Single Malts or Blends

Love bourbon but still enjoy an occasional foreign whisky pour as well? Discuss some of your favorites here.

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Single Malts or Blends

Unread postby Brewer » Sun Oct 02, 2005 11:36 am

Just wondering for those of us that enjoy Scotch what your preferences are. I started out enjoying blends, particularly Johnnie Walker Red and Black. After trying Single Malts, I appreciated the variety and pronounced flavors that were more evident in the Single Malts. Nowadays, when I'm having Scotch, I really go for the bold flavors of the Islay malts & others such as Talisker. I've come to really like Bruichladdich from Islay and of course Lagavulin, Ardbeg, Laphroaig & Bowmore. Springbank and Macallan are also amongst my faves. How about you?
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Unread postby bourbonv » Sun Oct 02, 2005 1:04 pm

I prefer single malt scotch with strong flavor. There are several of the single malts with little more flavor than a blend - Oban is the first that comes to mind. These products just don't do anything for me and I would rather have a taste of a strong peat malt than a whole bottle of the brown vodka's out there.

Talisker is my favorite malt whisky, I just wish it was not so damn expensive.

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Unread postby Brewer » Sun Oct 02, 2005 3:38 pm

bourbonv wrote:Talisker is my favorite malt whisky, I just wish it was not so damn expensive.

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That's one of the downsides of single malts: their cost! The flip side is the bargain that bourbon is!

I'm with you regarding taste though. I don't recall having Oban, but the Lowland whiskies are pretty bland IMO.
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Unread postby OneCubeOnly » Mon Oct 03, 2005 8:22 pm

For me it's the singles all the way. Every once in a while I'll delve into JW Black, but it costs more than many singles, so it's a pretty rare occasion. I have nothing against blends per se, it just so happens the few blends I actually like are pricey.

I tend to like single-malts in the extreme ends of the spectrum: either very subtle and delicate like Auchentoshan and Dalwhinnie or bold and in-your-face like Talisker and Laphroaig.
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Unread postby Whiskme » Tue Oct 04, 2005 4:31 pm

I don't believe I have a snobbish bone in my body, and would hate to think I did. But, I made a choice according to the awesome friends I've made electronically to dedicate my education in single malts and single barrel selections. This goes very nicely with the same choices I've made in quality cigars. And all three of these wonderful pleasures of life are fully ranged across their available options. I like the whole lineup of SM's from Highland Park 25 and MacCallan through Caol Ill and Ardbeg. It's the variances in spectrum that I enjoy from iodine soaked socks to maple sugar burning charcoal. The same for bourbon and it's wonderful rainbow of tastes to the earthy chocolate and leather of a finely aged cigar. I enjoy being stunned and surprised by the enlivened senses of taste and smell. If I could only have one I guess it would be Ben Nevis....today! I'm glad I get more than one choice though.
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Unread postby Mike » Wed Oct 05, 2005 10:16 am

Drinking Scotch is a bit rare for me these days, although I still have a wee dram on occasion. A couple of years back, when I was drinking Scotch regularly and thought, erroneously, that no bourbon was equal to good Scotch, I would have said that no blend is as good as a Single Malt.

After getting my come-uppance with saying something is 'best', I don't like to make categorical statements about any spirit. That being said, in my experience, I do find that the nose on the Single Malts seems to be a bit fuller and more complex than most of the blends.

But I have done little in the way of comparison except the offhand tasting of Chivas, The Famous Grouse, or Johnny Walker against some Single Malts.

The Single Malts always seem to come out on top for me. I like their individual charaters. Among the blends, I am most willing to buy Johnny Walker Black and actually prefer it to the Blue, that little touch of sweetness makes it better for me. That it is reasonable adds to the attraction of JW Black.
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