Scotch-Happy Sigel's Pours on the Hootch

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Sigel's is giving customers 68 opportunities to challenge their assumptions that they don't like scotch.

There's almost always a tasting happening at Sigel's, but a release touting next Wednesday evening's event at the 5757 Greenville Ave. store caught my attention because of the sheer number of whiskeys on offer. Distillery representatives will be pouring 68 different scotches, the majority of them single malt.

Admission to the Scotch Festival is free, although Sigel's is asking attendees to claim their "passports" in advance. A passport entitles a holder to one dozen samples (plus snacks and entry in a door prize drawing.)

"I would think this would be a perfect opportunity for a novice," says Joe Gavos of Sigel's, adding the distillery reps will be armed with information. "There will be lots of folks there who can instruct."

While seasoned scotch drinkers might want to construct a tasting of only 12-year whiskeys, or scotches aged in rum barrels, Gavos recommends savoring the line-up's diversity.

"Of course you should mix it up," he says. "Of course you should sample blended scotch, young single malts and older single malts."

The evening's roster includes a 21-year Balvenie, 21-year Glenfiddich, 25-year Tomatin and 25-year Chivas, in addition to the highly rated Springback 10, Old Pulteney and Glenlivet 21 Archive.

The party starts at 6 p.m. E-mail store01@sigels.com to RSVP.

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