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This may be a dumb question, but does anyone know if you can buy a scotch sampler pack? My brother likes it, but I'd like to be able to give him a sampler as something different....and broaden his horizons so to speak.

I've found the best way to try stuff is by the shot at a good bar. Saves you the money of buying whole bottles of stuff you've no idea if you'll like, and it's the only place I've been able to do a lot of tasting. Speaking of which, anyone drink Tullamore Dew? I had a taste of it at a bar a few months ago and it wasn't too bad. It's an Irish blended whiskey. About the only thing I've had I really didn't care for was Woodford Reserve Bourbon.
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Bushmills? That's a Protestant Whiskey

I was wondering when someone would make this statement. The widely-accepted Irish-American version is that Jameson is Catholic whiskey and Bushmills is Protestant whiskey. But that’s merely based on geography: Bushmills is from Northern Ireland (a predominantly Protestant region) and Jameson is from Cork – Catholic country.Jameson was founded in 1780 when John Jameson – from Scotland – purchased the Bow Street Distillery, which at the time was one of the biggest distilleries in Ireland. Now, it’s important to note that the Scottish Reformation occurred in 1560, so odds are in favor of the founder of the Jameson distillery, being Scottish, was a damn Protestant.Bushmills, on the other hand, was officially licensed in 1608 by King James I (of Bible fame) and despite of its location deep in the heart of Protestant country has a Catholic as a master distiller!This debate really only occurs in the US where Irish-American support of the Republic can sometimes be blind and often fueled by the very product we’re speaking of. But none of it means much, anyway: both distilleries are now owned by huge international companies: Jameson by French liquor company Pernod-Ricard, and Bushmills by the English owned company Diageo.So now the real decision comes down to who do you want to support more...The French or the English? I prefer Bushmills personally and highly recommend the Bushmills 1608!!ENJOY BUSHMILLS...The TRUE Catholic whiskey!!!
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If you are ever in Baton Rouge, LA you need to go here.

http://www.portroyallounge.com/inventory/C...covespirits.htm

I have a lot further to go but so far I've liked the Glenfiddich 18 and the Macallan 15 a lot.

Can't access that website, but what's special about this place? Do they sell scotch by the bottle? Just a bar?
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I went a little crazy in the liquor store recently. The collector in me got the best of me, and I bought a cart full of whisky. I'm going to talk to the accountant about considering them business expenses/part of me studying for the higher level sommelier exams. If that doesn't fly, oh well...they should last me a good while and provide any number of interesting evening conversations. I didn't buy all of these today, but my bar is now stocked with:

Gentleman Jack

Elijah Craig 18 single barrel Bourbon

Talisker 10

Dalwhinnie 15

Oban 14

Glenlivet 18

Lagavulin 16

Johnnie Walker Gold

Johnnie Walker Blue

Macallan 18

Some random thoughts after tasting several of these at different times over the course of a couple of days...

Johnnie Walker doesn't make the best whisky in the world, but they may market better than anyone else. The packaging/etc is impressive. I felt like I'd bought a real gold bar when I opened the Gold.

Tasting the Blue next to the Gold, I won't be buying any Blue for myself.

I bought the Elijah Craig as a tasting experiment, and so I'd have some in the house if anyone asked for it. Also, I really wanted to compare similarly aged Bourbon and Scotch. IMHO, it's just not a fair fight. The Scotch is light years better than the Bourbon. Light...years. Now maybe I'm a sucker/idiot and I bought horrible Bourbon. It is North Carolina, and our state owned/operated liquor stores aren't known for their diversity of stock or knowledgeable staffs. If anyone has a better Bourbon comparison, I'm all ears. Until then, I'm just going to think Bourbon is the ugly step sister to Scotch.

For the same reason you don't drink Pinot Noir after Cabernet, a little bit of that Lagavulin is pretty much the end of a whisky tasting. It's huge. And you know what? I like it. I really liked it. Much, much better than the Talisker 10. Was expecting to hate it, but it's really good.

I paid too much for it, but I really, really wanted the Macallan 18 as a tasting experiment. Plus it now anchors the "really overpriced" end of my collection next to the JW Blue. I've tried it a couple of different times, in a couple of different ways. It's likely going to be the one and only bottle I ever buy for myself. It's good, and I certainly won't turn it away if someone gives me a bottle, but like the Blue, it's just not worth the $$$ IMHO.

