Whisky round-up: Halloween special

Peter Ranscombe takes a light-hearted look at how Scotland’s whisky industry is preparing for Halloween and beyond.

THE Scotch Malt Whisky Society is holding its first Halloween party on Thursday at its bar on Edinburgh’s Queen Street.

A clairvoyant and a tarot card reader will take up residence in the first floor library, while black and white horror films will be screened in the Pip Hills room.

General manager Sarah Prior said: “Ghosts, ghouls, and – of course – residents of Edinburgh are invited to join us this Halloween as we bring Queen Street to life for a night of mystery and mayhem.

“This event is one of a kind for the society and not to be missed, with a host of spooky entertainment and, of course, a selection of the finest Scotch malt whiskies to choose from.”

Halloween - Cask 88

Meanwhile, Cask 88 is reopening the world’s smallest whisky bar in Edinburgh as a fortune-teller’s booth for the weekend leading up to Halloween.

The event marks the launch of the second bottle in Cask 88’s Scottish witchcraft series, “The Book of Daemonologie”, which has a spooky glow-in-the-dark label.

Herbalist and storyteller Amanda Edmiston from Botanica Fabula will haunt the whisky bar on 28-30 October, offering free samples.

A tarot card reading will be linked to the aromas and flavours that each visitor identifies in the whisky.

Hogmanay at Johnnie Walker Princes Street

Across the pavement from the world’s smallest whisky bar, Johnnie Walker Princes Street has its eyes fixed firmly on Hogmanay instead of Halloween.

Scotch whisky giant Diageo’s flagship visitors’ centre has unveiled details of this year’s Hogmanay party in its rooftop 1820 bar, with its views of the castle.

Rob Maxwell, head of Johnnie Walker Princes Street, said: “Hogmanay is a big night for any bar, but when you’ve got the views that we’re lucky to enjoy from the 1820 bar roof terrace and the package our team has created, you’ve got something really special on your hands.”

“[This year] feels extra special as Hogmanay celebrations return to Edinburgh after two years.”

Read more news and reviews on Scottish Field’s food and drink pages.

Plus, don’t miss the readers’ whisky challenge in the November issue of Scottish Field magazine.