|When I started my whisky journey a few years back my first contact with a South African whisky guru was with WhiskyBrother a.k.a. Marc Pendlebury. His sheer passion and willingness to teach me about – and expose me to – whisky was a fantastic stepping stone on my whisky journey.
Our first face-to-face meeting was on a flight down to the Cape to attend the 125th anniversary of the James Sedgwick Distillery and the entire flight there and back was spent talking whisky. I must have learned more in those four hours with Marc than I had in the previous month on my own. He’s just that kind of guy: a lover of whisky that derives as much enjoyment out of sharing and educating others as he does in drinking the stuff.
|Marc has now taken his passion a bold step forward with the opening of WhiskyBrother, the first speciality whisky store in Johannesburg, located in Hyde Park Corner shopping centre. This is no ordinary bottle store. What we have here is a whisky mecca.
The attention to detail in the store design alone is brilliant – from the raw oak staves on the wall at the rear of the shop, to the polished copper front of the sales desk, to the canvas distillery prints on the walls of photos that Marc himself took on a trip to Islay. Clever use of empty whisky bottles to create a lighting feature and the presence of whisky casks on the store floor lend a great air of authenticity to the space.
As for the whiskies available… Wow!
WhiskyBrother is the only retail store in South Africa that has a bottle of Glenmorangie Pride 1981 for sale – a thing of beauty!
The list goes on and on. At the media launch there were roughly 70 different whiskies on the shelves. This represents around 20% of the stock that will be available in the WhiskyBrother store. That means we’re looking at having a whisky shop in Joburg with over 350 different whisky expressions for sale. That’s insane!
Does this all sound a little bit biased? Well it will. Marc is a good friend and worthy of your support. Head on over to his store in Hyde Park and then you too will know what I’m talking about.