It will be a while before I buy any more, but what 5-6 bottles need to fill in the gaps in this collection?

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I went a little crazy in the liquor store recently. The collector in me got the best of me, and I bought a cart full of whisky. I'm going to talk to the accountant about considering them business expenses/part of me studying for the higher level sommelier exams. If that doesn't fly, oh well...they should last me a good while and provide any number of interesting evening conversations. I didn't buy all of these today, but my bar is now stocked with: Gentleman JackElijah Craig 18 single barrel BourbonTalisker 10Dalwhinnie 15Oban 14 Glenlivet 18Lagavulin 16Johnnie Walker GoldJohnnie Walker BlueMacallan 18Some random thoughts after tasting several of these at different times over the course of a couple of days... Johnnie Walker doesn't make the best whisky in the world, but they may market better than anyone else. The packaging/etc is impressive. I felt like I'd bought a real gold bar when I opened the Gold. Tasting the Blue next to the Gold, I won't be buying any Blue for myself. I bought the Elijah Craig as a tasting experiment, and so I'd have some in the house if anyone asked for it. Also, I really wanted to compare similarly aged Bourbon and Scotch. IMHO, it's just not a fair fight. The Scotch is light years better than the Bourbon. Light...years. Now maybe I'm a sucker/idiot and I bought horrible Bourbon. It is North Carolina, and our state owned/operated liquor stores aren't known for their diversity of stock or knowledgeable staffs. If anyone has a better Bourbon comparison, I'm all ears. Until then, I'm just going to think Bourbon is the ugly step sister to Scotch. For the same reason you don't drink Pinot Noir after Cabernet, a little bit of that Lagavulin is pretty much the end of a whisky tasting. It's huge. And you know what? I like it. I really liked it. Much, much better than the Talisker 10. Was expecting to hate it, but it's really good. I paid too much for it, but I really, really wanted the Macallan 18 as a tasting experiment. Plus it now anchors the "really overpriced" end of my collection next to the JW Blue. I've tried it a couple of different times, in a couple of different ways. It's likely going to be the one and only bottle I ever buy for myself. It's good, and I certainly won't turn it away if someone gives me a bottle, but like the Blue, it's just not worth the $$$ IMHO.It will be a while before I buy any more, but what 5-6 bottles need to fill in the gaps in this collection?

As traitorous as it sounds, the Yamazaki is fanfreakinlicious. I also have Deanston rated just as high as the yamazaki but I haven't been able to find it since to re-compare. Glenlivet has a 15 year old French oak Reserve which is similar to Macallan Sherry Oak, either one is a great lighter, more floral and aromatic single malt.
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This may be a dumb question, but does anyone know if you can buy a scotch sampler pack? My brother likes it, but I'd like to be able to give him a sampler as something different....and broaden his horizons so to speak.

There used to be a fewe more, this is all I can find with a brief search:

http://www.shoppersvineyard.com/store/pc/G...T-308p13103.htm

http://www.dandm.com/product_info.php?cPat...2021_f1221_2050

http://www.thepartysource.com/express/item.php?id=8783

But you can create your own if you have a well-stocked liquor store nearby. Just grab several minis of varying bottlings and do it yourself.

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Very much a scotch noob here.... I've cut my teeth on Macallan 12 and Glenlivet 12 and enjoyed them quite a bit but I want to try some others

I think I want to stay away from the really peaty/smokey scotches for now. Would an Oban 14 or Balvenie 15 be a good choice? They seem to be highly thought of and they are not Islay scotches, correct?

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Very much a scotch noob here.... I've cut my teeth on Macallan 12 and Glenlivet 12 and enjoyed them quite a bit but I want to try some othersI think I want to stay away from the really peaty/smokey scotches for now. Would an Oban 14 or Balvenie 15 be a good choice? They seem to be highly thought of and they are not Islay scotches, correct?

No, neither are Islay scotches. Oban is Highlands, Balvenie is Speyside. I don't have the Balvenie, but I do have the Oban 14 and I highly recommend it, especially for your palate right now. I'm not much if any ahead of you in learning the regions/flavor profiles, and the Oban 14 is a lovely scotch. Plenty of character and flavor without the peat of the Islays and it's a good price point to boot.
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7. Highland Park 18 - This was my favorite of the night. Wow. I've heard of Highland Park but I'm not sure I've ever had it before. You know you are drinking scotch when you have this. My chest is still warm this morning. Very light peat, smokey but finishes sweet and it burns long!

