Rant/Rave: Bourbon

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thrill
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Re: Rant/Rave: Bourbon

Post by thrill »

Sometimes I'll splash a little water into barrel proof whiskeys, but just a drop or two. I usually drink it neat.

EH Taylor Barrel Proof is my favorite relatively attainable whiskey and I never cut it. Stagg Jr is more widely available, very, very flavorful, and stands up to ice or water very well if you don't want to drink it neat.

Never had Craig Small Batch.

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Jocephus
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Re: Rant/Rave: Bourbon

Post by Jocephus »

has anyone had ron swanson's drink, lagavulin 16yr scotch whiskey?

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thrill
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Re: Rant/Rave: Bourbon

Post by thrill »

Jocephus wrote:has anyone had ron swanson's drink, lagavulin 16yr scotch whiskey?
It's a classic. A perfect place to start for someone who's willing to spend some dough and wants to experience a truly great single malt scotch.

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Jocephus
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Re: Rant/Rave: Bourbon

Post by Jocephus »

thrill wrote:
Jocephus wrote:has anyone had ron swanson's drink, lagavulin 16yr scotch whiskey?
It's a classic. A perfect place to start for someone who's willing to spend some dough and wants to experience a truly great single malt scotch.
thanks. was thinking of it as a gift for my pops but didn't see it in my local store...wasn't sure if it was a difficult find

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33anda3rd
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Re: Rant/Rave: Bourbon

Post by 33anda3rd »

Swirls wrote:Last night I snagged a bottle of Elijah Craig Small Batch at my local liquor store for $69.99. They said they only got 3 bottles in, and were super excited to get that many.
Is the paper label at the bottom black and in gold does it say "Barrel Proof"? If so you got a hell of a bourbon and paid the right price for it.

Jocephus wrote:has anyone had ron swanson's drink, lagavulin 16yr scotch whiskey?
Sure, classic.

When I was getting into Scotch I went down a big rabbit hole of reading and tasting and spent a lot of time with the book "The World Atlas of Whisky" by Dave Broom. I'd HIGHLY recommend that book for a Christmas gift for the Scotch drinker in your family or for yourself if you're interested in the history of literally every distillery plus some really awesome tasting notes. In that book, re flavor and tasting, Broom does a couple things.
1. Breaks single malts into five camps: Fragrant & Floral, Fruity & Spicy, Malty & Dry, Rich & Round, Smoky & Peaty.
2. Puts them all on a X/Y axis. X axis is light to rich body, y axis from bottom to top is delicate to smoky for peat content.

If you do a google image search for dave broom single malt flavor map you'll find a few images. Most are wrong, they're people re-creating the map without color-coding the dots to correspond to #1 above.

Anyway, imagine an X/Y axis, Lagavulin is at almost the extreme upper right. On the axis of Light -> Rich, it sits about 90% of the way to the right--it's very rich. On the Y axis of Delicate -> Smoky it's about 98% of the way to the top--only a couple Ardbeg expressions come in smokier. The dot that indicates its flavor family is the one corresponding, of course, to "Smoky & Peaty."

Here's where that becomes fun for me. Say you can't find Lagavulin 16.
Laphroaig 15 is nearly as smoky and just a bit lighter in body.
Lagavulin Distillers Edition is quite a bit richer--the richest on Broom's map--and a bit less smoky.
After that you're going to Caol Ila 18 (much lighter in body, and decidedly less smoky) or Talisker 25 (same richness, lots less smoky). So the Broom map kind of tells us for the Lagavulin 16 that there are really only 1-2 things that are very close, and that Lagavulin Distillers Edition is tougher to find than the 16. So if someone we know loves Lagavulin 16, we can really gotta put the legwork in to find that Lagavulin 16, or in a pinch go Laphroaig 15.

A lot of scotch whisky is like this at the extreme ends. If you go to the other top corner of the flavor map, Ardbeg 10 stands alone. Nothing close to it at like 5/100 on the Light-Rich axis and a 100 on the Delicate-Smoky axis. Laphroaig 10 is the next closest thing and it's quite a bit heavier. If you like a very light body and a metric [expletive] ton of smoke, Ardbeg 10 is effectively un-swap-out-able. If you like Spingbank 10--a whisky that is very light in body, and runs about 70/100 on the Delicate-Smoky axis but is not defined by it's smoke, then Springbank 10 is about all you can get in that immediate ballpark because the fruit/spice-iness defines it more than the smoke.

However, if a person's taste lives in a few other neighborhoods then there are a some areas of the flavor grid where there's a wealth of whisky. If a whisky drinker likes either:
Fruity & Spicy, and around the halfway point of both Light-Rich and Delicate-Smoky
Rich & Round, at the extreme end of Light-Rich and the midpoint of Delicate-Smoky
Then there are at least a dozen easily attainable single malts on the market for that drinker, plus heaps more in private labels like Cadenhead and Gordon & Macphail and so on. Those are good neighborhoods to be in as a drinker, since you have the ability to explore different things that don't force you too far out of your comfort zone.

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Swirls
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Re: Rant/Rave: Bourbon

Post by Swirls »

Yup it is labeled "barrel proof" in several spots on the bottle. 131 proof.

I had a glass of it last night cut with some water and a few whiskey stones. I think it will take me a few glasses of trying different ratios of water to find my happy medium.

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33anda3rd
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Re: Rant/Rave: Bourbon

Post by 33anda3rd »

Swirls wrote:Yup it is labeled "barrel proof" in several spots on the bottle. 131 proof.

I had a glass of it last night cut with some water and a few whiskey stones. I think it will take me a few glasses of trying different ratios of water to find my happy medium.
What's the four-digit code in the bottom right box? C918?

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Swirls
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Re: Rant/Rave: Bourbon

Post by Swirls »

It's C-something. I'm out of town this week for a vendor audit, but know the code started with a C.

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Re: Rant/Rave: Bourbon

Post by GeddyWrox »

My company had their Christmas party at Social House on Friday. Open bar. I had WhistlePig for the first time. Holy sh!t. It was phenomenal.

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33anda3rd
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Re: Rant/Rave: Bourbon

Post by 33anda3rd »

Swirls wrote:It's C-something. I'm out of town this week for a vendor audit, but know the code started with a C.
Makes sense, if you just got it. The Elijah Barrel Proof Codings are four digits.

Digit 1: It's always A, B, or C. They release Barrel Proof only 3X/year. A is the first release, B the second, C the third.
Digits 2-4, when it was released. So C918 is the third release of the year, released in September 2018.

The B517 if you can ever find it--and good luck--was Jim Murray's Whiskey Of The Year for that year. I've never tried it but am curious. I have a B518 from this year, and it's a disappointing one.

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