Join Ed Beam and SLTN for a dram

Trade invited to sign up for virtual tasting on October 20

Teddy will be talking all things whisky at the virtual tasting event

AS the nights draw in and thoughts turn to winter serves, Edrington-Beam Suntory has joined forces with SLTN to stage a special virtual whisky tasting for the trade.

Taking place at 7pm on Tuesday October 20, the Zoom event will be hosted by Edrington-Beam Suntory (EBS) UK’s senior whisky specialist for Scotland Teddy Joseph, who will guide participants through a specially-curated tasting of four of EBS UK’s most loved whiskies and discuss the latest trends in the on-trade and tips on how to approach the ‘new normal’ from behind the bar this festive season. The tasting will be followed by a cocktail demo by Teddy.

Those signing up (at sltn.co.uk/edrington-beam-suntory-virtual-whisky-tasting-event/) will receive a tasting kit ahead of the event which will include the four drams, a bespoke nosing glass, tasting notes for each whisky and a recipe card for the winter serve.

Ahead of the tasting, SLTN caught up with Teddy for the lowdown on the virtual event, his role and Edrington-Beam Suntory’s portfolio.

Which drams have you chosen for the virtual tasting with SLTN on October 20?

We’ll be exploring a great selection of drams including Highland Park 12 year old, Bowmore 15 year old, Laphroaig 10 year old and Naked Grouse.

What can participants expect from the virtual tasting?

An overview of each brand’s history as well as some key and fun facts!

With venues trading with reduced capacities, what are the main considerations for operators and bartenders when it comes to deciding which whiskies to stock?

Venues should consider streamlining their offering – simplicity is key right now. That said, outlets should still make sure to offer a selection of whiskies that cover different styles, regions, flavour profiles and price points.

How do you think whisky will perform in Scotland’s pubs and bars over the coming months? What trends do you expect to see?

The change in season, coupled with the season’s festivities, lend themselves to the warming delights of whisky. Malt of the Month/Moment promotions will help to maintain the strong performance of the category. In particular, peated whiskies such as Highland Park and Laphroaig tend to do well during the winter months as they lend themselves to serves such as the Hot Toddy.

With table service the ‘new norm’ and customers discouraged from standing at the bar and, therefore, looking at the gantry, what should operators do to highlight their whisky offer?

Outlets can still use their back-bar to advertise their whisky selection, especially if guests have sight of it inside the venue. In my opinion placement is key while lighting can help to draw attention to a venue’s offering. Outlets can also catch the attention of customers at tables by highlighting their exciting whisky section whether it is on a disposable menu or via a menu app.

How long have you worked at Edrington Beam-Suntory?

I have been with Edrington-Beam Suntory for four years. I had a similar position in Australia prior to returning to Edinburgh. A friend of mine notified me of the vacancy and recommended that I apply. It is a role which is usually based in London, so I was excited at the opportunity and delighted to land the role.

What do you think the Edrington Beam-Suntory whisky portfolio offers?

We are the UK’s number one whisky supplier and the proud custodians of an incredible portfolio, including The Macallan, Maker’s Mark, Highland Park, Laphroaig, Bowmore and The House of Suntory range of Japanese craft spirits. Our portfolio offers amazing versatility with must-stock expressions across all our brands. There is a whisky within our portfolio to suit all tastes.

What’s your favourite part of the job?

Getting to talk to people about our fantastic brands and educating them on their qualities.

What’s your most memorable dram and why?

Witnessing history with the unveiling of The Macallan’s brand new distillery in Speyside and enjoying a dram of an exclusive bottling for the occasion – one never to be seen again, with the youngest whisky in the blend being 55 years old!

If you could have a dram with anyone, who would it be, what would you drink and where?

Enjoying a Highland Park 50 year old with the distillery’s founding father, Magnus Eunson, on the roof of the distillery overlooking the beautiful Orkney Islands.