When the COVID-19 pandemic first began taking shape in the U.S., Whisky Advocate responded by looking for ways to come together from a distance—and so #TasteWithSpace was born. Since the first Friday New York City went into lockdown, our editors have hosted whisky distillers, blenders, bartenders, and other experts for conversation and tasting on Instagram Live every week.
Early on, #TasteWithSpace focused on the issues surrounding the pandemic and repercussions for whisky makers, bars, and restaurants. The conversation has since expanded and now encompasses a range of issues important to whisky lovers. In June, after Uncle Nearest and Jack Daniel’s debuted an education and mentorship program for Black whisky professionals, Uncle Nearest founder Fawn Weaver joined #TasteWithSpace to talk more about it. Nicole Austin, the distiller behind our 2019 Whisky of the Year, George Dickel 13 year old Bottled in Bond, came on to debut the whiskey’s 2020 release, comparing and contrasting the flavor profiles of each. And Andy Roddick talked sports and whiskey as he knocked back a pour of Sweetens Cove, the new bourbon he’s backing with Peyton Manning.
Check out the list below for upcoming interviews. To join us live, follow @whiskyadvocate on Instagram and tune in every Friday at 3 p.m. Eastern. Past #TasteWithSpace chats (from May 15, 2020 onward) are archived on our IGTV page.
#TasteWithSpace: Upcoming Interviews
September 18: High West
Learn about blending, American single malt, and other topics—like the discontinuation of Yippee Ki-Yay—from High West master distiller Brendan Coyle. Hosted by Whisky Advocate assistant digital editor Ted Simmons.
September 25: Little Book
Freddie Noe, eighth-generation distiller at the James B. Beam Distilling Co. and creator of Little Book, will lead a deconstructed tasting of the component parts of this year’s Chapter Four release. Hosted by Whisky Advocate executive editor Jeffery Lindenmuth.
October 2: Old Overholt
America’s oldest rye has undergone some small, but significant evolutions lately, and rye whiskey specialist Bradford Lawrence will explain how these changes are supported by history—and how Old Overholt, in turn, is renewing its roots by partnering with its birthplace, West Overton. Hosted by Whisky Advocate senior whisky specialist and digital editor Susannah Skiver Barton.
Past #TasteWithSpace Guests
September 11: Bruichladdich
Islay’s Bruichladdich has long been a proponent of providing as much information about its whiskies as possible, and head distiller Adam Hannett detailed the distillery’s renewed transparency campaign and answered questions from viewers. Hosted by Whisky Advocate senior whisky specialist and digital editor Susannah Skiver Barton, whose DIY Bruichladdich blend Hannett critiqued on-air.
September 3: Slane Irish Whiskey
Slane co-founder Alex Conyngham explained the whiskey’s triple-cask maturation program and discussed the commitment to sustainability at the castle-based distillery. Hosted by Whisky Advocate senior whisky specialist and digital editor Susannah Skiver Barton.
August 21: Maker’s Mark
Director of innovation Jane Bowie gave us the first taste of Maker’s Mark 2020 Limited Edition, made with two custom finishing staves, as well as the new Maker’s 46 Cask Strength. Hosted by Whisky Advocate senior whisky specialist and digital editor Susannah Skiver Barton.
August 14: Wild Turkey
Master distiller Eddie Russell will introduce several new Wild Turkey whiskeys, including Rare Breed rye and Master’s Keep 17 year old Bottled in Bond bourbon. He’ll also answer questions about chill-filtration and extra-aged bourbon. Hosted by Whisky Advocate digital editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton.
August 7: Virginia Distillery Co.
Gareth Moore, CEO of Virginia Distillery Co., discussed the exciting trends in American single malt, including the distillery’s recently released Courage & Conviction. Hosted by Whisky Advocate digital editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton.
July 31: GlenDronach
GlenDronach master blender Rachel Barrie joined from Scotland, hosted by Whisky Advocate digital editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton. GlenDronach’s single malts are all matured in sherry casks, and Barrie led viewers through a tasting of both sherry and whisky to ascertain the casks’ influence on flavor.
July 24: New Riff Distilling
Co-founder and vice president of New Riff Distilling Jay Erisman joined Whisky Advocate digital editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton to talk about New Riff Bottled in Bond rye—No. 17 in the 2019 Top 20—and taste through the distillery’s latest innovation, Backsetter.
