Throwing a party for your girlfriends and stocking up on wine? Time for an update. The hottest spirit among women in the capital now is whiskey. Contrary to popular perception, women in the city are taking to the spirit and how! Case in point, the popularity of a whiskey club exclusively for women at a city five star.
Spirit of Nero at the Le Meridien is a club of women whiskey drinkers who meet once every two months for a taste of their favourite spirit. Such is the growing popularity of this exclusive club (which so far, you can join only by invitation) that the club, which started with about 79 members, now boasts of a total strength of more than 270.
'It is a myth that women do not drink whiskey. In fact, they drink whiskey a lot. The drink is elegant, and has history, romance and legacy associated with it — all that is alluring to women. It is an expression of power,' says Meena Bhatia, vice president-operations and marketing, Le Meridien, New Delhi. 'We wanted to break the stereotype of Black Label with chicken tikka,' adds Bhatia, who started the club.
The club had its first session in March 2011. at every session, there are experts who take the women through a journey about the spirit, teaching them a thing or two about pairing it with different kinds of cuisines and how to serve the drink. The club also tries to bring in other learning experiences. For instance, the last time they members met up, Spirit of Nero did a collaboration with a cosmetics company which gave the members information about co-relation between perfumes and personality types.
The club experiments with new concepts and themes around which whiskey appreciation has been done like an afternoon of American barbecues. 'We are now looking at doing more interesting concepts, give a new perspective, a new discovery for members each time we come together,' says Bhatia.
Members of the club belong to diverse industries and age groups. There are diplomats, designers, mediapersons, housewives — all above 30 years. 'Basically, strong women from different fields who enjoy the drink and good conversation,' says Bhatia. For every event, the hotel brings out different whiskeys — it could be Japanese whiskeys or single malts. Whiskey ambassador Sandeep Arora takes them through.
So what does the future hold? 'We would like to explore and engage with novel concepts which has an element of discovery. We are strengthening our membership base and would like to see the club thrive as a strong entity,' says Bhatia.