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Goatfangs
Wicker Mantis

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Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:14 am 
 

So I figured I would make a thread about one of my favorite things to do - have a wee dram of Scotland's finest aqua vitae!

Come to think of it, I kind of got into Scotch and other whiskies similarly to how I got into heavy metal. First, the opportunity presented itself, second I started with the mild stuff (mild as in alcohol in general) and worked my way up, then I went head on into becoming a connoisseur!

My very first drink of Scotch was a couple months after I turned 21. For starters, I'm one of those "weird people" that actually waited until I was of legal age to drink. I started off with a Miller lite but only had two thirds of the cup because it tasted like shit. My second drink was Captain Morgan and cranberry, which wasn't too bad. Every now and then I would have a drink, I think my first taste of any kind of whisky was Jim Beam and coke. Most often I drank toward the beginning of any kind of music show or other event, and that would be the only drink I'd have for the whole night. I always made it a point to try something different and one day at a hockey game I ordered a Dewar's.

I happened to like it, because it had a flavor I never felt on my palate before yet once I did I liked it. That year I partook in a lot of Johnny Walker, which is decent enough, but it's been quite a long time since I had anything Dewar's or Johnny Walker, or any blended Scotch in general. Because one day I decided to get myself a single malt - Oban 14-year! What a treat that was! How I came to decide on that particular whisky? I went online and looked at reviews, came across a site that had some creatively written reviews of various kinds of alcohol. It was called Booze Bashers. Oban's flagship expression had a very glowing review on the site, in fact it was the highest rated Scotch on the whole blog. I tried The MacAllan and Glenfiddich at times - in one case I got a couple miniature bottles to put in a cooler for a road-game bus trip I was going to. Not driving for a while and most of the fellow bus passengers brought alcohol aboard so why not freeze a couple mini-Scotches and drink straight from the bottle? That was fun. Glenfiddich was actually at a bar of a music venue near Harrisburg, the place was actually quite upscale considering I was there to see some death metal bands (like Fruit of the Doom).

The hockey arena in my area (Sovereign Center in Reading, PA; home to the Reading Royals) had another single malt I decided to try - Talisker 10-year. Boy was that awesome! I couldn't get enough of it. In a rare moment I ordered a second helping of the stuff! Then the very next day I went out and grabbed a bottle for my own.

However, then I heard of a Scotch that boasts itself as the most richly flavored of all Scotch whiskies. One that you could give to a best friend, or to a worst enemy, since it's one of those "You either like it or not" type of scotches. A very smoky, peaty Scotch I heard. Talisker was smoky and peaty, probably taking cues from Islay malt distilleries (Talisker is on the Isle of Skye), and I love smoky flavored stuff in general. Laphroaig was practically legendary in the smoky Scotch world and I had to try it.

In a moment comparable to the first time I listened to Therion's album Beyond Sanctorum, I was stricken with love of Laphroaig. I have since gotten four bottles of it of three different varieties. I might go out and get the cask strength 10-year old next because I cannot get enough of it. I have an 18-year Laphroaig that I'm afraid to finish because it is the finest whisky I EVER tasted. I might just go finish it because I recently learned that whisky undergoes oxidation in the bottle and might lose the punch it had when you first opened the bottle.

Ardbeg is another kind I really enjoy. In fact, I had both Ardbeg Uigeadail and Ardbeg 10 year old. I finished the Ardbeg Uigeadail a couple nights ago - had a little too much of it because it's a long story. Ah well, I'll tell it anyway. I wanted to have some that night, but not the rest, saving that for another night. I did want to finish the bottle because of the oxidation issue. Well, the cork broke and fell into the bottle. I carefully poured all of it out into a glass and then was liek "Fuck it... I'll drink it!" It was good, but I did notice the flavor had degenerated a bit. Felt a hell of a buzz though.

I'm currently enjoying Ardbeg 10 year old.

There's other whiskies in my collection - Sazerac Rye whiskey, some French whisky, several Bourbon whiskies: Knob Creek, Wild Turkey Rare Breed, Maker's Mark, Bookers'. I have some Gentleman Jack which has been tasting weird lately, maybe it also oxidized. One whisky I have is a Japanese whisky - The Yamasaki single malt, aged 12 years. It tastes pretty damn good, similar to Scotch!

