Whisky Journey 2020 Singapore – More than just a bar-hopping event

Whisky is one of those things that can grow with you in different stages of your life; from the guzzling down bottles after bottles when you just turned 18 (where I live this is the drinking age), and when you’re older and been through life quite a bit, it can be that friend that sits with you at the fireplace in accompanying silence.

Whisky Journey 2020, organised by The Whisky Store, was meant to be a convention show sometime in May this year; of course now we know that the pandemic has all but shuttered that plan. Hence it was transformed into a 10-day bar and restaurant trail. Not an entirely new concept, but certainly one that is refreshing in these times.

From Stalwarts to New Entrants

From 11-20 December 2020, visit all 15 of the participating venues (list at the end of the article) to receive a dram of whisky from a curated selection of distilleries, and a stamp in your “passport”. Finish the passport and hand it in to any of these 3 bars (Copper, Malts & Quiach South Beach) no later than 22 Dec 2020, 10:30pm, and qualify for the Whisky Journey Trailblazer Contest. Stand to win exclusive bottles, collectible gifts and vouchers!

The closest you’re going to get to stamping a passport.
Get a Glencairn Tasting Glass to bring along your Whisky Journey.

This inaugural event features old-timer bars like Wala-Wala and Cable Car 1890’s Saloon, and bars that are new or quite off the beaten track such as Malts, #WLJK, SIlvermalt and many others.

Copper X Duncan Taylor

We started our journey at Copper, situated in Lanson Place off Penang Road. Although smack in the middle of Orchard Area, its inconspicuous facade means that it’s not one of the popular hangout spots of late. In fact, it’s round the corner from a very popular nightlife bar.

Copper. Image by Whisky Journey.

There, we were introduced to Duncan Taylor, a multiaward winning distillery with 75 years of history as a blender, bottler and cask broker, and now one of the most dynamic and innovative Scotch Whisky companies. Look out for the Black Bull Kyloe, a cask strength blend with a really complex flavour, and the Octave Glenallachie 2008 Whisky Journey Exclusive, which is surprisingly platable despite its 54.1% ABV. Perfect to pair with some savoury bar bites!

Malts X Glencadam

Malts. Image by Whisky Journey.

Being just opened this year, malts is one of hiding spots for the busy executive to enjoy a tipple after work, while still enjoying the impeccable service and whisky collection. With an adventurous chef at hand, they also have a delectable menu to pair with your drink, such as the papaya salad, Chinese-style prawns, roast beef and a signature lamb chop that is marinated for days and then grilled to greatness.

Being one of the oldest distilleries in Scotland, Glencadam Distillery is old school meets new world, sticking to their traditions of making highland whiskey. Look out for the Glencadam 1825 “The Rather Elegant”, a homage to their heritage, and my personal favourite, the 18 years “The Rather Polished” which was described as “A warm hug from grandpa”, with a surprising note of a familiar flavour to many. As someone told me, tasting notes might give you a bias on what you actually taste, so give it a go before reading the bottle!

A Malt to Remember

Being an admittedly novice at whisky (I’m more of a craft beer person), I found the concept very newbie-friendly and not intimidating at all. Perhaps it was also a blessing in disguise that the trail had to happen the way it is; you can now pace yourself over a few days instead of jam-packing a convention hall the reverberating noise of a crowd may not be the most conducive environment to learn about one of the world’s oldest alcoholic beverage.

So why not malt over to these 15 bars to have an eye-opener of a journey? Whether you want to casually enjoy a dram, or to nerd out with your fellow whisky geeks, there’s something definitely for everyone.

Be sure to check out their website to see their exclusive whiskys just for this event! You can also purchase bottles from the respective bars at prices never before seen, as low as S$104!

More Information

Whisky Journey will be carried out in accordance to existing government regulations with temperature screening and social distancing restrictions in place. To ensure that guests will have the opportunity to enjoy their free whisky drams, free pours will be extended beyond the event till 30 December 2020 at selected partner bars. Guests are also encouraged to make reservations before visiting each partner bar or restaurant as well.

Whisky Journey will be held from 11-20 December 2020 at various participating bars and restaurants across Singapore.

All passes are available for purchase at whiskyjourney.com.sg.

Ticket passes are available at $38 online, with passes priced at $45 each at the door. Pass holders will be entitled to a free Glencairn whisky glass, a Whisky Journey passport and a free 10ml tasting dram at each participating bar and restaurant. All guests will also have the opportunity to buy additional drams from only $2, access to industry experts, exclusive access to Whisky Journey bottlings, and many fringe activities.

To ensure you can get your drams, some bars extend their tastings till 30 December 2020, although you won’t be able to enter the Trailblazer contest by then. Just remember your passports and tasting glass!

Participating Distilleries:

  • Bunnahabhain
  • Cù Bòcan
  • Currach
  • Deanston
  • Duncan Taylor
  • Glencadam
  • Glen Scotia
  • Inchmoan
  • Inchmurrin
  • Kalak
  • Ledaig
  • Loch Lomond
  • Ornabrak
  • Paul John
  • The Lakes Distillery
  • The Scotch Malt Whisky Society
  • Tobermory
  • Tomatin
  • Tomintoul

Participating Bars and Restaurants:

  • Cable Car 1890’s Saloon
  • Copper
  • FOC
  • Jiu Zhuang
  • Joo Bar
  • Malts
  • Quaich Bar South Beach
  • Silvermalt
  • S L A T E.
  • The Cooperage
  • The Other Roof
  • The Writing Club
  • Tom Dick & Hillary’s
  • Wala Wala Café Bar
  • #WLJK

This feature is brought to you by Whisky Journey 2020 by The Whisky Store.

Editor’s note: As part of ongoing COVID-19 Safe Management Measures, your safety and health during your visit is important to the venues. You will be required to adhere to SMM actions such as SafeEntry, and social distancing. Stay safe, fellow otters!