Julia Nourney, lives in Germany. Working self-employed and independently in the spirits business for many years now, and a FRIEND of the Angels Whisky Club. Julia can guide tours in the German speaking countries in English and also German.
More grand stories from Julia, follow the links, have fun!
SWISS DISTILLERY WITH JULIA
Julie is currently writing a book about Germany whiskys. "Well, it is not only about Germany. I am writing about whiskies from all German speaking countries, therefore also about producers from Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. I guess I won’t be able to present all manufacturers because currently their number is growing on a monthly basis. But I think there will be around 100 producers in my book, lots of information about their technical equipment and their whiskies".
The book will be published Hopefully early summer 2011!
NOTE; Angels find the all ladies tasting idea really interesting, we will seriously consider this in the coming months. Grand idea Julia!
This interview was made by “Philip Reim from www.eyeforspirits.com”
How did your interest in spirits develop? I lived for many years in Franconia and in this area are countless small distilleries, so it is inevitable to come in contact with spirits. Apart from this I have always had a sucker for Grappa. When I met my husband he introduced me to the taste of whisky. First we tried a few styles then we bought some books, in our home bar were about 80 different bottles and voilá: Suddenly I had a new favorite pastime.
In 2007 the German gourmet magazine „der Feinschmecker“ and Glenfiddich awarded you as „whisky expert of the year“. How did it happen? It was really fun. First I joined their competition in the internet, followed by a theoretical and a practical round and then the final in Dresden, which I survived without loosing my nerves. Unfortunately this competition was held only five times and I missed the first four. I would love to defend my title but on the other hand I can still call myself “officiating” whisky expert of the year.
You are a “spirits consultant”, you work for distilleries, shops and consumers. What are you doing exactly? My job covers a broad field; it extends from tutored tastings for consumers and connoisseurs to seminars for gastronomy and trade. Another important area is the journalistic work. Apart from this, my current main topic is the consultancy service for manufacturers, this includes for example their positioning in the market, their product portfolio, suitable sources for base material, their technical equipment, etc. Usually I try to get familiar with the company first and spend some time on site to get an inside view of the production. My later recommendations are the result of the self-assessment of the producer, the evaluation of the consumers and my own impressions.
Whisk(e)y is ever since a male dominated area, at least by cliché. It is still unusual that a woman in this business is making a name for herself. Although it is changing slowly. One good example is Ardbeg with its master blender Rachel Barrie. It shows that women are at least equally successful in this field. Are you spotting a tendency of more femininity in this male domain of whisk(e)y? A women’s-only tasting is always worth to mark my calendar with a big red X, because it is so exciting to notice how different women deal with spirits. They approach to it in another way than men do. Although both genders are anatomically more or less the same, they seem to have a different sensory. In my opinion women deal more nuanced with aromas. It may be caused by the human history and the special role of women who were always in charge of their families’ health and well-being. However, I am delighted that more and more women are getting interested in whisk(e)y and other spirits and also find some career opportunities in this field. Maybe the whisk(e)y people are a bit conservative because in other spirit areas or the perfume business women are far more accepted.