Friday, June 8, 2018

#LIFESTYLE: THE Glenlivet CODE Dinner Launch

I recently experienced an evening with THE Glenlivet, unlocking their single malt, CODE. Hosted at their intimate private guest venue in the De Waterkant area in Cape Town, the dinner sought to education, entertain and indulge guests in a luxury experience of a limited edition offering by THE Glenlivet, CODE. My anticipation of the evening was already heightened from the ‘Save the Date’ email to the physical invitation received – all playing on the key messaging of unlocking the mystery behind the new product offering.

The venue was set up to create a low-key dynamic flow of activity. On arrival you received a complimentary drink with a code on the bottom, which was potentially the key you needed to unlock one of two safes that evening that hosted the special edition CODE edition offerings. Once registered, you could grab a snap shot of yourself against a banner wall, have the image printed as an actual photograph – which is very rare these days – and proceed to the bar and couch area, just adjacent to the dining section.

Eugene Lenford, Brand Manager of THE Glenlivet, opened the festivities with a polite introduction and handed over most of the talking to Isaac, the Brand Ambassador for brand across South Africa. One of the key things to come out from his brief engagement with us was the reasoning behind the bottle’s black coating – which included the idea of preventing consumers from tasting the whisky with their eyes, and instead, spend time with the whisky, taste it individually and focus and concentrate on finding your own flavour in the whisky. Something interesting to learn was that the brand has been around for approximately 200 years, with many other whiskies using Glenlivet as part of their name – therefore inspiring this brand when establishing itself calling itself, THE Glenlivet.

The décor was dark, tactile, moody; setting a running theme transparent of its origins form the whisky and the bottle design. Minimalist elements were nuanced with gold, bronzes and highlights of flora. The menus were a small, yet effective consumer participating – requiring us to scratch off the surface to discover our main course of Char Grilled Cutlet and Rolled Shank of Karoo Lamb with Baked Beef Short Rib, Stuffed Plum Tomato, Sweet Potato Empanada complemented with Fine Green Beans, Smoked Sweet Potato and Forest Mushrooms. Complimentary drinks were flowing through the night and there was a seductive selection of contemporary gqom and deep house music in the background.


Initially we were encouraged to experience CODE in our own ways. Two main offerings were set in play, neat with no ice, or neat with a serving of dry ice. My initial CODE tasting was neat: the whisky played out spicy and rather heavy on the palette. The aromas burst through the naval cavities and somewhat felt rather too strong for one who usually does not drink whisky. When I added the dry ice, the spice trail had simmered to a sort-of turmeric infused swell of liquid gold. The scents played lightly on the sinus and it was much more palatable for myself. For a more casual offering, you could have the CODE in a form of one of two cocktail options, as well.

Generally, the night was intimate and sublime. It definitely exuded and embodied the body, the CODE and the messaging it wanted to and needed to portray. It was a pleasant luxury experience, which is usually a drab experience with the standard formalities that usually come along with whisky tasting experiences. Nontando Mposa, Lifestyle Editor, was one of the lucky guests to walk away her very own bottle of CODE after cracking the lock on the safe!

If you’re a whisky lover, I definitely recommend getting yourself a bottle or two. If you’re just a collector and are looking for something new to buy for a special occasion, this is a great buy. It’s bound to be sold out in a couple of months.

#THEGlenlivet #CODE

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