*rugenius in food+drink playful , 13:46

Johnnie Walker’s Symphony in Blue- 09.17.14

jblue.jpg Here’s the latest from NOTCOT’s London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw.

This afternoon, London’s Merchant Taylors’ Hall was taken over by Johnnie Walker in celebration of Johnnie Walker Blue Label, Symphony in Blue. The afternoon was a delectable experience filled with a playful celebration of whisky including glacial ice, burning barrels, a fog of whisky, flavor organ and a banquet that was literally all singing and all dancing. An enormous production from Done and Dusted and Bompas & Parr.

Finding our way to the hall with a little trip back in history.

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The first of many fiery barrels!

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The beautiful Johnnie Walker Champagne Scotchtail with a saffron-soaked sugar cube coated in gold dust. Beautiful and delicious.

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“The Whisky Woodland” within the hall, complete with coopers (barrel makers) at work and the chance to char a barrel with a flame thrower!

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From fire to ice, we donned furs to enter the chilly ice bar and taste 10,000 year old glacial ice from Greenland’s Sermeq Kujalleq glacier.

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For a touch of Whisky Weather, we were whisked into a storm of spatialised whisky complete with fog, mist and lightning.

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The Crystal Chamber in partnership with Baccarat pairing glasses with their contents.

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The Blending Parlour, a chance to find out more about the blending process from one of the team’s master blenders. It was fascinating to hear more about the notes in whiskies and how they are interact and age as well as developing consensus and favorites among blenders!

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The bell announces time to feast!

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Tables set for a feast for all the senses.

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Poached Scottish Salmon and Lobster in a sour cream caviar sauce, one of many treats. The elaborate menu echoed the notes of the whisky (Fruit, Spice, Peat, Malt, Fresh, Wood and the Blend). The last of which consisted of a sous vide style Bresse chicken poached in a pig’s bladder (delicious!).

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A procession of desserts, topped by an ice tiger. The impressive display weighed over 100kg and desserts included a gold label marbled jelly, treacle tart and ice cream in some gorgeous flavors: olive oil, gold leaf and saffron, pistachio and rosewater, and plum spiced with cinnamon, cloves and five-spice.

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Once the plates were cleared, the show began in earnest with an all singing, all dancing cast and crew turning the tables into their stages and catwalks.

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The Flavour Conductor playing the many facets of Johnnie Walker with the help of composer Simon Little.

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Here come the drummers.

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Smoky barrels rolled up the tables.

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Dancing on the tables as the afternoon comes to an end.

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And of course, the signature walking man.

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