It sometimes amazes me how big cities can seem small once you discover the vibrant communities within them. London is a prime example – despite having millions of residents, you’ll often run into someone randomly at a market, in a pub or on the tube.
The whisky community is similar. Within London there is definitely one. And this group spirit is continuously highlighted on Twitter where the whisky loving community is ever-growing globally.
At a recent gathering, I suddenly started recognising a fair few faces from the London whisky community. This seemed appropriate for the event with Glenfiddich, which was there to showcase its latest range of whiskies, including the 1974 Vintage Vatted Release and the Age of Discovery Madeira Cask Finish.
What’s the tie-in, you may ask?
Well, Glenfiddich is a bit like London – it’s huge. It sells millions of bottles every year. But it’s equally similar to the community idea in that it prides itself on its small roots and the fact it is still owned by the same family after five generations. It’s also big on community spirit and is doing its fair share for charity.Glenfiddich’s most recent work, for example, has been to auction off a series of bottles named in honour of founder William Grant’s 110-year old granddaughter, Janet Roberts (seen above) the latest bottle of which sold for an incredible £44,000 with proceeds going towards Walking with the Wounded’s Everest Expedition (some of the team going are seen below).
It’s that community spirit that I love about the whisky industry. And as a large group of journalists and bloggers gathered to taste whiskies (which I review here) I knew they would go forth with the information, not bragging about being invited to a high-caliber event with Glenfiddich, but excited by the knowledge that they would be able to share what they had learned with the rest of the whisky community, that people would begin to chat about the whiskies and relate their own tasting notes and ideas to each other over social media or blogs.
There is a distinct lack of elitism or exclusivity within the industry; people are down to earth, friendly and welcoming. And I’m so glad to be a part of this little community and to share my thoughts with you!