Thursday, December 23, 2010

Danish Whisky Blog awards 2010

2011 is approaching fast, and quite a lot of people use this opportunity to look back on the year 2010.

I had an almost endless amount of good whisky and good whisky events taking place during this year. I have to say I enjoyed everything I participated in.

Highlight of the year was getting introduced into the PLOWED society at the annual Ardbeggeddon. Nothing beats dramming with friends, and the company and whisky at the Ardbeggeddon is pure top shelf.

I also enjoy a very lively community of local whisky connoisseurs, with several gatherings throughout the year of the highest quality and a lot of spectacular whisk(e)ys from all around the world.

Festival wise I really enjoyed Spirit of Speyside, Limburg and Glasgow Whisky Festival together with a couple of mini fairs organised by local wineshops and Juul's!

I've decided to set up a few awards, this is my way to honour some things I really enjoyed and maybe I was surprised a bit by them

Distillery of the Year


Amrut has put itself on the map in 2010 with a series of superb and innovative bottlings. I think it has come to a surprise to quite a few that a distillery producing world class whisky should emerge more or less from the unknown and then from India of all places as well.
Due to extra-ordinarely high evaporation the distillery has to work with other aspects than age, when creating new bottlings. Here's a photo of my Amruts, most of these were created in 2010!

Amrut TWE 10 year online anniversary bottling
Amrut Double Cask (a vatting of the two oldest casks at Amrut..7yo old whisky)
Amrut 100 (a peated 100 proof 1 liter bottling)
Amrut Cask Strength (the miniatures)
Amrut Fusion (made from a mix of indian unpeated malt and scottish peated malt)
Amrut Two Continents (matured in India, and then in Europe)
Amrut Intermediate Sherry (matured on first fill ex-bourbon casks, then ex-oloroso casks for 1 year, and then back to ex-bourbon)
Amrut Kadhambam (consecutively maturation in ex-rum, ex-sherry and ex-brandy casks, with the rum and brandy being Amruts own!)
Amrut Peated Cask Strength

Independendt Bottler of the Year

High West

A new distillery, which is located in Utah (of all places) has put itself on the map by bottling a series of ryes and bourbons of high quality. Especially the ryes has caught the public eye and several editions are available, some of them quite old. The ryes are said to be distilled at LDI, Lawrenceburg Distillers Indiana, which is not the most known distillery, but I think they are very skilled in making rye whiskey ! It will be exciting to see if High West itself can produce whiskeys and ryes of the same quality!

High West Rendezvous Rye, a vatting of a 6yo 95% Rye and a 16yo 80% Rye. Superb

Whisky Bottling of the Year

Double Single by Compass Box

This is a blend of 18yo Glen Elgin (76%) and 21yo Port Dundas (24%) the latter being a grain whisky from the now closed distillery in Glasgow, while Glen Elgin is malt whiskey from a distillery located just south of Elgin in Speyside. It's bottled at cask strength 53.3% and was bottled to celebrate Compas Box' 10th anniversary

Double Single

Now this is a wonderful cask that every ex-bourbon casked single malt whisky fan should seriously consider!

Description : Very bubblegum/candy like with a heavy spicy touch. Vanilla and Malt. It's very oily and intense in its expression. The finish is long and warming


Tasting of the year

Duncan Taylor, Dufftown - Spirit of Speyside by Mark Watt

In the Memorial Hall in Dufftown, Spirit of Speyside hosts a series of very good whisky tastings during the festival. This year I found the Duncan Taylor tasting particular good. Mark Watt Bingo and 5-6 great whiskies, including two of the years favourites: a 1972 Caperdonich and a 1973 Glen Moray. Adding to that 12yo and 40yo Black Bull, 22yo Glen Grant and a 25yo Caol Ila, what a great afternoon

and by the way, the price is a pint if anyone responsible happens to catch me somewhere :-)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

My favourite Whisky videos from Youtube

I like these 4 videos from You Tube

Whisky is not for Everyone by Dr. Whisky

Ralfy made a lot of good vlog's, this is my favourite :

Ralfy reviewing Port Askaig 17yo
see more of his vlogs at

I also like this one, it's Tim Puett ( opening his Lord of the Isles

Chief Article pops a LOTI, starrring Tim, Tom and Mikey

And finally The Man Who Walked Around The World starring Robert Carlyle :

Saturday, November 27, 2010

My bang for the bucks whiskies

If you have been into whisky for a bit and think you are well acquainted with the front row at your local supermarket and ready to venture into new territories, things can be a bit of a jungle. The amount of bottlings out there these days is high. Wonderfully high. There's more to the world of whisky than top brands like Glenfiddich, Highland  Park, Glenlivet and Macallan.Nothing wrong with those I will say before going on.