I got a bottle of the 12 year Highland Park and it came with a small bottle of the 18. I would definitely agree it was one of the better scotches I have tasted, although that isn't saying a whole lot. The 12 year was pretty good also.
Highland Park 12 year old is my favorite Scotch. I've only tried the 18 year old once, and I liked the 12 year old better.Interesting fact (or not): Highland Park is the only distillery that uses Orkney peat. The Scapa distillery is also located in the Orkneys, but uses peat imported from mainland Scotland. Anyway, I went to Scotland for my old job a few times, from the mid 80's to early 90's. One time, a co-worker of mine stayed in Scotland after one particular job was done, to meet some old college friends and go sight seeing. They went to the Orkney Islands with not much money left, except credit cards, but one of them just happened to have a half-empty bottle of Jack Daniels. The locals were clamoring over the bottle of Jack. They ended up getting a room for the night in exchange for the bottle. They make some of the best whiskey in the world, and the locals were fighting over a half bottle of Jack friggin' Daniels.
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Some Random thoughts based on last 10 posts using Michigan Prices (higher than most states)

Great Whiskey out of the flask: Forty Creeks - Reserve Select - It's tri-blend so it's not just a Canadian whiskey from Kitterling distillery. $23 and quite a treat for most people. Has a "toffee/carmel taste" without the Canadian after taste like Crown...I like Crown too...

Or bourbon: Buffalo Trace - $23 - Maker's Mark is the one everyone drinks, Buffalo Trace "thicker and tastes better" - Many people think this is better than Maker's Mark....

Let's talk Single Malt: Oban 14 will be more "peaty" than Balvenie 15 - Balvenie 15 is good and if you don't drink alot of scotch I would buy this over Oban 14 unless you like peat. And if you like Peat, the best Scotch you'll ever drink is Lagavulin 16 - IT IS the best and sets the standard.

I like Speyside and have started going to the smoke/peat -- My favorite speyside: Balvenie Fan plus Aberlour Abundah (Holy grail of Scotch) but have migrated to Lagavulin 16, Dalwhinnie 15 (which is coke-smoke from Coal vs. Peat) and I like Highland Park also. I drink all my scotch neat and buy cheaper scotch for the rocks except Aberlour Abundah (cask strength) _ For the rocks, I run Buchannans 12 (50% is Dalwhinnie) and Johnny Walker Black.

Current Inventory - (spelling?)

Macallan 10 Fine Oak - Nice scotch but the Miller-Lite of scotches like Glenlivet/Glenfiddich 12

Edradour 10 - Not great

Lagavulin 16 - The best IF you like smoke (phenolic content 25 -30ppm) - Takes you to almost too much smoke then releases to a smooth swallow and it does smell like your on the shoreline of the ocean in Scotland.

Ardbeg 10 - Ardbeg is highest phenol - not great - The Ugendial is smoother but you have to like iodine/phenol - not for beginners

Aberlour Abundah Batch 27 - Holy grail - great color, taste, cask strength (~63%) - Over Ice

Aberlour 12 - Don't buy get Abundah instead !!

Balvenie 15 Single Barrel - Great and it a tie between this and cheaper Balvenie 12 double wood - the 12 DW is great

Dalmore 12 - Good, cheap sherry scotch - $48 here...

Glenmorangie Nectar D'or - Good Scotch, for whatever reason not a Glenmorangie fan - liked the old Port Wood but those were replaced by Quinta Ruben, Nectar D'or and others.

Highland Park 12 - Love the HP, great taste like a speyside Blavenie but more smoke - Phenolic content (10-12ppm).

Tried/Have Bought

Scapa 16 - Good scotch with medium smoke

Bruchladdiach 14 th hole - LOVE this need to find a bottle

Balvenie 17 Madierra Cask - Too much "wine" taste for me for the $140 spend....Smooth

Websites I suggest:

whiskyintelligence.com - Great daily news

whiskeyfun.com - Daily tastings and GREAT reviews !!

THE Best Map of Distillerys

Great thread - Let's talk scotch !!! I just started 3 years ago and couldn't stand scotch until you have single malt :o

Cya Kev

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Some Random thoughts based on last 10 posts using Michigan Prices (higher than most states)

Great Whiskey out of the flask: Forty Creeks - Reserve Select - It's tri-blend so it's not just a Canadian whiskey from Kitterling distillery. $23 and quite a treat for most people. Has a "toffee/carmel taste" without the Canadian after taste like Crown...I like Crown too...

