Welcome to our spotlight series, where we highlight up-and-coming creators who deserve a moment in the spotlight. These creators may be bloggers, YouTubers, and podcasters, but they all have one thing in common. They are creating great booze-related content.
In this post, we meet Shayla. A twenty-four-year-old whiskey lover who is quickly gaining notoriety in the whiskey scene with her YouTube channel Whisky Central.
We asked Shayla to give us a few words about what inspired her to start creating content around whiskey, how she got started, and what her favorite whiskeys are. Here is her story.
How Did You Get Started?
“At a young age, I worked for a local vineyard in Oregon, making Pinot Noir. I became increasingly interested in winemaking, and I started researching how to become a Wine Sommelier. I developed my palate with copious amounts of food, and of course, some lovely Pinots.
When I was twenty-one, I got into whisky. I was at a bar for my birthday, and I had Jameson. I was surprised to find that I enjoyed it. I was sipping on the shot of Jameson, a far cry from a Glencairn glass. But I started to try other whiskies when I went to a new restaurant or bar.
“Hey, why don’t you start a Youtube channel about whisky.”
I loved researching new topics, and a couple of years later, after having my first Scotch and falling in love with Scotland’s amazing spirit, I went deep down the research rabbit-hole. I was annoying my husband so much with Scotch history that he said: “Hey, why don’t you start a Youtube channel about whisky.”
This was a very clever way to get me to leave him alone and talk to other enthusiasts about whisky instead of an unwilling participant and vodka lover (I know, you don’t have to tell me).
At the time, I had no idea that WhiskeyTube even existed. I read articles and books about whiskey. Then I hit YouTube to see if anyone was making videos about my obsessive interest. I had no idea that I would find channels like Aqvavitae, The Whiskey Dictionary, The Mash and Drum, and Ralfy. All were making fantastic content about whisky with tens of thousands of subscribers. Luckily, I found the amazing community of WhiskeyTubers; I got involved in live chats and met so many kind people.
I worked up the gusto and started my channel in May. It took me another month to shoot and edit my first video. I was terrified to post it on the channel. The video got 83 views, and I was astonished. I’ve made almost thirty review videos since then.
My first love was Scotch, but luckily I love other whiskies as well. I also make videos about Bourbon, Rye, Irish, and any other world whiskies I might come across. I cover the history of the distillery, my nosing and tasting experience of the whisky, along with my recommendation on that particular whisky, and other whiskies you might like to try if you enjoy the one I am reviewing.
Why Are You’re Passionate About This Industry
“Whisky is the most beautiful spirit in the world. I love everything about it, but if you ask any WhiskeyTuber why they continue to make videos, I think they would all answer in the same way. For me, it started because of the whisky, but I am here because of the people.
Whisky is an amazing spirit, I will love it for the rest of my life, but I genuinely love it because of how many people I have met from its reach.
I am friends with people from Scotland, Indonesia, India, Austria, The Netherlands, Belgium, and the United States. I have never been to Arkansas, Tennessee, Texas, or Michigan, but some of my good friends are from there.
Another amazing thing about WhiskeyTube isn’t just the quantity of people you meet, but the quality. I don’t think I’ve ever met a group of people who are more kind or more generous than the people in the WhiskeyTube Community. They all take care of each other; when they meet up, they give each other samples.
If everyone treated each other like the whiskey community treats each other, the world would be a better place. Whisky gives me something that I think we all search for in our lives— a sense of purpose and connection. In an ever-divisive world, whisky is something that brings me close to a lot of people. I can’t ever thank it enough for that.
I have always been more comfortable behind the scenes. I am an introvert who likes to chat in the comfort of my home behind a keyboard. My channel and my subscribers have pushed me out of my comfort zone. Now, I do weekly lives in front of the camera.
I am not sure if the people in my live chat feel this way, but I feel like I am at a pub with them. We have a connection with each other for about two hours every Saturday; we have inside jokes and don’t have to worry about work or any stresses we have from everyday life.”
What Are Some of Your Favorite Cocktails
“I usually drink whisky neat. On the occasion that I have a cocktail, I enjoy a Scotch with ginger ale and a lemon twist. Occasionally I will have a Bourbon or Rye (depending on how spicy I am feeling) Old Fashioned or Manhattan. Other than that, it’s whisky, neat, in a Glencairn.”
Conclusion: Whisky Central
If you want to keep up with Shayla, click this link to check out her YouTube channel Whisky Central. Don’t forget to subscribe and hit the little bell notification so you can get notified when she posts a new video. You can also support her by contributing to her Patreon here.
If you are a creator and have an interesting story about how you got started with spirits or cocktails, shoot us a message, we’d love to be in touch. Check out all our other blogs here. And remember to stay safe, stay home, and get hammered!