I want to get into a single malt Irish whiskey but is there a particular brand that stands out above the rest? Don't say Jameson :p
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conquer__all
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 1:09 am 
 

I'm a Bourbon man, I do like Scotch but perfer Bourbon for it's sweetness and complexity. I like Maker's Mark the best, Jack Daniels (yeah, I know it's a Tenn Whiskey not a bourbon), and Knob Creek, Pappy Van Winkle (which is hard as hell to find in PA). I usually drink my whiskey straight or in a Manhattan.
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The_Beast_in_Black
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 1:36 am 
 

I'm quite fond of Scotch and Irish whiskey, but not particularly keen on bourbon. Something about bourbon doesn't sit right with me. I think it's got a slightly cloying sweetness to it that I'm not fond of, which doesn't really make sense since I like rum. Anyways, these days I mostly drink your standard whiskeys for parties and such; usually Ballantine's, Johnnie Walker, Canadian Club or Jameson. I haven't had a good whiskey sampling session in a long time. I should fix that.
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Yahko
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:13 am 
 

Here is my Scotch evolution.

About 6 years ago I was working in landscaping and our leadhand was drinking Canadian Club with Ginger Ale as his favorite drink. I joined him after work many times for a few months. One day after work he said "Ok go buy some whiskey". I had the 26$ in my pocket - I went in and I saw a squarish bottle that said Scotch Whiskey on it, so I grabbed it and came back. The guy was like "Its scotch, you cant really mix it with ginger ale" we tried to do so and it didnt work so we had to drink it strait. As months passed by I became friends with the guy and we used to hang out and his fathers neighbor was a big scotch guy and he told us what to try and this and that. Probably a year passed by and we tried Canadian Club - and we said what a disgusting drink was it comparing to scotch.

In the long run I tried all the blended scotches and few single malts that I could buy here in Toronto, Canada. On top of my head is - The Famous Grouse, Teachers, Grand Macnish, Cutty Sark, Islay Mist, Grants (the 3 types, I cant remember the names), Ballantine's, Te'Bheag, Glennfiddich, Chivas Regal, Glenlivet, Glen Parker, Jura something and the list goes on.

I like almost all Irish Whiskeys, Bushmills Bush, Tullamore Dew, Jamesons, and a few more names. I wanted to get Powers but it was sold out so I need to wait until they bring more some where this year, hopefully. I got a bottle of Kilbeggan that I bought almost half a year ago for an all Irish party (whiskeys, beer and food) the party never happened so I still go the bottle unopened :P

I recently went to a Whiskey tasting, there were a few that I liked and a few I didnt - a Japanese Single Malt, was way too expensive the taste was whatever. Laphroaig was quite interesting. Glenmorangie was nice. There was one bottle that I cant remember the name that was quite summery and refreshing. I dont like Johnnie Walker series at all - I tried Platinum that goes for 140$ a bottle and it was a waste of my taste senses :P I dont know why but JW is not impressing me much.

My favorite is Chivas Regal - I dont have guts to spend the money to try the single malts, most of the blended scotches are like 25$ to 40$ so I can afford to buy a bottle every other weekend. With single malts its a bit more in the 80$ range which I never my mind to buy. Plus I switched to beer in the past 2 years so I might just buy one bottle a year of some Scotch I never tried before but nothing too fancy.

I hate bourbon - can not stand it from beginning to end.
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CrushedRevelation
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 4:38 am 
 

Here is a shot of my gorgeous crystal decanter, which at the moment contains the American Honey Wild Turkey bourbon. Admittedly, this is not what I consider to be high-end stuff by any means, but it is quite a nice bourbon for sipping on with some ice, and it looks beautiful in the crystal (also has matching glasses). I would like to further expand my experience with the finer scotches, as they have always interested me, and am keen to try pricier, more delicious brands beyond the Glennfiddich, Hennessy and the like.

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Bede
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 5:20 am 
 

My favourite whiskies come from the Islay. I've tasted all but Bunnahabhain, an iniquity I intend to rectify in the near future. As to my favourite one, I'd say I'm in the same boat with you Goatfangs; 18-year-old Laphroaig is just divine. However, this might be prone to change when I get the chance to the taste the 25-year-old.