Or bourbon: Buffalo Trace - $23 - Maker's Mark is the one everyone drinks, Buffalo Trace "thicker and tastes better" - Many people think this is better than Maker's Mark....

Let's talk Single Malt: Oban 14 will be more "peaty" than Balvenie 15 - Balvenie 15 is good and if you don't drink alot of scotch I would buy this over Oban 14 unless you like peat. And if you like Peat, the best Scotch you'll ever drink is Lagavulin 16 - IT IS the best and sets the standard.

I like Speyside and have started going to the smoke/peat -- My favorite speyside: Balvenie Fan plus Aberlour Abundah (Holy grail of Scotch) but have migrated to Lagavulin 16, Dalwhinnie 15 (which is coke-smoke from Coal vs. Peat) and I like Highland Park also. I drink all my scotch neat and buy cheaper scotch for the rocks except Aberlour Abundah (cask strength) _ For the rocks, I run Buchannans 12 (50% is Dalwhinnie) and Johnny Walker Black.

Current Inventory - (spelling?)

Macallan 10 Fine Oak - Nice scotch but the Miller-Lite of scotches like Glenlivet/Glenfiddich 12

Edradour 10 - Not great

Lagavulin 16 - The best IF you like smoke (phenolic content 25 -30ppm) - Takes you to almost too much smoke then releases to a smooth swallow and it does smell like your on the shoreline of the ocean in Scotland.

Ardbeg 10 - Ardbeg is highest phenol - not great - The Ugendial is smoother but you have to like iodine/phenol - not for beginners

Aberlour Abundah Batch 27 - Holy grail - great color, taste, cask strength (~63%) - Over Ice

Aberlour 12 - Don't buy get Abundah instead !!

Balvenie 15 Single Barrel - Great and it a tie between this and cheaper Balvenie 12 double wood - the 12 DW is great

Dalmore 12 - Good, cheap sherry scotch - $48 here...

Glenmorangie Nectar D'or - Good Scotch, for whatever reason not a Glenmorangie fan - liked the old Port Wood but those were replaced by Quinta Ruben, Nectar D'or and others.

Highland Park 12 - Love the HP, great taste like a speyside Blavenie but more smoke - Phenolic content (10-12ppm).

Tried/Have Bought

Scapa 16 - Good scotch with medium smoke

Bruchladdiach 14 th hole - LOVE this need to find a bottle

Balvenie 17 Madierra Cask - Too much "wine" taste for me for the $140 spend....Smooth

Websites I suggest:

whiskyintelligence.com - Great daily news

whiskeyfun.com - Daily tastings and GREAT reviews !!

THE Best Map of Distillerys

Great thread - Let's talk scotch !!! I just started 3 years ago and couldn't stand scotch until you have single malt :goodposting:

Cya Kev

1) agree with the Forty Creek recommendation as a flask liquor - very very smooth and an outstanding value.

2) Buffalo Trace is better than Makers Mark and an outstanding value. The Buffalo Trace distillery makes even more premium offerings though that are better... Eagle Rare single barrel is unreal for $28... George T Stagg is the ultra elite of the overproof bourbons.

3) looking to learn more about scotch so I appreciate this thread.... right now i've worked my way from canadian whiskies to bourbons... and I think i'll graduate to scotch soon.

I have a bottle of Glenlivet 12 and Macallan 12 in my cabinet... but I'd still rather have my Eagle Rare 10 than either one of those right now.

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I did same thing...Started Bourbon for 6 months and then 3 years went to Single Malt then never looked back....

If you like Whiskeys including Irish, Canadian, Bourbon and all others globally..there are two books you need:

World - Whiskey - 2010 and Harcover - Great Book !

and for Tastings of all things whiskey...

Jim Murray Whiskey Bible 2011 - Awesome !!

Bringing six bottles to a friends house tonight and tasting all night long...Planning my strategy to buy another bottle today :goodposting:)

Love the single malt !!

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Another good deal there

Never had either one of these or paid more than $50 for a bottle. These worth it? How long do sales like these last? I'm a sucker for a good deal.

I've never seen the Tomintoul 27 that cheap, not sure how long it will last at that price.