July 17: Julie Reiner
Cocktail luminary and owner of several fabled bars, including New York City’s Clover Club, joined Whisky Advocate executive editor Jeffery Lindenmuth to mix Manhattans and help readers troubleshoot making drinks at home.
July 10: New York Distilling Co.
With a focus on cocktails and cocktail bars, Whisky Advocate assistant digital editor Ted Simmons spoke to New York Distilling Co.’s Allen Katz about how he has weathered the pandemic as an urban distiller and how he plans to welcome back his diverse clientele.
July 2: Ask Us Anything!
Whisky Advocate digital editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton and assistant digital editor Ted Simmons reprised the very first #TasteWithSpace, this time taking questions from viewers and tasting through a special flight of whiskies.
June 26: Uncle Nearest
Fawn Weaver, CEO and Founder of Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey, joined Whisky Advocate assistant digital editor Ted Simmons to discuss the creation and development of the burgeoning brand and its new joint initiative with Jack Daniel’s aimed at increasing diversity in American whiskey.
June 19: Lux Row Distillers
Master distiller John Rempe of Lux Row walked Whisky Advocate digital editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton through the new Daviess County bourbons, explaining the flavor differences resulting from finishing in toasted French oak and cabernet sauvignon casks.
June 12: George Dickel
Nicole Austin, head distiller and general manager at Cascade Hollow Distilling Co., introduced Whisky Advocate digital editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton to the 2020 release of George Dickel Bottled in Bond, walking through the similarities to and differences from 2019’s version.
June 5: Sweetens Cove
Along with master blender Marianne Eaves, tennis star Andy Roddick discussed the new Sweetens Cove Tennessee bourbon and took questions about his whiskey preferences, his golf game, and plans for the future. Hosted by Whisky Advocate assistant digital editor Ted Simmons.
May 29: Ardbeg Distillery
Ardbeg head of maturing whisky stocks Brendan McCarron cracked jokes and prepped fans for the next day’s Virtual Ardbeg Day, while tasting through Wee Beastie and the Ardbeg Committee release of Blaaack. Hosted by Whisky Advocate digital editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton.
May 22: Starward Whisky
Starward founder David Vitale chatted Australian whisky, explaining how Melbourne’s intense climate coaxes special flavors and maturity from single malt and grain whisky alike. Hosted by Whisky Advocate digital editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton.
May 15: Four Roses
Four Roses master distiller Brent Elliott talked about the distillery’s shutdown, the process for developing Small Batch Select—No. 3 in the 2019 Top 20—and the lasting legacy of the late, great Al Young. Hosted by Whisky Advocate digital editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton.
May 8: Dewar’s
Dewar’s master blender Stephanie MacLeod drew in viewers from all over the world as she introduced Dewar’s Ilegal Smooth, finished in mezcal casks, and explained the brand’s famous Double Double blending process, revealing that there will be plenty more Double Double 21 year old (No. 2 in the 2019 Top 20) coming out.
May 1: Woodford Reserve
Woodford Reserve master distiller Chris Morris detailed the Virtual Derby, which took place the following day, and chatted about the Woodford Reserve Master’s Collection, including Batch Proof, No. 6 in the 2019 Top 20.
April 24: Teeling Whiskey
Teeling Whiskey co-founder Jack Teeling called in from Dublin to discuss and taste the distillery’s first single pot still whiskey, which just debuted in the U.S. and scored 91 points.
April 17: Bardstown Bourbon Co.
Bardstown Bourbon Co. master distiller Steve Nally talked cask finishing, blending whiskeys of different ages, and what effect the pandemic may have on the Kentucky bourbon industry.
April 10: The Drama King
Pro wrestler and whisky lover Matt Rehwoldt—subject of our Spring 2020 Icon profile—gave a wide-ranging interview that touched on the pandemic, life on the road as a WWE star, and, of course, his favorite pours.
April 3: Travel Bar
Mike Vacheresse, owner of Brooklyn, New York’s Travel Bar, explained how he was staying afloat while his business couldn’t open.
March 20: Blind Tasting
The very first #TasteWithSpace aimed to recreate Whisky Advocate’s regular Friday afternoon tastings, with editor and senior whisky specialist Susannah Skiver Barton and assistant digital editor Ted Simmons swapping notes and explaining the blind-tasting process to viewers.