Amongst bloggers and in forums it's always a reoccuring subject to name cheap whiskies, which is looked upon as great value for money. Who isn't interested in good deal ?

Here's MY list of a set of whiskies, which might not be the cheapest whiskies around, but I think you won't get better value for money than these. I don't think it's a coincidince that 9/10 of these are bottled at 46+ ABV, as my personal preference is for unchillfiltered, not watered down whiskies

Deanston 12yo, 46.3%
The new revatted, unchillfiltered version of Deanston, and what a comeback. Creamy, delicious single malt. Available for less than 30£

Deanston mini

Old Pulteney WK499
Available in selected airports World of Whiskies shops...Heathrow and Edinburgh from personal experience. I have seen this at 50£ for 2 1liter bottlings making this the best deal in whisky I have ever seen. It's a NAS Old Pulteney cask strength in a typical style of the distillery. Seaside vanilla and mint!

Balvenie 15yo Single Barrel 47.8%
Cask variation will of course be there, but these are typical delicious ex-bourbon vanilla whisky. Yum Yum. Not more than fortysomething quids usually

Tomatin 18yo 46%
Another solid comeback and a living proof that whisky at 46% just is better. One of my favourites at the whisky fringe 2009

Amrut Fusion 50%
First time I got this blind I guessed it as 20+ year old lightly peated speysider. Nuff said
Back label of Amrut, bottle almost gone

Glenburgie 10yo Gordon and MacPhail 40%
Sometimes seen at below 20£ on offer in UK, and below 300Dkr as standard price in Denmark, this is a delicious continous bottling from Gordon and MacPhails. It has got special touch that I often find in G and M sherry casked whiskies

Bladnoch Forum Bottlings
Apart from their own whisky, Raymond bottles a big selection of other distilleries. Bladnoch Forum bottlings is probably the greatest value for money whiskies around! Even includes Bladnoch whisky itself now and again.
Bladnoch Forum Bottling example : Cambus Grain 

Lagavulin 12yo Cask Strength
Bottled at cask strength and 12yo this is one of my favourite Islays. 44£ in Edinburgh airport

Tweeddale blend 46%/ Black Bull 12yo
A pair of excellent delicious blends and delightful newcomers to the whiskymarket. And it's great to see a blend that's not watered down to 40%. Less than 30£

Aberlour A'bunadh
Legendary small batch NAS cask strength fullsherried whiskies. Beware, there can be some batch variations

And here is one that you might have missed.

Arran Peacock
This was out 1½ year ago and sold out most places. Still available at Juul's in Copenhagen. Voted whisky of the year 2009 by One of my favourite whiskies

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Websites that asks for your birthday and country

Here's something that annoys me.

Don't You just hate the fact, that it's quite common these days, that you have to enter details about your country of origin and your birthday details whenever you have to enter the website of a company making whisky or the website of a distillery?

I sincerely thinking this is treating the customers like they are idiots. I also believe that the companies doing this is enforced so to by their lawyers.

Typical welcome screen from a distillery

Now whats happening here?? Anyone above the age of 9 (and I am possible offending most kids age 5-8 right now!!) is able to enter some more or less random numbers that will make you appear 18+ or 21+ or whatever is needed, depending on what country you are from.

So the only effects this page has, is 
1. It annoys the majority of us thats old enough to drink, as we have to spend time entering these details whenever we enter sites. 
2. Anyone not supposed to enter, might get some satisfaction beating the "authorities" or a laugh how stupid  this is. I doubt a lot of youngsters are interested in malt whisky anyway

So these filters won't stop anyone not at legal age to gain access to your website. I don't think it has stopped even one teenager from breaking into their parents spirit cabinet and drinking their brains out...

So instead of treating customers like they are idiots, I think these companies should start doing things that has an effect or is more meaningful.

