Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Learning about whiskey

I have been out of Manila for sometime working abroad.  Maybe working too hard.  But after one of those late night meetings with colleagues, they decided to have some drinks at my hotel before heading home.  My hotel is conveniently located in between the office and the BTS.  No reason to rush home yet since it was happy hour. Plus we all needed a break.

First round of drinks consisted of a local Thai beer, a couple of mojitos, apple juice (for me) and red wine.  I was the only one drinking juice which was ok since I, er, WE have not had dinner yet.  When the second round came along, I decided to order a tequila.  The rest ordered the same thing-beer, mojitos and red wine.  The boss (not mine) was surprised that I drank tequila.  Well, I really don't. Not recently though- maybe not in the past 10 years or so.  Just so you know, I dislike mixed alcoholic drinks.  I know they taste good but it's not me.  No blended drinks of that sort.  If ever I order anything blended then it might as well be a fruit shake.

The boss (not mine) said that I was too "classy" for tequilas and should try something else.  Hmmm, I like that term"classy".

"Oh I hate mixed drinks.  Please suggest something for me,"  I said.

"Why don't you try a good whiskey," he answered.

I remember trying it before, gulping it at once until the very last drop.  Where did it get me?  Well, my face was plastered to the table after that.  I felt dizzy and couldn't lift my head for a time. I can remember how the wretched liquid stung my throat.  Should I even dare?

Well I did.  I told him that I didn't like the burning sensation in my throat.  He said that I should not drink it in one gulp.  A good whiskey should be enjoyed.  That I should enjoy the lingering flavor in my mouth.  Hhhm?  It sounds interesting. So I did try it.

He ordered two types for me (with ice).  Single malt, 10 year Macallan and a 15 year Macallan.  I smelled both.  Hhhmm, smelled good.  I tasted both and they were both good.  No burning sensation in the throat.  I took it in sips and swirled the liquid in my mouth.  Really good.  The flavor lingered in my mouth for seconds after every sip.  The flavor blossoming. This was good stuff.  It totally changed my perception about whiskey.  I used to think that whiskey should be left to old men and their cigars.  But hey, classy young women can drink this too.

Note that we were not drinking to get drunk and get wasted.  That's just too highschool.  We were a bunch of professionals chilling out after a hard days work.  I'm sure that I won't do this every night but my introduction or re-introduction to whiskey was a great experience.  The timing just perfect when you're with co-workers who understand the demands of the job and want to have some down time especially on a Friday night.

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