30th May 2020, 12.30 – 22.00

Guest Speakers

Who’s who from our panel of guest speakers?

Dan Humphrey – Summerton Whisky Club

Hi, my name’s Dan. I launched the Summerton Whisky Club in January 2018, which has slowly grown into the largest full-bottle whisky subscription out there. Summerton Whisky Club started as a Christmas present for my Dad. Having spent a fair few Christmases and birthdays giving him bottles of whisky, I wanted to do something different and to stand out from previous years. I wanted to sign him up to a whisky subscription that would deliver a rare and unique bottle to his doorstep every month or two, but couldn’t find one. Undeterred, I created a whisky subscription for him that has now grown into the Summerton Whisky Club sharing whisky with hundreds or members.

MATTHEW WRIGHT – TV PRESENTER

After 18 years of 4am starts for his tv show The Wright Stuff it’s perhaps understandable that Matthew developed a fondness for quality beverages. Truth be told, his association with whisky goes a little further back than that: as a student at Exeter University in the 1980s, Matthew and his housemates were frequent visitors to the legendary Nobody Inn with its enormous selection of 260 plus whiskies. He attempted to sample the lot over the ensuing three years of study but failed and has been catching up ever since.  After leaving uni Matthew abandoned his dream of acting to work first as a print journalist with The Daily Mirror where wining and dining celebrities like George Michael and Jim Carrey opened his eyes to the joys of the grape before moving into TV and radio. Matthew became a father for the first time at 53 to the delight of wife Amelia and has become a regular face on ITV’s This Morning in recent months. Away from work, Matthew loves fly fishing – he’s Vice President of the Wild Trout Trust – and restoring old British motorcycles. He dreams of opening a fly fishing business in the Caribbean

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IAN WISNIEWSKI – DRINKS WRITER/BROADCASTER

Ian Wisniewski is a drinks writer and broadcaster specialising in spirits, particularly whisky and especially Scotch whisky. The Whisky Dictionary (published September, 2019) is his eleventh book, and he writes regularly for publications including Whisky Magazine and Malt Whisky Yearbook, with production his favourite area. He conducts tutored tastings, classes and courses, judges in various competitions, and visits distilleries regularly to keep learning about production. He is a Master of the Quaich and a Musketeer of Armagnac.

JOE WADSACK – CELEBRITY CHEF & DRINKS EXPERT

Joe is the only person ever to win the coveted International Wine and Spirit Communicator of the Year award twice, in 2005 and 2016. He studied wine making in Bordeaux and has since worked as a buyer and consultant for a number of leading supermarket chains. Joe’s was the youngest ever International Senior Judge at The Royal Melbourne Wine Show, and has featured on many BBC and ITV Shows discussing all aspects of drink. He currently presents The Drinks Coach UK on YouTube on week nights at 8.30pm

COLIN HAMPDEN-WHITE – PRESENTER, THREE DRINKERS (AMAZON PRIME)

Colin is a presenter on The Three Drinkers on Amazon Prime, Chairman of the Circle of Wine Writers and a Keeper of the Quaich. Having started his career at the Scotsman, he worked at The Times and FT, and became the founding editor of Whisky quarterly magazine. He now writes, tastes and is consultant spirits editor for Club Oenologique. In his spare time, he is a fine art photographer working with Vogue Italia and is represented by the Rebecca Hossack gallery in London and New York.He has exhibited all over the world including the National Portrait Gallery. He has won the Louis Roederer Award for Artistry and the Born Digital award for photography. 

Matt McKay – The Dramble

Matt McKay is the Lead Writer for The Dramble a well-regarded whisky website fuelled by honesty, integrity and passion. He is a Chartered Public Relations Practitioner by trade, helping brands to protect, enhance and build their reputations. As a self-proclaimed whisky geek, he has been on the judging panels for whisky competitions and is currently studying for the General Certificate in Distilling.

ANTHONY & NICKY – NEW DRAM DRINKER

For the last 12 months we have embarked on a journey into the wonderful world of whisky.

As newbies we searched social media looking for guidance on how to drink whisky and which whiskies we should try first. Whilst we found many channels and posts – none of them were for the ‘new’ whisky drinker. Hence New Dram Drinker was born!

The whisky community is huge and there are many wonderful people out there that we couldn’t wait to tap into this vast wealth of knowledge and connect with like minded whisky enthusiasts. We have made friends that have supported us and steered us in the right direction with their knowledge and generosity. We are constantly improving whilst having fun along the way!

So, whatever you’re drinking, however you are drinking it we salute you.

“Pour it, drink it, enjoy it”

Andy – Malt Box

Andy has been a part of the whisky community for over a decade. In 2012 he set up the Manchester Whisky Club and since handing over the reins he has run his whisky blog Malt Box on YouTube.

After drinking supermarket value branded whisky as a penniless teenager, he quickly fell in love with everything that whisky had to offer when a bottle of Glenmorangie 10 was handed to him one Christmas.

For Andy, whisky is there for drinking, is best when shared and is a strong proponent of drinking the water of life however you want to.

VIN PF – NO NONSENSE WHISKY

Vin started his whisky journey over 10 years ago with supermarket blends (rough start) but that all turned around when someone bought him an Old Pulteney 12 for his birthday.

After 6 years of exploring whisky on his own, he finally cracked and set up No Nonsense Whisky as a way of enthusing about all things whisky to anyone who would listen.

AMY SETON – THE BIRMINGHAM WHISKY CLUB

Amy is well-known in the whisky world as the owner of The Birmingham Whisky Club, which she started in 2011 after a ten-year career in the corporate world. In 2018 she and her team turned what was a tasting events company, popping up at venues and bars around the city, into Birmingham’s first whisky bar and tasting room.

Over the years, Amy has endeavoured to infuse as much creativity, passion and story-telling into the business. Through unique tastings, her internationally acclaimed festival ‘Whisky Birmingham’ and the 350 strong whisky selection available at the Club, Amy and her team, have a mission to break down the barriers there are in the whisky world by making it more accessible so a new generation of people can enjoy the ‘water of life’.

JOHN McCHEYNE – THE SCOTCH MALT WHISKY SOCIETY

John has been an Ambassador for The Scotch Malt Whisky Society for 13 years, although a member of The Society for much longer, going back almost to the formation of SMWS in 1983. Initially John conducted events in London and the SE. But, from around 2012, he has also represented the Society internationally, in existing and ever growing number of new branches. In recent years, he has been involved in Events, Media representation and Development activity for the Society in many of the 25 or so countries in which it now holds a presence. He has led Whisky events at such as a G20 Summit and the London Olympics, and last year was inducted into Keepers Of The Quaich in recognition of his service to Scotch and Scotland.

JAMIE DIMOCK – THE ST ALBANS WHISKY CLUB

Hi I’m Jamie – I’m on a mission to make whisky more fun and eradicate snobbery.  I’m looking for the perfect whisky cocktail and I think its OK to add ice. For the last few years I have been bringing whisky exploration to The St Albans Whisky Club which I set up in 2016 on Facebook in Whisky Adventures.  Last year I set up my own indie bottling co “The Waxhouse Whisky Company” with our first release coming out last December. I’d tell you what my favourite whisky is, but the truth is it changes all of the time. I hope you enjoy the festival! Dan has worked so hard to bring this line-up together and there are some fantastic whiskies in the line-up that I know you will enjoy!