On the road
Every month we set out from our spiritual home at The Vaults in Edinburgh to take our tastings outside of our Members’ Rooms and on the road across the UK. Our journey takes us from the southern coast of England, passing by The Toon of Newcastle all the way to the capital of the Highlands in Inverness. As the Society’s Anthony Delcros explains, tasting events are hosted by an enthusiastic and passionate team of SMWS ambassadors, who bring not only entertainment and product knowledge, but also the care, sense of community and passion that has brought us all together since 1983
PHOTOS: CHRIS SCOTT
Our tastings are always open to non-members to provide a first-hand experience of what it is like to be a part of the biggest whisky club in the world. Tickets are, of course, priced appropriately and fairly, for members and non-members. And if you are already a member, bringing your chums is always encouraged and sometimes even rewarded!
A standard tasting usually involves six Society drams, but sometimes we like to bring in something new and different. After all, exploring new flavours is at the core of the magic that we perform. The formats of the tastings can vary from time to time, depending on the venues we work with or simply to keep encouraging members to approach whisky with different perspectives and stay curious. Food is always something we try to make available for members, as whiskies can always be enjoyed with cheese or as an accompaniment to a succulent roast. This is also to keep everyone in fine fettle!
We will always mention what to expect in our event descriptions, along with any essential information such as the line-up. Recently, we have been experimenting with a “Vaults Bar” format for a more casual and social experience. The pop-up bar style event features over 18 different whiskies from all flavour profiles along with other spirits and blended malts. Guided by our brand ambassadors, this gives you the chance to choose your dram, share your thoughts with others and choose when and where to go next at your own leisure. As part of the tasting, if any of the whiskies have captured your heart, we try our best to make it possible to purchase and take the bottles home on the evening.
PICTURED: One of our ‘on-the-road’ tastings with members in Dundee
ABOVE: Society ambassador Olaf Meier talks some members through the line-up of drams in Dundee
This year we will have visited 15 different towns and cities throughout the country with the ambition to increase this number for 2024 and make our tasting experiences even more accessible to everyone. With this in mind, we are always in search of new venues to host our events. If you think you have found the right venue in your local area for a Society tasting, reach out to the Dram-Cierge team on 0131 555 2929 (or email email@example.com), your local brand ambassador, or myself at firstname.lastname@example.org. Recommendations and references are always welcome, and we have committed to them before.
So, let’s raise a glass to the road ahead, filled with new flavours, shared experiences and the unbreakable bonds of our whisky-loving community. Here’s to the spirit of adventure, curiosity, and the endless possibilities that await us on this incredible whisky journey.
Meet the team
Look out for your local SMWS brand ambassador at a tasting on the road around the UK