Support responsible drinking by
- Small banners with or similar seems sensible to me.
- Spittoons at festivals.
- At distillery visits the driver should get a sample offered as alternative, or just a wee container they can pour the dram in and take with them for later.

One great thing I have seen is what Diageo do at the Spirit of Speyside whiskyfestival. They sponsor minibusses and taxivouchers. A festival like this has some problems of logistics, and these sponsorwhips actually makes it quite cheap to get around, even over longer distances, so personally it's something I really appreciate. This actually does make it possible to get to most events quite easy without a designated driver.

So put the money where it matters, treat people like grown ups, and stop annoying me with those stupid formulars

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Abhain Dearg Peacemaker

MacSorley's Pub in Jamaica Street, Glasgow gives guest the possibility to taste 3months (approx) Abhainn Dearg spirit

On the bar there is a 30 liter casks and orders are pulled straight from the cask with a valinch

This is 2nd "batch" of Abhainn Dearg at MacSorley's. With 3 liters remaining in the cask, it was transported to the Isle of Lewis and topped up with new make spirit. After 12 weeks the cask was again opened for pouring. The cask is 30 liter ex-oloroso wood. As whisky has to be matured for at least 3 years in wood before it can actually be labeled whisky, this can not be called whisky. It simply has to be labeled otherwise.

Abhainn Dearg is gaelic and means Red River. The distillery is located far away on the west coast of the Isle of Lewis, an island of the Outer Hebrides. Abhainn Dearg is arguably the smallest distillery in Scotland with a production capacity of just 20000 liters annually. The distillery is the most westernly distillery in Scotland, and also the most remote.

Abhain Dearg Spirit 64%

1. Abhainn Dearg Peacemaker 64% straight from the cask at MacSorley's

This is powerful stuff. It's not everyday I get a dram that I can nose from a yeards distance. The nose is very fresh, and makes me think of raki, grappa and grapes. The palate instanly puts the colour green on my brain. Green tea, green apples, green leaves, even the perfume they use in green dishwater soap. It's dominated by youth without being feinty. It reminds me a lot of the very young Benromachs that came out a few years ago. I also sense a tiny bit maritime notes in this, salt, seaside and a harbour

Rating : promising

Rob with a dram of Abhainn Dearg. Notice the colour!

Find the location of Abhain Dearg here

and check their website here

Monday, November 8, 2010

Diageo Dramming part 6 - Glenkinchie

In the cozy countryside just southeast of Edinburgh lies the only remaining lowland distillery of Diageo... Glenkinchie

Apart from being part of the original Classic Malts series, with the usual couple of versions available, and the very rare special bottling by Diageo, Glenkinchie is very hard to find as independent bottlings.

The few I have tried have been magnificient. So it is a very hidden gem


I mentioned before a few distilleries that has improved, and when Glenkinchie last year went from 10yo to 12yo with their standard expression it was another one for the list. I still believe we haven't seen the best from this distillery ..yet (hopefully)

It's also a very nice distillery to visit, the tour starts with a museum, that includes a miniature model of a distillery

Distillery model

After the tour you enter a wee bar with the possibility to try out a few drams, depending on what kind of tour you paid for. I wish they included a cask strength sample here !

1. Glenkinchie 1975 33yo bottled by A.D. Rattray 60.7%

Refill Hogshead cask #2967. Distilled 6th August 1975, bottled 3rd November 2008

The ABV of this bottling is remarkable high. I can't recall seeing a lot of whiskies with higher ABV. And the age combined with ABV is more or less sensational!

I am pretty sure this has been laid down at full strength, not the 63.5% which seems to be almost industry standard these days. Other Diageo bottlings from this era has the same high ABV, just recalling some rare Malts Collection bottlings I have seen.

This is intense stuff and not for the faint hearted. Luckily I got experience consuming Staggs, which can have ABV's of 71+ so I know what to do

This I just have to consume dropwise. I love the explosion of taste these drops do on your palate. Great stuff

The nose is sweet ripe fruits..Classic old whisky from forgotten days, but what an ABV to mask it!. This takes time, care and concentration to drink

If you follow one of the endless whiskygurus who has a habit of telling you exactly how a whisky must and should be drunk, this whisky will teach you to find your own way of doing things

33yo Glenkinchie

The palate is an explosion of spicy wood, sweet ripe fruits which follow the great nose on the same pattern, with the wood, which was more or less absent in the nose, now entering the stage

The finish is long and spicy and some bitterness. It stays forever under the sides of your tongue!

