The Whisky List (TWL) hosted its second annual whisky trade expo in Sydney last week, showcasing premium whiskies from around the globe.
Members of the trade met with brand ambassadors and distillers, and tasted over 60 whiskies from a number of brands representing Scotland, Ireland, the United States, Australia and world whiskies. Attendees included bartenders, bar owners, hotel managers, independent bottleshop owners, liquor banner groups, media, whisky clubs, and wholesalers.
The exhibiting brands included Amber Lane, Ardbeg, Barrell Craft Spirits, Bunnahabhain, Coastal Stone, Deanston, Decadent Drinks, Glen Moray, Glenmorangie, Hobart Whisky, Ledaig, M&H Distillery, Penelope, Remnant Whisky Co., Sagamore Whiskey, Spring Bay Distillery, Stellum, Tobermory, Waterford Whisky, and WhiskySponge.
TWL On-Premise sales lead Scott Allan said: “We saw a spike in interest from on-premise venues who are both on the lookout for new whiskies for cocktails as well as additions to their premium offerings. The demand for Aussie single malt
whiskies at approachable prices like Remnant’s $99 Golden Fleece 10 Year Old Tasmanian single malt whisky,
Coastal Stone’s $79 Xplore, or the gold medal awarded Amber Lane Equinox single malt whisky are great
examples of this growing demand.”
Head of Off-Prem at TWL Larry Aronson added: “We wanted to make the event to everyone in the industry, from buying groups to independent bottle stores, hotel and bar managers to trade media. We provided one-on-one time between brand stakeholders and attendees, making it that much easier for them to make their orders ahead of the busiest quarter of the year.
“It can be tricky for distributors to get to a large number of buyers in one go, and likewise retailers and bars often can’t afford to leave their businesses multiple times for new product research. Based on the feedback we received, we look forward to building on and expanding this expo in 2024.”
The Whisky Trade Expo 2023 is organised by The Whisky List, with the trade expo now a core part of their growing wholesale business.
Amber Lane Distillery Cellarmaster Rod Berry said: “Getting cut-through can be challenging in the competitive Australian whisky market. This trade expo introduced us to some new contacts, and provided an excellent platform for conversations with a variety of prospects.”
The Whisky Trade Expo will return in 2024. TWL is also exploring bringing this unique trade-only event to other states across Australia.
Drinks Digest heads to trade expo
It was exciting to try new-generation whiskies at TWL’s trade expo, including our first taste of a peated Irish whiskey by Waterford.
Waterford’s peated whiskies are crafted using the ‘old ways’ of whiskey production of Irish peat, which the producer said allows for more ‘unique’ flavours to be imparted into the whiskey.
The smokiness of the peat is offset by a surprising lightness and freshness on the palate, with a smooth mouth feel. It tastes a like the missing link between Scottish peated whisky and Irish whiskey.
Another favourite was the Islay Single Malt by Whisky Sponge, a delicious dram.
And it was fantastic to be led through a tasting of Amber Lane’s range by cellarmaster Rod Berry. Amber Lane’s whiskies are matured for a minimum of four years, primarily in premium large format 250L+ Pedro Ximenez and Oloroso Sherry casks, sourced from famous Sherry bodegas such as Fernando de Castilla, located in Jerez, Spain.
Small barrels can produce overly oaked whiskies, with Amber Lane’s big barrels giving the liquid a chance to evolve slowly. The standout for us was Equinox, small batch expression that Berry describes as capturing “the magical moment when ex-sherry and ex-bourbon casks are in perfect balance”.
For more information about the event or any of the participating brands at the expo, visit www.thewhiskylist.com.au