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Old 11-27-2010, 10:55 PM   #301
El Diablo
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Re: Whisky

WFS,

I've had Aberfeldy before but don't remember it v well.

Glenrothes '85 and '98 are quite different, and both outstanding.

A few drops of pure spring water is a great addition to most any scotch.
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Old 11-27-2010, 11:12 PM   #302
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Re: Whisky

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Originally Posted by El Diablo View Post
stabn,

Tons of great options at the $60 level. As for the Fine Oak you mentioned, I'm not too much of a fan.

Here are some great choices for you:

Balvenie 12 Doublewood (~$40)
Highland Park 15 (~$50)
Glenrothes 1998 (~$55)

Balvenie 15 Single Barrel (~$55)
Highland Park 12 (~$40)

I love all those bottles. The top 3 will have a little more of the sweetness that the Macallan has (the balvenie doublewood most of all). If I had to pick one bottle out of the group based simply on you liking the Macallan 18, I'd probably go with the Highland Park 15.
Unfortunately I was 0/2 looking for any Highland Park at the state run liquor stores here in Washington . The Balvenie 12 was as much as your quote for the 15 so that didn't seem like a great idea.


Any opinions on the Glenrothes 1994?
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Old 11-30-2010, 04:11 AM   #303
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Re: Whisky

Tried Laphroig 10 year for the first time the other night at the bar. Tasted with a little bit of water. Smelled super smokey, really got me excited. Immediately after swallowing it tasted like an white-ash covered smoldering log. I really liked it. But then, as I sat there the taste slowly evolved into a familiar but unpleasant flavor (talking after a couple of minutes). I think I can best describe the flavor as Vicks VapoRub. Very unpleasant. Won't be buying a bottle after all.
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Old 11-30-2010, 01:32 PM   #304
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Re: Whisky

JT,

Try Caol Ila and Talisker.
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Old 11-30-2010, 01:41 PM   #305
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Re: Whisky

Bought my first bottle of scotch last night. I went with Glenlivet 12 as per recommendations here and other places on the interwebz. I look forward to becoming snooty and buying more bottles when I stop being a lifebroke college student.
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Old 11-30-2010, 02:31 PM   #306
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Re: Whisky

Bought my first scotch the other day. The balvenie doublewood 12. It was interesting and certainly had a more complex flavor then anything I had ever drank. Was oak-y on the way in, kind of campfire-y on the way down and had a smokey aftertaste. I enjoyed it, and am looking forward to getting something new.

Unfortunately booze is much more expensive here in Canada
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Old 11-30-2010, 06:07 PM   #307
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Re: Whisky

Quote:
Originally Posted by JayTeeMe View Post
Tried Laphroig 10 year for the first time the other night at the bar. Tasted with a little bit of water. Smelled super smokey, really got me excited. Immediately after swallowing it tasted like an white-ash covered smoldering log. I really liked it. But then, as I sat there the taste slowly evolved into a familiar but unpleasant flavor (talking after a couple of minutes). I think I can best describe the flavor as Vicks VapoRub. Very unpleasant. Won't be buying a bottle after all.
That's the 'medicinal' taste that Laphroig is famous for. Other Islay whiskies have it but usually to a lesser degree. If you like the smokey taste but Laphroig was a bit too much, as El D says I'd try Talisker as it's got smoke flavour (but not quite as much) but it's mixed well with other rich and complex flavours. Laphroig is very much about the peat-smoke and not a great deal else as far as I can remember. Not that this is a bad thing, just not to everybody's taste. Caol Ila is my personal favourite but that also is not to everyone's taste as the smoke is more 'ashy' than other Islays and it tends to split opinion. I'd play it safe and try Talisker, everyone with tastebuds likes Talkisker imo.
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Old 11-30-2010, 06:44 PM   #308
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Re: Whisky

The talisker 10 year old? I think I'm gonna grab that or the Highland Park 15 for my next purchase.

I see Highland Park 15 for 85$, Macallan 12 for 90$, Talisker 10 for 70$ and Caol Ila 12 for 90$. Lol canada I guess.

Would these be good starting points for someone who knows absolutely nothing other then the balvenie doublewood?
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:38 PM   #309
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Re: Whisky

GH,

Wow. I added my local SF price (klwines.com) for comparison.

Highland Park 15 for 85$ ($50)
Macallan 12 for 90$ ($43)
Talisker 10 for 70$ ($50)
Caol Ila 12 for 90$ ($50)

LOL Canada indeed.

The Talisker and Caol Ila are going to be very different from the balvenie - much smokier, a little less smooth, and much less sweet. They are not peat bombs (ie: big harsh medicinal earthy flavor), but have a nice hint of peaty smokiness to them.

