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Old 04-14-2018, 12:38 PM   #256
fargon
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Welcome EDavis63. I hope you like Googly Eyes.
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Old 04-14-2018, 03:33 PM   #257
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Seagram's V.O. shots. Caffeine-free Pepsi back.
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Old 04-14-2018, 05:15 PM   #258
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Iced cold press coffee. Ice Cold and Black, like my heart.
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Old 04-24-2018, 03:43 AM   #259
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Sarge View Post
Getting back to the theme of this thread - I'm about to go to the liqour store. Any suggestions?
If Big Sarge is a scotch drinker and still around to read this thread, try my favorite Speyside: Balvenie's DoubleWood 12yo. Gets the usual bourbon-cask maturing for the usual kind of time, then gets a finish stored in port and sherry casks before being let out into the world.

This stuff is as complex as a red wine. Layers upon layers upon layers.

Get outside of enough of this and you'll take up the bagpipes.
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Old 04-24-2018, 07:51 PM   #260
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UG, what is it that distinguishes Speyside from Islay? I've found it lighter, more floral, and vexingly, somewhat peppery. I didn't care for it. In fairness, I am smoke-smitten, Laphroaig has ruined me for any Scotch not made at the water's edge.
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Old 04-24-2018, 09:15 PM   #261
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Quote:
Balvenie's DoubleWood 12yo
~ I hereby endorse this product or service ~
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Old 04-24-2018, 11:49 PM   #262
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Originally Posted by BigV View Post
UG, what is it that distinguishes Speyside from Islay? I've found it lighter, more floral, and vexingly, somewhat peppery. I didn't care for it. In fairness, I am smoke-smitten, Laphroaig has ruined me for any Scotch not made at the water's edge.
I'm a giant fan of Islays myself -- and you've noticed every year there seems to be another one setting up. They're gonna get as thick as all those Speysides if they keep it up...

Not only that, the Islays are getting all cute, and introducing notions like "vatting" -- stirring together all or most of the separate Islays, like blend Scotch minus the grain alcohol extender, and itself a return to the sort of thing well-fixed gentlemen and clubs did with various Scotches back in the nineteenth century, maybe as early as the late eighteenth. If you can find it, a vatted bottling is Big Peat -- I understand this to be all the Islays, just as smoky as ever you like, with a rather comic label on it that seems to depict that Islay is a very windy place, very windy indeed.

To compound the mischief and the bewilderfying, the sundry distilleries in the several regional styles are trying their hands at producing other regions' styles of whisky. Speyside and Highland styles are seriously beginning to blur into each other, leaving the Northern, Campbelltown (I think C'town whiskies may be poised to expand back into many brands; there used to be a hundred twenty-odd distilleries in Campbelltown and I see no reason with the single malt market as it is for them not to grow like a fairy-ring again), some Lowland now, and the Isles/Islay mode. More on this after a para on Speysides. Who in keeping with the above, are tackling making Islays just for fun. And so on, round and round Scotia...

Speysides are rather more united by geography than by flavor these days. That said, the backbone of the Speyside style of whisky is a pretty light body, a faint sweetness, and something grainy about its flavor too -- Glenlivet being an example of all that. Glenfiddich is a distillery just up the road from Glenlivet that tried to be a Glenlivet copy -- and wasn't, and isn't. I'm not Glenfiddich's biggest fan, but opening a dram of it up with a sparing few drops of your favorite designer water makes all the difference in the world. Damned if I understand how, but it does; consider a little splash of water as always worth a try if you're not quite liking taking it neat. Straight up, in the American dialect. The River Spey is a wide valley, a big watershed generally northeast-flowing, and with the explosion of the single-malt market, there seems now to be a duly legal distillery up every single tributary creek in the watershed; Speysides are all over the place. Many are wonderful, a few expressions of whisky less so -- I've something the Auchentoshan people put out, and didn't show a lot of character, that I generally use to spike my hot chocolate. It's terrific for that. For consistently enjoyable Speysides, you can't go wrong with any variety of Glenmorangie, the varietal-bottling specialists -- finish with this cask, finish with that, or don't multicask at all. Should you explore Speyside whiskies further, see Balvenie Doublewood -- or their other whisky, the simple Balvenie -- as above. The Speysides are accessible, approachable, friendly spirits. Not lapel-grabbers the way many of the Islays are.