Rating 86 - but this won't be everybody's cup of Gevalia

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Diageo Dramming part 5 - Strathmill

Strathmill Pagoda's

Strathmill, one of those unknown Diageo's. Blendfodder some would name it.

It's located in Keith, which other distillery, Strathisla, is a bit more known. Strathmill has and is very hard to come by as a single malt. Even the flora and fauna bottling is a bit rare


Strathmill was built in 1891, and the they extended from 2 to 4 stills in 1968. They also added purifiers in 1968. Other places I have seen purifiers are at Glen Grant and Ardbeg

The function of purifiers is to create some extra reflux and make the spirit lighter

Here's some photos I took of the Stratmill purifier system

Strathmill spirit still

The refluxed spirit is entering the still again through the little pipe. The purifer itself was attached quite late in the process, in a small condenser, located just outside the building. I tried to capture it here :

Stratmill purifier

Here's another view of the purifier :

Strathmill purifier

There have been some innovation over time to create lighter spirits at distilleries. Tall still's at Glenmorangie. Triple Destillation at Auchentoshan, weird bends on the lyne arms at Tobermory. One of the more unusual things I have seen was at Fettercairn, where there is a small copper pipe around the upper part of the still with constant running water rinsing the exterior of the still. The colder copper will increase reflux inside the still itself!

This post has become far too nerdy now, so on with the dramming :-)

1. Strathmill 1974 31yo bottled by Mackillop's Choice 43.3%

Distilled 14 May 1974, bottled March 2006. Cask 1210

A very light spirit. It was a bit restrained when I first opened the bottle, but has improved since - it's been open around 2-3 months now. It's dominated by mint and vanilla. Not very intense. It's a very nice whisky, but a bit one dimensional, and you would really expect more wood influence from a whisky this age. The low ABV makes this very drinkable and almost a soft drink :-)

It's a perfect morning dram, I think this would get lost in a tastings if mixed up against other malts. It is a very anonymous dram. Lacks texture and oilyness most of all. But the simplicity got some charm

Rating 83

When I just opened the bottle it was a clearcut (2/5) but here after 3 months open I did consider marking it a 3/5, but somehow I still feeels its far from that. See my ratings explained at the first box top right of the blog

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Blind samples from WhiskyIsrael

I am battling Whisky Israel :-)

Gal Granov, one of the guys behind Whisky Israel has supplied me with a couple of samples - and I am supposed to review them blind. And I will do that !. At the end of this post I will add Gal revealing the truth, which I don't know yet

I allready had Keith Wood of Whisky-Emporium having a bit of fun with 4 samples supplied by me, which he described here :

So now it's my turn, here we go.

Gal Granov's sample no 1

Milk-acidity (you need to have been in a cowbarn with newly milked milk to know what I mean!), floral perfumes which leaves the colour purple on my braind for some odd reason. Peaty ? I am getting associations to Bowmore, but the spirit is lighter than what I would normally associate with Bowmore. I would say the floral fruity perfumy taste of this dram is origined from some kind of wine-finish

My first guess would be a Port Charlotte wine finish, 2nd Longrow, but these are also the 2 peaty malts most associated with finishes. The finish isn't affecting this malt to a major extent, but more gives it a soft touch. I also feel the peat is underdeveloped or restrained somehow, but hey--I have been known to be immune to peat :-)

Rating 80

Gal Granov's sample no 2

Cocoa, dusty, reminds me of a vatting of Amrut and Scapa, how clueless can you be ? Fruity, dry, slightly woody-spicy, vanilla. I really like this for its sharp freshness and the vanilla. I got no clue what it is, reminds me a bit of Imperial

Rating 85

Here is the verdict by Gal :

The 'Peaty' sample is indeed a Bowmore as you initially suspected... It's not finished in any cask AFAIK. It's the Bowmore Tempest 10 year old, Cask strength. quite a new expression, and a nice one, though it's not one of my favorites when it comes to Islay peaty delights.

