Welcome back to part 4 of the 1st Edition Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar story.
So, with 2 thirds of the whisky selection secured but not finalized I still needed another supplier to complete the line up and then go through the individual whisky choices.
Having been an avid proponent of Independent Bottlers throughout my entire whisky career, I have been approached by various different companies that have seen the benefit in having someone passionate about something that at times can be a difficult educational piece for the greater whisky market.
About 4 years ago, I was introduced to the Wemyss line of Independent bottlings while pouring at a whisky event in Chicago. At the time Wemyss was in it’s infancy in the US market and had no real distribution in Canada either.
I didn’t know it at the time but Wemyss was going to play a vital role in being able to make the 1st edition a reality.
Over the course of almost 3 months, I had been back and forth with the suppliers involved, honing the whisky list and making sure that consumers would be taken on a journey of discovery through different ages, regions and cask types.
The whisky list was actually 98% complete when I received the difficult news that one of the initial suppliers had to pull out leaving me a mere 2 weeks to secure a replacement.
After the initial panic subsided, the realization that Wemyss were waiting in the wings for just this opportunity, meant that we now had the best of all backup plans. The Official launch of Wemyss into the Alberta market showcasing their single cask bottlings had Jacqueline buzzing with enthusiasm as she quickly confirmed that they were ready to fill the gap. We were able to quickly finalize what would become the completed 1st Edition Whisky list just in the nick of time.
It all came together perfectly, 25 whiskies that showcase all the major Scotch Whisky Regions and styles. 18 of the 25 are unique Single Casks only found predominantly in the calendar and the limited number of 700ml bottles that will be available from the 1st December at a select few Alberta retailers. Those lucky 400 that manage to snag a calendar will be able to secure a bottle or two of their absolute favorite whisky.
Samaroli, A.D. Rattray and Wemyss – 3 top notch independent bottlers all with their own unique take on releasing and marketing the very best that Scottish Distilleries can produce.
So, with the whiskies finally confirmed you might think that we were over the line and that additional challenges would be small and inconsequential. Little did we know that the toughest part of this testing road was yet to come.
The rubber hits the road as next week we delve into just how much it truly takes to follow your dreams.
Until then, whatever your dream is – go out and reach for it with everything you have.