I wouldn't waste my money on 12-year-old Glenfiddich. Don't get me wrong, it's good and quite enjoyable, but I'd save the money for older ones. Their 18-year-old is excellent and worth all the money it costs. At first, I really liked the 12 years old Glenfiddich, but then I went to the Glenfiddich distillery for a tour, and they offered us their 12, 15 and 18 years old whiskies. After that, the 12-year-old seemed just seemed to lack something in taste. The older ones are really rich and well-rounded in flavour.

I'm currently drinking a Highland whisky, AnCnoc, and it's quite interesting as well. It's quite sweet, even fruity, with a hint of smokiness, and from my experience it seems to be suitable for people who are overwhelmed by the smokiness of the Islay whiskies. It's definitely easier to drink since the smoke and peat don't smack you right in the face with the ferocity of, say, Ardbeg. A good, altough perhaps a bit bland, whisky.

As for the Irish ones, Connemara peated malt is decent, I'd say. If you like your whiskies to have a strong peatiness/smokiness, try it. It's not even that expensive, I think.

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Tantalus
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 6:26 am 
 

I love Scotch, and some Bourbons - though those tend to be overly sweet for my liking. The OP made me sad though as I think Canadian Club is lovely :(

Most people don't know how to drink Scotch, which is why they don't like it. Letting it sit on your tongue, gently warming, and trickling slowly down the throat is one of life's most unalloyed pleasures. It disturbed me that some people freeze it, though. WITH ice I can understand, but freezing it is abominable.
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The_Beast_in_Black
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:46 am 
 

I think Canadian Club is quite good, too, so you're not alone there, old mate.

Never heard of anyone freezing Scotch before. Why the hell would they do that?
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Under_Starmere
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:39 pm 
 

Talisker is indeed pretty fantastic. Amazing that so many different savory notes could harmonize in one active bouquet they way they've designed it to. Really have to pick up a bottle soon, if I can afford it... Currently finishing a bottle of anCnoc 12 yr. It's essentially as Bede described: surprisingly fruity (even a bit citrusy!) with an undertone of peat. Really nice stuff, as I'm not the biggest fan of ultra-peaty scotch. Or...perhaps I should say the peatier the scotch, the more of a mood-specific thing it is. This sweeter approach found in the anCnoc makes it something suited to a more everyday pour, though not to say its quality is generic, because it's quite fine.

Though I've had strong bourbon leanings in the past, recently I'm finding myself more interested in scotch overall. I've got a bottle of Basil Hayden's 8 yr on the shelf at the moment, and though it's obviously quite good, next to the anCnoc it feels structurally thin and just not quite as compelling somehow. It's got fewer notes and simply isn't quite as satisfying. Methinks I'll be taking a Highlands tour and leaving Kentucky behind for a while. Though I might not be able to resist making the figurative flight back to the figurative Appalachians and picking up a bottle of Blanton's by way of intermission...
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Scourge441
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:58 pm 
 

I've been taking a liking to Maker's Mark recently, and I'm fond of Knob Creek as well. Scotch, though, I'm only mildly experienced with. I got to sample some Green Label and Black Label at a New Year's party my friend threw, and both impressed me, but it hasn't become a hobby yet.

On a side note: what's the traditional whiskey to use in a mint julep? I've heard differing opinions on whether it's bourbon or rye.

Tantalus wrote:
It disturbed me that some people freeze it, though. WITH ice I can understand, but freezing it is abominable.

I had a friend who froze a small bottle of Johnnie Walker Blue Label. It tasted vile. In his defense, it had been sitting in his car and had gotten hot, so I can understand his logic given that he's probably never really dealt with scotch before, but still... Blue Label :(

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conquer__all
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 4:55 pm 
 

for mint Julep def a Bourbon. Maker's Mark makes a great Julep as well as a Manhattan!
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RedMisanthrope
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 7:04 pm 
 

If the liquor is brown, I'm down. With certain exceptions of course. Jack is fine, but I don't go out of my way to drink it. Southern Comfort is gut rot in a bottle. I usually nab some Maker's or if I don't feel like wincing after every sip, Crown is acceptable. For Scotch I usually go for Johnny Walker, but if I want something a bit more authentic, The Glenlivet is one of my favorites. For my birthday this past November I bought myself a bottle of Eighteen Year Old Glenlivet. Probably the best liquor I've ever had. Saw later on that the place I purchased it from had a Twenty Year bottle locked up in a case. Maybe for my next birthday.
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Razakel
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 11:21 pm 
 

The_Beast_in_Black wrote:
I think Canadian Club is quite good, too, so you're not alone there, old mate.


