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6th Annual Whiskey Obsession Festival

April 11, 2018 (Wed) - April 14, 2018 (Sat) from 6:30 PM - 1:00 AM

Michael's on East
1212 South East Ave
Sarasota, FL 34234

View Map   |   9414009889

Cost: $35 to $195

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Cocktails     Spirits     Tasting (sit down)     Tasting (walk around)    
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The Sixth Annual Whiskey Obsession Festival will be held April 11 to 14, 2018 in Sarasota, Florida.  Whiskey Obsession is the largest world whiskey festival in the U.S., with four days of classes, tastings, lunch and dinner pairings, expanded bartender academy, interactive panel discussions, cigars, VIP pours, a fabulous grand tasting with hundreds of whiskies to sample, and live music street party in the heart of downtown.  Dozens of distillers and professional brand ambassadors from around the world travel to Sarasota to share their knowledge and passion for these fine spirits.  Tickets and complete schedule are available at www.whiskeyobsessionfestival.com.  

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Bartender Academy @ The Aloft Hotel, 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

$20 ticket includes lunch and swag (bartenders/ industry only)

Session I - Professional Development Panel // 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. 

Three panelists discuss mixologist and ambassador professional development, best practices, and career advancement including industry opportunities, expectations, and responsible brand marketing. 

Session II - Interactive Bars and Workstations // 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. 

Participants will learn new skills and techniques from ambassadors and accomplished mixologists.


Whiskey Obsession Kickoff Dinner @ Sarasota Yacht Club (SYC), 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

The theme of the 2018 Kickoff Dinner is Whiskey and Time featuring a special menu created by SYC Executive Chef Anthony Puccio paired with the evening’s premium whiskies.  Tickets are $125 per person.  Open to the public; SYC membership not required.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Exclusive Focus Lunch Master Class @ Sarasota Yacht Club, 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. 

Exciting lunch whiskey pairing with a charismatic industry professional, featuring a special menu from SYC Executive Chef Anthony Puccio.  Tickets $35 per person.  Open to the public; SYC membership not required.


Panelist Small Group Dinner @ The Francis, 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Our most exclusive event, this dinner features an intimate meal with one of our experts preceding the Panel of Whiskey Experts next door in the ballroom.  Tickets are $125 per person, limited to 16 guests.


The Panel of Whiskey Experts Interactive Tasting & Discussion @ The Francis, 7:00 to 9:30 p.m.

The panel features eight distillers and brand ambassadors in a unique interactive tasting as they share their favorite spirits.  Guests will sample a broad range of world whiskies, accompanied by light bites and hors d’oeuvres.  Tickets are $75 and seating is limited to 120 guests. 


The History of Bourbon Through Bluegrass with Bernie Lubbers, The Whiskey Professor at the historic Gator Club, 10:00 pm until late.

Friday, April 13, 2018

 Lunch Master Classes, 12:00 p.m, to 2:00 p.m.

 Multiple lunch master classes will be held at select downtown restaurants.  $35 per person 


Pre-show Premium Master Class, @ Michael’s Wine Cellar, 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

This exclusive tasting features premium whiskies from a global powerhouse brand, just before the Whiskey

Obsession Grand Tasting.  Limited to 30 guests.  $60 per person.


Grand Tasting and Master Classes, Michael’s on East (See times below)

With hundreds of whiskies available to sample, the Grand Tasting features dozens of the world’s premium global brands as well as emerging craft distillers.  Taught by industry professionals, our six seminar-style master classes present an opportunity for in-depth learning at interactive tastings with distillers and brand ambassadors. 

•6:30 p.m. VIP Admission

•7:30 p.m. General Admission

•8:00 p.m. Class I, II, and III ($10 for VIP; $20 for GA guests)

•9:15 p.m. Class IV, V, VI ($10 for VIP; $20 for GA guests)

•10:30 p.m. Last Pour

•10:45 p.m. After Party at Made Restaurant (Free Event!)


Three ticket levels are available:

VIP $195:

•VIP admission limited to 150 guests includes one commemorative Glencairn glass and one hour early entrance at 6:30 pm.

•VIP hour pours of ultra-premium, fine, expensive, and rare spirits (details will be available on the event website).

•One $50 retail voucher for purchases and special orders placed on Friday, April 13, 2018 during the Whiskey Obsession Festival grand tasting.

•Greater opportunity to interact with distillery ambassadors and industry professionals.

•Unlimited tasting of over 200 spirits.

•Discount tickets and priority seating at evening master classes (first come first served).

•Wine, soft drinks, buffet and hors d' oeuvres. 

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General Admission $95:

•General admission limited to 500 guests includes one commemorative Glencairn glass and entrance at 7:30 pm

•Unlimited tasting of over 200 spirits.

•Access to evening master classes (first come first served).

•Wine, soft drinks, buffet and hors d' oeuvres.

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Companion $45:

•Companion admission limited to 75 guests includes entrance with VIP or general admission ticket holders.

•Wine, soft drinks, buffet and hors d' oeuvres.

 Saturday, April 14, 2018

Women of Whiskey Brunch @ Sarasota Yacht Club, 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

New event for 2018!  We are thrilled to present the Women of Whiskey Brunch, featuring a panel of three prominent women making contributions to the whiskey industry.  Whiskies from each panelist will be paired with a special menu created by SYC Executive Chef Anthony Puccio.  Tickets are $35 per person.  Open to the public; SYC membership not required.


Whiskey Rocks Live Music Street Party, 6:30 p.m. to 1:00 a.m.

Whiskey Obsession Festival partners with the Sarasota Downtown Merchants Association to present national and regional bands on an outdoor stage.  Free event!  


Tickets and information are available at whiskeyobsessionfestival.com.


For more information contact Turner C. Moore, 941.400.9889

Email:  Turner@WhiskeyObsessionFestival.com

Website:  www.whiskeyobsessionfestival.com

High res photos:  https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B49IZoKW9ykoOVZGSi03Rm4xX1U?usp=sharing

Video:   https://youtu.be/5yeO5p3Vfl0

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/whiskey_obsession_festival/

Whiskey Obsession Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/WhiskeyObsessionFestival

Visit Event Website: whiskeyobsessionfestival.com/