England wouldn’t usually be our first choice to find whisky. Unlike our cousins in Scotland and Ireland, or even America, it’s a tipple we’ve long enjoyed but little made. We stick to brewing ciders and craft beers mostly. But what if we told you that there are over 40 distilleries in the country currently making English whisky.
The first in-person English Whisky Festival will celebrate this burgeoning scene later this month. On November 19, several English distilleries – from all over the country – will descend on Digbeth’s The Custard Factory to celebrate the country’s finest whiskies. After two years of celebrating online – having started in 2020 – The English Whisky Festival will finally take place in-person. At last giving guests the opportunity to sample whiskies from up and down the land under one roof.
Visitors to the festival can expect to sample amazing English whiskies and spirits from the likes of our city’s very own, Spirit of Birmingham, and Circumstance Distillery in Bristol. On top, you can join masterclasses that delve deeper into the themes of English whisky – and what makes it such a unique, rapidly growing scene. There’ll also be an onsite bar and whisky shop, to take some of your favourite bottles home.
You don’t have to be a whisky expert to attend, but it might help if you can palette the taste.
So whether you know Suntory from Glenmorangie, can tell the difference between a single-malt and a blended whisky or not. You’re bound to discover and learn something new about the exciting, up-and-coming market.
Confirmed distilleries include: Ad Gefrin (Northumberland), Bankhall (Blackpool), Bimber (London), Circumstance (Bristol), Cooper King (Yorkshire), Copper Rivet (Kent), Cotswolds (Warwickshire), East London (London), English Whisky Co. (Norfolk), Henstone (Shropshire) , The Lakes (Cumbria), Ludlow (Shropshire), Mercia (Staffordshire), Retribution (Somerset), Spirit of Birmingham (Birmingham), The Oxford Artisan Distillery (Oxford), Weetwood (Cheshire), Wharf (Northamptonshire), White Peak (Derbyshire), Whittakers (Yorkshire) and Wiltshire (Wiltshire).
The English Whisky Festival is hosted by Exploring English Whisky. Tickets for the event are £40, with add-on prices for the masterclasses, which you can purchase here.