Three Asian Brands Featured at World of Whiskies Expo in SF

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Over 1,400 people attended the 2012 Whiskies of the World. Photo by Nelson Chow.

Over 1,400 people attended the 2012 Whiskies of the World. Photo by Nelson Chow.

Bay Area whisky lovers are in for a treat as the 14th Annual Whiskies of the World Expo returns to San Francisco on April 6th at the Hornblower Yacht located at Pier 3 in the Embarcadero. Attendees will have the chance to sample a vast array of whiskies from all over the globe from some of the most renowned brands to lesser known independent bottlers.

“For the four years I’ve been running the event, I am elated to see not only the increase in brand participation – about 250 expressions will be presented this year, but also in the variety of whiskies as well as the depth and education of the consumer,” said Douglas Smith, the event director.

The expo draws over 1,400 people annually and this year will feature three Asian brands: Amrut, an Indian whisky presented by Purple Valley Imports, that has been qualified as the third best in the world by the world’s leading whisky guide – Jim Murray in his 2010 Whisky Bible, King Car Kavalan (Ian Chang) – which was only released a few years ago from the only distillery in Taiwan, and Anchor Distilling and Nikka, Japanese whisky, featuring both single malt and blended editions.

Elizabeth Staino, Associate Marketing Manager of Nikka says attendees will have the chance to taste two whiskies of exceptional quality – Yoichi 15-year old, which has a distinct aroma and body that is attributed to direct heating distillation in which pots are heated with natural coal and Taketsuru Pure Malt 12 – year-old, produced at Nikka’s Miyagikyo Distillery which is surrounded by mountains and sandwiched between two fresh water rivers, provides excellent humidity and air quality conditions for soft and mild malt.



For those preferring a fruitier whisky with notes of mango, green apple, and cherry, they should stop by King Car Kavalan’s booth.

“Kavalan whisky is a magical creation under sub-tropical weather,” says Erica Chung, Global Business Development/ Public Relations of King Car Kavalan Distillery. “The features of our whisky are fruity fragrances, round body and well-balanced mouth-feeling. Once you have tried it, I can assure you that it will be one of the most unique whisky experiences that you have ever had.”

Kavalan uses unpeated malts as its raw material. This three-year old whisky doesn’t taste young at all due to the faster aging process occurring in Taiwan’s warm and humid climate.

Chung notes a growing popularity of whisky among the young generation of Asian consumers and believes this is due to the drink’s complex fragrances and diverse characteristics.

She says whisky used to be seen as the spirit preference among people of older generations or those with a higher social status, but it is now a “global phenomenon” that people now in their 20s and 30s begin to appreciate.

Limited tickets to Whiskies of the World Expo, which includes a dinner buffet, are still available at


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