The Space Coast is known for all sorts of festivals, from the Grant Seafood Festival to the Rocky Water Brew Fest. The Eau Gallie Art District’s Whiskey in the District is unlike any other.
The celebration, held this past January, offered exclusive whiskey tastings, as well as hors d'oeuvres from local restaurants.
Based on this inaugural event, the festival is sure to become an annual tradition. My husband and I are both whiskey devotees and were very excited to see what EGAD had in store. The results blew us away. There were over 30 types of whiskey, bourbon and scotch to try and never a wait in line. Attendance was capped at 300 people, which made for an intimate and laid-back experience.
A few of the whiskeys we know and love were available, such as the Woodford Reserve Double Oaked and the Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel Rye. However, there were so many variations new to me. One of my favorites was This is Stolen Rock & Rye, which had the smoothest honey flavor. Another new one to me was Michter’s Small Batch Bourbon.
Michter’s Master Distiller Pam Heilmann is the first woman to serve as a master distiller in the Kentucky Distiller Association. I hope to see more who follow her.
To ensure no one was drinking on an empty stomach, there were amazing appetizers made by restaurants in the area. Cryderman’s BBQ was a fitting treat alongside the whiskey. They served brisket shots, brisket tacos and a scrumptious bread pudding. Chez Quan’s featured a spicy stir fry, and Uno’s served up savory fish dip crostini. 28 North Gastropub made its first public appearance. With their saucy meatballs and a compressed cucumber salad, we are very excited about the new restaurant to open in Viera.
As if the amazing food and drink offerings weren’t enough, a luxurious hospitality tent was on site where we could relax. Ambient music was playing throughout the festival. A la carte bars and food trucks were set up for those without tickets who still wanted to enjoy the festivities. The rest of the arts district’s restaurants and bars got into the spirit as well, with special themed drinks like Traditionals’ old-fashioned-style sangria.
Be sure to look out for this event next year, as it is another truly unique Space Coast experience! ◆