Britton Hogge Pt. 1 #022

Amanda sits down with former Director of Operations, Britton Hogge on a special St. Patrick’s Day tasting of Flaviar’s “Irishmen”. In Part 1 of a 2 part series, we dabble in Tasting A and Tasting B flavors while questioning St Patrick’s Day legends and if we would rather lose our sense of smell or taste permanently.

Tasting the Luck

We are celebrating St Patrick’s Day with “The Irishmen” tasting box from Flaviar in a two-part series with tasting buddy, former Director of Operations, Britton Hogge!

During the last episode, we discussed Hogge’s professional progression from the winery to Director of Operations at NYC Pride where we met, to working on digital needs for his local government down there in Virginia. We also tasted some goodies and I have the peanuts to snack in between today’s tasting.

Tasting A – JJ Corry the Gael Batch No 2

Britton is “tasting hints of Roasty Banana Whiskey“. Amanda says “Floral Fruity Something“.

I actually got to march in the parade twice so far and LOVED it. The interesting part about the participation is how structured and reverent the parade is. You are to march in orderly lines past the grandstands and quietly receive your blessing as you pass St Patrick’s Cathedral, however, the crowds are a rowdy bunch constantly trying to jump on the route.

But it’s gatherings like these that make events, and events like these become holidays that expand beyond their original meaning. We make events that symbolize more than just a religion, but a celebration of life and culture – and more importantly the importance of immigrants celebrating each other in a new culture, creating a new community, celebrating new events. As producers, we are a part of that creation.

Tasting B – Hyde 6 year-old No. 4 Rum Cask Finish

Britton gets a “hit a flavor and then it’s gone, no lingering flavor, but Smokey”. Amanda says “it’s got some Spice to It. Spice Vanilla”.

With a global pandemic, many of our sacred events have been impacted, but the celebration of that identity continues with a lone bagpiper on the street in the Lower East Side. COVID-19 brought along new fears and got us questioning, which sense would we be willing to live without permanently, smell or taste? When it comes to experiences we have come to value-adding the sense of smell into an activation. It can trigger memories and is connected to our survival skills of smelling danger or deliciousness. Taste can also be used to sense danger through poison or soured food. It’s our last line of defense before ingesting something dangerous or more deliciousness. When producing events we tend to focus on what is seen and heard, but tend to forget these very potent sensory experiences? What are we adding to the experience when we focus on taste and smell? How are we rounding out the patron’s journey through the brand and how does that tie back into the identity of the event?

For me, St Patrick’s Day starts with pork sausage, beans, tomatoes, eggs, and a Guinness, the sound of bagpipes and green plaid marching down 5th Avenue as far as the eye can see, and ends with the smell of spilt beer, the warmth of Irish whiskey in the belly, and the sounds of laughter as we all attempt to Riverdance our way home.

Fun Fact about St Patrick: He wasn’t even Irish, he was British and kidnapped by Irish raiders – freed, converted to Christianity, and returned to Ireland as a priest where he stayed till he died on March 17th. Rumors become stories that become myths which grow into legends and BEHOLD he’s the Patron Saint of Ireland. They say he drove all the snakes from Ireland, but of course, snakes never existed in Ireland because it’s too cold but it’s a metaphor for cleansing the island of paganism. He then used the 3 leaf clover to represent the holy trinity. By the 18th Century, the Irish wore them on March 17th to signify their Christian Irish pride – which evolved to wearing GREEN. St Patrick’s Day boomed in America, Canada, and Australia where Irish immigrants flooded in the mid-1800s due to famine. The first St Patrick’s Day parade occurred in NYC in 1762 when a group of Irish soldiers marched together down a few blocks to a tavern, which is now the longest and largest St Patrick’s Day parade in the world with 200,000+ participants and 3 Million spectators.

Amanda Younger

About Author /

Amanda brings 15+ years event experience working with the world's preeminent brands, including NYC Pride, High Times, NBA, and MRY. Amanda has led, managed, and executed activations, touring, ticketing, food & beverage, trade shows & conferences, rallies, street festivals, concerts, and any confetti moment New York City has allowed. Amanda can be reached at amanda@eventspeak.com

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