Whisky Picnic In My So-o-oul

I went there. And I drank the place dry. Or very nearly so.

Now, a week later, the hangover is well gone but Nick Ravenhall’s words still ring in my ears: ‘This is Barry the Barrel’ – he points at a cask set up on the stage – ‘and he’s very f***ing empty’. Cheering echoes off the high vaulted ceilings, DJ puts a big-fat beat on and The Feeding begins. One by one the bottle necks are stuck in that wee bunghole. One of the most wonderfully quirky parties ever thrown in Edinburgh begins.

I had never been to The Caves in Edinburgh before and I was impressed. The place is seriously spooky. One of the members of staff told me that famous murderers, Burke & Hare, used to store bodies of their victims just across the wall from the bottom bar. I can totally see why, that part of the town is a Disneyland for serial killers.

At the entrance every guest received a metal mug for indulging in weird and wonderful drinks prepared by some of the nation’s best bar tenders. And weird and wonderful the drinks were. Cocktail ingredients ranged from classics like bitters and lemon juice to the likes of sweet potatoes and Earl Grey tea. I’m not going to go into details, I didn’t take any notes on the night (I did take pictures though), but my winner was Ardbeg with something limy and something orangy. I also liked Yamazaki and coffee liqueur, even though the memory of this particular one is somewhat blurry.

Add a bunch of people dressed in tweed from heads to toes, with Movember moustaches and beards, sitting on picnic rugs in the middle of the dance floor… sipping whisky from tea-flasks. Average age? No more than 26

Let’s now have a look at the event recipe: one wonderfully bizarre idea of feeding the barrel, one fantastic venue, a dozen ridiculous cocktails, hundreds of young and keen whisky imbibers, some tweed, one great DJ, one roast hog. Mix and shake all night. For the best result serve in November.

Whisky Picnic is officially the best whisky event I have ever been to. Nick and Duncan’s do-whatever-you-want attitude is very close to my heart. Their ability to put together such a grand sponsored party without littering the evening with brand slur is inspiring. Someone in the crowd shouted ‘we should do it every month!’ at one point. ‘Or every week!’ someone else added. Now that would send Nick and Duncan straight to the intensive care ward at Royal Infirmary, considering the amount of time and effort they put in every time they do it. But then again, maybe it’s worth t? Suffering of few for the greater good of many? On behalf of Nick and Duncan I accept this sacrifice.


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Click on the pic for more!

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