The non peaty one is a very special type of Arran malt. yes, Arran! It's a very limited bottling of a single cask Arran aged 2 years on Arran and then shipped to Israel for additional maturation in the city of Jerusalem. Then bottled at CS by  the Israeli whisky society. A very young Arran, but maturation in Israel in hotter temp is quite fast.
you can find a post of mine detailing it and the story of this special cask : 

Well done Steffen. ;)

Now it's my turn. Next week i shall nose your samples and post mine.... exciting and quite intimidating as well.


PS Gal told me on twitter that the Arran is almost 4 years old in total!

My own final comments : Amrut is a whisky that is matured under high temperatures in Bangalore, India, so it's not totally clueless I got associations to it, as Gal's Arran has been matured for almost 2 years in Israel. Amrut is also a young whisky. I wouldn't say the Arran is similar to Amrut but it just had this thing to it that gave me associations

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween Beer and Jazz Festival 2010

If you like whisky then festivals, tastings and fairs are a great opportunity to go out and try some whiskies. For me its an opportunity to try a lot of whiskies. I really wan't to try everything out there, and it's not possible to buy a bottle of everything, who's got the rooom, and the money for that ?

I don't !

Halloween Beer and Jazz Festival is organised by Århus' local real ale pub : Cockney Pub. Beside having a great selection of ales and beers, they also got a nice malt whisky section. A decent turnaround and an ongoing changing line-up which makes this a desirable whisky pub. And the prices are affordable as well!

I have visited Cockney Pub earlier

Mike Wilson, Cockney Pub

4 days of jazz and blues music, and 40 beers/ales, what else can you ask for ?. Whisk(e)y off course :-)

In Denmark, we have 3-4 major operators as whisky agents/importers. One of them is Juul's from Copenhagen. This year Juul was manning the whiskystand at the Halloween Beer and Jazz Festival

Nikolaj Jørgensen from Juul's and a couple of happy visitors!

Juul's are the importers of Gordon and MacPhail (includes Benromach), Springbank, Arran, Chieftains, Murray McDavid, Glenglassaugh, Glencadam, Elements of Islay etc. Beside this they have their own bottlings, in the past there was the PING series, more recently the FLYING series and the LINE series

Apart from this they have a rum selection that matches their whisky selection and also a lot of Cognac's

This was a great opportunity to dig into some set groups of whisky and do some research. As I did attend Juul's mini whisky fairs in Hadsten spring 2009 and 2010, I had the background research well and solid done, it was time to look for new bottlings, and also sections I missed or omitted before.

First subject was the Arran selection. I've been through most of this before. Juul's is actually one of few places  left on the earth where you still can buy the legendary Arran Peacock, which is one of my all-time favourite whiskies!. Today I was aiming for the bottling released to celebrate Arran's 15 year jubilee. An approximately 11yo amontillado finished cask strength. I don't like wine, and I don't like wine finishes. I didn't like this sherry finish either and was just glad I didn't have to purchase a bottle to try this. Next one up was the 14yo new OB which was a much better whisky and I enjoyed that one! 

Next Section to look at was the Springbank/Longrow/Hazelburn

Kilkerran - Hazelburn - Longrow


I wasn't particular sure on some of these, couldn't 100% recall which I tried and which I didn't try before. Just to be safe I went through the following : Springbank 12yo, Springbank 2001, Longrow 18, Springbank CV

All great malts. I am not sure Longrow will ever do it for me when it comes to peaty malts, I actually like Springbank better when it got a peaty touch

I also had to test one of my old time favourites, the Springbank 100 proof. Seemed like it changed, didn't seem to have the same delicate ex-bourbon character as I remembered. I'll research this in less than a fortnight hopefully. Nikolaj Jørgensen from Juul's did produce a couple of samples as well. Juul's will very shortly, begining of November, release a couple of single casks for the danish market. A Hazelburn 56.4% 8yo ex-oloroso cask, and a Springbank 14yo rum wood. I particular like the Springbank, but if you are fan of ex-sherry whisky I bet you will love the Hazelburn!

Next part I had to look at was the Gordon and MacPhail's. I allready tried everything from Benromach so I ventured over to their new releases

Gordon and MacPhails line up

Imperial 1994, Glenburgie 1990 and Balblair 1996, all at 46% and bottled 2010. 3 magnificient drams

A section I avoided was the Murray McDavid section. Almost all of these had a weird finish. I know there will be 1 or 2 of them I would like, but I can't be arsed to go throgh 10 of them, of which I would probably dislike 5, 3 will be indifferent and the last 2 I would like.