Macallan is very similar to Balvenie DW, a little smoother and a little less sweet, but imo no reason to buy that since you already have Balvenie. I personally prefer Balvenie and HP to Macallan in that general category.

Highland Park is also pretty similar, but it has a little bigger flavor and is not sweet.

So I'd say, if you want to try something overall similar to Balvenie, but with a little bolder flavor, that HP 15 is an awesome place to go next. If you want to try something that is more of a different flavor profile, the Talisker and Caol are a nice middle ground between the very smooth and very peaty scotches.

Also, the chart in this post is very useful to help you identify and compare flavors as you try new stuff: https://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/sh...&postcount=195
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:52 PM   #310
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Re: Whisky

Sounds like Talisker it is. I'd like to try something completely different and see which style suits me the most. Thanks for the tips and chart!

I don't see the Highland Park 15 on that chart though. The 12 seems far enough away from the Balvenie that it would be different enough. How is the 15 different then the 12? Smoother?
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:25 PM   #311
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Re: Whisky

Goose,

Overall that chart is awesome and I mostly agree w/ it, but imo the HP is way too far away from Balvenie and Macallan. It's smokier and bigger flavor, but not THAT much imo.

As for 15 vs 12, yeah, mainly just smoother. I've had the HP 12/15/18/25/30 and it is one that I think is overall pretty consistent, just gets a little smoother and more complex as you go up the years. I generally buy the 15 or 18. I think the 15 is prob the best deal in terms of price/quality.

That progression is not the case with all distilleries. Some have very different flavors w/ different ages, and some actually get milder and a little washed out flavors as you get over 20.
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:46 PM   #312
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Re: Whisky

I find it pretty strange how your US prices are almost identical to the prices in the UK, despite the bottles having travelled halfway round the world to you and about 3 hours down the road to me.
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Old 12-01-2010, 08:52 AM   #313
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Re: Whisky

First of all awesome thread. Lots of interesting info in here and I will be following it closely. My collection currently contains Laphroig 10, Bushmill Black Bush, and Buffalo Trace. I have recently finished a bottle of Caol Ila 12 and Glen garioch founders reserve, both of which, although markedly different whiskies were excellent in their own respects. The Founders reserve had a strong whiff of white chocolate on the nose which was something I had never encountered before on my whisky adventure!

Does anyone have any thoughts on the difference between Glenfiddich 15 and 18? I can get the 15 for 29 and the 18 for 36.50 so taking into account the difference price points which would you recommend.

One other great thing that I have found through googling is the Scotch Malt Whisky Society. They have their own single casks that they mature themselves and release sporadically through their website. I am really tempted to dive in and purchase one.

Here is the link:
http://www.smws.co.uk/whisky
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Old 12-01-2010, 11:57 AM   #314
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Re: Whisky

Quote:
Originally Posted by JayTeeMe View Post
Tried Laphroig 10 year for the first time the other night at the bar. Tasted with a little bit of water. Smelled super smokey, really got me excited. Immediately after swallowing it tasted like an white-ash covered smoldering log. I really liked it. But then, as I sat there the taste slowly evolved into a familiar but unpleasant flavor (talking after a couple of minutes). I think I can best describe the flavor as Vicks VapoRub. Very unpleasant. Won't be buying a bottle after all.
I think this is the same thing I don't like about Coal Ila, I call it 'camphor-y' because it reminded me of Campho Phenique (or maybe it was Absorbine Jr. I heven't smelled either since I was a kid). The strange thing is that I like both Lagavulin and Laphroaig but just didn't dig the Caol Ila. I actually used the last half of the Caol Ila to season a cask for some homebrewed Porter.
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Old 12-01-2010, 04:03 PM   #315
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Re: Whisky

Quote:
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I think this is the same thing I don't like about Coal Ila, I call it 'camphor-y' because it reminded me of Campho Phenique (or maybe it was Absorbine Jr. I heven't smelled either since I was a kid). The strange thing is that I like both Lagavulin and Laphroaig but just didn't dig the Caol Ila. I actually used the last half of the Caol Ila to season a cask for some homebrewed Porter.
awesome, teach me? I actually had a beer made by BrewDog recently that was an imperial stout aged in Islay whiskey barrels.....kinda tasted like a good stout with a shot of laphroig dumped in. It was interesting to say the least...not something I would ever order, but certainly glad I bought one to try.
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Old 12-01-2010, 05:27 PM   #316
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Re: Whisky

RA,

I'm not a big fan of Glenfiddich, so can't help you there.

