Under the auspices of the 95th PITTI IMMAGINE UOMO, Degorsi Luxury Consulting on January 8, 2019 at Westin Excelsior Firenze, presented its 11th edition of SALON OF EX
Ken Lindsay- 24 Hours of Elegance
A special guest of the 24 Hours of Elegance was Ken Lindsay the international brand ambassador of CHIVAS, who held an exclusive VIP tasting at the White Palace.
Here is the story about the man behind this amazing brand.
How did you find yourself in the whisky business?
My background is marketing, for more than 30 years. I started in the scotch whiskey business in 1988 and joined Ballantine’s in 1990 as International Marketing Manager for Ballantine’s prestige range of luxury whiskies. So that got me into different category…..and when arrived I felt really comfortable. I was so excited about scotch whiskey being Scottish and living in Scotland it was a dream job.
What is your favorite whiskey and why?
My favorite whiskey of all time and it’s since 1990. it’s Ballantine’s 17 years old.,which is a beautiful luxury whiskey from the Ballantine s range. I was introduced to Ballantine’s 17 by the original Master Blender, the old Master Blender who was working there at the time. He introduced me on such a very nice way, when I taste it I thought my goodness this is the one. Since then I’ve tasted many other whiskey. I call it my desert island whiskey, If I’ll be stranded on the desert island I will have bottle of Ballantine’s 17 some ice, nice glass and some good music.
Have you ever witnessed the whole process of whisky making, and if so can you share your experiences with us?
I am very lucky that I live in Scotland, working for Chivas brothers and working with Ballantine’s . Beauty of making scotch whisky is totaly pure and natural product using only three ingredients green, malted barley and pure Scottish water from underground spring. With this simple three ingredients we can make lot of different flavors, different styles. Amazing quality of scotch whiskeys just by distilling and ageing these whiskeys in beautiful oak casks. It was made in Scotland for over 500 years, so by now we are pretty good. For me we produce the best whiskeys in the world: Ballantine’s and Chivas Regal.
Can you describe a typical day work?
My typical work day this week look like this I get up in the morning, get flight from Korea where I work for weekend, back to Scotland, arrive in Scotland Wednesday evening repack and take next morning flight to Belgrade to come to “24 Hours of Elegance”. Typical day will be working in different country, working with our sales teams and marketing teams and also doing a lot of training, presentations, whiskey tastings, sometimes media interviews like today. Also events like “24 Hours of Elegance”, I need to go to all around the world to presents our whiskey on events. Every day can be different, meeting different people and cultures, try to speak different languages … It’s an exciting job and beauty of it is that you can travel all around the world, wherever I go people love all products. For me it’s a big satisfaction when I see people from around the world, vintage cars, all enjoying with a glass of Chivas Regal Extra … That all brings people together.
Thanks to your job, you have the opportunity to travel a lot. What city left the best impression on you?
I am very lucky, because of my job I’ve visited more than 75 countries which is a lot. My first visit in South America was Brazil and the first city i visited was Rio de Janeiro. I fell in love with Rio it’s exiting country. I also love Asia I just come back from very nice holiday with my wife from Malaysia and Thailand. That was a dream holiday, people are extraordinary and friendly.I love Russia also I have opportunity to meet local people, who take me to local places, show me to prepare local food. It was such a exciting trip.
What is Chivas doing in terms of corporate social responsibility?
Chivas Brothers and Chivas Regal has a very strong in corporate social responsibility. We collaborate with many business, organizations around the world. One of the biggest and most successful collaboration is the Chivas Venture. To support the movement, we created the Chivas Venture, a $1million fund to search and support the most promising social entrepreneurs. Maybe delivering water to 3 million people to Africa, maybe delivering school equipment to young kids in Columbia. We have a great spokepersons like Javier Bardem, Halle Berry, Chris Evans and other well known celebrities. They are very keen to support this, and our slogan is „Win the right way“- we believe generosity and success go hand in hand.. Everybody wants to have success but to succeed in right way, you can generate benefits to other people and help local community with businesses enterprise , that not just me getting the benefit but the whole community and the country. It’s a very exciting project running for three years already. People who drink Chivas Regal enjoy our product responsibly, and like to believe they are contributing to a worthwhile initiative globally. The generous prize fund of $1 million means a lot to social entrepreneurs in a developing country and we are happy and delighted to support.
How did you get involved with “24 Hours of Elegance”?
We were at the very beginning partners with Aleksandar Djordjevic and his organization. Chivas Regal being a very elegant and very luxurious brand, absolutely is appropriate and the right whiskey brand to be associated with the “24 Hours of Elegance”. Everything from beautiful cars, watches, shoes, designers suits, art, bringing that all together with Chivas Regal is something what everybody within business can enjoy. Everyone in this community can enjoy luxury scotch. Every year I am happy to see beautiful vintage cars, elegant people, enjoying in White Palace, which is a fabulous venue.
After “24 Hours of Elegance” what is your next step?
I get a flight on Sunday after event back home to Scotland, then on Monday I travel up North to our distillery where I am hosting a group of 27 Korean guests, who are coming from their sales department, from our company PernodRicard Korea ….we are rewarding them for a very good sales last year. I will show them distillery, whiskey tasting, we will be having a dinner where we all dress like gentlemen in kilts. It will be a very good experience for them and for us also…..we gonna play music, dancing and singing … We gonna give them a true feel of Scotland and its culture. After that I am gonna go to play golf and relax.
Read next luxury article: Crème de la crème for yachting lovers - Kata Rocks SuperYacht rendezvous