The contents of Monsta's glass...(read OP)

Monsta_AU

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It's another log thread, a diary if you like. Go ahead and create your own if you need to, however discussion on what is being drunk (and finished) along with suggested purchases are more than welcome.

Okay, so there is movement in the hard liqour cupboard. After a number of months of it not really moving too much and a bottle of Springbank 10 year old sitting there after I promised myself I would not open it until finishing one of my open bottles, the Glenmorangie 10 (aka 'The Original') is no more. Cork into the spares and the bottle into the recycling.

30/1: Springbank 10 opened. Previously tried the 15 on my trip to Melbourne in December, and it is a mighty drop. Getting up there in price though, especially with Government Sucking Taxes and the fact we are in Australia. Luckily, the other half brought this 10yo back from the UK on her trip in September last year at significant discount to local prices. Score!

Opened it up, and listen... when Ralfy says it is one of the best 'Standard Jobbing' or volume product of a distillery then you should stop and listen. Direct fired stills give an amazing extra oomph, and if you like Glenfarclas (also direct-fired) but want less sherry monster and let the cask and spirit speak with just the lightest touch of smoke then this is for you. I get citrus and a definite pineapple note to it, along with the phenolic medicinal note of peat and a slight floral note. There is just a slight marine note to it too. In the mouth there is just everything under the sun.....It's quite different but in oh such a good way. I think I prefer it to the 15.

If anyone keeps scotch around, you should absolutely have a bottle of the Springbank 10 on the shelf. Awesome value for money, just a shame that it is not widely available and you need to hunt a little to find it.

31/1: Soild 'and er half' dram tonight of Aberlour 12. Easy drinking and inoffensive sherried malt which is eminently enjoyable but is not some masterfully matured bottle and who can complain at the price. Probably could do with an extra year or two maturation to let it soften just a touch more, but that's what the 18 is for. A'bunadh is the equivalent to the Glenfarclas 105 at a slightly better pricepoint but I don't think it is as good.
 
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Drubbing

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I've had my fill of heavy sherried malts over xmas. Aberlour 12 was nice. Glendronach even nicer but too much of a good thing, they both got too rich and I got too poor. I think I've got a shit palate anyway. Monkey Shoulder, Chivas, Bushmills 10 - all different prices and all taste jusy like malt with varying degrees of alcohol harshness.

I'm kind of happy with JW Black. Consistent, not too malty or stupidly priced and goes down well.
 

Rami

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@Monsta_AU the springbank one is on the list for me to try. Unfortunately I can't find it anywhere for a decent price. May want to wait for a relative to travel overseas and grab me one :).

Would be great to see your top 10 listed.
 
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Monsta_AU

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I've had my fill of heavy sherried malts over xmas. Aberlour 12 was nice. Glendronach even nicer but too much of a good thing, they both got too rich and I got too poor. I think I've got a shit palate anyway. Monkey Shoulder, Chivas, Bushmills 10 - all different prices and all taste jusy like malt with varying degrees of alcohol harshness.
I cannot help you and your shit palate. Monkey Shoulder is actually pretty good for the dollars.

I'm kind of happy with JW Black. Consistent, not too malty or stupidly priced and goes down well.
If you believe it to be consistent, then you really do have a shit palate. The Walker house style is indeed consistent, but what goes in is definitely not. They do tend to hide it well with the 'drinkers' that finish bottles and buy another because they cannot go back to the bottle they finished 10 years ago - mostly. The Red has had a massive drop in quality, the Black less so but still noticeable.

@Monsta_AU the springbank one is on the list for me to try. Unfortunately I can't find it anywhere for a decent price. May want to wait for a relative to travel overseas and grab me one :).

Would be great to see your top 10 listed.
I am a long, long way from being able to confidently publish a top 10. There's many more years of dramming to learn from before I would be able to put my name to a list.

You can get Springbank 10 from GoodDrop for $83 which is the cheapest I know of but happy to be corrected. $9 flat rate delivery for us in NSW & VIC, $15 for QLD & SA, $20 rest of the country (outside dry postcodes). If you amortise it over 2 bottles and you are in WA it's still signifiantly cheaper than the rest of the outlets that stock it. Everywhere else it's $100/bottle at best.

GoodDrop have a few bundle deals at $50 off retail too, the Glenfarclas 12 & 25 pair is excellent value. Nicks can sometimes put the 1L bottles out at the same price as GoodDrop's everyday 700ml price but you need to be quick.
 

J.Mac

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Which
I've had my fill of heavy sherried malts over xmas. Aberlour 12 was nice. Glendronach even nicer but too much of a good thing, they both got too rich and I got too poor. I think I've got a shit palate anyway. Monkey Shoulder, Chivas, Bushmills 10 - all different prices and all taste jusy like malt with varying degrees of alcohol harshness.

