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The OCUK Whisky (and Whiskey) review thread

Discussion in 'La Cuisine' started by Uriel, 4 Jun 2009.

  1. Karl

    Mobster

    Joined: 23 Oct 2002

    Posts: 3,480

    Location: No

    Hello!

    After years of drinking brandy, I thought I'd put a bit more concerted effort into trying whisk(e)y, and have been pleasantly surprised thus far.

    I started off when my wife bought me a bottle of Haig club, which I'm getting the impression (after viewing 16 pages) that it's not favoured as I haven't seen it mentioned once :D

    I decided to venture further afield, and my wife bought me a few miniatures from a distillery that I can no longer remember (obviously drank them a bit too fast), and have now moved on to:

    [​IMG]
    This one was a bit light for my liking. It was nice enough, but wasn't blowing me away.

    [​IMG]
    Much more like it. I really liked the strength, and despite not being a 'notes of this and that' sort of person yet, I really enjoyed it.

    [​IMG]
    I decided to gamble on Talisker and see what I thought of it. I've had a few glasses of it, and it's definitely different to what I've had before, with a definite reference to smokey / TCP that I've seen others mention. It's funny, because I was in charge of a BBQ on the weekend with one of these on the go, and after half an hour of sticking my face in to a load of smoke, all I could smell from this was apples!!

    I've also been non traditional, and tried all of these whiskeys with a couple of ice cubes. I think I prefer all of them chilled, and with an additional drop of water that the ice offers. This one offers a totally different flavour for me with a couple of ice cubes in, one which I really enjoy - I can also see a lot of the oily sort of texture to it. I'm not sure I'd buy another bottle of it, because I'm keen to try other things now.

    I've got tickets for Whisky Bristol Underground which is in September, and really looking forward to what's on offer there.
     
  2. Bickaxe

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 8 Nov 2013

    Posts: 8,732

    Location: In the pub

    Haig isn't mentioned much because there is nothing much to say about it. Young grain whiskies are not much good to be honest and only good for blending (so pretty much anything owned by Diageo).
    Each of the 6 regions in Scotland has a distinctive taste which you will come to know if you try a lot.
    I prefer Speyside whiskeys of the bourbon variety ands only ever go for Islands towards the end of the night as a lot of them are peaty.
     
  3. Karl

    Mobster

    Joined: 23 Oct 2002

    Posts: 3,480

    Location: No

    Thanks for the comment. Looking forward to trying something that's billed as truly 'peaty', as I found the Talisker to be fairly so, but none of the others.
     
  4. Lupis

    Hitman

    Joined: 27 Oct 2002

    Posts: 671

    Location: Scotland

    So Lagavulin, Clynelish, Caol Ila and Oban (to name just a few) are only good for blending?
     
  5. Bickaxe

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 8 Nov 2013

    Posts: 8,732

    Location: In the pub

    Islay is your friend there. Words like phenols and ppm (double digits please) will help.

    They are all malt whiskies, not grain.

    My point is that malt whiskeys are generally better at the same age than grain (although old (30+ years) grain is very good indeed and easier and cheaper to find than the equivalent aged malt).

    If you are going to buy a bottle of Haig Club, look for a single malt instead.
     
  6. Lupis

    Hitman

    Joined: 27 Oct 2002

    Posts: 671

    Location: Scotland

    Your quote of "(so pretty much anything owned by Diageo)" didn't make it sound like you were talking exclusively about grain whisky at that point.

    That being said I wouldn't be buying Haig Club if I wanted a single grain whisky. You are paying more for the perfume bottle and advertising than for the whisky.
     
  7. Karl

    Mobster

    Joined: 23 Oct 2002

    Posts: 3,480

    Location: No

    In all fairness, it's a very reasonably priced perfume bottle, as it's £16 for 70cl. I've also drank 2 bottles and enjoyed them, so no complaints here :)
     
  8. the_r_sole

    Mobster

    Joined: 25 Aug 2010

    Posts: 3,012

    If you want the full flavour then don't use ice, when it's chilled it tends to hold the oils where you get aromas from, so you're missing a bit of the flavour profile by drinking it with ice, usually a drop of water is all you need to release the full flavour.
    If you want to get a good idea of the profile of the whisky, dot a bit in the palm of your hand and rub your hands together to heat it up, then cup your hands over your nose, you'll get the full whack then!
     
  9. Karl

    Mobster

    Joined: 23 Oct 2002

    Posts: 3,480

    Location: No

    Thanks, I'll give this a go!
     
  10. Acme

    Caporegime

    Joined: 29 Jul 2011

    Posts: 35,436

    Location: In my chair.

    Bought some Tesco own brand scotch. Preferred it to some of the more expensive stuff.

    I am trash. :(
     
  11. Bickaxe

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 8 Nov 2013

    Posts: 8,732

    Location: In the pub

    Go sit on your corner sofa and think about what you've done.
     
  12. Lupis

    Hitman

    Joined: 27 Oct 2002

    Posts: 671

    Location: Scotland

    I wasn't really thinking about the clubman version, more the "deluxe" which is around £35+ which, for me, isn't reasonably priced.
     
  13. Karl

    Mobster

    Joined: 23 Oct 2002

    Posts: 3,480

    Location: No

    [​IMG]
    A friend brought the remains of a bottle of "Classic Laddie" over the other night, and I was very pleasantly surprised by it. No smokiness there, but plenty of vanilla, which I found interesting because I haven't really noticed many pronounced flavours coming out of a glass since first starting my whisky odyssey.

    I will definitely be getting a bottle of this.
     
  14. Karl

    Mobster

    Joined: 23 Oct 2002

    Posts: 3,480

    Location: No

    Understood :)
     
  15. Karl

    Mobster

    Joined: 23 Oct 2002

    Posts: 3,480

    Location: No

    [​IMG]
    Glenfiddich 18 year old sampler bottle last night. I'm not enough of a connoisseur to really determine a difference between the 15 and 18. I think that between 12, 15 and 18, the 15 is my favourite on balance of value for money and flavour.
     
  16. Scam

    Capodecina

    Joined: 20 Oct 2002

    Posts: 14,740

    Location: London

    I'm going to have to get a bottle of that I think. My colleague recommended it ages ago but I dismissed it as I read about the peated ones they did (I find most peaty/smoky drams to be very medicinal, does not suit my pallette at all). But that sounds lovely.

    Again good bargains about at the moment?
     
  17. azazl187

    Mobster

    Joined: 19 Jan 2010

    Posts: 3,161

    My wife bought me a bottle of 12 year old Highland Park Viking Honour the other week.

    Its nice but I'm not 100% sure where I place it on my all time favourites. I like it and it is smooth to drink but nothing really stands out about it if that makes sense
     
  18. Lupis

    Hitman

    Joined: 27 Oct 2002

    Posts: 671

    Location: Scotland

    There are some unpeated Islays out there. The Classic Laddie, as mentioned, and Bunnahabhain 12 to name a couple of readily available ones.

    If you are willing to wait Amazon have the Bunnahabhain 12 for £30, although it is out of stock. You can order it though to get it at that price. It says 1-2 months but I've found they never take anything like that to get them back in. That is a bargain in my opinion.
     
  19. Scam

    Capodecina

    Joined: 20 Oct 2002

    Posts: 14,740

    Location: London

    Good shout. Sounds interesting enough for a £30 punt thanks! I've got a Killkerran 12 on the go which will hopefully lead me nicely into that :cool:
     
  20. Gribs

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 12 Nov 2003

    Posts: 2,342

    Location: Skipton