On the first night of June, a line of 90 people stretched out the door of the Australian National Maritime Museum in Sydney’s Darling Harbour. Anticipation was building, as the group – exclusively made up of Broadsheet readers – waited to enter a very special event in celebration of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition.

Inside, they were greeted by ambient tunes courtesy of DJ and FBi presenter Isa. There were two whisky highballs on offer, thanks to host The Glen Grant: a mandarin reduction and fresh thyme, or one with hibiscus, ginger and Manuka honey. For the whisky lovers among us (it was a Glen Grant event after all), there were also bottles of the label’s Aboralis single malt and 10-year-old Single Malt Scotch to sample.

Once everyone had a drink in hand, Broadsheet senior campaign manager Ange Yu welcomed the crowd and introduced Uncle Michael West to conduct the Welcome to Country. Guests then heard from the museum’s acting deputy director, Michael Baldwin, as well as curator Emily Jateff before wildlife and conservation photojournalist Douglas Gimesy took to the stage.

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Gimsey took the attendees through his artistic process, speaking passionately about the environmental crisis and the importance of taking action now. Guests also heard from Daniele Pirotta from The Glen Grant, who spoke about whisky-making, and how its natural elements, like grain, peat and water, subtly influence the flavour. A small sample of The Glenn Grant Single Malt Scotch Whisky was passed around for a guided whisky tasting.

Then, it was on to the exhibition. Guests were free to wander around and enjoy the show at their own pace. More cocktails circulated, along with a food menu by Bella Brutta and LP’s chef Luke Powell. Standouts included the chickpea panise with anchovy, the kingfish gnocco fritto and a mortadella pizza bianco.

This article is produced by Broadsheet in partnership with The Glen Grant. The Glen Grant is an events partner for the Wildlife Photographer of The Year exhibition at the Australian National Maritime Museum.