You can get the Laphroaig 18 for $60 (plus $15 shipping) here. I've never had it since I haven't grown to appreciate Islay's yet but it gets great reviews.

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Very much a scotch noob here.... I've cut my teeth on Macallan 12 and Glenlivet 12 and enjoyed them quite a bit but I want to try some othersI think I want to stay away from the really peaty/smokey scotches for now. Would an Oban 14 or Balvenie 15 be a good choice? They seem to be highly thought of and they are not Islay scotches, correct?

Balvenie Double Wood is 12 years old, sold at Trader Joes for about $34 and is absolutely delicious. I like it better than the 15. Hmmm, I know I tried the Oban but I didn't rate it in my iMalts app (highly recommended if you're an iPhone guy. I believe other platforms have scotch tracking apps as well). The app also helps you keep track of where they're from. most of my high ratings are Speysides and Highlands. Not a fan of the peaty stuff either.Opinions vary, but I prefer almost all Scotches neat (no ice). Maybe a teeny tiny splash of water, like 4 teardrops worth.
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Got my order in a couple days ago and this is good stuff. Very easy drinking but might not be strong enough for those who like a peaty Islay.
Just tried a little taste of the Tomintoul Peaty Tang at my local spot. They keep acquiring the strangest of whiskies there, randomly it seems. Anyway, I hated it. Tasted like extra smoky bbq sauce and chloraseptic spray, with a splash of ###. Dunno how the peat ages but at the 12 year level I am simply not a fan no matter how hard I try to finish my Bowmore 12yo.
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On a positive note, I stopped by the eminently awesome Topline Liquor in Glendale and splurged on a bottle of the Yamazaki 18. Absolutely loooooove the 12 and the 18 doesn't disappoint. Light and fruity and smooth as a Japanese baby's bottom. I still feel guilty about going for the Japanese 'single malt' but they didn't have Deanston so that's what I got.

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Got my order in a couple days ago and this is good stuff. Very easy drinking but might not be strong enough for those who like a peaty Islay.
Just tried a little taste of the Tomintoul Peaty Tang at my local spot. They keep acquiring the strangest of whiskies there, randomly it seems. Anyway, I hated it. Tasted like extra smoky bbq sauce and chloraseptic spray, with a splash of ###. Dunno how the peat ages but at the 12 year level I am simply not a fan no matter how hard I try to finish my Bowmore 12yo.
The 27 isn't peaty at all and I think the Peaty Tang was made to satisfy the people who like the peat flavor. Don't let the Peaty Tang scare off of the 27.
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Very much a scotch noob here.... I've cut my teeth on Macallan 12 and Glenlivet 12 and enjoyed them quite a bit but I want to try some othersI think I want to stay away from the really peaty/smokey scotches for now. Would an Oban 14 or Balvenie 15 be a good choice? They seem to be highly thought of and they are not Islay scotches, correct?

Balvenie Double Wood is 12 years old, sold at Trader Joes for about $34 and is absolutely delicious. I like it better than the 15. Hmmm, I know I tried the Oban but I didn't rate it in my iMalts app (highly recommended if you're an iPhone guy. I believe other platforms have scotch tracking apps as well). The app also helps you keep track of where they're from. most of my high ratings are Speysides and Highlands. Not a fan of the peaty stuff either.Opinions vary, but I prefer almost all Scotches neat (no ice). Maybe a teeny tiny splash of water, like 4 teardrops worth.
I've read this several times now (Balvenie 12 is preferred to the 15). I'll keep that in mind for the next purchase. For now, I enjoyed a glass of Oban after dinner and enjoyed it, definitely more smokey than the McCallan but I consider it a nice subtle introduction to the peaty/smokey end of the scale...
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I've been drinking my scotch at about 1/3 water and 2/3 scotch and really like it. Give it a try if you're usually a rocks guy and see what you think.

:confused:ducking from the backlash bound to occur once the scotch guys read this! :shrug:
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is there an online site you guys goto to buy the more rare scotches?

or do you order them from your grocery store/liquor store?

if you order them from your local store something they don't carry in stock... how's the markup?

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Absolutely and completely unrelated to Scotch or whiskies, but my neighbors father came over for Xmas from Hungary and was supposed to bring me a bottle of the real deal absinthe from Czech but wasn't able to. He did bring me a liqueur called Zwack. Very reminiscent of Jager (haven't had it in awhile so I can't remember how similar) but is lighter and more herby. Just an FYI about a tasty booze I'd never even heard of. A great history too, surviving Communism and being the national booze of Hungary.

