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In pictures: A first look at the newly refurbished SMWS Queen Street and Kaleidoscope Whisky Bar

Whisky fans in Edinburgh are in for a treat this month as the SMWS unveil the Kaleidoscope Whisky Bar at their newly refurbished Queen Street venue.

Published: August 10, 2016
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Kaleidoscope, which opened its doors on 1st August, will become one of Edinburgh’s top whisky destinations, welcoming everyone from novices and connoisseurs to locals and international visitors.

Guests will be invited to explore its ever-changing spectrum of whisky flavours, with more than 200 rare single malt whiskies and other spirits are available at the bar each month.

The £300,000 project saw the whole venue - which was first opened in 2004 - transformed with a striking new look combining classic features with contemporary design created by Surface ID, the Glasgow designers behind renowned venues such as Stravaigan, Left Bank and Grosvenor Café.

Changes to the layout

As part of the refurbishment project, Kaleidoscope takes pride of place on the ground floor of the Georgian townhouse venue at 28 Queen Street, visible and accessible from street level.

The Dining Room restaurant, previously on the ground floor, moves upstairs to the first floor. It has been expanded to double the original capacity and features a bespoke Charles Heidsieck champagne table, a unique experience in Edinburgh, which offers diners a 5-course meal matched with Charles Heidsieck champagnes.

The new layout of the first floor also means the Society can offer spaces as private areas for group bookings up to 60 people.

The Members Rooms, exclusive to SMWS members and guests, have moved to second Floor and are now a full table service area.

There are now two areas, the Members Room and the Members Snug, a quieter area where the members' bottles will also be kept.

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The Kaleidoscope Whisky Bar

Kaleidescope bar SMWS staff

Kaleidescope Bar (1)

The Society has created a flavour bottle display in the bar, with a granite display element which lights up in colour corresponding with the flavour profile of the bottle on display.

Flavour Cubes in Kaleidoscope Bar will also display elements of all the flavour profiles the Society has.

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The Members Room

SMWS Members room

Members Room Top Floor

SMWS Member's Room - Top Floor

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The new Members rooms will offer two cosy rooms (one large and one smaller - the snug) for the SMWS members to enjoy discuss the Society's whiskies.

The Tasting Room

Tasting room - first floor

The Oval Taster Bar has a Kaleidoscopic light feature also playing on the Society's profile colours.

The new Dining Room

SMWS Dining Room 1

SMWS Dining Room 2

The Dining Room centre piece is the ‘Single Cask’ artwork. It signifies that only a finite number of Society bottles come out of one cask. The piece used 184 bottles and was made by Scott Associates Sculpture & Design Ltd. based in Glasgow.

The exterior

SMWS Queen Street exterior

The exterior has outside seating and though they aren't able to have drinks outside at the moment the Society has applied for permission from the Council.

Kaleidoscope Taxi 

SMWS Kaleidescope taxi

Keep your eye out for the Kaleidoscope taxi, the perfect way to make your way to the venue from anywhere in Edinburgh city centre.



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