Distillery tours have been halted, people are quarantined at home, and bartenders are out of work as much of the hospitality industry has been shuttered — a perfect storm of hardship that is leading distilleries to find ways to both support the hospitality community and new forms of engagement with customers. WhistlePig has joined the effort by launching a blend-at-home contest in conjunction with online alcohol retailer Flaviar.
Last week, Flaviar members were able to order their own HomeStock kits which they are using to come up with their own WhistlePig blend. Participants will submit their own recipes online, and the top three contenders will be blended online in a live session by WhistlePig master blender Pete Lynch on Tuesday, April 28. The winning blend will be bottled and sold online as “WhistlePig HomeStock Whiskey, Blended Together, While Apart,” with 20% of the revenue donated to the United States Bartenders’ Guild (USBG) Foundation’s Bartender Emergency Assistance Program that will provide grants to bartenders who have lost their jobs due to the COVID-19 epidemic.
“The most important thing we can do right now is stay home,” said Lynch in a prepared statement. “By inviting people to blend whiskey at home, we hope to create a sense of community among fans, while raising some valuable funds for our friends in the bar industry. FarmStock has been one of our most exciting whiskey journeys, and we’re thrilled to partner with Flaviar to continue that story with HomeStock.”
The various whiskey components are pretty interesting considering the whiskeys that make up the WhistlePig range, which predominantly consists of 100% or 95% rye sourced from Canada and Indiana. The blending components participants have to work with here are a five-year-old, 100% wheat whiskey aged in dechar/rechar American oak (undisclosed source); a five-year-old, 100% barley whiskey aged in dechar/rechar American oak (undisclosed source); and a four-year-old rye whiskey distilled by WhistlePig and aged in Vermont oak with a char No. 3.
The live blending session on April 28 will be streamed on the Flaviar YouTube and Facebook channels, so even if you didn’t get a chance to participate this should be an interesting whiskey event to tune into — and consider buying a bottle to help support the USBG.
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