Monday, January 4, 2010

Get Whisky Live Japan Tickets

Tickets to Japan's biggest whisky festival, Whisky Live Japan, will go on sale at 12 am tomorrow (January 5) at This year's extravaganza will be at Tokyo Big Sight, Odaiba on Sunday February 21.

Entry tickets are 6,000 yen and tickets to the master classes (which must be booked and sometimes book out early) are 3,000 yen each. A Day Ticket which includes entry and three master class tickets is 13,000 yen.

Entry includes:
- Samples of loads of whiskies at the distillery stands.

- A 10th anniversary tasting glass & gift box.

- A special commemorative edition of Whisky Magazine Japan.

- A Whisky Live! 10th anniversary lanyard.

- A 1,000 yen voucher for refreshments from the New Tokyo restaurant (less than a minute’s walk away from Live!)
There should be some English instructions on the Whisky Live website but any non-Japanese speakers wishing to apply for tickets an send an e-mail to organisers also have a twitter page giving news in the run up to the event here.

I always try to get to Whisky Live Japan. It is a huge event with loads of opportunities to learn about and taste top whiskies not only from Japan but from across the world. Once you have paid for your entrance, there are more free tasting opportunities available than any one person could possibly deal with in a week and there is always good entertainment on the main stage to keep you content as you sniff and snort. The master classes are well worth making an effort to get into (though, be warned, the Japanese whisky talks are always in Japanese). If you do speak a bit of Japanese, those ones always book out quickly so get along to quick! The full master class schedule is here.

I expect to post fuller details about this year's special Whisky Live bottlings next week but I will say here that I waiting for the details with great interest. This is Whisky Live Japan's 10th Anniversary and there will be six specially bottled single cask whiskies to mark the occasion.

Whisky Live Japan organiser David Croll said previous years' offerings had been sourced through bottlers: "This year, given the anniversary, we approached the Japanese distillers, and were thrilled when they agreed to bottle ‘official’ casks for us. Dave Broom [ the famous whisky writer] made the final selections from cask samples prepared by the distillers, who then bottled the stock themselves."

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