We’re fans of Whisky Advocate‘s WhiskyFest, a two-day October tasting festival that brings together whisky geeks, aficionados, collectors, scholars, and distillers from all over the world and offers a chance to educate oneself more deeply on the breadth of this brown spirit as well as taste some pretty rare juice. And while it seems like October is a long way off, if you’re a bourbon collector or someone just beginning to dabble in Scotch, you might start thinking about purchasing tickets to this party, because they just went on sale–and are discounted through Sunday.
WhiskyFest features two grand tasting sessions, one on Friday and one on Saturday, during which you’ll be able to quaff more than 300 varieties of whisky that encompass Scotch and bourbon, of course, and also Irish, Canadian, and Japanese products. You can also attend an all-day Saturday seminar (which comes with an extra price tag) during which Whisky Advocate‘s writers will discuss their subject matter expertise and let you taste through a variety of expressions. If you opt in for that, though, we’d hit the Friday night tasting, too–in our experience, those same experts, as well as the distillers and master blenders wandering the room, are willing to engage in some tasting on the floor, which nets you a little impromptu education, context, and flavor memory that’s harder to get in the classroom.
General admission tickets for each grand tasting are currently $195, but they’ll jump to $225 next week. You’ll have to shell out an additional $50 if you want early VIP access, but if you’re looking to discuss one distiller’s vertical with the distiller himself or find the people with serious home libraries, it might be worth it.