Whiskey A Go-Go

A bitterly cold Sunday night of a long weekend made for the perfect setting for a whiskey/whisky tasting at The Urban Grape in Chestnut Hill this past weekend. While most wine stores close up shop at 6:00 on Sundays, The Urban Grape sometimes closes and then reopens to host special pop up events, complete with great food and drinks and a nice bit of education on the beverage of the day. Normally I am too lazy to go out on a Sunday night, but, long weekend or not, I find it a great way to help stave off the Monday blues until Monday actually arrives.

Whisk(e)y A Go-Go featured whiskey expert Matt Chivian talking about nine different whiskeys that hailed from the US, Ireland, or Scotland. Food pairings were made by The Gallows, and they were not just great with the whiskey, but they were winter comfort food at its finest.

Urban Grape

whiskey tasting

Here’s the lineup:

American Whiskey by Michter’s American Whiskey Co.

“Single Barrel” Straight Rye Whiskey (Kentucky) paired with Deviled Eggs w/House Smoked Fish

“Unblended” American Whiskey (Kentucky) paired with Apple and Cured Ham Mince Meat Pie

“Small Batch” Bourbon Whiskey (Kentucky) paired with Pulled Pork Sliders



Irish Whiskey bottled by Cooley Distillery

Slane Castle “Premium Blended” Whiskey (Ireland), paired with GreatHill Blue Cheese, Honey, Citrus on Brioche

South End Gallows

Single Malt Scotch Whiskey Bottled by Gordon & MacPhail

Benromach Distillery 10 year (Speyside)

Ledaig Distillery 16 year (Isle of Mill)

Pulteny Distillery “Old Pulteny” 21 year (Highland)

          Glenrothes Distillery 30 year (Speyside)

The above were paired with The Gallows’ Scotch and Barley Soup with Oxtail, while the below was a slightly sweet, slightly gingery dessert all on its own.

Dunkeld Atholl Brose Scotch Whisky Liqueur


As you can see, the tasting lineup was pretty spectacular, and it featured some really tasty, well-balanced choices. My personal favorites were the Slane Castle Whiskey, which is smooth and light, perfect for blending in cocktails as a rum substitute, the Benromach 10 year because of the earthy turf undertones that reminded me of a rainy Irish day, a hot whiskey, and a fireplace, and the Glenrothes Distillery 30 year because of it’s toasty, slightly sweet notes and lovely smoothness.

It was a great way to spend a Sunday evening with friends; I even got to catch up with blogger buddies from Beantown Eats! The Urban Grape does a fantastic job with every detail of their events, from choosing great businesses to partner with for delicious food pairings, to important details like offering a coat rack for guests. The tickets for the whiskey pop up event were $15 each which, considering how much whiskey and food was available, is pretty amazing. Their events sell out fast, so keep an eye out!

Are you a whiskey/whisky fan? If not, what other spirits do you like for wintry cocktails?

Speaking of cocktails, I am finally checking out The Hawthorne tonight. Any suggestions on what to order?

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Tags: Boston, cocktails, events, Ireland, Scotland, Urban Grape, whiskey, whisky

  1. Michelle’s avatar

    I am not a whiskey fan. I just can’t get myself to enjoy it!


  2. Amie’s avatar

    Such a small world! I was there too… Not to sound stalker-ish but did you have a camera out (or were these cell phone photos?) I noticed someone w/ a camera and was like Hmm, I wonder if someone’s going to be blogging this! Haha – great event, it was my first time to Urban Grape and I’m glad I checked it out :-)


    1. traveleatlove’s avatar

      I did have my camera out! I am so sorry that we missed each other!


    2. Jon’s avatar

      Awesome recap! Urban Grape, The Gallows and Matt did a great job with the whole night. So great to see you and to meet Eric. And yes, I love whiskey. It truly is the “water of life”. See you tonight!


    3. Daisy’s avatar

      What a great event. I enjoy whiskey and the gallows food. (they just so happened to be my post today!) I’m excited to see what the Hawthorne has in store for us tonight!!


    4. Emily @ A Cambridge Story’s avatar

      I had no idea Urban Grape had events like this. I saw you tweeting during it and it sounded like a blast. I’m really warming up to whisky and dark rum drinks with just a hint of citrus. I’m sad to miss out on Hawthorne tonight!


    5. Lindsey @ BeantownEats’s avatar

      I thought Urban Grape did a great job! I’m going to be stalking their website for upcoming events. My taste for whisk(e)y is still growing, but I have learned that I generally prefer the peaty ones from Scotland.

      If you like Aviations, the one at The Hawthorne is one of the best I’ve ever had. See you tonight!


    6. Elizabeth’s avatar

      I’ve never been to Urban Grape. If it weren’t so far from me I’d go to their events.


    7. Raija’s avatar

      It was a great night! And your faves and my faves were the same!! Except I would add the Michter’s Small Batch Bourbon — it’s one of my faves!


    8. Megan’s avatar

      I’m getting better with whiskey in cocktails, but I definitely would never order it straight up. Sounds like a great event!


    9. Michelle Collins’s avatar

      I was never a whiskey fan until we went to a BCAE class called Whiskeys From Around the World a few weeks ago. It was really interesting, and I learned that there are actually good-tasting whiskeys out there (that won’t set my mouth ablaze).


    10. Hadley at The Urban Grape’s avatar

      Thanks for the great write-up! I thought it was a great event too. Even I found some whiskey that I like (TJ was thrilled!)!


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