Author Topic: A Few Thoughts on Scotch  (Read 7017 times)

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Offline airboy

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A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« on: March 17, 2019, 09:00:40 AM »
I started drinking Scotch for my health - really.  I used to drink beer in the evening but I became diabetic.  Scotch has fewer carbs = better for a diabetic.

I have Scottish ancestry (Abernethy) though that is pretty meaningless since my ancestors came to North America in the 1600s.  Still, I retain two important characteristics of the Scotch: I like Scotch and I'm frugal.

Fortunately, I find Scotch blends are better tasting than single malts.  "Scotch Snobs" (and probably those with better palates than I) know that single malts are better than blends.  But I like blends and I'm drinking because I want to, not because I have to.  I'm retired so I don't have to drink.  Blends are much less expensive than single malts which warms my heart.

My thoughts on some Scotch Blends are in subsequent posts.

Offline airboy

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2019, 09:03:58 AM »
What I like and dislike in Scotch.

Scotch should not taste sweet.  If you want a sweeter taste, drink bourbon. 
Scotch should have a smoky or peaty taste to it.
Scotch should not taste like you are sucking on a piece of burnt wood.
Scotch should go down smooth, not harsh.

Preferences:
Sometimes I want a smokier/more peaty taste.  Sometimes I don't.
Because I sometimes want smoky, I need at least two brands of Scotch in the house at all times.

If you disagree with the above criteria - then take the subsequent recommendations as an "anti-buy" list rather than a recommendation list.

Offline airboy

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2019, 09:06:45 AM »
Dewers White Label

Advantages:
Smooth
Lightly smokey/peaty taste
Not sweet

Disadvantages:
None.  Not expensive, smooth and good. 

This is my everyday, go-to scotch.  You can find it everywhere.  It is not terribly expensive (you can get a handle for less than $40 including tax in Georgia). 
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 09:28:35 AM by airboy »

Offline airboy

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2019, 09:10:40 AM »
Johnny Walker Red

Advantages:
As smoky a taste as I ever care for
Smooth
Not Sweet

Disadvantages:
More expensive
Usually I don't want something this smoky

I keep a fifth (not a handle) of Johnny Walker Red in the liquor cabinet.  I don't want something that smoky every day, or even every week.  But when I want it I want it. 

Offline airboy

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2019, 09:14:40 AM »
JW

Advantages:
Cheaper than Dewar's
Not sweet
Comes in a plastic bottle (It is less likely to break)

Disadvantages
Not smooth enough

I will happily drink JW when it is offered to me.  I find it a little to harsh to buy for myself.  But I'm happy to drink your JW, thank you for it, and have a second while thanking you for being a fine fellow.


Offline airboy

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2019, 09:22:49 AM »
Scorsby

Advantages:
Less expensive than Dewars
Not sweet
Smoky, but not too smoky

Disadvantage:
Not smooth, not smooth at all.

I tried a Fifth of Scorsby and it was not smooth enough.  It was barely drinkable.  I finished the bottle instead of giving it to a relative who believes that any free liquor is better than any liquor he purchases with his own money.  But I did think about gifting it - hard. :-\
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 09:39:20 AM by airboy »

Offline airboy

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2019, 09:27:47 AM »
Carlyle

Advantages:
Cheaper than Johnny Walker Red
More smoky than Dewars, but not as smoky as Johnny Walker Red
Not Sweet
Smooth

Disadvantages:
None really.

Awesome!  I found this at Total Wine in Greenville, SC when up for the SEC Women's Basketball Tournament.  This was a store manager recommendation - which often is a good indicator.  It hit my sweet spot on smoky (more smoky than Dewars but not too smoky).  It is less expensive than Johnny Walker Red. 

Offline airboy

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2019, 09:30:53 AM »
I posted all of this as a public service to my fellow grogs - who seem to be a hard drinking bunch.

I've spent a decade of research on this topic.  And remember, I'm a scientist and I have been highly trained in "research."

Offline airboy

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2019, 09:42:38 AM »
Shieldaig

Advantages:
Cheaper than Dewars
Honestly, the name is pretty neat.
Not sweet.
Nice smoky taste

Disadvantages:
Too Harsh

This was the other Total Wine Manager recommendation in the blended Scotch area.  I drank all of this and did not consider giving it to a relative - but it was harsher than I like.  If you can tolerate something less smooth than Dewars, or if, God help you, you like a harsher taste - then try Shieldaig.

Offline solops

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #9 on: March 17, 2019, 09:50:30 AM »
Enjoyable thread. I, too, am retired and enjoy Scotch. I don't drink much at all, sadly. It's not that I don't WANT to, I just keep forgetting to....not a good sign. My drinks are Scotch and port with an occasional CC&7. The other two being a bit sweet, I tend to like my Scotch neat - no ice, no water - and I , alas, like the strong single malts. which makes my only occasional drinking more affordable. My favorite is Laphroaig, as peaty and strong a drink as one could want. I can say that there is a big difference between the 10 and 25 year old versions. I stick with the cheaper bottle for the most part. And somehow I think I had a bottle of 18 year old Laphroaig, though their website claims no such animal exists....must have had too much of whatever it was :-)
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Offline Staggerwing

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2019, 09:57:27 AM »
Johnny Red is my usual go-to, though I'll splurge on some Black on occasion, and Dewers is indeed a nice fall-back for a lighter taste.

That being said, right now all I have in the house is a bottle of Bushmill's Irish Whiskey, also not bad.
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Offline Huw the Poo

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2019, 10:13:44 AM »
Nice thread, Airboy!

I tend to prefer single malt Scotch, however that's purely my taste and I have nothing against blends at all - it all comes down to the flavour.

That being said, I can wholeheartedly recommend a nice bottle of 12-year-old Chivas Regal, which has become kind of a go-to for me if I can't get my hands on any of the single malts I usually drink.  It's also not terribly expensive.


Offline Staggerwing

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #12 on: March 17, 2019, 10:50:51 AM »
I don't think I've ever tried Chivas Regal, despite it being on every liquor store shelf right by the JW Red. I'll give it a go some time.
Vitu r enn - ea hvat?  -Voluspa

Nothing really rocks and nothing really rolls and nothing's ever worth the cost...

"Don't you look at me that way..." -the Abyss
 
'When searching for a meaningful embrace, sometimes my self respect took second place' -Iggy Pop, Cry for Love

... this will go down on your permanent record... -the Violent Femmes, 'Kiss Off'-

"I'm not just anyone, I'm not just anyone-
I got my time machine, got my 'electronic dream!"
-Sonic Reducer, -Dead Boys

Offline Airborne Rifles

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #13 on: March 17, 2019, 12:46:59 PM »
Thanks for this thread. Ive started enjoying scotch too but so far only single malts. I agree on sweetness/peatiness thing. Ill have to try some of these.

Offline jamus34

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Re: A Few Thoughts on Scotch
« Reply #14 on: March 22, 2019, 09:35:20 AM »
Nice thread

walker Red in a handle is my go to for volume / cost ratio.

Walker black is nice but not worth the premium over the red.

I prefer Islay scotch so when I have some pennies rubbing together without a home Ill grab a bottle of Ardbeg 10 yr or Laphroaig 10 yr.
Insert witty comment here.