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Thursday, August 12, 2010

In Praise Of Scotch Whisky

  • Bunnahabhain (boon-a-havn). First step to heaven. The mildest of the Islay options, for those who wish to tread softly into peat and smoke.
  • Glenmorangie (glen-mor-n-jey). The Lasanta. WOW! My default choice.
  • Auchentoshan. Rare in many ways. One of the few distilleries operating in Scotland's Lowland region. Triple distilled. Subtle.
  • The Famous Grouse. A blend, including The Macallan and Highland Park.
  • Bowmore (boh-mor). Legend. 10 years old. Smokey extravaganza! One of the oldest distilleries in Scotland and the oldest Islay single malt. My favorite top-off after whatever whisky I'm drinking on a particular evening.
  • Aberlour. An ultra-dark speyside, aged 12 years in oak and sherry casks. Ooooh so smooth!
  • Old Pulteney. 12 years old. Clean and smooth as you would expect from a maritime offering.
  • Tamdhu. A delicious Speyside offering that tastes a bit like my favorite Glenmorangie The Lasanta. Used extensively in blends, including The Famous Grouse, J&B, and Cutty Sark. Apparently the distillery was shuttered in April 2010. Should I hoard the bottles that are still available in stores?
  • Laphroaig. The king of smoke. It doesn't get any nastier than this. Pour this Islay dram when you're ready for that knockout punch!
  • The Speyside. An excellent example of delicious Speyside nectar.
  • Bruichladdich Rocks. An unpeated Islay. An oxymoron? And how does one order this in a bar -- Rocks on the rocks? ;-)
  • Ardbeg. Water of Life. Perhaps the smoothest of the Islay offerings. My favorite Islay.
  • The Macallan. Cask Strength. Only a top notch distillery can make 60% alcohol taste like maple syrup! Do not miss this gem. My favorite single malt.
  • Cutty Sark. A truly delicious blend. My favorite among the blends. They recently changed the bottle design. So, save the old one, if you have it.

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