The fine people of Weinquelle Lühmann in Hamburg offer good bottles and provide top service to their customers – six days a week, fifty-two weeks a year. But that is not all. Several times a year, they also host well-organised and recommendable tastings. On top of it all, they even put on their own whisky and spirits fair. This year, my girlfriend and I attended the event for the first time. Since we were invited to a birthday party later on that day, we made sure to arrive at the fair directly when the doors opened at 11 o’clock. That way, we still had three hours to explore the booths and try the drams. And man, there was a lot to explore and try!
All in all, over fifty exhibitors came to the Weinquelle headquarters in Siek to showcase their products. I focused on the ones trading in whisky. But those with different preferences could also discover a lot of other drinks; from rum and gin to wine and vermouth and everything in between. The 10 Euro entrance fee got the visitors their own tasting glass plus the chance to try all available beverages for free! Yes, that is right. Once you were in, you did not have to pay anything for the drams!
The selection was astonshing! I began with the Penderyn Rich Oak at the Schlumberger booth. Light and fruity, it marked a good starter. Next up, I tried a new Canadian whisky called Signal Hill, which will soon be introduced to the German market by Kammer-Kirsch. Drammers with a sweet tooth might want to note the name down already. In the following, I also revisited the lovely Redbreast 21yo (always great to stop by at your stand, Eyck) and discovered the new Compass Box Affinity, which is a blend from Scotch and calvados (cheers for knocking out this bottle, Gerd). Other worthy mentions were a 30-year-old Girvan from Douglas Laing’s Remarkable Malts range (available from my pals of Bremer Spirituosen Contor) and a 12-year-old Kilchoman bottled exclusivley for Weinquelle Lühmann (presented at the stand of Vibrant Stills). From the latter, I could not help but buy a full bottle.
As you have seen, my spiritual travels not only led me to Scotland and Ireland, but also to Wales, Canada and (partly) France. But I did not only gaze into the distance. During the nice chat I had with Finch’s master distiller Hans-Gerhard Fink, I learned more about this German distillery. With a low six-figure output per year, it produces significantly less alcohol than the smaller units in Scotland, such as Edradour or Benromach. However, it is still the most productive whisky distillery in Germany at the moment. Finch’s motto is “From the field to the glas”. It refers to the fact that Finch self-grows all barley and other grain for its whisky. The water source is also located on the farm belonging to the distillery. Whether or not they cultivate their own yeast, I forgot to ask. From the various expressions they had on offer, I tried the elegant Distillers Edition and the sweet Corn Edition. Both were highly enjoyable and convinced me to keep an eye on Finch from now on.
When my girlfriend and I left at 2 pm, I took a glass of Octomore 10yo with me to enjoy on the 20-minute walk to the train station. I figured, this super-peaty Islay malt would make for a good finale. By the time of our departure, the fair was already pretty crowded. But I did not mind this at all. Some of the whiskies I drank that day waited several decades until they were ready to be savored. So it surely did not hurt to wait a minute or two before I could order them. All in all, Weinquelle Lühmann’s annual whisky fair 2019 was a full success – the concept was great, the organization was smooth, the attendance was high and the drinks were good. Even the weather was swell! If nothing comes in between, I will definitely be back next year!
Weinquelle @ Web: https://www.weinquelle.com/
*** I got kindly invited to the event by Weinquelle Lühmann. ***