A couple of them caught my attention. Port Ellen 1982, 27yo, Chateau D'Yquem Finish, Murray McDavid Mission, 48.6 - No I didn't try it, it just reminded me that Plowed just had a discussion last weekend about the pronouncination of this. It was a agreed on a general concensus that it must be pronounced "dick'em"! 

Well, I got around to taste a peated Bunnahabhain 2005 and Ledaig 5yo (sherry cask) from Murray McDavid, both very good drams and surprisingly young. Yet another proof, that whisky doesn't have to be 10-12 years or older to be worth drinking

Specialty Drinks, a label by The Whisky Exchange has a series called Elements of Islay

Apart from Port Ellen, this is all no-age-statement young Islays

Elements of Islay

I REALLY liked the Lg1, but also the Br1 and Ar2 fell has my thumbs up. This series is allready legendary and if you're a fan of young Islay's here's something for you

This fair, albeit being mainly a beer and jazz event's does attract quite a few of the local whisky entusiasts, over the weekend I met around 10. I did drag some of them with me myself, and its always nice to sit down and talk about whisky while drinking them. 

Here's 4 of them, the 5 of us just had a minor plenum discussing the origin of a blind sample served to us, we couldn't really agree on the region!

Blind sampling is hard but fun

Lowland, Highland, Speyside, Islay or Island??. 

Well I think I was the winner. I guessed on Arran which is an Island Whisky, and last time I looked NEW ZEALAND was an Island.....

It was a Lammerlaw 12yo 40%, a nice dram which only suffered from a low ABV imo. No one had a clue guessing this :-)

Thanks to Nikolaj from Juul's for this educating experience

Flying, Elements, Glen Garioch, Glencadam, Glenglassaugh, Murray McDavid, Chieftain's

From the Chieftain's Choice I selected a 15yo Tomatin and an Ardbeg 11yo 46%, I particular liked the Ardbeg 

Bourbon Time

I don't know that much about bourbons so it has been area I have been researching quite a lot here in 2010. This weekend I a chance to taste a Wheat Whiskey. Bernheim Wheat Whiskey which I really enjoyed. Also Georgia Moon Corn Whiskey (Aged less than 30 days) and three versions of Old Fitzgerald, last three also from Bernheim Distillery in Louisville Kentucky. I particular liked Fitzgerald's 1849, a charcoal filtered bourbon.

This was a long weekend, and also a fun weekend. Juul's brought a couple of boxes with "leftovers" and you could aim for one of these by the fishing pond method

Glenallachie 1969-1987 on the hook

Some of the dregs

From the dregs boxes I was blessed with the fortune to taste the following

Caperdonich Connoisseurs Choice 1968-2004 (yum yum)
Highland Barrel no 4255 Ian Mcleod, sample,  1996-2008 59.9% 
Craigellachie Hotel, Craigellachie Distillery 1982 57.7% (Best dram of the weekend)
Speyburn Connoisseurs Choice 1977-2006
Aberfeldy Connoisseurs Choice 1988
Glenallachie Connoisseurs Choice 1969-1987
Ledaig Connoisseurs Choice 1990
Glen Spey Connoisseurs Choice 1995-2007
Arran Robert Burns 250th
Old Potrero (A 2½yo Rye malt Whiskey from Anchor Distilling Company, SF, California)

Potential purchases ?

Lg1, Balblair, Glenburgie and Imperial from G&M, Old Fitzgerald 1849, 14yo Springbank single cask rum wood soon to be released and probably a few more :-)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Steffen's Short Guide Scottish Distilleries

There's whisky from around 100 scottish distilleries available, so this guide is actually very long

Here is my recommendations!!
This is a guide to entry levels whiskies!!
The fact that a whisky gets labeled "Don't bother", doesn't mean a distillery doesn't bottle or make good whisky. They just haven't given me anything that lifted my eyebrows (yet!). Quite often they will have a marketing strategy aiming their malt for different people than me. That is they chillfilter their whisky, then add too much water and caramel E150.
Sometimes a distillery is very good but doesn't get any attention from their parent company as single malt. It will be hard to get anything on this list then-
Allmost all malts will be available from Independent Bottlers (IB). I only point to an Independent Bottler if they have been able to and are still bottling consecutively good bottlings from the distillery. Otherwise this is about OB's and bottlings general availble. So no single cask OB's as well, unless they have been rolling them out on general basis-
Most distilleries do exclusive limited bottlings, but this list is mainly a guide cheaper level whiskies, so no Penderyn Port Wood single casks or Diageo Manager's Choice here.

