W+A had Bowman Brothers, Yellow Spot 12 Year and Talisker The Distillers Editions Double Matured.
Bar: Ri Ra’s The Whiskey Room, Georgetown, DC
Marketing Manager: Mary-Catherine
When we started this it was somewhat of an ambition to be “those guys” who all the local spots knew. Those guys who got into any bar at any time of day; who all the bartenders knew by name; who were walked into the kitchen or better yet the cellar, for private meetings with the owners. Well, that hasn’t quite happened. But there’s hope yet! For you see in the midst of Georgetown, DC lies a restaurant by the name of Ri Ra. It has great character and ambience. But that’s not what’s important here. What is important is what looms above this establishment; The Whiskey Room. What’s even more important is the fact that we were recently contacted by their marketing manager, Mary-Catherine. Somehow she found us through the power of social media (I didn’t bother to ask the details, I was just happy she did) and decided to reach out. Needless to say we were ecstatic. This was the beginning of that dream. Sure we’ve gotten to know a lot of bartenders since we started, but to be invited to tour an establishment, to forge that relationship with the staff, from the very beginning, based on nothing but the strength of what we do, that’s what it’s all about!
If you think I didn’t take her up on her offer… you’re dumb.
A mere 6 days after our initial contact, I was ready to pay Ri Ra a visit.
With counters and shelving straight from Dublin, and flooring that came from the same factory that made the wood for the Titanic, The Whiskey Room is home to over 300 bottles with an ever expanding collection. When it comes to Whisky + Architecture, doesn’t get sweeter than this. The history. The bottles. The… That! It is, in a word,
bloody fantastic. I’m told that their focus has now been to increase their bourbon collection, including the Pappy Van Winkle range as well as Old Weller. As such, Mary-Catherine offered me a taste of some of their more recently acquired bourbon – Bowman Brothers out of Virgina. I’ve had the Abraham which was amazing, and the Bowman didn’t disappoint. But alas, for those in the know, or those who do a quick Google search, this is an Irish Pub, and my bartender, Daithi (Dave if you prefer english), is from the Emerald Isle itself, so of course I had to dabble with some Irish.
And that I have. Big time.
Yellow Spot 12 year. The story goes that the Mitchell family would put dabs of paint on their barrels, each colour indicating a rough age statement of the whiskey within. Matured in 3 different casks, Yellow Spot had a lovely creamy taste to it with a hint of honey. Daithi tells me The Whiskey Room is the only place in DC that Yellow Spot is offered. I’ll have to verify that (I mean, Jack Rose… hello…) but who am I to question him? Anyway, I ended the night with some Talisker Distiller Edition; a great offering from the Isle of Skye.
All in all, Ri Ra’s Whiskey Room is a great place to experience some fine whisk(e)y. If it weren’t for the fact that it’s in Georgetown and thus out of the way a bit – there’s no metro access – and my wallet allowed, I would probably be there every
day week. However, I’m very much looking forward to building a relationship with Mary-Catherine MC (cause we’re cool like that now) and Ri Ra. After all, I just want to be somebody. I just want to go somewhere. And I’m ready to wake up and pay attention.