Brace yourselves, whisky lovers. The second International Scotch Day is right around the corner. Are you prepared to celebrate International Scotch Day? Well, here’s all you need to know about this grand day. International Scotch Day is a global celebration held in honour of Scotland’s whisky, arranged by Diageo. This 8th of February marks the 180th birthday of Diageo’s pioneer, Alexander Walker, son of Johnnie Walker – the world’s best-selling whisky, which certainly seems fitting for this day to be revered globally as International Scotch Day by Diageo.
The First Edition
It was only recently that the worldwide celebration was inaugurated-- last year on 10th February, thus bringing together whisky aficionados from all over the world, leaving a lasting impression on each of them. “Scotch is made all the way across in Scotland-- from the romantic west coast, through the whisky heartland of Speyside, to the vibrant urban central belt of Scotland, and though it is made here, it belongs to the world and is truly the world’s favourite whisky”, says Ewan Gunn, the global Scotch whisky master from Diageo.
The event invites communities from all parts of the world to raise a dram of scotch and commemorate the occasion together. The first edition of the event last year initiated by the global spirit giant Diageo had the company provide free access to all its Scottish distillery visitor centres. The Diageo Archive was also made open to the public for the very first time. Additionally, Diageo introduced a unique social media campaign-- the #LoveScotch initiative. This invited young millennials and social media enthusiasts to take a shot at sharing all things related to scotch whisky. Interestingly, the entire ‘global influencers’ team of Diageo that includes the famous Canadian model Coco Rocha, participated in the promotion of this event, along with actress Freida Pinto. Several activities took place in high-profile bars all around the globe. Dr. Nick Morgan, head of whisky outreach in Diageo, believes that while a ‘World Whisky Day’ already exists, scotch whisky specifically deserves its own day. And we cannot disagree! Steeped in passion, scotch whisky is time-honoured and favoured globally. Scotch whisky tops the important spirits’ chart in Diageo’s portfolio, with a global export count as high as 33 million cases every year. The staff, with a strength of nearly 30,000, was encouraged to share their ardour for scotch with the world. Exciting educational initiatives like Learn Scotch, a three-tier training programme including Malt Advocates, was introduced exclusively for the employees. The event raised a toast to the heritage, quality and authenticity of scotch whisky while focusing on the importance of persistent leadership and innovation in the industry to drive growth.
2018 Events Unveiled
International Scotch Day commemorates its second anniversary this year on February 8th with a series of events being held to mark the celebrations. Organized by Diageo, the event will host scotch aficionados from all over the world, who will come together to raise a dram. Post the first edition, Ronan Beirne, Diageo’s global brand marketing director, said, “Last year we launched International Scotch Day and its huge success proved what we at Diageo already knew – the world loves Scotch. This year is going to be even bigger, with celebrations taking place globally, from Scotch whisky tastings to opening the doors to Diageo’s archive in Scotland, free passes to distillery visitor centres and celebrity events in cities from Manila to Johannesburg”.
He added, “Hosting International Scotch Day for a second year shows how confident we are about the popularity of this truly international drink”.
So, what’s in store for the fans looking forward to the event? Well, Diageo is set to open up its archive at Menstrie, near Alloa, to the public. It is a spirit library possessing over 5000 bottles, so it is perhaps unsurprising that it is known to be the largest of its kind in the world. What’s more, the first 100 visitors can even avail of an exclusive guided tour free of cost. Scotch whisky distilleries like Talisker, Oban, Lagavulin and Dalwhinnie will be freely accessible by the public on 8th, 10th and 11th of February. Following the “#LoveScotch” initiative from the previous year, the hashtag seeks more people to get talking, thinking and drinking the liquid.
If you are a scotch whisky zealot, be a part of this mammoth event and behold history being made.