Posted by Helena Wimpole
Established in 2015 so that Rotarians may enjoy a whiskey appreciation fellowship, the Rotary Whiskey D.R.A.M. Fellowship was officially sanctioned by Rotary International the following year.  The initials D.R.A.M. refers to Whiskey Drinking Rotarians and Members.  The aim of this Fellowship is for Rotarians and their partners, who enjoy drinking whiskey/whisky, to learn and share with each other information about whiskies from different parts of the world.
 
The history of whiskey is fascinating. It is said that the Chinese invented it more than 5,000 years ago, whereas whiskey making was brought from mainland Europe into Scotland and Ireland by travelling monks over 1,000 years ago. Nowadays, whiskey/whisky is made in many countries including Scotland, Ireland, the U.S.A., Canada, Japan and Australia.
The distilling of whiskey/whisky also has a very interesting history. The word whiskey comes from the Gaelic words ‘uisge beatha’, meaning the water of life. It was first distilled in the 15th century and both the Scottish and the Irish claim it originated in their country.  It can also be spelt two ways (whiskey or whisky), and this is due to the type of cereal grain used in the distilling process and where it was produced.
 
Whiskey/whisky is a distilled spirit and its major categories include Bourbon, Scotch, Irish whiskey, Rye, Sour Mash, Moonshine, and many others.  The main differences are due to the various grains that are used in the distillation, and how and where it is produced.  Regarded as the most popular liquor in the world, every style, and each brand within the style, has different flavour characteristics. There are an amazing number of brands and types of whiskey and whisky available, and this makes the Fellowship both interesting and enjoyable.
 
As with most aspects of Rotary, the Whiskey D.R.A.M. Fellowship encourages fundraising as part of its activities when Rotarians and their partners get together and enjoy their tastings. The chosen projects for their financial contributions involve clean water initiatives.
 
Whilst the Whiskey D.R.A.M. Fellowship is relatively new, it has proved very popular (naturally!). There are now many hundreds of members in 33 countries throughout the world.
For more information refer to the website:  https://whiskeydram.org/