We all know Eau De Vie as that uber-cool, secret hideout for evenings fuelled by liquid nitrogen concoctions, flaming cocktails and everything in between.
For a change, we got to experience the other forte of this fine establishment – its incredible collection of whisky.
Having run appreciation societies for over five years, EDV’s Japanese whisky appreciation society saw their stellar team walk us through five exquisite expressions.
The owner of Speakeasy Group, Sven Almenning, and their Head of Whisky, Geoff Fewell, tag-teamed the session; the former regaling us with their quips and tales while the latter taking us through an enthralling crash-course on this fine spirit.
Only having established itself as a real contender to its western counterparts about a decade ago, while the Japanese are today a focus of the whisky world, many are hard to come by. Geoff, who’d made his way all the way up from Melbourne’s Boilermaker House, helped us sample through some of the best in their collection (paired with delectable charcuterie).
We started off with Ichiro, a typical Japanese highball malt and grain whisky boasting a “worldwide blend. Up next was Yamazaki, initially modelled after Scottish whisky, which then evolved to suit a more refined Japanese palate. Then came Iwai, a traditional whisky with a soft, rounded, and full-bodied palate. Our favorite though, was the Yoichi, a 115-year-olda single malt originally founded in the 1930s, with a gentle, creamy expression, sweet and spice notes, and a long finish.
Sven complemented the above with stellar commentary many fun tidbits along the way, including the fact that one should dilute their whisky with a drop or two of distilled water to avoid a numbing of their palate over the course of a tasting.
Through it all, the pair’s love of the spirit was undeniable, with Sven mentioning how he’d just about stocked the first full bar with his personal collection alone!
What’s more, they regularly made a concerted effort is ensuring their patrons shared in experience, serving from bottles valued at upwards of $4000 at a mere fraction of the price, per glass.
Eau De Vie’s appreciation society was intimate, inviting, and extraordinary amounts of fun for a school-night. With their monthly showcases of everything from cocktails, to Champagne, to Absinthe, there’s an experience for all tastes and palates this year.
Ace Mamun is the Director of The Plus Ones in Sydney, whose long-term love affair with Eau De Vie has only grown deeper after discovering it is a veritable El Dorado of Nihon’s finest spirits.