Tuesday April 1 2014

High society mentored on single malt whisky and food pairing

Host Swithin Munyantwali (M), with guests Kwame

Host Swithin Munyantwali (M), with guests Kwame (L) and his wife Benin Ejalu. PHOTO BY BRUNO BIRAKWATE 


It all started as a mere conversation between two friends who bumped into each other earlier this year while on personal business in Mombasa. The two individuals were Swithin Munyantwali, a prominent lawyer and businessman and Nyimpini Mabunda, the youthful Managing Director of Uganda Breweries Ltd.

“I suggested to Nyimpini that we should celebrate whisky drinkers in Uganda. That we should introduce other premium whisky brands besides John Walker,” Swithin told guests at the first ever Single Malt Whisky dinner series that he hosted at his Humura Resort on Saturday evening.

The guests at the dinner included only 30 friends and business associates that were chosen and invited by Swithin. Notable among them were businessman Amos Nzeyi, Dr Martin Aliker and his wife Camille, Uganda Cricket Association chairman Dr Kato Sebale, NCR Computers Chairman Abhay Agarwal and Kwame and Benin Ejalu.

Four other outstanding individuals have been chosen to host the other dinners in due course.
Mr Mabunda, the UBL MD told us that the dinner series are meant to celebrate the hosts’ outstanding personal achievements as well as signal the evolution of luxury living within the Ugandan market.

Upon arrival, guests were greeted by live jazz music played by Isaiah Katumwa while the whisky expert Bernard Gutman, welcomed each guest with a glass of 14-year-old Clynelish whisky.

There was excitement as the team of whisky tutors led by a bagpiper Charles Canning from the Cape Town Highlanders and Alan Shuman, a member of the keeper of the Quiach Society, made a grand entry in traditional Scottish outfits.

The tutor introduced guests to the five stages of whisky appreciation; colour, body, nose, palate and finish.
Guests were treated to a sumptuous five-course dinner, with each course paired with a fine single malt whisky.

The menu included; stuffed courgettes with Glenkinchie; crispy fried chicken with chilli & coriander butter served with Cragganmore; braised lamb shank with pesto mash spring onions & rosemary and 12-year-old Caol Ila; Crème Brulee with 10-year-old Talisker, and; Roquefort cheese on a baguette paired with Lagavulin.

After dinner, the bagpiper took to the floor and played a few songs before he was joined on stage by Isaiah Katumwa. It was a fusion of skills as the two entertainers played Amazing Grace to the guest’s delight.

Swithin invited his guests to the bar area and they enjoyed the rest of the night. Guests, left at leisure, each with their choice of single malt whisky to continue the tradition they had been initiated into.