So alas, due to the beckon call of the real world (i.e. my day job), this was my last day at then MCC. I started the day with a seminar entitled "Spirits in a Blind, or How Spirits Professionals Describe Spirits with Something Other than 'I Like it,'" with Doug Frost and Steve Olson. The duo took us through a blind tasting of a swath of spirits, teaching us some techniques for spirits tasting, and helping us talk through and identify some of the flavors we experienced with each tasting.
I followed up spirits in a blind with another event with a spirits tasting emphasis, "Discovering Le Cognac." Steve and Doug were joined by Dale DeGruff, Paul Pacult, Dave Wondrich, and Andy Seymour this time. After giving a background on cognac, its terroir and characteristics, they took us through a tasting of 8 different cognacs, and a few cognac cocktails as well. Cognac is a spirit I am less familiar with than some others, so this session and the prior were in many ways the most enlightening of the conference for me. You can find much of the information they provided on a site the participants helped put together, http://www.experiencecognac.com.
The last seminar I attended was "Tequila's Rebirth: Agave's Golden Age." Jaime Salas of Milagro tequila took us through the history of tequila, and its role as popular newcomer to the cocktail scene (as compared to other spirits).
Finally, I closed out the night with a trip to the Indy Spirits Expo at Soiree Nightclub. This event was jam packed with small producers and importers (and attendees!). I tried as many things as my remaining stamina would allow. Among the products that stick out in my mind now as great/interesting were Redemption Bourbon; Death's Door Gin; the Midnight Moon products from Piedmont Distillers; and several of the rums and amaros from the Classic and Vintage Spirits collection of Domaine Select Wine Estates. Also, while I didn't do as much sampling there because I am already familiar with many of their products, I must also give mention to Haus Alpenz, which in my opinion has a universally fantastic line of products that just keeps getting better and better.
Thus ends my daily wrap-ups from the MCC. I will post some more highlights, tips and tricks learned, and other tidbits from the event in the near future. First, I need to go through my notes, and more importantly, get some rest! But as a final note, I must say, this was a great event that was enjoyed by both a slew of industry folk and amateur enthusiasts alike. If you have the chance to go next year, do it!