Canadian Club is alright, but I mostly only drink it because I'm a Trailer Park Boys fan :lol:

Jameson is basically the only hard alcoholic drink which I thoroughly enjoy, and I do love my Jameson. I'd like to become more of a whiskey connoisseur when I'm older and have more money to throw around.

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Dragunov
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 11:42 pm 
 

There is so much class going on in this thread. I bet everybody is smoking a cigar too.
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Waltz_of_Ghouls
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 11:53 pm 
 

Bede wrote:
I wouldn't waste my money on 12-year-old Glenfiddich. Don't get me wrong, it's good and quite enjoyable, but I'd save the money for older ones. Their 18-year-old is excellent and worth all the money it costs. At first, I really liked the 12 years old Glenfiddich, but then I went to the Glenfiddich distillery for a tour, and they offered us their 12, 15 and 18 years old whiskies. After that, the 12-year-old seemed just seemed to lack something in taste. The older ones are really rich and well-rounded in flavour.


The 18 years old one is quite something yes. However I preferred the 15 years old one. I need to buy a new one, but at least I still got a bottle of 18y.

Another Scotch I'm quite fond of and it's probably the "pride" of my limited collection, is a Glenrothes Vintage 1992. Bought it in 2004/5 and half the bottle's gone now. :(

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Yahko
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:17 pm 
 

Dragunov wrote:
There is so much class going on in this thread. I bet everybody is smoking a cigar too.


From what I saw in movies and heard from people and some personal experience - cigars go well with cognac or brandy. I dont know how well they go with scotch because the cigar leaves a lot of taste in your mouth that would surely "mislead" or maybe even ruin the very fine tastes of the scotch or whiskey.
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Gelseth_Andrano
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:33 am 
 

Gotta love Glenlivet. I can't remember the type of scotch it was, but I had some 18 year old stuff that tasted like campfire smoke, and it was damn delicious. I'll have to ask my sister what that was and pick some up. When I'm out on the town my whiskey of choice is ususally Jameson. For whatever reason, it's really just the tastiest in my opinion (excluding top shelf stuff of course) out of all your mid range selection. Candian Club is also pretty good for what it is. I picked up a fifth (750 mL) of it for $12 and some change, and it's fine for just having around and drinking whenever, especially for that price. A handle (1.75L) is only around $20. Lately, I'll drink that and chain-smoke while playing Saints Row the Third so I can feel extra gangsta.
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Bede
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:35 am 
 

As to how people drink their whiskies, I normally have it neat. Although, with older whiskies, adding just two to three drops of water will alter the taste and make the weaker flavours more dominant.

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Tantalus
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 10:51 am 
 

Neat for me too, generally, for the reason you mentioned. I prefer Glenlivet to Glenfiddich as far as the more commercial Scotch goes, 'fidditch has a slightly clinical almost, petrol-y aftertaste at each age band I've tried, not sure if that's just my palate though. I really want to get into the stuff from the Isle of Jura, it's not that expensive and sounds awesome. Peat smoke ahoy!
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somefella
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 10:35 am 
 

I drink a shit-ton of Jim Beam when I'm out with my friends, but my favourites have to be Glenlivet and Glenfiddich. What smooth and heavenly beverages !
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Smoking_Gnu
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 12:39 pm 
 

Goatfangs wrote:
However, then I heard of a Scotch that boasts itself as the most richly flavored of all Scotch whiskies. One that you could give to a best friend, or to a worst enemy, since it's one of those "You either like it or not" type of scotches. A very smoky, peaty Scotch I heard. Talisker was smoky and peaty, probably taking cues from Islay malt distilleries (Talisker is on the Isle of Skye), and I love smoky flavored stuff in general. Laphroaig was practically legendary in the smoky Scotch world and I had to try it.