I'm kind of happy with JW Black. Consistent, not too malty or stupidly priced and goes down well.
Glendronach was it? I really enjoy the 15yo. Similiar to Glenfarclas 15yo but a little less 'refined' to me for lack of a better word
 

Drubbing

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I cannot help you and your shit palate. Monkey Shoulder is actually pretty good for the dollars.

If you believe it to be consistent, then you really do have a shit palate. The Walker house style is indeed consistent, but what goes in is definitely not. They do tend to hide it well with the 'drinkers' that finish bottles and buy another because they cannot go back to the bottle they finished 10 years ago - mostly. The Red has had a massive drop in quality, the Black less so but still noticeable.
Bit of Scotch snobbery creeping in there...

Monkey is fine and decent value I suppose, I just don't find any of the ones mentioned much different from each other.

When I say consistent for JWB, I don't have the good old days to compare it with. I'm talking the last month or two. Most scotch was better in previous years when demand wasn't as strong. Whisky is having one if its renaissances at the moment, and the very nature of how it is made, reduces quality in order to meet demand. The big players crank up production and find ways to shove their blends out the door faster. I read Ralphy too.

Ralphy compares an older bottle of Black with a new one. Both are still recognisable as Black, one is just better and more involving. It's still a decent daily sipper IMO. There are worse for more money, like Glen Moray Single Malt NAS. I think good blends are far better than poor singles.

My whisky expert friend used Black as the base for his home cask. He forgets what else has gone in there, but I've thrown in a bottle of Dewars and Chivas Extra. It's got some Ardberg in there too. The stuff he gets out of that is very good, I've two bottles worth of it. Complex, interesting, moreish, you can taste the Black and Ardberg, but in altered proportions.

So my palette probably isn't that shit. It just doesn't discern much between 'bottom shelf' single malts, such as those I mentioned.
 

Monsta_AU

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Which Glendronach was it? I really enjoy the 15yo. Similiar to Glenfarclas 15yo but a little less 'refined' to me for lack of a better word
Not sure which one Drubs had, but I agree that the 15 is nice, and a nice price point too. Had a dram of 24yo from a Signatory bottling which was definitely worth the price of admission at around $140.

Bit of Scotch snobbery creeping in there...
A little, but anyone who drank scotch before the GFC will know that there has been an overall drop in the blends. Even Chivas is down on what it used to be, their 'Extra' label is only new but quite disappointing and I prefer the standard Chivas over it. That said, I rarely drink blends now apart form when in Malaysia with workmates and we tend to get bottle service. There's some pretty shocking single malts too as you mentioned. Muirheads Silver Seal 8yo was horrible.

Monkey is fine and decent value I suppose, I just don't find any of the ones mentioned much different from each other.
Monkey is a vatted malt - all killer and no filler. I am certain that its the 'not quite up to single malt quality' barrels with less age that go into it however it's still well ahead of some bottles at the $55 range and it goes for $42-$45. Also has a decent amount of Fiddich in it so an ideal base for a home cask project.

When I say consistent for JWB, I don't have the good old days to compare it with. I'm talking the last month or two. Most scotch was better in previous years when demand wasn't as strong. Whisky is having one if its renaissances at the moment, and the very nature of how it is made, reduces quality in order to meet demand. The big players crank up production and find ways to shove their blends out the door faster. I read Ralphy too.

Ralphy compares an older bottle of Black with a new one. Both are still recognisable as Black, one is just better and more involving. It's still a decent daily sipper IMO. There are worse for more money, like Glen Moray Single Malt NAS. I think good blends are far better than poor singles.
Overall I agree with the thrust of your argument, but having dunk more than a few cans of Black Cans in my younger days, the modern iteration really does pale to the late 90's releases. I shared more than a few glasses or Red with my Grandfather who ended up moving to Grants in the early 2000's. That said, bottle puchased 5 years ago and now of just about any single malt or blend will be fairly different due to the same pressures.

My whisky expert friend used Black as the base for his home cask. He forgets what else has gone in there, but I've thrown in a bottle of Dewars and Chivas Extra. It's got some Ardberg in there too. The stuff he gets out of that is very good, I've two bottles worth of it. Complex, interesting, moreish, you can taste the Black and Ardberg, but in altered proportions.
He must have put a ton of Black in to start with to stand up to the Ardbeg. How big is the cask?

And probably the next big question would be when do you start yours?

So my palette probably isn't that shit. It just doesn't discern much between 'bottom shelf' single malts, such as those I mentioned.
Hey, you called it shit yourself, I just went with it and didn't argue!

Might be time to try some of the nicer stuff then. I usually take advantage of flights wherever possible in order to get as much experience with various drams in a cost effective way. Well, more cost effective than buying a bottle that I may or may not like in any case. Sometimes Minis are also avalable of the larger market examples.
 

