• The Balvenie Craft Bar

A drinking argument is even more compelling when it is the drinks you are arguing about.  So slightly tipsy, my friend and I kept swapping tastings, disagreeing about which we liked best and whether one of us had them in the wrong order.

We were at the Balvenie Whisky Craft Bar.  A pop-up bar set-up for Good Food Month, this little place will not be around for long.

The principle is simple.  Craft whisky goes with, well, crafts.  Tables, bowls, even the glasses have been handcrafted so that you can admire the works while tasting.

We tried three varieties against each other: a 12 year old double wood, a 15 year old single barrel and a 17 year old double wood.

Image courtesy of The Balvenie Craft Bar

I liked the nose and flavours of the 12 with a creamy finish.  My friend, who is much more the whisky drinker than I, preferred the 17, which smelt like vanilla ice-cream but tasted too strong for my liking.

A special treat was a 21 year old whisky which had been put in whisky barrels and then finished in ones that used to hold port.  The idea is that the sweetness of the port would seep through.  It smelt softer.  My friend really enjoyed this one, thinking it would be too strong but finding it smooth out which she expressed with spirit fingers in an animated fashion.

The crafts were beautiful and I especially appreciated the wood work by Kim Torma which was sanded into calming curves, although somehow still functional.  Metalwork by Cinnamon Lee was also impressive.

To accompany the whisky and art were delicious artisan cheeses and enjoyable live music.

Image courtesy of The Balvenie Craft Bar

The Balvenie Craft Bar’s closing night is 14 November, from 4:30pm to 10:30pm.

Balvenie Craft Bar
Zenith Interiors
179 Flinders Lane
Melbourne 3000
02 9994 4416