Meleklerin Payi Whisky Awards 2017
Meleklerin Payi Whisky Awards 2017
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2017 had been a year of many new whiskies, whisky tasting events and travels. I had attended over 30 tasting events, went to Scotland twice, visited several distilleries, attended Whisky Live London & Whisky Show London and in total I have tasted 142 new expressions. “Having tasted >1000 different whiskies” was a lifelong dream for me and I achieved it this year. This year I started my podcasts in Turkish and for the Meleklerin Payi Whisky Awards 2017 I recorded 6 podcast and explained in detail the nominees and winners of each category. They are in Turkish language and Google Translate still cannot translate podcasts:) so here’s a brief summary of the awards.
We had several whisky launches and tasting events in Turkey. I have 8 nominees in this category. Johnnie Walker Green Label is reintroduced in Turkish market and the launch event at Jungle 8 was one of the unforgettable events of the year. The all-green setup of the venue, Johnnie Walker vertical tasting conducted by global brand ambassador Tom Jones followed by the mini concert by famous Turkish singer Ozge Fiskin made this event worth this award.
- Whisky Show Bill Lumsden Glenmorangie Masterclass
- Whisky Show Shinji Fukuyo The Art of Maturation Yamazaki Masterclass
- Whisky Live Stephen Teeling Teeling Revival Series
- Whisky Live Martine Nouet whisky cheese pairing
- Glengoyne Distillery cask sampling and blending workshop
- St Regis Meleklerin Payi Premium Macallan Expressions
- Meleklerin Payi Corporate Tasting Event: Demsa
- Meleklerin Payi Corporate Tasting Event: Tepta
Shinji Fukuyo’s maturation masterclass was like a university lecture. We have learned a lot on the effects of climate, wood type -with a special emphasis on mizunara-, and still shapes. An unforgettable masterclass with several Yamazaki samples…
Collecting whisky books is a passion of mine and my aspiration is to have all whisky books ever printed. My whisky library with over 100 books is most probably the largest whisky library in Turkey. This year there were several great new books, however I had 5 nominees for this category. Malt Whisky Yearbook 2018, Whisky Bible 2018, Dominic Roskrow’s Whisky Japan, Michael Jackson’s Whisky The Definitive World Guide and Dave Broom’s The Way of Whisky.
Dave Broom’s latest work The Way of Whisky is an amazing and insightful journey to Japan. You can simply sense the tranquility of the Japanese temples and the beautiful nose of Japanese whisky just by scrolling through the pages of this masterpiece.
This year I’ve been to Whisky Live London, Whisky Show London and Scotland twice in pursuit of finding new drams. A business trip to Mumbai also opened up a whole new category of Indian blends for me. They were all unforgettable but the tour I organized in March “Journey to the Magical World of Whisky” started in London with Whisky Live and lasted 4 days. Starting from Edinburgh we traveled all the way upto Skye, crossed Scotland to Inverness and ended the tour in Speyside. Good friends mixed with good whiskies makes every trip worth an award!
I had 2 trips to Scotland and visited several distilleries in 2017 (and reached 25 in total). Talisker, Cardhu, Glenkinchie and Glengoyne made it to my shortlist however it is an easy choice to give this award to Glengoyne. Beauty of the surroundings, very knowledgable staff who answered my million technical questions, the malt blending exercise and bottling my choice of cask were the highlights of my 4 hour tour that felt like 4 minutes.
Winner: Cube & Cold
A Turkish couple who loved whisky and stones combined their love for both in this new business of whisky stones. Hand carved out of Turkish granite, marble and onyx, they create sets of beautiful whisky stones and sell online on Instagram. Pls click for my review on Cube & Cold
For this category I had 2 nominees. Facebook Malt Maniacs and Facebook Viski Tutkunlari. I created Viski Tutkunlari “shamelessly stealing” from Malt Maniacs and setup similar rules. Viski Tutkunlari is the first Facebook whisky culture forum in Turkey and in short time it reached an audience of >8000 whisky enthusiasts in Turkey and led to formation of new whisky groups and successful tasting clubs like Cirkin Adamlar, Viskİzmir and ViskiAdana just to name a few.
WHISKY OF THE YEAR
It’s the most difficult award to give. I listed all my tasting notes according to my grading (over 100). My Top 20 Whiskies formed naturally since they’re simply the expressions I gave 90 or over points. This year my highest grade of 94 went to the amazingly rich Hakushu 25 (tasting notes in the link)
Top 20 Whiskies of 2017
- Hakushu 25 No:0809 (94)
- Ichiro Joker 2014 Bottling (93)
- Tomatin 1972 (92)
- Edradour 16 Barolo Cask Finish (92)
- Paul John Cask Strength Fıçı: 1906 (92)
- Tamdhu Batch Strength Batch: 2 (92)
- Gordon & MacPhail Strathisla 40 (92)
- Karuizawa 31 Sherry Cask #3567 (91)
- Glenmorangie Single Cask “swamp oak” Cask: 1946 Bottle: 133 (91)
- Clynelish Whisky Show 2017 Bottling (91)
- Glengoyne 25 (91)
- Glenglassaugh 12 Old Bottling 1980-1992 (91)
- Glendronach 21 Parliament (91)
- Glenmorangie Astar 2017 Release (90)
- GlenGrant 10 (90)
- Chivas Regal 18 French Oak (90)
- Compass Box No Name (90)
- Ardbeg An Oa (90)
- Octomore 8.3 (90)
- Glenfiddich Snow Phoenix (90)