Where can one try different kinds of scotch whisky?

I’m interested in trying different kinds of scotch whisky, but it seems that your typical bars only carry a few – maybe even a couple. There are tons of different kinds that can be purchased through a liquor store, but I don’t want to be shelling out $50 on a bottle that I may not like.

Does anyone know how this sort of thing would work?

Any Northern Virginians want to start a Whisky Club? :wink:

Mr. Athena has several bottles. Come on over.

OK, if that doesn’t work, find a good restaurant in your area that also has a bar. Most high end restaurants will have a selection of single malt Scotch. Assuming you don’t want to pay for a whole dinner, one that has a bar will allow you to sample the Scotches.

They’re not cheap, though. It may end up being cheaper to buy a few bottles and experiment.

Look for Scotch tastings in you local area. New York City has lots of them, so maybe your city will have some too.

It is well worth it too. The last event I went to let you try 30 different kosher scotches for $35. Most of the scotches cost over $30 too.

Nothing. :frowning:

Wouldn’t the shops also have those little miniature bottles? The kind that hold the equivalent of perhaps two bar measures (something like that anyway). That way you can test and experiment without disasters both financial and physical. :slight_smile:

I think I’m well placed to find some good Scottish whisky: Shall I go out a-testing on your behalf? Oh, but why not?

Go to Silenus’ house, or come over to mine. :wink:

Exactly! Here’s what I wrote on the subject in another whisky threada few months ago:


Time to start frequenting a higher class of drinking establishment.

Start by exploring the world of nips. See what your better liquor warehouses have in the way of minibottles. You’d be surprised what’s out there in miniature. Then check out better bars and restaurants. I’ve eaten in a number of up-scale eateries where single-malt scotch is listed on the dessert menu.

Threads that touch upon the Creature:

Ah, but you see my cunning plan is that I can do the investigating on his behalf, being in Scotland anyway, and being SUCH a helpful person. :D.

Celyn, i’ll be over to help you soon. :slight_smile:

This doesn’t work where the OP is. Liquor is only available through state stores, and they’re pretty limited with respect to which miniatures they carry (in fact, I can’t recall seeing anything other than a Glenlivet 12 year-old). And if there are any restaurants or bars with a decent single malt collection, I sure as hell couldn’t find them when I lived there.

You can buy liquor online and have it shipped to Virginia, which can help with the selection problem, but shipping can be pretty expensive. I had to just suck it up and spend some money when I wanted to find my way around scotch.

The best low-cost approach, IMHO, is to pick up a Speyburn 10 year-old, a Glen Garioch 10 year-old, and a Tamdhu. The first two are available at the Reston and Herndon ABC stores, and they’ll special order the last for you. These are good malts that are about $25 each, and represent a pretty good variety of flavors. Try them, tell us which ones you liked, and we’ll point you torwards others.

Why is this surprising? As far as I can tell, Johnny Walker red is actually aged with dirty gym socks. :wink: I don’t care much for Black, either; it’s basically my jockey box Scotch, tolerable on the the rocks and suitable for mixers, if you’re inclined to do such a thing to whiskey.

I’ve no brilliant advice for the o.p. except to look around for a bar that specializes in such things, and be prepared to pony up the $10+ per drink for upper shelf Scotch whiskys. Oh, and don’t neglect other whiskeys, like Irish whiskey and Japanse whiskey; while not as recognizable there are some very good choices there, and I’ll take a Black Bush or Tyrconnell over any Scotch (except for the 12 year old cask-aged Glenmorangies) on most days of the week. For the most part I can dispense with bourbons, but plenty of people like 'em, and occasionally I’m in the mood for something that tastes like it was aged in an old tire.


Is there any place on the Wrong Coast that has sensible liquor laws?

Move there.

ETA: Note to Stranger - :stuck_out_tongue:

My glass of Maker’s Mark tastes real good right now. It’s been a long day.

Dudley. Your question was just fine. But I think you’ll be better served by my moving it to IMHO. All the better class of [del]drunks[/del] Scotch connoisseurs hang out over there.

samclem GQ moderator


Ah, the flavor of burnt corn. :wink: I’ve got a bottle of Woodford Reserve I tap on occasionally, and maybe something left of the Knob Creek I picked up on sale at Bevmo early in the year, but my cabinet is too full of Red Breast, Black Bush, Bushnell’s 16 Year, Jameson 1780, Knappogue, Tyrconnell, three different types of Glenmorangie, Laphroaig, Macallan 12 Year, and a handful of gins and vodkas to make room for bourbon. So…take all you want at the liquor store without fear that you’re depriving me. :wink:


OK, thanks, samclem.

ultrafilter, good post from someone who understands this prison in which I live, devoid of cultural expression while celebrating vapidity.

I’ll try the whiskys you’ve mentioned. The reason I’d started this thread is because I have gone through nearly three liters on The Glenlivet 12 year, and yesterday, I had the opportunity to have some Johnny Walker Blue Label at FedEx Field yesterday (pretty cool day), and I was instantly hooked. After reading around a bit tonight I’ve found that I could get some damn good scotch without spending $200 a bottle. Just wondering how it’s possible in this corporate wasteland to find such a place that has places that offer up good scotches.

For the record, $10 a glass to try won’t kill me.

Feel like spending a day in Washington D.C.? 60 rare single malt whiskys for $120. There is a buffet there too! That comes out to $2 a glass if you can get through them all.

Of course you won’t really taste anything past your tenth glass.

BTW, what is the plural of whisky? Is it whiskies, whiskys or whiskeys?

Whiskies. The plural of whiskey is whiskeys.

There’s a Scottish pub in St. Louis that has about 70 whiskies on the menu. It’s only a thirteen hour drive. Well worth it.

It depends on the nation of origin. It’s [ul][li]Irish whiskeys[]Scotch whiskies[]Canadian whiskies[]Kentucky/rye/corn whiskeys[]Japanese whiskies[]Welsh whiskys[]Indian whiskies (which is actually a highly distilled rum)[/ul][/li]Stranger

Damn it! The one week I decide to travel for work!