Drubbing

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A little, but anyone who drank scotch before the GFC will know that there has been an overall drop in the blends. Even Chivas is down on what it used to be, their 'Extra' label is only new but quite disappointing and I prefer the standard Chivas over it. That said, I rarely drink blends now apart form when in Malaysia with workmates and we tend to get bottle service. There's some pretty shocking single malts too as you mentioned. Muirheads Silver Seal 8yo was horrible.
Can't disagree. I thought Chivas was good if going cheap, and any reasonable blend benefits from a splash of decent stuff added to lift it. The Extra is marketing BS. There was nothing extra at all. I finished the std chivas, but the Extra went in the cask.

Not sure on the size of the cask, probably around 7 litres. JWB was the base, but there's all sorts in there. I doubt a whole bottle of Ardberg went in. The peat is there, but subtler, it sits in the flavour mix rather than being the main event. Just as well, peat is not my thing. I find it horribly medicinal. The scots who hate peat call it TCP, which is a foul antiseptic used to wash the mouth out.

I've certainly not developed a malt snobbery. I like good whisky whether blend or not. AncNoc and Cragganmore are nice, but so is JW Green. Sadly though, they're never far apart in price.
 

Monsta_AU

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Not had much time this week as I have been getting home late.

11/2: Auchentoshan American Oak. Bought this a while ago and never really got into it. Obviously a bit of oxidisation from the few drams poured has helped as I now get the slightest of smoky notes in it, or the impression of direct firing (which it is certainly not). Direct firing can indeed bring on a savoury profile which I am not sure about just yet, but I think may yet be hiding in this bottle ever so slightly.

Previously leaving the impresison of something young and very fresh, it now seems to have relaxed and it showing some very nice vanilla dominating as you would expect from a first-fill boubon barrel. Citrus falls away to a malty and toasted coconut flavour, and oak lets itself be known but is quite controlled and certainly not dominant. Finish seeing more of the malty stanzas and a little more citrus, specifically graprefruit, and a slight herbaceousness. But this basic dram from probably the most well known lowland distillery is starting to take me on a journey, and screwing with my head.

Maybe all that APR sniffing earlier today has affected me!
 

stillshunter

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Can't disagree. I thought Chivas was good if going cheap, and any reasonable blend benefits from a splash of decent stuff added to lift it. The Extra is marketing BS. There was nothing extra at all. I finished the std chivas, but the Extra went in the cask.
[snip]
I've certainly not developed a malt snobbery. I like good whisky whether blend or not. AncNoc and Cragganmore are nice, but so is JW Green. Sadly though, they're never far apart in price.
Agree. Still don't mind a tipple of Dimple. A store blend, but a mighty nice one.
 

Monsta_AU

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Dimple was on special at Liquorland last week, the 12yo was under $40. Not bad at all. JW Black was well under that at Dans, $36 I think?

Still on the Auchentoshan, trying to give it a solid run and make some space in the cupbaord, although I have noticed more oxidisation as I go and that savoury/toasted note has dimished a bit now and the vanilla & citrus is dominating once again.

One dram I experimented with the smallest of splashes of the Aberlour 12 into the mix. Now that was a nice as the touch of sherry sweetness took the edge off the citrus.
 
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The Red has had a massive drop in quality, the Black less so but still noticeable.
Ah, that reminds me of my score over Xmas and Birthday.
A 1 litre bottle and another 750 ml bottle, both JW Red :banghead: :yuck:

Bloody in-laws...I'd rather they just bought a cheap port than a cheap scotch.
Now I have to find someone I don't like, that I can re-gift it to ;)
 

Monsta_AU

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Back to the recent experiences....

At home, the Auchentoshan continues it's run, probably a third of a bottle left now. I am experimenting with a few drops of other whiskies into it to change it up. Tonight however was straight with a tiny bit of water which definitely opens it up. Straight seems to just be a pure vanilla and malt driven ride, while the water spreads those flavours and you can then taste the remainder.

Last week my Boss was in town for a few nights. We found ourselves at the Barber Shop Cocktail bar, a rather Gin-driven menu but a nice selection of scotch also. He does indeed love his smoky whiskies, so it was Lagavaulin 16 first night out. Should be in any serious whisky drinker's collection. I would dearly love to try a 21yo single cask expression of this, another few years on it would be something to savour.

Second night, we ended up at Lobo Plantation, which is a Carribbean-style bar with a shedload of Rum. There were a couple of reasonable bourbons (Woodford Reserve) and a rather weak array of whisky. So when in Barbados, drink rum. Zacapa 23 was the hit of choice at a very reasonable price, and I think I have found a new drink for my boss. All the tropical fruit flavours, with a slight spice and an underlying syrupy, almost molasses kind of note right through. @Mark1966 would be proud!

