow on September 10 and 11, in Paris September 12 and 13, and in Tokyo on October 24.