2015-05-27 / News

Local pastor releases collection of Scotch whisky reviews

BY ALI ARMSTRONG
EDITOR


Reverend Christopher Thoma, who serves as the senior pastor at Our Savior Evangelical Lutheran Church in Hartland, recently released “The Angels’ Portion: A Clergyman’s Whisky Narrative Reverend Christopher Thoma, who serves as the senior pastor at Our Savior Evangelical Lutheran Church in Hartland, recently released “The Angels’ Portion: A Clergyman’s Whisky Narrative By day Reverend Christopher Thoma serves as the senior pastor at Our Savior Evangelical Lutheran Church. By night, he is an author, blogger and reviewer of fine Scotch whiskies.

Thoma recently released “The Angels’ Portion: A Clergyman’s Whisky Narrative”, a collection of Scotch whisky reviews that reads more like a collection of creative short stories.

“It probably goes without saying that there is a misconception with regard to Christians and alcohol. Most of the more notable issues are purely denominational and more closely related to cultural misunderstandings than they are a faithful rendering of the Holy Scriptures,” he said.

Thoma developed the book with entries from his whisky review blog of the same name. The 330-page book contains nearly 100 whisky reviews, but Thoma says the book is not “designed to teach you about the history of whisky or engage in discussing market trends” but rather to entertain the reader.

“The book gives a pretty good snapshot of what is available in the United States so that the reader can laugh, cry, or whatever before he decides on the bottles he wants to investigate,” he said.

Thoma says he typically writes a few reviews each week, either before or while he walks on the treadmill. “The life of a pastor is a busy one, so when it comes to having tons of time to devote to this, I give it as much as is required for faithfulness to my first calling.”

Although Thoma says he never had a taste for whisky early on, that all changed when he walked into a liquor shop in London and the owner, noticing his wanderings, asked if he liked whisky. He led Thoma to a few open display bottles and one by one gave him a sip. He walked out with a William Grant & Sons, 25-year special release, and as they say, the rest is history.

“I suppose that the enjoyment I get from Scotch whiskey is rooted in the fact that I first believed all whiskey was, in general, terrible. But I’d only had the typical mass-produced editions,” he said. “And then I walked into that whisky shop in London. The kindness of the proprietor and his genuine willingness to prove to me that I was wrong about all of this, well, that changed things.”

Thoma says his personal whisky collection currently stands at approximately 90 bottles, which he has collected over the course of several years. He says he buys a new bottle when he gathers enough loose change and extra dollars.

“Some of the editions I’ve been able to acquire I will never drink in that they are investment bottles. I bought them for a very low price and now they are worth quite a bit more,” he said. “I keep these close and pull out the brig sword whenever anyone suggests that we give them a try. Pastors don’t make much money. I’m counting on a few of these to help me with my children’s college expenses.”

Published work

Thoma is already a published author, blogger and poet. He has written several other theological books, including “Feeding the Lambs: A Worship Primer for Teachers of Children”, a volume that helps teach pastors, teachers, parents and others about worship and how to teach its substance to children.

Additionally, he has written various Bible studies in print, magazine articles, hymns, essays and poems. He is currently working on various children’s books, including a fantasy fiction piece and another on the theological topic of Eschatology.

“The Angels’ Portion: A Clergyman’s Whisky Narrative” is available on Amazon. For more information or to read Thoma’s blog visit https://angelsportion.wordpress.com.

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