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As I prepared to taste Octomore – a heavily-peated whisky from the Islay distillery Bruichladdich – I felt a warmth in my belly. And my toes. Pretty much everywhere, for that matter. After two hours of sipping on the best whiskies around – American, Scottish, Bourbon, Single Malt, Rye, peated and unpeated alike – I was prety satisfied. But when I brought the glass up and took a whiff, the nose on the Octomore nearly bowled me over. The smokiness was dizzying. The warmth in my belly turned into a roaring fire: the only cure was a sip. And then another. And repeat, over and again, all across the spaciousness of Wings Over the Rockies Air and Space Museum, host of this years WhiskeyX.

That experience, that fire in the belly and the need for a sip, was typical of our whole night at The WhiskyX, a mid-October whisky tasting festival in Denver. The surprises and delights kept coming from all sides. VIP lines, cigar patios, specialty tastings, and more.

One of the most fun tastings  of the night was at Vapor Distillery’s booth. Made at their headquarters in Boulder, the Ginsky — a gin aged in American Oak Barrels — tickled my tongue with hints of wood but had a sharp juniper bite. Vapor just launched the newest member of their spirit familiy with Boulder Bourbon.

If you’re bummed that you’ll have to wait another year for a chance to try dozens of whiskies in a single night, don’t worry: the Denver 2019 Winter Whiskey Festival is just around the corner on January 27! Not saying we’ll see you there, but we’ll see you there.


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