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Hi guys....scotch newbie here. I posted in the "I love whiskey" thread, but didn't get any response.

Since this one is about scotch, I'll keep it on-topic...I'm a very, very new scotch drinker, trying to expand my horizons with liquor and move a little bit away from beer. The only scotch I've really drank is a bottle of Glenfidditch 15-year (Solera, apparently?) that I got for free...and I've greatly enjoyed it.

What would be some other good beginners scotches to try? I tend to pay top dollar for beer, so I have no problem paying a premium for the good stuff if it's worth it - I can't afford to drink the super expensive stuff all the time, though. I see a lot of suggestions in this thread, but don't want to rush into something that's over my head early on.

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Hi guys....scotch newbie here. I posted in the "I love whiskey" thread, but didn't get any response.

Since this one is about scotch, I'll keep it on-topic...I'm a very, very new scotch drinker, trying to expand my horizons with liquor and move a little bit away from beer. The only scotch I've really drank is a bottle of Glenfidditch 15-year (Solera, apparently?) that I got for free...and I've greatly enjoyed it.

What would be some other good beginners scotches to try? I tend to pay top dollar for beer, so I have no problem paying a premium for the good stuff if it's worth it - I can't afford to drink the super expensive stuff all the time, though. I see a lot of suggestions in this thread, but don't want to rush into something that's over my head early on.

I always recommend Oban to new scotch drinkers since it's got some flavor without being over-powering. You can find it online for a little over $60 shipped.
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One cheaper Scotch I have and I like is the Abermour 10 year. Picked up a bottle for normal drinking for about $28 and it's not bad at all. I prefer this one strait.

Another one I picked up a few weeks ago that I like is the Ballvine 10, Founders' Reserve. Very smooth with that nice Spanish sherry cask taste.

Also was advised that people who drink Johnny Walker Blue are rich and uninformed. That makes sense.

:X

Black label is all you need. It just doesn't hold up against the great Islays though.

Black is terrible compared to Blue. Blue is crazy overpriced but really good. That's the bottle in the back of the cabinet reserved for special occasions.
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Hi guys....scotch newbie here. I posted in the "I love whiskey" thread, but didn't get any response.

Since this one is about scotch, I'll keep it on-topic...I'm a very, very new scotch drinker, trying to expand my horizons with liquor and move a little bit away from beer. The only scotch I've really drank is a bottle of Glenfidditch 15-year (Solera, apparently?) that I got for free...and I've greatly enjoyed it.

What would be some other good beginners scotches to try? I tend to pay top dollar for beer, so I have no problem paying a premium for the good stuff if it's worth it - I can't afford to drink the super expensive stuff all the time, though. I see a lot of suggestions in this thread, but don't want to rush into something that's over my head early on.

I always recommend Oban to new scotch drinkers since it's got some flavor without being over-powering. You can find it online for a little over $60 shipped.
What's the in-store distribution of this? We have a MASSIVE liquor store in town (Premier Group) that has just a ton of stuff. I took a walk down their whiskey aisles a few weeks ago - I usually go there for the beer, best beer selection in town as well - and was completely in over my head with all the choices.
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I've been drinking my scotch at about 1/3 water and 2/3 scotch and really like it. Give it a try if you're usually a rocks guy and see what you think.

:Xducking from the backlash bound to occur once the scotch guys read this! ;)
I think a few drops of water should always be added to bring out the flavor, but I'm not a snob about people who add a lot of water like that. My advice is to drink it so that you can enjoy it and slowly start adding less water.
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One cheaper Scotch I have and I like is the Abermour 10 year. Picked up a bottle for normal drinking for about $28 and it's not bad at all. I prefer this one strait.

Another one I picked up a few weeks ago that I like is the Ballvine 10, Founders' Reserve. Very smooth with that nice Spanish sherry cask taste.

Also was advised that people who drink Johnny Walker Blue are rich and uninformed. That makes sense.

:excited:

Black label is all you need. It just doesn't hold up against the great Islays though.

Black is terrible compared to Blue. Blue is crazy overpriced but really good. That's the bottle in the back of the cabinet reserved for special occasions.
I have a bottle of Blue in the back of my cabinet that's reserved for not drinking. I thought I'd be really clever and buy a couple of bottles cheap on a cruise, but one bottle is still unopened and I've drank maybe a third of the other in two years. If you like really smoky, peaty scotch then you probably love the Blue.
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One cheaper Scotch I have and I like is the Abermour 10 year. Picked up a bottle for normal drinking for about $28 and it's not bad at all. I prefer this one strait.

