The hop and scotch industry
Single-malt whisky expert Ian Logan has said he is confident Dubai’s hospitality workforce is knowledgable enough to deal with growing customer demand for high-quality spirits.
The Scotsman’s role with alcohol giant Pernod Ricard sees him travel the world as an international brand ambassador for Chivas Brothers.
Speaking exclusively to Caterer Middle East at a recent training session for Starwood’s Dubai staff, Logan said he considered the city “a unique market”.
“There’s nowhere else in the world where so many places are opening up in such a short time,” he noted.
“We’ve spoken to bar people in Dubai and they want to know how to pick out the aromas and how to serve the product; they are very responsive to instruction and keen to learn.”
Logan, whose main focus is the Glenlivet range, added: “I am involved in new product development, developing and fomenting training programs, choosing casks for bottling, looking after guests in Scotland and coming to places like Dubai to pass on my knowledge.”
Logan pointed to passion and experience as essential attributes in developing a sound knowledge of whisky.
“It’s all about experiencing different things; there are no right answers or wrong answers, it’s a very personal thing,” he explained.
“You cannot learn by reading a book; you have to pick a glass up, put you nose in and smell the aromas.”
Although fear of recession is lingering around the beverage market at the moment, Pernod Ricard are set to continue production at current levels.
“You’ve got to constantly review your range,” commented Logan.
“We brought the 25-year-old Glenlivet to the market two years ago, which was all made possible because we continued distilling during the last major economic slump of the 1980’s. So this is an experience we will use to encourage future production.”