Otherwise the two bottles each of Johnnie Green and Chopin Vodka turned up last Friday. Both put into the 'collection' cupboard.
 

Mark1966

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Back to the recent experiences....

At home, the Auchentoshan continues it's run, probably a third of a bottle left now. I am experimenting with a few drops of other whiskies into it to change it up. Tonight however was straight with a tiny bit of water which definitely opens it up. Straight seems to just be a pure vanilla and malt driven ride, while the water spreads those flavours and you can then taste the remainder.

Last week my Boss was in town for a few nights. We found ourselves at the Barber Shop Cocktail bar, a rather Gin-driven menu but a nice selection of scotch also. He does indeed love his smoky whiskies, so it was Lagavaulin 16 first night out. Should be in any serious whisky drinker's collection. I would dearly love to try a 21yo single cask expression of this, another few years on it would be something to savour.

Second night, we ended up at Lobo Plantation, which is a Carribbean-style bar with a shedload of Rum. There were a couple of reasonable bourbons (Woodford Reserve) and a rather weak array of whisky. So when in Barbados, drink rum. Zacapa 23 was the hit of choice at a very reasonable price, and I think I have found a new drink for my boss. All the tropical fruit flavours, with a slight spice and an underlying syrupy, almost molasses kind of note right through. @Mark1966 would be proud!

Otherwise the two bottles each of Johnnie Green and Chopin Vodka turned up last Friday. Both put into the 'collection' cupboard.
Yeah, I'm enjoying the Zacapa 23 - good recommendation from you I think!

Did you get a shave (http://thisisthebarbershop.com/barber-services/) with your scotch?
 

Monsta_AU

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Yeah, I'm enjoying the Zacapa 23 - good recommendation from you I think!

Did you get a shave (http://thisisthebarbershop.com/barber-services/) with your scotch?
It's not a true 23 as it a Solera system, but there's complexity right through it and engages you across multiple glasses. Did introduce a guy to it while I was there next to us at the bar, it was like a lightbulb lit up after he got halfway through it.

And no, no shave as it was late, drinks only. Nice spot, although the Baxter Inn is next door but that place is crazy busy. This bar was far quieter and easier to relax. Nice staff too.
 

Monsta_AU

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It's been a while, there has been some movement. The bottle of Dalwhinnie 15 is finished, and plenty new purchases including 2x Glengoyne 15 and a Glen Scotia 15. Unfortunately I need somewhere to store them now as I am moving. Looking at a nice bar/sideboard cabinet to put them in.

My trip to NZ gave me the chance to sit in the Jefferson in Auckland and try a few new drams. First up was the SMWS 10.140 (Bunnahabhin) which was a deliciously peaty, mouthwatering dram. Possibly the one that was opening my eye the most was the Glenglassaugh 'Torfa' which was a slightly sweet and fruity, yet very approachable peated whisky. As the guy at the bar said, he started there not liking peated yet this was what converted him. To me it is a very tasty, almost quaffable dram and @eggbert might want to get his hands on a bottle.
 
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eggbert

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It's been a while, there has been some movement. The bottle of Dalwhinnie 15 is finished, and plenty new purchases including 2x Glengoyne 15 and a Glen Scotia 15. Unfortunately I need somewhere to store them now as I am moving. Looking at a nice bar/sideboard cabinet to put them in.

My trip to NZ gave me the chance to sit in the Jefferson in Auckland and try a few new drams. First up was the SMWS 10.140 (Bunnahabhin) which was a deliciously peaty, mouthwatering dram. Possibly the one that was opening my eye the most was the Glenglassaugh 'Torfa' which was a slightly sweet and fruity, yet very approachable peated whisky. As the guy at the bar said, he started there not liking peated yet this was what converted him. To me it is a very tasty, almost quaffable dram and @eggbert might want to get his hands on a bottle.
Sorely tempted but can't seem to get from either good drop or MBS which seem to be my main options up here until Dan's opens.
I would love to get 2 bottles soon, then a few more duty free when my parents come over next month but just can't seem to nail down which ones to grab.
How easy is it to / what is the legality of getting one of you to get the free delivery from Nick's then sending up here?
I'm currently drinking cheap blends (ralfys choices) to try to year apart some flavours, but really want to try sunbathing a lot nicer.
Some of the descriptions have me licking my lips in anticipation. I really want to experience a thick, oily mouthfeel from a whisky. Also many of the flavours, especially at isn't, fruity, winey, sherry flavours at present, but eventually I hope to also appreciate salty, brine smoke and peat from Islay
By the way, anyone here in on the Facebook dram full cask bottlings that would recommend them?
 
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