Interview with Dan Hvitman
This is the seventh inter view in a serie of inter views with people who love whisky. This time I interview Dan Hvitman (profile) , a pro sommelier and author of the Swedish blog, Wine & Spirits where he writes about wine, whisky, beer & other spririts. You can also find Dan on Twitter as @was_sommelier. Please clap your hands for Danne!
Tell me a little about yourself?
I have more than 20 years experience in the restaurant business. Worked as executive chef for several years, but also as restaurant manager. Food and beverages has always inspired me. Recently, I specialized myself in beverages, primarily wine. I have trained myself to a sommelier. I also have a well visited blog (swedish), where I write about wine and other kinds of beverages.
How did it all start, what’s your first experience of whisky?
It has always been a passion for me to combine food and beverage. It all started when I were at a convention several years ago where we combined chocolate and whisk(e)y.
What’s your favourite and worst whisky experience and why?
I’m still learning about whisk(e)y and have not had this experience yet. I’m still very open minded about all whisk(e)y. But obviously Ardbeg Single Cask 1976 made me very pleased.
What’s your opinion on todays whisky rating systems (1-10, 1-100, stars etc.)?
I have really no direct opinion about it yet. If it can help consumers to find good whiskies, I think that all scales are probably good.
How do you taste whisky? Do you use water, and when?
Yes, I use water, if necessary. Usually with single cask whisk(e)y which have cask strength just to get the right flavor.
How is the whisky climate? (bars, clubs, events & magazines etc.) in your country?
Here in Sweden it seems that we have created a good atmosphere in the typical bars. It gives the typical whisk(e)y drinker great opportunity to find their favorite whisk(e)y.
What’s your opinion on different cask-finish expression?
I like the experiment with cask character. It gives us more choices to enjoy whisk(e)y.
What is your opinion on the whisky snobbery that some are talking and writing about?
Of course there are whisk(e)y snobbery, but it will always do. As long as you are open minded I think that you will have the best chance to get satisfied. Don’t listen to much what people say, just try and make your own opinion.
Where in the world would you like to go to try whisky? Why, do you have a favourite place, distillery or country?
What whisky trends are you seeing, how does the future look like?
Bruichladdich is one of many destilleries that experiment a lot, they are really into visions and I like it. I think that we will see more strange things coming up on the market. And it will be fun products.
Did you enjoy the interview? If you would like to be part of the serie or know someone else who would, please let me know.