Networking and Scotch-It Works For Me!


It’s nice to have friends in cool places. This is why I love networking-you never know who you are going to meet and how you can connect with each other to experience things you never thought possible.

Take for instance last year. I was tweeting with some other bloggers when I saw a call for bloggers to go to NYC to participate on a TV show. If you know me, I replied immediately to my soon to be new blogging BFF Julie Deneen of Julie Deneen 2.0 and Fabulous Blogging fame. The next thing I know I am at the CBS TV center in Manhattan at 7am waiting to participate as a tweeter/blogger for the Anderson Cooper Show!

We are BFF's now - Me and Deborah Norville at the former AC Show
We are BFF’s now – Me and Deborah Norville at the former AC Show

Last month I had the opportunity to review the new Jason Bateman movie, Bad Words, for Midlife Boulevard in Beverly Hills. I reached out to Leslie Marinelli of The Bearded Iris when I first started blogging 2 years ago (she lives near me, so I celebrity stalked her) and after a thorough background check she met me for lunch and we’ve become fast friends-she likes me even though none of my pets have prolapsed penises

This weekend, a good friend and up and coming Atlanta Designer Steve McKenzie and his wife Jill invited me to a blogger event at the American Craft Council’s craft show-it was a Scotch tasting with Balvenie Scotch. Steve is an artist and designer and he and Jill opened up a fabulous shop in town last year called Steve McKenzie’s. It is truly a treat with beautiful Grange furniture, accessories and table settings, Moleskine, pottery, china, Colsen Keane leather, and signature Steve McKenzie fabric. It’s becoming the hot new place to go for the Atlanta design trade and trend setting home owners.

I am not a food blogger, nor do I review much else but a few movies, books and restaurants. I am also a Cabernet girl so Scotch is not on my radar, even though it is always on BC’s. My last sip of Scotch was Johnny Walker Red in college on a date with a rich golfer frat boy to an ACC football game and it didn’t end well.

Johnny Walker Red – 1, Mary Anne – 0.

Suffice it to say it’s been 30 years since my last drink of Scotch (or Wild Turkey Bourbon–this Southern girl doesn’t do the hard stuff well).

But since I am adventurous, enjoy Jill, and got free admission to a craft show and free Scotch, I was game. It is, after all, networking

We went to a presentation by one of the reps from Balvenie Distillery in Scotland.  We tasted 4 flights of whisky (that’s without the E you see) from Scotch aged 12 years to one aged 21 years. And there IS a difference in taste and Scotch DOES have a bouquet and you DO stick your nose in the cute glass and sniff it. Just like boxed wine, uh huh.


And either my taste buds have matured, I’ve matured, or it was that those college memories have receded, but I really loved this Scotch. Of course, my favorite was the PortWood Balvenie aged 21 years in vintage port (the wine) pipes to the tune of around $250 a bottle.

I’m worth it.

My other favorite was the Caribbean Cask, aged 14 years in Caribbean rum casks-light and with fruit and vanilla overtones I thought that this was a great second place to the PortWood – and less expensive.

Oh, and Scotch doesn’t fill you up, has no added sugar, pairs well with dark chocolate and is totally Mad Men. One ounce of Scotch has 56 calories, zero carbs and zero sugar. And apparently men really dig a gal that orders a Scotch. I did my research and I can justify just about anything-it’s in my genes.

Thank you Jill and Steve – thank you Balvenie! See, networking IS important!

So guess what-I do enjoy a good Scotch. I guess I am heading in to Greta Garbo territory – “Gimme a whisky. Ginger Ale on the side. And don’t be stingy, baby.”