If employers of avid whiskey drinkers notice a spike in non-attendance, here’s why: till the end of August, the postal hall of the State Buildings has transformed into a pop-up whisky bar, The Dram.
The bar will host a seven-week program of whisky-themed events and masterclasses, organised by Long Chim international beverage director James Connolly.
“Each week will feature unique whiskies from around the world,” says Connolly. “The masterclasses are designed for all. If you’re new to whisky you’ll learn a lot. And if you’re an expert there will be a lot of new releases and rare bottlings that most haven't seen before.”
In addition to drinks, the program will also explore the synergies between whisky and food – the pairing of bold, heavily peated Islay whiskies with briny oysters, a nod to the island’s location in the North Atlantic.
“Whiskeys have natural acidities that work really well with specific foods,” says Connolly. “We’ll also have cured meats that work really well with smoky scotches.”
It’s not all big, peated whiskies, though. Lighter, malt-driven styles from Japan and North America will also be celebrated.
“Japanese whisky is a great gateway for people who are new to whisky,” says Connolly. “They’re very clinical in approach so the style is very refined. It’s also almost impossible to get some of the stock without an allocation. Japanese whisky has seen one of the biggest growths in the industry.”
To merit Australia’s recent rise in the whisky world, special guests Cameron Syme (Limeburners), Nick Baxter (Archie Rose) and Mark Affleck (Whipper Snapper) will be on hand to share stories and spirits from their respective distilleries.
The pop-up will also offer boilermaker sessions: whisky chased by beer. Whiskies will be partnered with a range of craft beers supplied by Feral: think bold scotches with richer beers, such as IPAs and smoked porters.
Outside formal tastings, the bar will be open for walk ins and offer a weekly changing whisky menu and food by Post. Spanish architect Patricia Urquiola has also designed a temporary installation that transforms the postal hall into a cosy lounge.
The Dram runs till September 1. The full program is available online.
The State Buildings, St Georges Terrace & Barrack Street, Perth
(08) 6168 7780
Tue - Sat 4pm–late