The Scotch Malt Whiskey Society is great. They put on this thing http://www.singlemaltextravaganza.com/schedule.html and had a number of bottles of theirs to taste there. I was really impressed w/ their whiskeys.
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Old 12-02-2010, 01:08 AM   #317
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Re: Whisky

Quote:
Originally Posted by DonkeyChip View Post
I think this is the same thing I don't like about Coal Ila, I call it 'camphor-y' because it reminded me of Campho Phenique (or maybe it was Absorbine Jr. I heven't smelled either since I was a kid). The strange thing is that I like both Lagavulin and Laphroaig but just didn't dig the Caol Ila. I actually used the last half of the Caol Ila to season a cask for some homebrewed Porter.
Camphor is actually one of the active ingredients in VapoRub. I would have described it as a mixture of camphor and iodine (i'm a pharmacist so i work with pure both) but figured nobody would understand that description

Anyway, i'm going to have to try lagavulin to see if it has the same problem
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Old 12-03-2010, 05:12 PM   #318
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Re: Whisky

Finally found a bar that had this year's Buffalo Trace Antique Collection available. Got to try the Thomas Handy, George Stagg and the Eagle Rare 17. Eagle Rare was my fave out of the bunch.
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Old 12-03-2010, 06:14 PM   #319
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Re: Whisky

elus,

If you liked that Eagle Rare 17 a lot, I'd highly recommend Eagle Rare 10 as an everyday whiskey.
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Old 12-03-2010, 07:02 PM   #320
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Re: Whisky

Elus,

I did not know you drank whisky. I might actually have to contact you the next time I'm in Vancouver!

Diablo,

After I think four servings of the 1994 Glenthroes I am definitely liking it. Thanks for the recs!
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Old 12-03-2010, 08:37 PM   #321
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Re: Whisky

ElD,

Thanks for the recommendation. I'll probably grab a bottle in the next week.

stabn,

Let's drink in Seattle instead. Whiskey is twice as expensive here. Also can I sleep on your couch?
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Old 12-04-2010, 05:48 PM   #322
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Re: Whisky

I've been thinking about buying my first Highland Park 15 bottle.

Are there any bottles similar to it? I don't know much about single malt whiskeys since I mostly drink commercial blended ones (Chivas 12, JW Black, etc).

I'm also interested in getting a Macallan bottle. I've only tried it once (can't remember what age), but I want to try other brands. Any recommendations?
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Old 12-04-2010, 07:21 PM   #323
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Re: Whisky

ohai,

Plenty of discussion in the thread re: HP/Macallan and similar bottles.
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Old 12-07-2010, 06:23 PM   #324
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Re: Whisky

So I bought the talisker 10, and it was quite different from the balvenie doublewood. Much stronger, smelled alot more like alcohol and it was only 6% higher. I enjoyed it though, the first sip was delicious, almost like caramel or toffee. Then it hit your mouth and started getting harsher and burnt the throat when swallowed. Anyways, interesting and a good addition to the (small) collection. I would say I slightly prefered the balvenie for being smoother and easier to drink, though they were both enjoyable.

So now that I've got these 2, what's next?

I was looking at the Highland Park 15, and saw an HP 18 for 1.65x the price. Worth it? Or not really?

Also Glenrothes. Here are the ones available to me:

GLENROTHES SELECT RESERVE SINGLE MALT 60$
THE GLENROTHES ALBA RESERVE K 70$
GLENROTHES VINTAGE SINGLE MALT 90$
1991 THE GLENROTHES 100$
THE GLENROTHES 1985 165$

Where exactly are these on the chart? I didn't see any.

Also thinking of trying the glenlivet 12, as it is far on the chart from the 2 I've tried.
THE GLENLIVET FRENCH OAK 15 YR 63$
THE GLENLIVET 12YO SINGLE MALT 62$

Any good?
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Old 12-07-2010, 08:06 PM   #325
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Re: Whisky

GH,

A lot of people like Glenlivet, but I am usually not a big fan, especially at those price points. Having said that, I do love Glenlivet Nadurra.

Re: the Glenrothes, I think it's great. It's a flavor profile pretty similar to the Balvenie (except without as much sweetness).

I'd say go w/ a Glenrothes or HP next. They'll have a little bit bigger scotch flavor than the Balvenie, but won't have as much of what you tasted as harshness in the Talisker. Both Glenrothes and HP are very smooth and well balanced.

As for the specific Glenrothes you listed, I would not recommend the Select Reserve. I like everything else I've had from them except that (which is not bad, it's just not that great imo). I also wouldn't invest the kind of money you need to for that 1985 until you've had a little more experience trying a bunch of stuff.

HP 18 vs 15 is tough. That's one where I think it's really on the fence as to whether 18 is worth the premium over 15.
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