In a moment comparable to the first time I listened to Therion's album Beyond Sanctorum, I was stricken with love of Laphroaig. I have since gotten four bottles of it of three different varieties. I might go out and get the cask strength 10-year old next because I cannot get enough of it. I have an 18-year Laphroaig that I'm afraid to finish because it is the finest whisky I EVER tasted. I might just go finish it because I recently learned that whisky undergoes oxidation in the bottle and might lose the punch it had when you first opened the bottle.


I'm just getting into scotch myself and found I really enjoyed Laphroaig after a friend let me try some...I definitely seem to enjoy that really smoky flavor, if you could recommend anything else similar.

My dad's friend is this old Scottish guy who knows everything about scotch, and he recommended Balvenie 12 year, Glenmorangie 10 year and Glenkinchie 1991 as excellent single malts, so I'm looking forward to trying those.
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Ancient_Sorrow
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 1:03 pm 
 

Quote:
Neat for me too, generally, for the reason you mentioned. I prefer Glenlivet to Glenfiddich as far as the more commercial Scotch goes, 'fidditch has a slightly clinical almost, petrol-y aftertaste at each age band I've tried, not sure if that's just my palate though. I really want to get into the stuff from the Isle of Jura, it's not that expensive and sounds awesome. Peat smoke ahoy!


I had some Jura stuff a while back - I can't remember what it was, more specifically, but it was deliciously smooth, which is all I really ask for in a Whisky - that it doesn't taste like liquid fire, as so many do.
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Bede
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 1:49 pm 
 

Smoking_Gnu wrote:
I'm just getting into scotch myself and found I really enjoyed Laphroaig after a friend let me try some...I definitely seem to enjoy that really smoky flavor, if you could recommend anything else similar.

My dad's friend is this old Scottish guy who knows everything about scotch, and he recommended Balvenie 12 year, Glenmorangie 10 year and Glenkinchie 1991 as excellent single malts, so I'm looking forward to trying those.


If you enjoyed Laphroaig, you'll most likely enjoy Ardbeg and Lagavulin as well. All the whiskies from Islay have that smoky flavour, but the three mentioned are most powerful in that sense. The Northern distilleries have also that smoky flavour, albeit milder.

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Thiestru
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:46 pm 
 

I can't say I've had nearly as many scotches as most of the people in this thread, but I do honestly love the stuff. The Glenlivet is my go-to scotch; I find it completely satisfying. I tried Glenfiddich a few years ago, and was disappointed. It looks and smells so promising, but the taste just fell short to me. I wish I could give a detailed explanation of what I didn't like, but it's been far too long since I had it for me to remember. Chivas Regal and Johnny Walker suit me fine, but I rarely buy them. In fact, I rarely buy whisky at all, as I prefer beer as my regular beverage. The unfortunate side effect of this is that I haven't explored the less commercial scotches. This thread has got me craving some whisky now though, so I ask you: what is the first bottle I should buy? If you recommend something other than the four I mentioned, chances are I haven't had it, or at least don't remember it. Thanks for any advice. :)

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lancasterdrummer
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:07 pm 
 

Had my first taste of Johnny Walker Blue Label. Orgasm in a glass lol.

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Smoking_Gnu
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:11 pm 
 

lancasterdrummer wrote:
Had my first taste of Johnny Walker Blue Label. Orgasm in a glass lol.


They sell that at the bar I used to work at; some ridiculously inflated price like $50 mixed and $75 on the rocks or neat. I think maybe 3 shots have been sold between all of the bartenders here since we started carrying it over a year ago, and people normally spend a fair bit on drinks here the way it is ($14 martinis and all that.)

This thread has also inspired me to actually buy a bottle of Laphroiag, which I plan on sampling tonight. Cheers!
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Earthcubed
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 7:52 am 
 

Part-time whiskey/whisky drinker, full time beer enthusiast here. I just focus so much of my money and leisure time sampling, drinking, and (though I do this less now) writing about beer that I don't have much spare room for spirits. When I do, it is usually Scotch, and it is usually at a restaurant; I don't drink the hard stuff often enough to make buying a whole bottle worth it, especially if it is an expensive one I have never tried. Always worth it to spend $8-$15 on one glass when you're out rather than risk $40-$100 on something you may absolutely hate and not want around the home.

