After we had an amazing time when Laphroaig visited Sydney last year. I thought I would check out where Laphroaig Live was held this year. The answer: Oktoberfest Germany!
I was initially pretty surprised at this choice of location. The previous events have been held where the brand has a connection, either where they source their barrels (Kentucky or Jerez) or where some descendants of the distillery had emigrated (Sydney). As John Campbell explains in the video Germany was chosen because it is was on their largest markets, a fact I found quite surprising.
The event had a very similar format to last year, with a four person panel and live audience. Distillery Manager John Campbell and Master Blender Robert Hicks were there again. This time they were joined by Bernhard Schafer (German whisky ambassador) and Pierre Thiebault (founder of the whisky website connosr.com).
During the show they tasted the Laphroaig 10yo and compared it with two whiskies from their sister distilleries Adrmore in the Highlands and Connemara in Ireland. After the three way tasting they also had a dram of the Quarter Cask and the Cairdeas 2012.
To round off the show they tasted a German sausage which had been smoked over peat and also sampled a special edition beer from the Rittmayer Brewery which had been brewed using malt from Isla and had been aged in Quarter Cask barrels.
I think the live events are a great concept from Laphroaig and a good way to engage whisky fans.