Shanghai to down its best whisky shot

Shanghai to down its best whisky shot

The world’s largest whisky festival aims to make converts in the rice wine city

Whiskey tastingDitch your rice wine habits and learn to drink like a socialite at Whisky Live Shanghai.

From obscenely expensive cars to designer clothes, Chinese consumers have proven their insatiable love of luxury. Now the country's big spenders will have a chance to learn how to drink pricey whisky like a Scot.

The world’s major whiskey tasting show, Whisky Live & Fine Spirits (Whisky Live in short), returns to Shanghai for the third straight year on September 2-3 at the Intercontinental Hotel Puxi.

Held in 16 countries, the event claims to be the world's largest celebration of Scotland's national beverage.

It aims to educate everyone, from novice sippers to glass-swirling connoisseurs, in important aspects of the spirit, including all of its baffling terminology.

Whisky Live Shanghai will include more educational programs than a typical beverage fair. Participants can check out mixology demonstrations, tasting sessions and a DIY blending zone.

Apart from that, Shanghai whiskey enthusiasts will be able to try 30 brands and 50 whiskys. Find a full list of exhibitors here.

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“We tend to pick global cities [to host the event] ... Paris, New York, London, Tokyo," says Stephen Notman, director of the Shanghai Whisky Live. "Shanghai is a dynamic global city that warrants a platform to come in and do whiskey business.

“Over the last three years there have been major changes in the whiskey [business] in China. There are now pockets of interest all over Shanghai that are starting to really appreciate whisky, like Southern Cross and Malt Whisky Bar.”

China is one of the world's largest whiskey markets. The country drinks up US$33 million worth of Scotch a year -- around 2.5 percent of global sales. Industry experts expect that number to double in the next five years.

Whisky Live & Fine Spirits, Intercontinental Hotel Puxi (上海浦西洲际酒店), 500 Hengfeng Lu, near Tianmu Xi Lu 恒丰路500号, 近天目西路, normal ticket RMB 150, VIP ticket RMB 900 (including personal tutorials, exclusive tastings and free bottle of whisky ), 2-7 p.m., www.whiskeylive.com

Jane Leung is a Hong Kong-born Canadian who has dabbled in the mixed media bag of film and television production, the professional sports industry and magazine publishing. 

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