There are many things in the world that are complimented by a great whisky. Music is one. A good book is another.
Nothing goes better with fine whisky though than good company and conversation.
Nearly two years ago now I founded a whisky and book club in Calgary known as Liquorature. This exclusive little crew (only 7 of us by design…along with the occasional sit-in) meets once a month to chat about books, whiskies, rums and all things related. Each month has a dedicated host, who is tasked with providing a venue, selecting the whiskies (and a rum for our resident ‘caner), tabling a spread of edibles…and most importantly…picking a book.
Liquorature is comprised of gents ranging in age from late 20s to mid 50s. We’re all friends (and better friends because of Liquorature) and we all offer something unique to the collective. Membership is exclusive and closed. Any more than 7 or 8 in a room and conversation becomes a little…congested.
Our gatherings are generally the last Friday of every month. At the beginning of our evening we meet, greet and eat. At this point we trot out the bottles and our host will explain what we’re drinking and why he has picked these bottles in particular. Dramming begins in time with the inaugural question for the host…”so…why did you pick this book?” The conversation flows fast and free from here. Generally we’ll stay on topic for anywhere from an hour to two. When we feel we have exhausted conversation related to the book of the month…it is fair game. The levels in the bottles drop…the humor grows more candid…the evening blooms.
Our gatherings are a monthly highlight for all involved. They are an intellectual release and an opportunity to learn. To date we have tackled books such as ‘The Idiot’ (Dostoevsky), ‘The Namesake’ (Lahiri), ‘Atlas Shrugged’ (Rand), ‘Catch 22’ (Heller), ‘Blood Meridian’ (McCarthy) and ‘On The Road’ (Kerouac). We have even covered a book penned by a member’s brother (David John Watson’s ‘Geonesis’). There have been many other books so far, and there will be multitudes to come.
I can not recommend strongly enough that some of you start clubs like we have. The opportunities at informal whisky tastings are invaluable and enlightening. The chance to share great literature is rare. Combining the two…well…bloody brilliant.
Feel free to visit our sister site at www.liquorature.com to see just what we do and what we get out of it. Notes on our gatherings, book reviews, whisky reviews and rum reviews can all be found there. Drop a line.
If you want advice on starting your own club, feel free to email at email@example.com.