DFS Group (DFS), the world’s leading luxury travel retailer, in partnership with Changi Airport Group (CAG) hosted its eighth annual edition of the prestigious Masters of Wines and Spirits in Singapore on Saturday, March 23, and Sunday, March 24. The highly-anticipated event showcased a curated collection of 140 of the rarest and finest whiskies, wines, cognacs and champagne from around the world.
The 2019 edition of Masters of Wines and Spirits was hosted at Singapore’s state-of-the-art complex, Infinite Studios. The event brought together over 1,000 local and international guests to celebrate DFS’ global travel retail leadership and innovation and its relationships with some of the world’s top wine and spirit houses. Guests were invited on an immersive and interactive journey to discover each of the brands through engaging video art installations and digital projections and an exploration of a wide variety of unique tasting experiences.
This year’s edition of Masters of Wines and Spirits explored the theme of “Masters at Work” – an homage to those who have acquired complete knowledge or skill in a subject, technique or artform and whose passionate commitment to their task continues to raise the bar for all others in the field.
During the weekend, DFS celebrated six masters across a spectrum of backgrounds including Brooke Supernaw of DFS as Master of Curation, Ewan Gunn of Diageo as Master of Whisky, Sarah Burgess of The Macallan as Master of Malt, Fabrice Papin of Château Lafite Rothschild as Master of Wine, Hidetsugu Ueno (below) of Bar High Five as Master of Cocktails and DJ Arthur Bray as Master of Music.
The event also featured four exceptional masterclasses to inspire and delight guests. Masters of Malt hosted by Sarah Burgess, Whisky Maker at The Macallan, saw guests taste premium and exclusive products such the Macallan Enigma and Macallan M Decanter.
Masters of Wine hosted by Fabrice Papin, International Brand Ambassador of Château Lafite Rothschild took guests through a full-range tasting of eight different Domaines Barons de Rothschild Châteaux wines. Masters of Blending hosted by Ewan Gunn, Global Whisky Master at Diageo, saw guests taste Coal Ila 35 year-old, Port Ellen 39 year-old and Johnnie Walker Blue Ghost and Rare.
Masters of Cocktails presented by Japanese mixologist and Spirited Awards World’s Best Bartender in 2016, Hidetsugu Ueno, took guests on a journey through the Japanese craft of spirits and a cocktail making session featuring whisky, sake and gin.
“This year’s Masters of Wines and Spirits once again showcases the extensive expertise of DFS’ merchant team in curating a world-class, bespoke collection and bringing together the world’s most sought-after wines and spirits and their brand ambassadors,” said Brooke Supernaw, DFS Group’s Senior Vice-President Wines, Spirits, Tobacco, Food and Gifts. “Our ability to present such an unrivalled and illustrious assortment of highly collectable and exclusive products would not be possible without the longstanding partners and relationships we hold dear.”
Said Teo Chew Hoon, Group Senior Vice-President for Airside Concessions, Changi Airport Group: “Changi Airport is honoured to host the latest annual edition of the Masters of Wines and Spirits in Singapore. Through our long-term partnership with DFS, we strive to delight our passengers with unique experiences and look forward to showcasing another outstanding and rare collection that can only be found at Changi,”
The 140-piece strong curation – featuring collectable items such as the oldest whisky ever released by The Macallan family, The Macallan 72 Year Old in Lalique – The Genesis Decanter; a set of three extremely rare vintages, The Château Lafite Rothschild Double Magnum Collection; and one of 1,500 bottles produced from the owner’s original stocks – Port Ellen’s 39 Year Old. The collection will also be showcased and celebrated at Changi Airport through a series of activations at Terminals 2 and 3 until the end of April.
DFS’ Masters of Wines and Spirits 2019 Collection
More than 80 Cognacs and Whiskies make up this year’s collection and include The Dalmore Constellation Vintage 1973 Drinking Cabinet, a very special bespoke and handcrafted cabinet commissioned by Richard Paterson, containing The Constellation Vintage 1973 (cask no.10). The Bunnahabhain 39 Year Old Spanish Octave Finish, an exclusive limited edition piece that forms part of the new Bunnahabhain Element Series which is crafted around the importance of various elements impacting on the character of each Bunnahabhain whisky, and the DFS Exclusive, Caol Ila 35 Year Old, boasting a fine freshness, cleanliness and precision for its age.
The Glenfiddich 45 Year Old, an exclusive blend for DFS Masters of Wines and Spirits, honours a whisky-making tradition dating back to 1887 and is a true reflection of the passion and innovative spirit passed down through all five generations of the Grant family. Possibly the last ever cask of Karuizawa Single Malt to be bottled in Japan is the Karuizawa Single Cask 1995. Port Ellen 39 Year Old is an elegant complex 39 year old Single Malt Whisky, unlocked from the heart of Port Ellen and is expertly married from a selection of ex-Bourbon and ex-Sherry refill casks.
Macallan presented The Macallan 72 Year Old In Lalique – The Genesis Decanter, the oldest whisky ever released by the Macallan family in commemoration of the opening of its new Distillery and Visitor Experience. Presented in a bespoke limited-edition crystal decanter handcrafted by Lalique, this exceptional whisky celebrates the collaboration of masters from across the fields of whisky, crystal, architecture, construction and craftsmanship.
Also from the Macallan family came The Macallan Fine & Rare Decades Collection. Created exclusively for DFS, the collection features five Fine & Rare vintages from 1938, 1947, 1954, 1965, 1976, each drawn from a single unique cask, denoting key historical events for the year.
From the world of wine, DFS presents more than 60 collections including The Château Lafite Rothschild Double Magnum Collection, a rare opportunity to collect three of the great vintages produced by the estate in big formats and The Château Mouton Rothschild Magnum Collection, a unique six-vintage magnum set of exceptional vintages from 1988 to 2009.
The Penfolds 2015 Bin 707 Cabernet Sauvignon Imperial is one of the world’s most iconic Cabernet Sauvignons and a true representation of the Penfolds ‘House Style’ and has shown its ability to age with grace and finesse since the first vintage in 1964. All great wines begin with a great site, and the Continuum Tim Mondavi Library Vertical Selection is a unique collection offering an opportunity to enjoy a vertical flight of Continuum vintages from 2010 through 2015.
Giving reason to celebrate is the Rare Le Secret Magnum Vintage 1997 With Emerald, Ruby, Sapphire. Inspired by the muse of both Maisons, Marie- Antoinette, Queen of France, Rare Le Secret High Jewellery is royally embellished with a one- carat precious stone, interwoven golden bands set with 510 diamonds. Presented in a majestic box, this spectacular edition has been for more than 20 years in the cellar of Régis Camus, Rare Champagne’s Cellar Master.
DFS Masters of Wines and Spirits is part of the DFS Masters Series, a signature programme of exhibitions around the world. The Masters Series is a showcase of the pinnacle of DFS’ leadership and innovation in curating and creating exceptional experiences across its five pillars of luxury: Wines and Spirits, Beauty and Fragrances, Watches and Jewellery, Fashion and Accessories and Food and Gifts.
The full 2019 Masters of Wines and Spirits Collection will be available for purchase at Singapore’s Changi Airport from March 25. A smaller, curated collection will be available later in year atT Galleria by DFS in Hong Kong and Macau.