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Best Bottom Shelf Whiskies?


Sir Otter
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For me it would be Teachers for a peated blend, and Famous Grouse for everything else. What are your go to bottom shelf whiskies? 

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nach0
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I´m not a professional taster nor do i drink constantly, but whiskies are the alcohol beverage i´m most inclined to drink when pipe smoking.

All whiskies here comes from abroad, and considering the prices, i´d say the bottom options would be Teacher, Jamessem, Grand Old Parr, Chivas and Jhonnie Walker black label.

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Ithian
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Teachers is amazing! I didn't expect much the first time I got it but was pleasantly surprised.

For a slightly higher price Johnny Walker red and black are great!

Jameson is too smooth and one-dimensional for me. And many other cheap ones tend to be too sharp.

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Lee
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 Lee
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Bottom shelf: Jameson

Middle/top shelf: Lagavulin (16 years)

I wouldn’t pay more than that for whisky, so can’t comment on the *real* top shelf whiskies.

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Sir Otter
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Lagavulin is getting pricey these days 🙁 

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Lee
 Lee
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My parents once stayed at Gleneagles, in Scotland, (a posh hotel and golf course). After their evening meal my Dad thought he’d try a really good whisky. When the waiter brought the whisky trolley to their table, it had on it bottles worth £200-£300 ($250-$380) each! Which makes Lagavulin look quite reasonable! 😄

Of course, it’s the same with things like wine and champagne. There are bottles worth thousands, not hundreds. Some people can obviously afford it. But I can’t help thinking really expensive beverages are more of a status symbol than anything. Either that, or I’m an ignorant, uncultured philistine! 😄

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Sir Otter
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Lagavulin is a great whisky, but I am just not sure if it's worth the price hikes they've instituted lately. In my area, the 16 year is running about 60 dollars more than it was a few years back. I've heard reports that the quality has gone down as the price has gone up, but I cannot confirm that personally.

There's definitely some whiskies in that 200 dollar range that are worth it like Dalmore's Cigar Malt. It has such a unique flavour that I haven't really encountered elsewhere. But like most luxury items, you have a sort of plateau at a point per price (for wine it's around 35 dollars in the research I've seen) where the quality does improve but not as drastically compared to bottom versus mid. At a certain point you are certainly paying for status, or you simply have the money to waste on it. 

I am quite interested in trying Bruichladdich's Port Charlotte as a more reasonably priced alternative. I've heard great things about it. 

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Lee
 Lee
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I’ll keep my eye open for that. Thanks for the tip! I hadn’t heard of it before.

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ugdabug
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I like the Port Charlotte. For me the big islays are Lag 16 and Laphroig Quarter cask. Very similar and BIIIG. Port Charlotte for me is more like Bowmore where you still get the peat but it's pulled back a bit and probably easier to drink for those that find the first two too big.

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Juan José Pascual Lobo
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Lagavulin is very smoky. The ideal one with latakia blends.

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Lee
 Lee
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Yes, it’s very peaty. Typical for Islay malts. I also like Ardbeg and Laphroaig, which have a similar peaty taste. Good stuff to have with Latakia blends, as you say.

 

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Juan José Pascual Lobo
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And of course Laphroaig, as you say. But if you want a fresh, fruity, with notes of fresh almonds, apricots and peaches, ideal with Virginia and oriental blends, you should try this. In Spain, 80-90€ a bottle. Impressive.

1705971613-MICHEL-COUVREUR-OVERAGED.jpg
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Sir Otter
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Laphroaig Quarter Cask is heavenly. That pictured whisky looks amazing. 

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Juan José Pascual Lobo
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Michel Couvreur is a Belgian spirit and wine merchant that select the distilled whisky in Scotland, transport it to Burgundy in France to complete the aging process in barrels that previously contained very old sherry wines from Spain. The aging process takes place in traditional caves dug into the rock. It´s one of the very best beverages you can enjoy and it´s affordable.

 

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Sir Otter
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Ardbeg Uigeadail 👍 

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ugdabug
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Love it and I have some but not cheap.

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I remember reading somewhere that during the covid debacle, the island of Islay stopped exporting whiskys so that the residents there wouldn't get infected with the covid virus. Naturally, this caused a shortage, so the price of the Islay scotches skyrocketed. When people finally regained their sanity and the covid debacle subsided to a more reasonable level of panic, Islay started exporting their scotches again which they had been stockpiling. However, they didn't release the stockpiled scotch all at once so as not to flood the market and drop the prices too drastically. Lagavulin 16 peaked out at about $120 a bottle in my local market, which was about double what it was before covid. Today I can get Lagavulin 16 for usually around $70-$80 a bottle which is about $10 higher than it was pre-covid. I live in the United States. Lagavulin 16 is my favorite whisky and I drink it pretty regularly. I tried Lagavulin 8 out of desperation during covid. Lagavulin 8 is a curiously interesting scotch, but I still prefer the 16. As I said this was something I read, so I can't attest to the accuracy of any of this, but being a regular consumer of Lagavulin 16 scotch, I can attest to the Islay scotch shortage and price peaks.

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Sir Otter
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So that's why the prices went up... Sadly, it's still $120 where I live. 

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Juan José Pascual Lobo
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The island of Islay may have stopped exporting whisky so as not to run out of stock for their own consumption during lockdown. Running out of whisky could scare them more than the Chinese virus.

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Haddock
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Glencadam 10.

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Carlyle Blended. It's better than their 12 yr old and is dirt cheap at $17+ a bottle. This stuff can rival Johnny Walker Black at times, though more fruity and a bit less peat with a nice malty backbone. I'd pay way more for this stuff. 

Jura "Journey." I think it's their entry level single malt at about $35 a bottle. Excellent stuff for the price and I prefer it to their 10 and 12 yr olds. Malty with an almost Grand Marnier note of sweetness.

 

 

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ugdabug
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Absolutely Teachers for me is the best cheap blended whiskey. Got more barley than most so tastes closer to a single malt.

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