Scottish Enterprise Awards 2019

7 | SME NEWS - Scottish Enterprise Awards 2019 With virtually all Whisky education undertaken by the various brands that sell the product, it’s hard to find an objective approach to this delicate art. Offering something a little different, the Edinburgh Whisky Academy brings its customers a high-brow experience to remember. We profiled this exciting new venture to find out more. Founder Kirsty McKerrow (who has worked as a brand ambassador for brands including Glenmorangie and Ardbeg and whose family is steeped in whisky heritage with her forefathers starting Mackinlays whisky in 1815) established the Edinburgh Whisky Academy in 2015 to fill what she felt was a vital gap in the Scotch Whisky education market. Offering brand neutral, certified courses which are written and delivered by industry experts makes the Edinburgh Whisky Academy unique. The Edinburgh Whisky Academy can credit a large amount of its success to the commitment to high quality in every area. With teaching located in a privately-owned historic house, catering of a high quality, and certified by the Scottish Qualifications Authority, with all four of their courses verified to match, there’s no room for complaint from candidates. The experts teaching the course bring with them a wealth of information about the topic, building in a personal connection that draws their students into the real heart of the matter. What this company offers is an authentic experience at a premium level. Targeting the whisky and hospitality industries has proven to be the right step for the Edinburgh Whisky Academy, as they have gained the opportunity to train brand ambassadors and sommeliers from a number of high-profile comp- anies. This demonstrates how the impressive reputation of the company has spread, bringing in a wide range of people from within and outside the industry. The benefit of the location and the nature of the course is that there is a very friendly atmosphere. Candidates are able to leave not only with a greater whisky knowledge, but with positive relationships established with other enthusiasts and professionals. World-Class Whisky for them to come to Edinburgh. These plans are well in hand, with their first tier of education (an online Introduction to Whisky Certificate) already launched, and partners lined up in India, China, Germany and Turkey. A recent visit abroad to China proved a major success and the Edinburgh Whisky Academy intend to run a course in a new market yearly. As more and more people come to visit Scotland, drawn by its beauty and heritage, it seems obvious that the Edinburgh Whisky Academy will grow with it. Looking beyond the familiar Edinburgh surroundings, it’s clear that there is a global interest in the peculiar qualities of whisky, and it is this peculiar attraction that has allowed the team at the Edinburgh Whisky Academy to make their business such a success. Contact: Ian McKerrow Company: Edinburgh Whisky Academy Web Address: Telephone: 07809426771 Being based in Scotland is an advantage to the Edinburgh Whisky Academy, partly because of its location in Edinburgh – a major tourist destination in and of itself. Another positive is the nature of Scotch Whisky, with no other product, anywhere in the world, so associated with its country of origin. This allows the name of the business to resonate with the customer in a way that is totally unique amongst products and brands. To the team at the Edinburgh Whisky Academy, the status of Scotland as a high-quality and trusted nation has allowed them to capitalise on any uncertainty in the markets. Whisky itself is undergoing a period of growth itself, especially with regards to single malts being marketed as a luxury product. This is reflected in the number of distilleries that have started up, with whisky tourism amongst these remote distilleries providing a major economic boost to the areas they can be found in. Moving forward, the Edinburgh Whisky Academy aims to forward its goal of pioneering whisky education standards on a global level. The plan is to achieve this with an online learning platform, alongside taking their education courses to an international audience, as opposed to waiting