The wonderful world that is whisky can be vast, saturated and, for the average person, more than a little confusing. And that’s just the stuff from Scotland!
We get it, scotch isn’t exactly cheap, and before you splash out on a bottle, you’re going to want to know if you’ll like it. There’s a lot of scotch on the market, they’re all delicious in their own right, but not all of them are going to be right for you, and that’s okay!
We, as individuals, have different preferences, different palates if you will. The bottles in this blog have been chosen to introduce the various flavour profiles of scotch. There really is one for everyone, we’re going to help you find the one for you.
Firstly, let's attack the proverbial marmite of the whisky world; peat.
If you know it, hats off, you’ve done your research! If you don’t, peat is essentially a soil that burns, the burning of this soil during the malting and kilning process will likely impart the whisky with a smoky flavour profile.
As your introduction to peated whisky we’d recommend Bowmore’s 15-year-old single malt.
A staple bottling from the Bowmore distillery, and, in our opinion, the perfect, gentle nudge into the realm of peated whisky. The product of three years spent in Oloroso sherry casks, the peat smoke is beautifully intertwined with sweet, dark fruits, a truly magnificent double act.
This next ones for those of us with a sweet tooth, your usual tipple is probably a brandy, maybe a gin, perhaps a sherry or sweet wine… I present to you, the Hazelburn 14-year-old sherry wood.
If you’re seeking an esteemed whisky, one to be respected by peers and father-in-law’s alike, this is definitely a contender, oh and the taste’s not too bad either!
Looking for something new, fresh, innovative, unheard of? Introducing, The Balvenie Stories 12-Year-Old: The Sweet Toast of American Oak.
Never heard of it? Precisely! Newly released in June 2019, this bottle is the youngest of The Balvenie ‘Stories’ collection, you’ll experience flavours of sweet vanilla, coconut and a subtle ‘malty-ness.’ Each bottle has been inspired by a unique story that can be experienced by the drinker via an NFC-enabled neck tag, prepare for a multi-sensory journey!
Top tip: If you’re feeling really adventurous we’d recommend donning a blindfold to really heighten those senses!
If you take your Nando’s ‘extra hot,’ or opt for the vindaloo at your local Indian restaurant. Firstly, you’re insane, reckless, fearless and have no respect for the chilli rating system. Secondly, you may enjoy this next whisky.
Ok, so maybe we’re over-exaggerating, it’s not quite that spicy... We’d give it two chillies.
The Kilkerran 8-year-old, experience a quality whisky at a fraction of its worth. You should expect to find a light sweetness, honey and vanilla, perhaps peppermint, balanced with a spicy cinnamon kick!
To round-off your scotch-starter-pack we’ve selected our favourite digestif, The Glenfarclas 15-year-old.
Sumptuously sweet, rich and dense yet surprisingly delicate, its everything you could want in a post-dinner tipple. This whisky boasts a strongly 'sherried' flavour profile, expect dried fruits and sweet vanilla with a warm cinnamon tang!
There you have it, my top five recommendations for your launch into the world of Scottish whisky!
Of course, these whiskies are based on my own personal preference, yours will more than likely differ completely, in which case disregard this list, forget about it, burn every trace from your mind! The truth of the matter is no one can tell you which whisky you'll like.. except for yourself!
In that sense, maybe this whole blog has been an entire waste of your time! (Don't hate us!)