Remember, this is my personal list, your list will differ (I haven't tasted everything out there - but almost), so don't kill me if I didn't list your favourite. Here we go :

Don't bother


Abhainn Dearg
Don't bother

Don't bother

Everything but the Blasda :
Supernova, Rollercoaster, Alligator etc.
Nam Beist


Don't bother
(I really like this distillery from IB's)

I don't like their finishes or earlier bottlings
Some great single casks and the icons series, especially Peacock and Golden Eagle
Arran 14yo

Arran Peacock and Arran Rowan Tree

Three Wood

Don't bother

Don't bother


Deerstalker 18yo (IB)

15yo single casks
Tun 1401

Ben Nevis
Don't bother - I didn't like most of what I tasted from them

I like almost all of their stuff. Beware of weird finishes thou. A constant flow of good single casks bottlings so far

Plowed BenRiach

Stronachie (IB)


8yo 55%

Blair Athol
Don't Bother


Don't bother


Many great IB's around, especially older stuff

Caol Ila
Quoting Mark Watt : "I never had a bad Caol Ila"
I agree

Look out for old stuff, especially Duncan Taylor's

Caperdonich by Limburg

Don't bother



Don't bother

FF 16yo

Don't bother

Dalmore is a great place for kids.

Don't bother

12yo (new version @46.3%)

Don't bother

Don't bother

That was a colourful tasting

The 10yo is horrible, really horrible
anything else I tried was really good thou

Cask Strength Edition

Cask Strength Edition
10yo by Gordon and macPhail



Don't bother

Glen Elgin
Don't bother


Rich Oak

Revival, it'a young but not a waste of time
They just reopened after being mothballed for 23 years
Good stuff, but rare

Glenglassaugh old floor maltings

Glen Garioch
1990 Vintage

I need to catch up on this one, but I liked the
12yo cask strength

Glen Grant
The Major's Reserve
25yo by Gordon and MacPhail

Glengyle (Kilkerran)
Don't bother (yet)

Glen Keith
Getting rare. I had a great deal of older IB's I really enjoyed

Don't bother - new 12yo better than the old 10yo thou


Don't bother

Anything that comes from ex-bourbon casks exclusively!

Glen Moray
Mountain Oak

Glen Ord
Don't bother


Glen Scotia
Don't bother - be suspicious

Glen Spey
Don't Bother

Don't bother

Don't bother

Highland Park

I tried quite a few excellent bottlings from Duncan Taylor labels aged 8-13

Don't bother

I don't like the 10yo

Don't bother (yet)

Don't bother

Knockdhu (AnCnoc)
A new approx 13yo Vintage released every year

12yo Cask Strength

Lagavulin 2001

10yo Cask Strength

Don't bother

Loch Lomond
Don't bother - run away
(that goes for any of their malts)

Cask Strength Edition

10yo cask strength

Don't bother

Don't bother

Cask Strength Edition

15yo bottled by Gordon and Macphail

Don't bother

Great OB rabge in general

Bottle your own 15yo'ish cask strength at Old Pulteney

Royal Brackla
Don't bother

Royal Lochnagar
Don't bother

Don't bother


Don't bother

100 proof
Longrow 10yo
Hazelburn 12yo

Cask Strength Edition


Don't bother


Don't bother 

Don't bother

Don't bother

Don't bother


Somehow I forgot all other Tomintoul's than this one :

Don't bother

John Black selection

I omitted many long time closed distilleries. Brora, St. Magdelene, Port Ellen, Lochside, Banff, Coleburn, Convalmore, Dallas Dhu, Glen Esk, Glen Mhor, Glen Albyn, Glenury Royal, Lochside, Millburn, North Port and Ladyburn have all given me some good drams : Happy hunting for those

A new distillery like Daftmill isn't mentioned, cause the bloody owner sits on his casks and won't release anything :-)
Ah well, he is a very nice fellow, his whisky is marvelous and I guess we just have to wait or visit the distillery