Favorites include Talisker 10, Laphroaig 10 and Glenlivet 18 for Scotch; I have had far, far fewer American whiskeys but my three favorite there would be W.L. Weller's 12, Templeton Rye and Jack Daniels Single Barrel. You guys really ought to try the 12-year Wellers; it's only around $28, unheard of for anything aged that long. Seems to be a longtime classic for wheat-based bourbon.

I dislike Glenfiddich 12. Definitely prefer Glenlivet 12.
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Bede
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:13 pm 
 

Smoking_Gnu wrote:

This thread has also inspired me to actually buy a bottle of Laphroiag, which I plan on sampling tonight. Cheers!


Just out of curiosity, which Laphroaig did you choose?

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Yahko
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:32 pm 
 

I had Laphroaig 10 at a scotch tasting and its nothing I ever tasted before. It was like a mix of rubber, leather, salt, stone and smoke all at once. Very interesting, very unique.
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Smoking_Gnu
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Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 11:22 pm
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 2:25 pm 
 

Bede wrote:
Smoking_Gnu wrote:

This thread has also inspired me to actually buy a bottle of Laphroiag, which I plan on sampling tonight. Cheers!


Just out of curiosity, which Laphroaig did you choose?


10-year, that's the only one I've found around here. I had it a few times at bars before when my friend would let me have a sip of theirs on the rocks, but hadn't tried it neat until Wednesday night. Really good stuff.

I would like to try the 18-year since everyone seems to rave about it; may look into ordering it online.

Razakel wrote:
The_Beast_in_Black wrote:
I think Canadian Club is quite good, too, so you're not alone there, old mate.


Canadian Club is alright, but I mostly only drink it because I'm a Trailer Park Boys fan :lol:

Jameson is basically the only hard alcoholic drink which I thoroughly enjoy, and I do love my Jameson. I'd like to become more of a whiskey connoisseur when I'm older and have more money to throw around.


Julian, don't drink the Swish... :D

Do they really drink Canadian Club on that show or are you just going with the Canadian reference?
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Earthcubed
Peregrinus sine aetate

Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 3:44 am
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:06 pm 
 

Yahko wrote:
I had Laphroaig 10 at a scotch tasting and its nothing I ever tasted before. It was like a mix of rubber, leather, salt, stone and smoke all at once. Very interesting, very unique.



Ah, the infamous "Laphroaig character." I'm sure if you had a hundred other Scotches the only similar-tasting ones you'd find would all be from that same brand. FYI, I believe their barrel house overlooks the ocean (and by extension, absorbs the ocean air through the barrels) and in any case they themselves describe a number of their drinks as having a "seaweed" flavor, so I'm not surprised you tasted salt.

I like it. Lots of people hate it though.....
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Thiestru
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Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2008 9:18 am
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Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:35 pm 
 

I too just bought a bottle of Laphroaig 10, and I'll be trying it in a few minutes. I'm pretty excited.

Update:

Appearance: Very beautiful color, very rich golden. All good there.

Nose: Wow! That's something else. I hate to use the typical descriptors (smoky, salty, seaweed, etc.) to describe it, but that's what it is. Extremely strong smell, probably the strongest scent of any beverage (alcoholic or otherwise) I've ever encountered.

Taste (taken neat): Again, wow! Never tasted anything like this before. It comes at you with all guns blazing, but holding it for a few seconds on the tongue reveals a complex flavor that is at once sweet and salty, and very smoky. Before I tried this, I couldn't really understand why everyone was comparing it to the ocean, but I'll be damned if it's not accurate. I don't know what the Isle of Islay looks like, but I feel like I can imagine it fairly well, just based on this whisky, haha. Very hot going down the gullet - the most intense part of the experience - but a surprisingly gentle finish, and quite a long-lasting.

That's my as-it's-happening, first-time review, so I'm likely to discover more about this whisky as I drink a bit more; hopefully I'll also think of how to describe it better. How does it stack up against other whiskies I've had? I can't honestly say. It's unique, which makes it hard to compare. I could see this becoming a personal favorite though. Thanks to everyone in this thread for bringing this fine drink to my attention. Wassail!

