Beirut welcomed the first edition of the internationally renowned Whisky Live event on the 2nd and 3rd of December 2016 at Zaitunay Bay’s iconic Le Yacht Club Beirut. As a new and exciting concept for the Lebanese market and the region as a whole, the event opened in the presence of trade, whisky lovers, international experts and the media.
Organized by Hospitality Services, more than 1,500 whisky connoisseurs and enthusiasts attended the prestigious show of fine whiskies from around the world. Single malts, bourbons, Scotch and Irish whiskies featured in a huge section spanning 500 square meters. Visitors enjoyed a rare opportunity to sample limited edition whiskies as more than 40 international whisky brands gathered including Glenmorangie, Johnnie Walker, Kavalan, Nikka, The Dalmore, Jura, Kilchoman, Hine, Appleton, Nomad, Chivas, Jameson, Glenfiddich, The Balvenie, Grant’s, Monkey Shoulder, Cutty Sark, Glenmoris and Lauder’s. An interactive symposium of live sessions, tastings and over 25 master classes with global brand ambassadors featured on the high-caliber event program.
Two sections for avid collectors, the VIP Room and Collector’s Room, showcased the most exclusive bottles. Guests in the Collector’s Room were able to sample sought after bottles including Karuizawa 50 years 1965 Sherry Cask and Karuizawa 50 years 1965 Bourbon Cask, with whisky expert Marlene Leon from Maison du Whisky France. In the VIP Room, Neil Ridley, one of the UK’s most recognized spirit experts and editor-in chief of Whisky Magazine, hosted a series of master classes where attendees were able to taste rare and unique bottles.
In addition, a selection of brown spirits including rums and Cognac were also on display and a huge selection of the Whisky Live spirits were available for purchase at The Malt Gallery’s pop-up store. The event was catered by Nicolas Audi.
Serving as a reference for the whisky industry, Lebanon becomes the 18th country in the world to host Whisky Live, after countries such as Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, France, India, Japan, Singapore and the UK.