International Women’s Day is still two weeks away, but why celebrate women’s achievements on only one day? As a whisky-drinking woman, I’ve loved reading about and learning from women who share my passion. Here are six admirable women in whisky to kick off Women’s Day festivities early:
– Alwynne Gwilt, whisky enthusiast, journalist and the palate behind the excellent Miss Whisky — where she reviews drams, explores distilleries and profiles fellow women in whisky — tells The Whiskey Reviewer how she fell in love with the spirit, and how to introduce Scotch to the uninitiated.
– Mackmyra master blender Angela D’Orazio shares what it’s like working at Sweden’s flagship whisky distillery, as well as her interests outside of the spirits business.
– Helen Mulholland, Bushmills’ master blender, is all business as she discusses the distillery’s range and packaging. And I second her recommendation of the Black Bush blend, which is one of my own favourites!
– when it comes to women in whisky, Allison Patel is a powerhouse. She’s the founder and owner of Brenne Whisky, which is uniquely finished in cognac barrels. Here she talks about crafting Brenne’s flavour profile.
– if job envy’s a thing, Eimear Kelleher leaves me positively green! She’s a Brooklyn-based brand ambassador for Tullamore D.E.W., and she’s spreading her love of Irish whiskey.
– a list of whisky women I admire wouldn’t be complete without a nod to Johanne McInnis, a.k.a. the Whisky Lassie. Knowledgeable and friendly, Johanne is highly active on Twitter, connecting whisky-lovers or, to paraphrase Johanne, weaving the whisky fabric. When I started to tweet about whisky, Johanne was one of the first people to engage me in conversation and in doing so, she made me feel welcome. With one small gesture, she took away a lot of the remaining whisky intimidation — the sense that everyone knew what he or she was talking about but me — and I’ll be forever grateful for that. Johanne is a connector — of people to whisky and to each other — and The East at last gives her the in-depth profile she deserves.