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Dr John Hawkins

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Tuesday in Zurich: Widder Bar

Posted on 2009/10/15 08:09:25 (October 2009).

[Tuesday 13th October]
Today fared much better at the Zurich office than the previous day, it was a completely different theme entirely unrelated to my current project and again I guess I shouldn't really write anything about it here, but I ended the day feeling very satisfied with the results.

I didn't fancy another boring night in at the corporate accommodation, and disappointingly none of the people I had been to see at the Zurich office had invited me out for a drink in the evening. So instead I headed out for the evening by myself, to try out a bar I had found simply by typing "whisky bar zurich" into the ever excellent Google Maps.

So I spent the evening at the excellent Widder Bar sampling malts from their impressive selection. Highlights included an old Signatory bottling of Brora (shortbread and demerera sugar), a Swiss single malt - a 4 year old Rugenbrau (dried fruits; reminiscent of a Karuizawa) and the piece de la resistance was undoubtedly the Widder Bar's own Laphroaig bottling (less of the characteristic medicinal notes but huge raw elemental peat, yet surprisingly refined and feminine - more like a Caol Ila). I also tried the renowned Ardbeg Mor there which alas I couldn't really appreciate as at that point an inconsiderate American had decided to stand right next to me at the bar and smoke a cigar. Ho hum.

Spent a while chatting to the bar manager who was very friendly and really knew his whisky - a lovely chap. I ended up leaning on him for recommendations towards the end of the evening and he exhibited that impressive trait of a real whisky expert; analysing what I had been drinking so far and choosing whiskies that were sufficiently similar to be to my taste, but equally sufficiently different so as to keep things interesting. The atmosphere was also really nice in this place - very sophisticated and upmarket but also very friendly - a couple of the other customers started talking to me at various points during the evening (including a Canadian guy who proclaimed that whisky was invented in Canada - yes, ok whatever you say). Oh and there was a piano player too. All very nice indeed.

A very pleasant way to round off my trip to Zurich.

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