December 15, 2020

San Francisco; Participate in a virtual whisky tasting and cocktail class with The Whisky Shop; things to do

San Francisco

Participate in a virtual whisky tasting and cocktail class!


The Whisky Shop  360 Sutter St., (415) 989-1030.  Daily 9am-6pm.  

This liquor store carries what is perhaps the largest single malt whisky collection in the United States.  One is even bottled under their own label.  

The shop also offers a variety of virtual tastings that are big-time fun.  Visit the website for details and to sign up to experience one with old or new friends.  Tastings are free, but a reasonable charge is applied for a tasting set that includes appropriate spirits being mailed to each participant in time for the tasting.  My husband and I shared one tasting set.  

Whisky Tasting  My tasting included a variety of whiskeys from San Francisco’s 10th Street Distillery and was guided by a 10th Street master distiller.  While tasting their smoky peated whisky, one delighted participant commented, “I felt like I was drinking a campfire.”  We also sampled “Further” whisky--described as “a groovy blend in honor of the bus that inspired Tom Woolf’s The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.”

participants in whisky tasting with The Whisky Shop in San Francisco
participants in whisky tasting with The Whisky Shop
in San Francisco


spirits line up for whisky tasting with The Whisky Shop in San Francisco
spirits line up for whisky tasting with The Whisky Shop
in San Francisco


distillery atmosphere at whisky tasting with The Whisky Shop in San Francisco
distillery atmosphere at whisky tasting with The Whisky Shop
in San Francisco

Cocktail Class  This tasting was extra-special fun.  To enjoy it fully, we were asked to have a few things on hand, including a lime and a simple syrup (they provide the simple recipe).  My group was introduced to several herbal liqueurs to use as a mix.  With Fernet--a medicianal-smelling blend of 21 mysterious herbals that by itself also makes a good apertif or digestif--and M&H Levantine Gin from Israel (M&H stands for milk and honey) plus some lime juice and simple syrup, we made a simple Gin Sour Gimlet.  Another cocktail used Penderyn Ledgend Single Malt whisky from Wales mixed with another herbal--Falernum.  We also mixed up a tiki cocktail with Black Tot Rum.  When the session was over, I could hardly stand up to go prepare dinner.  Thank goodness I had pre-planned a meal that just needed heating, and also thank goodness I was assured that even though we had mixed all those spirits there would be no headache or hangover.  I enjoyed the rest of the evening and was quite surprised the next morning when I did indeed wake up with a clear head.  

participants in the cocktail class with The Whisky Shop in San Francisco
participants in the cocktail class with The Whisky Shop
in San Francisco


spirits line-up for the cocktail class with The Whisky Shop in San Francisco
spirits line-up for the cocktail class with The Whisky Shop
in San Francisco


spirits line-up for the cocktail class with The Whisky Shop in San Francisco
spirits line-up for the cocktail class with The Whisky Shop
in San Francisco


tulip glass with Fernet leftover from the cocktail class with The Whisky Shop in San Francisco
tulip glass with Fernet leftover from the cocktail class with The Whisky Shop
in San Francisco

2020 pandemic update:  A virtual whisky tasting is perfect to experience with a group from the safety of your home.  




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