Engraving For the Holidays
by Alain Gayot
Jeff Hoyt and I headed out to Craft last night to celebrate the launch of Johnnie Walker’s first ever Los Angeles-area bottle engraving studio. Hosted by Edward Adams, Master of Whisky for Johnnie Walker, the evening included a masterful dinner by chef Matthew Accarrino and multiple whisky samplings from the prestigious spirits brand. As we arrived, we were greeted with Ginger Ale, Grand Marnier and vanilla liquor were blended with Johnnie Walker Red Label in three different drinks with the later becoming the evening’s favorite.
The meal started with Maine lobster tortellini paired with Johnnie Walker Green Label, a blend of four mature single malt whiskies aged for at least 15 years. The second course was a well executed Muscovy duck breast with whiskey sour cherry puree, Tokyo turnips and Savoy cabbage in a mustard sauce paired with Johnnie Walker Black Label. The third course was a very ambitious and very good bacon-wrapped, dry-aged sirloin and short rib with smoked shallots, Yukon Gold potatoes and salsify, delivered with the only single malt from the Isle of Skye, the peaty 18-year-old Talisker.
Shifting to things sweet, we were made to coat our worked-out palates with a dark chocolate mousse and slowly inject frosted sips of the indulgent Johnnie Walker Gold Label before swallowing the rich mixture. Our hosts saved the best for last, offering the smooth and mellow Johnnie Walker Blue Label in simple sipping glasses. Johnnie Walker Blue Label is a blend of the very rarest whiskies from the Scottish house.