Another one I picked up a few weeks ago that I like is the Ballvine 10, Founders' Reserve. Very smooth with that nice Spanish sherry cask taste.

Also was advised that people who drink Johnny Walker Blue are rich and uninformed. That makes sense.

:excited:

Black label is all you need. It just doesn't hold up against the great Islays though.

Black is terrible compared to Blue. Blue is crazy overpriced but really good. That's the bottle in the back of the cabinet reserved for special occasions.
I have a bottle of Blue in the back of my cabinet that's reserved for not drinking. I thought I'd be really clever and buy a couple of bottles cheap on a cruise, but one bottle is still unopened and I've drank maybe a third of the other in two years. If you like really smoky, peaty scotch then you probably love the Blue.
I just think it's incredibly smooth and tasty.
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Bruichladdich is another I really like. I've only has one bottle of it but loved it. Irbid in the medium-light, dry classification. (I think that is generally my preference, though I've never realized it before).

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I've been drinking my scotch at about 1/3 water and 2/3 scotch and really like it. Give it a try if you're usually a rocks guy and see what you think.

:goodposting:ducking from the backlash bound to occur once the scotch guys read this! ;)
I think a few drops of water should always be added to bring out the flavor, but I'm not a snob about people who add a lot of water like that. My advice is to drink it so that you can enjoy it and slowly start adding less water.
This is correct -- drink it how you like it. The "if you don't drink it neat, you have a ######" crowd is way off. In Scotland, when you order a dram, it comes with a little pitcher of water. Most whiskies do well with a few drops of water added to release the aroma and flavor. If I'm trying a whisky for the first time, I'll try it neat and adjust accordingly. Some don't need anything, and others need several drops of water.
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I've been drinking my scotch at about 1/3 water and 2/3 scotch and really like it. Give it a try if you're usually a rocks guy and see what you think.

:confused:ducking from the backlash bound to occur once the scotch guys read this! :yawn:
I think a few drops of water should always be added to bring out the flavor, but I'm not a snob about people who add a lot of water like that. My advice is to drink it so that you can enjoy it and slowly start adding less water.
This is correct -- drink it how you like it. The "if you don't drink it neat, you have a ######" crowd is way off. In Scotland, when you order a dram, it comes with a little pitcher of water. Most whiskies do well with a few drops of water added to release the aroma and flavor. If I'm trying a whisky for the first time, I'll try it neat and adjust accordingly. Some don't need anything, and others need several drops of water.
My point wasn't so much in the amount of water (I like to dilute it a little more so it lasts longer but that's just me) but rather to try water instead of ice.
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Hi guys....scotch newbie here. I posted in the "I love whiskey" thread, but didn't get any response.

Since this one is about scotch, I'll keep it on-topic...I'm a very, very new scotch drinker, trying to expand my horizons with liquor and move a little bit away from beer. The only scotch I've really drank is a bottle of Glenfidditch 15-year (Solera, apparently?) that I got for free...and I've greatly enjoyed it.

What would be some other good beginners scotches to try? I tend to pay top dollar for beer, so I have no problem paying a premium for the good stuff if it's worth it - I can't afford to drink the super expensive stuff all the time, though. I see a lot of suggestions in this thread, but don't want to rush into something that's over my head early on.

I always recommend Oban to new scotch drinkers since it's got some flavor without being over-powering. You can find it online for a little over $60 shipped.
What's the in-store distribution of this? We have a MASSIVE liquor store in town (Premier Group) that has just a ton of stuff. I took a walk down their whiskey aisles a few weeks ago - I usually go there for the beer, best beer selection in town as well - and was completely in over my head with all the choices.
Guy at another board says he doesn't like Oban much, but he prefers "peat-bombs". As a beer person, I'm clueless as to what this means in terms of taste, much like a non-beer person would be clueless with the term "hop-bomb".

Rebuttal??

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Hi guys....scotch newbie here. I posted in the "I love whiskey" thread, but didn't get any response.

