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Byron Shire
May 9, 2021

Australia’s biggest whisky fanatic

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Dan Woolley

Some people love whisky. Others are fanatical about it. Then there’s Dan Woolley. Not only does he have the word WHISKY tattooed across his knuckles, he has a collection of more than 800 bottles in his house, and travels the globe visiting distilleries. ‘I don’t remember how many distilleries I’ve visited over the years. I know I’ve been to more than 50 in Scotland alone and tasted more than 2000 whiskies’, said Dan.

For the past 20 years Dan Woolley has been able to turn his obsession into a well-paid career that included owning his own whisky bar, training bartenders and creating whisky lists for more than 200 bars across Australia. He is now the proud ambassador for Laphroaig.

‘I guess I’m the luckiest man in the world,’ he says. ‘I don’t particularly want to tell you how I got to where I am, because everyone’s after my job. I can say this much; it’s through hard work and determination. I’ve visited Laphroaig on many occasions. It’s very far away and very hard to get to, but my determination, drive and passion have got me to where I am today.’

Woolley’s passion for Laphroaig saw him spend a week helping out at the distillery, assisting to make the whisky, from the barley to the bottle. 

He describes Laphroaig as ‘the most unique flavoured whisky on the face of the earth! It has intense smoke, very, very ashy, medicinal, salty maritime flavours, sweet vanilla spices and a little bit of citrus, with lots of honey sweetness’, he says.

Ballina RSL Club will host an evening for whisky lovers in November. Bookings are essential as numbers are limited. One night only, Thursday 21 November from 6.30pm to 9pm. Just $45 per head. Book online www.ballinarsl.com.au or call 6681 9500

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