I find too I'm a big fan of the whiskies finished off in used sherry or port casks, after the standard treatment of ageing Scotch in once-used bourbon barrels. Used barrels are big business! Yet the barrel trade is not celebrated in any Scottish folksong I've ever heard -- hardly just. But man, am I keen on sherried Scotches. I miss that flavor if a Scotch is made without it.

Rather scarce, but available by online order, is a whisky out of Taos -- as in New Mexico -- sold in rather small bottles @ US$50ish and in cask-strength 92 proof, named Colkegan. The New Mexico Distillery does not smoke its barley malt with peat fires. It uses mesquite. Man! -- Scotland just came to the barbeque! It is a whisky to squee for.

At my elbow right now is an Isles: Jura 10yo, from the concern located on the next island up from Islay in the Hebrides. I'm thinking it will show a kinship to the Islays. There's only the one distillery, which figures, as Jura has a population of roughly two hundred souls. You couldn't say Jura whisky's operation is some giant and faceless corporation -- for all that the holding company's headquarters is in the Philippines. Where they do not despise whisky. Globalism.

The capsule is blessed with the accommodating tear-strip to get it off... got my Glencairn glass out... it's in tolerable shape, not dusty; sometimes I use a snifter, for the same scent-concentrating reason Glencairns are around these days... stopper out... typical of whisky corks, cork body with a prominent cap atop it, shaped like a rivet. This batch of this whisky is a warm greeny-brown-amber color... mild, rather spiritous nose but little smoke... ahh, the smoke is on the palate and tongue. Not quite fiery, as with Finlaggan from Islay just across the water; lightsome body; not a lapel grabber, but a strong, confident flavor. Sherry finished. Smooth as silk. Wonder what barreling the stuff for fifteen years would do. Guess you can now find out. The wife and I will surely enjoy this bottle. Is there indeed a regional resemblance with the variously smoked Islays? -- some resemblance; you're not likely to confuse Jura 10 with the Islays though. Would recommend, price is not too heavy.
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Last edited by Urbane Guerrilla; 04-25-2018 at 12:43 AM.
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Old 04-25-2018, 09:38 AM   #263
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Enjoying chocolate Milk
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Old 04-25-2018, 02:03 PM   #264
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Old 04-25-2018, 02:11 PM   #265
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Old 04-28-2018, 02:59 AM   #266
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Thumbs up The Ardmore

Tonight's opening is The Ardmore: Legacy (No Age Statement), their main product. Gotten at by a mix of 80% peated malt and 20% unpeated. It's a Highland-region whisky.

Highland style whiskies have, I think, a habit of being... elusive. Subtle. Stealth malts. I've a few Highland malts in my liquor hutch now, just from buying rather randomly. It's a mix of style, and where the distillery actually is, that seems the determinant. I find, reading around tonight, that Glenmorangie is among the Highland region whiskies; hmm. I took a tour of Edradour's distillery, now asserted to be the *second* smallest distillery in Scotland after 2007, and duly took their tour dram -- and can't remember a single thing about Edradour whisky. Nada. From sipping The Ardmore, I begin to think perhaps this elusiveness is the Highland style's characteristic. Dare I say, it's discreet. Mannerly.

Yet the whisky is not characterless. Sweet, rather floral nose. Very moderate smoke, spiritous finish. The trained palates discern vanilla, honey, and toffee notes; I dunno about that. "Toffee notes" seems to come up a lot in whisky-tasting. Doubtless comes out of the barrels' wood.

They of course these days offer numerous fancier expressions, for instance a port wood finished bottling of twelve years stated age, at a price that will not horribly mangle your budget. And a bottling from the 1960s, 25yo, that goes a thousand pounds a pop, that definitely would.
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Old 04-28-2018, 10:00 PM   #267
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Chocolate Milk im having
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Old 04-28-2018, 11:01 PM   #268
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Old 04-29-2018, 12:15 AM   #269
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Old 04-29-2018, 10:53 AM   #270
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Oh, yeah...
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