Since this one is about scotch, I'll keep it on-topic...I'm a very, very new scotch drinker, trying to expand my horizons with liquor and move a little bit away from beer. The only scotch I've really drank is a bottle of Glenfidditch 15-year (Solera, apparently?) that I got for free...and I've greatly enjoyed it.

What would be some other good beginners scotches to try? I tend to pay top dollar for beer, so I have no problem paying a premium for the good stuff if it's worth it - I can't afford to drink the super expensive stuff all the time, though. I see a lot of suggestions in this thread, but don't want to rush into something that's over my head early on.

I always recommend Oban to new scotch drinkers since it's got some flavor without being over-powering. You can find it online for a little over $60 shipped.
What's the in-store distribution of this? We have a MASSIVE liquor store in town (Premier Group) that has just a ton of stuff. I took a walk down their whiskey aisles a few weeks ago - I usually go there for the beer, best beer selection in town as well - and was completely in over my head with all the choices.
Guy at another board says he doesn't like Oban much, but he prefers "peat-bombs". As a beer person, I'm clueless as to what this means in terms of taste, much like a non-beer person would be clueless with the term "hop-bomb".

Rebuttal??

The peat bombs have a very phenolic, smoky taste. A friend said it was like drinking a really good cigar. If you like peat bombs, you're unlikely to like Oban as the peat and smoke flavors in Oban are very subtle. To a "peat bomb" drinker, Oban is neither fish nor foul, so it stands to reason he doesn't care too much for it. That said, being a lover of peat bombs exclusively paints you into a pretty narrow Scotch drinking corner. To say Oban isn't good is putting your personal preferences above objectively judging the whisky. I am learning to like/appreciate the peat bombs, and I wouldn't have been able to get there without intermediate steps like Talisker and Oban in between the Dalwhinnie and Lagavulin styled extremes on the continuum. Recommending a really peaty Scotch to a newbie is akin to recommending a 90 minute IPA to a new beer drinker. It MAY work out, but it's much more likely to be off putting. You work your way up to those types of beverages, whether they're beer, wine, or Scotch.
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The peat bombs have a very phenolic, smoky taste. A friend said it was like drinking a really good cigar. If you like peat bombs, you're unlikely to like Oban as the peat and smoke flavors in Oban are very subtle. To a "peat bomb" drinker, Oban is neither fish nor foul, so it stands to reason he doesn't care too much for it. That said, being a lover of peat bombs exclusively paints you into a pretty narrow Scotch drinking corner. To say Oban isn't good is putting your personal preferences above objectively judging the whisky. I am learning to like/appreciate the peat bombs, and I wouldn't have been able to get there without intermediate steps like Talisker and Oban in between the Dalwhinnie and Lagavulin styled extremes on the continuum. Recommending a really peaty Scotch to a newbie is akin to recommending a 90 minute IPA to a new beer drinker. It MAY work out, but it's much more likely to be off putting. You work your way up to those types of beverages, whether they're beer, wine, or Scotch.

Well, to be fair, the guy didn't really recommend anything. He freely admitted that he loves "peat-bombs" and that it wouldn't be the best for a new drinker to drink one of those.Let's say that I go to the store and they don't carry Oban. What should I look for? Trust me when I say that the place in town is monstrous in terms of its liquor selection....if it's not super obscure, it's probably there. They might not have the selection of a scotch-specific place, but I'm sure they have most of the basic "good stuff".
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Well, to be fair, the guy didn't really recommend anything. He freely admitted that he loves "peat-bombs" and that it wouldn't be the best for a new drinker to drink one of those.Let's say that I go to the store and they don't carry Oban. What should I look for? Trust me when I say that the place in town is monstrous in terms of its liquor selection....if it's not super obscure, it's probably there. They might not have the selection of a scotch-specific place, but I'm sure they have most of the basic "good stuff".

If you're new to whisky, Speyside is usually a good place to start. Many of the more well known single malts come from that area, including Glenlivet, Glenfiddich (not one of my faves), Macallan (10 or 12 year are great starting points), Balvenie, and Aberlour. Glenmorangie is a personal favorite of mine, which comes from the Highlands, but it's similar in style to the Speyside malts.All of these will be on the lighter, crisper side, and they don't have the smoke and peat that turns some people off.
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I'll put water with a blend for light drinking on the rocks, and do like a touch (couple drops) of water to release single malts, but don't like ice at all in singles. I've been using Whiskey Stones and love them. They keep the Scotch cooler (not cold by any means), without having the flavor change, as ice melts.

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