Whisky Focus - The SMWS Set To Attempt World Record Whisky Tasting

The SMWS Set To Attempt World Record Whisky Tasting


10th August 2023
Have you ever fancied being a World Record Holder, then now's your chance as The Scotch Malt Whisky Society has unveiled plans to attempt a new GUINNESS WORLD RECORD for hosting the largest online whisky tasting event.

Madeleine Schmol SMWS Guinness World Records attempt event host (photo credit Mike Wilkinson)

In honour of its 40th anniversary and as it approaches the remarkable milestone of 40,000 global members, The Scotch Malt Whisky Society (SMWS) has unveiled plans to undertake a venture that seeks to establish a new GUINNESS WORLD RECORD for hosting the largest online whisky tasting event.

On the 30th of September 2023, a gathering of up to 1,250 members from the expansive whisky club spanning the UK, USA, Japan, China, and Australia will convene virtually to partake in a three-drink tasting experience lasting approximately 45 minutes.

This historic endeavour is set amidst 'The Gathering', a flagship event within the Society's year-long series of activities commemorating its 40th anniversary, designed for its ever-growing global community of enthusiasts.

Conceived in Edinburgh in 1983 by the visionary Pip Hills, SMWS commenced as a small assembly of kindred spirits who shared an unwavering ardour for single cask whisky. Presently under the ownership of the Artisanal Spirits Company, with the venerable Hills, now 82, at the core of the 40th-year jubilations, the Society has matured into the world's largest whisky club, boasting an impressive membership of nearly 38,000 aficionados scattered across over 20 nations.

The pioneering virtual whisky tasting extravaganza will unfold at 2pm across the world, emanating from The Vaults nestled in Leith, Edinburgh—a place steeped in the legacy of SMWS. The opening dram will be expertly guided by SMWS Master Ambassador John McCheyne, the second by Tom Smith, Senior Director of SMWS USA, and the final by Matt Bailey, Director of SMWS Australia.

In collaboration with the video production specialists at GLO, the Society has organized a Zoom broadcast to livestream the tasting event. During this ambitious record-setting endeavour, participants will savour three Society-selected drams.

The SMWS Guinness World Record attempt tasting pack with The SMWS Cask No. 55.78, aptly named "What a Spread!", he SMWS Cask No. 39.244 "Tutti Frutti in a Wooden Bowl," and Batch 15 "Smokus Fruticosus,".

The line-up comprises The SMWS Cask No. 55.78, aptly named "What a Spread!", which they describe as a 13 year old opulent and sweet bottling hailing from a distillery in Speyside (Spoiler - Royal Brackla). Its tasting notes dance with nuances of "spiced toffee, creme brulee, and a hint of fresh oak." Alongside it stands The SMWS Cask No. 39.244 "Tutti Frutti in a Wooden Bowl," an 11 year old (Spoiler - Linkwood) whisky that embodies the Juicy Oak & Vanilla flavour profile that SMWS is renowned for. Completing the trio is Batch 15 "Smokus Fruticosus," an artful blend composed of malt whiskies sourced from the revered islands of Islay & Orkney.

Commenting on the record-breaking attempt, Madeleine Schmoll, event host and Social Media and Community Manager at The Scotch Malt Whisky Society UK said, "The Scotch Malt Whisky Society has come a long way since Pip Hills and his friends started exploring the amazing array of flavours in single cask whisky in Edinburgh in the early 1980s.

"Now, 40 years later, the Society has almost 40,000 members around the world, including around 18,000 here in the UK, so what better way to celebrate that by bringing so many of our members together to go for this world record.

"We’re delighted to be playing our part in this world record attempt – we’ll certainly have fun trying to do it!"

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society members can sign up now to take part in the event, which will be streamed live, on the 30th of September 2023, from the Society’s spiritual home, The Vaults in Edinburgh. If you are not already a member you can join The SMWS here
www.smws.com
 

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