The Glenlivet Unveils New Immersive Whiskey Experience
At the opening event to the LA Food and Wine Festival last night, a new whiskey project was launched. The Glenlivet unveiled their new immersive whiskey experience, the Dram Room, which seeks to educate consumers about Scotch.
The choice to deploy the Dram Room at the LA Food and Wine Festival is particularly clever, since there is already a captive audience looking to experience good tastes. Yet, many of the people, despite some familiarity with wine are not that engaged with whiskey, in general, or Scotch, in particular. For instance, the two young men in line behind me were wondering aloud if Scotch was different than whiskey.
The Dram Room consists of a tiny room, then to a small outdoor patio. In the room, itself, one gets started off with a dram (1oz) of The Glenlivet 12 year and can read on the wall about the ingredients of Scotch. On the opposite wall, one can read about the milling process and one even mill some barley of one is so compelled. Towards the end of the room, one can then read about what the barrel-aging does to the Scotch.
Entering out into the patio, one is then treated to a dram of The Glenlivet Founders Reserve and offered it either neat, on the rocks, or with some club soda. Following that, two screens are set up where one can answer six questions about lifestyle and interests, resulting in a Scotch-based cocktail suited to the answers. While the recipe for the cocktail is unfortunately not listed at the kiosk, if one chooses to have a picture of themselves emailed to the user, then one will receive the recipe therein. Finally, there is a wall of aromas of the different Scotch products of The Glenlivet, where participants can smell the differences in the the products.
On hands to help educate event attendees was Rick Edwards, Master of Scotch for The Glenlivet. Edwards has been in this industry for twenty years and, in addition to having been trained at The Glenlivet distillery to be the ambassador of The Glenlivet to America, is one of the first five Masters of Scotch in America. Edwards described the Dram Room as “A hands-on journey of taste and sensory experience, which “allows consumers to come in, get to grind mill, and dissect aromas.”
I was particularly interested in the novelty of the cocktail station, especially since Scotch is not a common whiskey upon which to build cocktails. Edwards pointed out that “We can create amazing profiles with Scotch for cocktails if you know how to combine with them with the right ingredients.” Furthermore, added Edwards, “They make excellent cocktails.”
The Dram Room will be going to another dozen food festivals, where attendees can go through this mobile tour of this Speyside Scotch. The tour takes roughly ten minutes. It’s a nifty new idea that is really fascinating and worth checking out if you see it at a food festival