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Goatfangs
Wicker Mantis

Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2008 5:02 pm
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Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2013 9:01 pm 
 

Anyone watch Ralfy's whisky reviews?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8pFRhHBsnH0

I think Laphroaig 10-year Cask Strength is going to be my next bottle.


By the way, I mentioned oxidation of opened whisky bottles. Ralfy gives some good advice on how to deal with those (aside from drinking them up within a few months!)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ATdUbox20q8
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Goatfangs
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 8:59 pm 
 

Bede wrote:
As for the Irish ones, Connemara peated malt is decent, I'd say. If you like your whiskies to have a strong peatiness/smokiness, try it. It's not even that expensive, I think.


I went out to the liquor store today and picked up a bottle of Connemara peated single malt Irish whiskey. I just poured a glass and I quite like it!

It's not as strong and smoky as Laphroaig (I also got a bottle of 10-year, since I got to have my Laphroaig!), but the peatiness is there. I'd say it's married quite nicely to the heatherly sweetness of Irish whiskey, there is definitely a distinction between this and Scotch. It's smooth too, but how else is it supposed to go down? It's not like a glass of Booker's bourbon which kicks you in the groin while kissing you on the lips at the same time. That stuff goes down rough and is one of the few whiskies to give me a headache, despite the actual flavor being quite excellent.

It's cheaper than most of the Scotches I like, but still pricier than many of the Bourbons I like. A good middle of the road price that is affordable. I don't go out and get much whisky, I'm no heavy drinker but I'm satisfied with this purchase!

So thanks for the recommendation. Just about done with this dram and I might have another later tonight!
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RageW
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Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2008 11:44 am
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:14 pm 
 

I have a bottle of Lagavulin 16 over here. I call it "Smokey".
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Goatfangs
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:32 pm 
 

Lagavulin is the next Scotch I want to try. I might get it sometime down the road but it's always a bit pricier than other Scotches (it's in the $70-$80 range). Is it worth getting?
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TheUglySoldier
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:51 pm 
 

I don't have enough money to drink much Scotch, but occasionally I'll grab a bottle of Black Douglas, which, although a cheaper brew, is pretty damn good.
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RegularK
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Joined: Fri Jan 19, 2007 9:24 pm
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Location: Canada
PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:12 am 
 

@OP

I must agree with you Laphroaig is amazing. I am a huge whisky fan, but I have only been able to afford their Quarter Cask until I got the 10 year for Christmas. I have not cracked it yet! I am still very excited to try it out sometime. Ugh! Whiskey (or whisky) is great fun to discover, awesome!

I bought Ardbeg out of province and enjoyed it, but, honestly, I enjoyed Laphraoig a lot more,.

Lagavullin in my province is way too expensive ($130!, cheapest bottle) so I won't be experiencing that any time soon.
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Bede
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Joined: Sat Apr 19, 2008 4:58 am
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:20 am 
 

Goatfangs wrote:
Lagavulin is the next Scotch I want to try. I might get it sometime down the road but it's always a bit pricier than other Scotches (it's in the $70-$80 range). Is it worth getting?


I have the distillers edition of Lagavulin's 16-year-old. I bought it from the airport in Edinburgh for around £50 (1 litre), which I thought was a bargain. Its taste is recognisably Islay-esque, but since this edition has been matured a second time in cask wood, it also has a strong flavour of sherry. It's very, very enjoyable and intense, but the flavour are more layered, so it's not the easiest whisky. I'd say this is one of those whiskies that should be tried fully sober with no prior alcohol intakes.

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to try the normal Lagavulins yet, so I can't say much about them. However, I think that Laphroaig, Ardbeg and Lagavulin are all quite similar, but normally everyone will be able to find a favourite one out of the three: the similarities of the three whiskies are enjoyed by all, but it is the small differences that are decisive in deciding which one to love. So, I'd say it's worth getting, even if it wouldn't become a favourite of yours. :)

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Earthcubed
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2013 8:23 am 
 

Lagavulin in my mind has a more "mossy" peat flavor than other peated Scotch, though it's still smoky as hell. I've only had the 16.....for some reason the 12 is more expensive. :scratch:
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