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shellunderwater

Better Bourbon and Scotch

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1 hour ago, ileys said:

Since we have a very knowledgeable group of folks here, I need ask this question - where should someone who does not have much experience with whiskey begin on a RCCL cruise complete with drink package?  I am not afraid of paying a few bucks for an upcharge, but I have no idea where to start.  What is the best way to order - neat, rocks, with water, straight from bottle?

I would agree to start neat, then you can add some water and/or ice.  Try some different ones.  Try a manhattan, try other mixed bourbon drinks.  Don't be afraid to dislike something, just order something different.  If you can get in a bar at a quite time, talk with the bartender, they may be able to take you through some suggestions.  You've already paid for it.  🙂

 

Now, for summer weather enjoyment of bourbon, try a Kentucky Arnold Palmer.  Don't use good stuff.  Don't use firewater either.  Pour an Arnold Palmer (1/2 iced tea, half lemonade... season to taste with a shot or two of bourbon.... enjoy on ice).  As you sit in the shade enjoying it, you can say a thank you.  Just pay it forward.😎

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10 minutes ago, shellunderwater said:

I would agree to start neat, then you can add some water and/or ice.  Try some different ones.  Try a manhattan, try other mixed bourbon drinks.  Don't be afraid to dislike something, just order something different.  If you can get in a bar at a quite time, talk with the bartender, they may be able to take you through some suggestions.  You've already paid for it.  🙂

 

Now, for summer weather enjoyment of bourbon, try a Kentucky Arnold Palmer.  Don't use good stuff.  Don't use firewater either.  Pour an Arnold Palmer (1/2 iced tea, half lemonade... season to taste with a shot or two of bourbon.... enjoy on ice).  As you sit in the shade enjoying it, you can say a thank you.  Just pay it forward.😎

 

The mixed drink question was up next - manhattans, old fashioneds - all to be tried while the trying has no marginal cost.  This will be an opportunity for my inner alcoholic to try new things!

 

Thanks for the suggestions!

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2 hours ago, ileys said:

 

The mixed drink question was up next - manhattans, old fashioneds - all to be tried while the trying has no marginal cost.  This will be an opportunity for my inner alcoholic to try new things!

 

Thanks for the suggestions!

Bulliet Rye in a Manhattan is yummy.

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2 minutes ago, mac66 said:

Bulliet Rye in a Manhattan is yummy.

Yes I agree! I'm really bummed as my wife texted me that she heard that a liquor store in the area had just gotten in the Weller 12. I called and they just sold the two bottles they got. Urrrggggg!

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7 hours ago, SRF said:

 

Do you know why blended whisky was invented?

 

It was invented to get women to drink Scotch, as the traditional (single malt) whiskies were more overpowering. So the grain whisky was added to smooth them out and make them lighter in flavor.

 

The draw of a single malt is the complexity.  All the various flavors as it rolls across the tongue, and lingers.  And the change in flavor profile as you add a wee bit of water (not too much).

 

And yes, most single malts should have a bit of water added.

 

When I try a new whisky.  I taste it neat.  Then I add a tiny bit of water, and taste again, and then a bit more water, and taste.  At some point, you know you have hit the proper mix as the aroma and flavor peaks.  

 

 

The reason blends were invented is not interesting to me. All I know is I like blends better. For obvious reasons, their flavor profile is much more complex than single malts. 

Also, generally speaking, JW Black is the gold standard to which almost all blends are compared. It’s blend is also based on Talisker, an excellent single malt. It’s also a great value. 

Its funny because a lot of my whisk/e/y tasting has been on a cruise. I also drink my bourbon and scotch, neat, but for some odd reason, I drink Crown Royal and Jameson, on the rocks. 

I started out drinking bourbon, and for the longest time I searched for my favorite. Then someone turned me on to scotch. I asked myself why I was looking for a good bourbon when scotch literally turned me around. 

I still drink bourbon, and I do have my favorites. bulleit is one of my favorites. I also like Knob Creek and Woodford Reserve. I’ve also discovered a great inexpensive bourbon that compare favorably with Knob Creek; Evan Williams. I always have scotch on hand, not always bourbon. 

I don’t buy single malts, because like I said, they’re a horrible value and i’ve Yet to find what all the fuss is about. 

Edited by rusty nut

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On 9/19/2019 at 3:46 PM, Sea Dog said:

Yes I agree! I'm really bummed as my wife texted me that she heard that a liquor store in the area had just gotten in the Weller 12. I called and they just sold the two bottles they got. Urrrggggg!

 

By the time you hear it, it is too late.  Weller 12 is hard to find, antique should be easier and is also an amazing pour.

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3 minutes ago, grod19 said:

 

By the time you hear it, it is too late.  Weller 12 is hard to find, antique should be easier and is also an amazing pour.

I agree. I see that a liquor store near me might have the Antique 107 but is selling it for $149. Might have to splurge.

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On 9/19/2019 at 11:39 AM, ileys said:

Since we have a very knowledgeable group of folks here, I need ask this question - where should someone who does not have much experience with whiskey begin on a RCCL cruise complete with drink package?  I am not afraid of paying a few bucks for an upcharge, but I have no idea where to start.  What is the best way to order - neat, rocks, with water, straight from bottle?

 

A good whisky or whiskey, should be neat or with a small amount of water.  Ice cools and deadens the taste, so should not be used.

 

As i mentioned before, when I taste a new one, I start neat.  Smell and taste it.  They add just a bit of water, not much at all.  Swirl and let sit about 30 - 60 seconds at least.  Then smell and taste.  Typically you find some more and some added aroma, and some additional tastes.  Swirl it around your tongue, to hit all the flavor receptors.  After swallowing it, wait a bit to see about any after tastes.

 

Nothing on board is what I would start people out with in the line of Scotches.  But they do have some good bourbons.

 

BTW, Scotch is whisky, all others are whiskEy.

 

All that said, drink the way YOU like to.  But I would not waste good whiskies and good money on any quality whisky and any flavored mixer.

 

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On 9/19/2019 at 12:01 PM, Sea Dog said:

I started on the rocks and then progressed to neat. You can always ask for it neat with some ice cubes on the side. Some order it neat and have with them a little eye dropper bottle with distilled water and put a few drops in to open it up. The great thing about having the DDP is that if you try something and don't like it just order something different.

 

Technically, the water used to dilute the whisky, should be the same water it was distilled from.

 

In Scotland, you can actually buy small bottles of water from the various distilleries.

 

I just use tap water.  As long as there is no taste reason to not drink the water, it will be fine.  And on board, the tap water is distilled or RO.

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When I introduce someone to Scotch for the first time, I normally start with a Lowland, like Auchentoshen.  It is milder, less peaty, and easier on a novice.  Then I move to a Highland.  Then possibly a Speyside, but to me, they are a Highland with a bad after taste. 🙂

 

Then finally to the full on Islands.  Talisker is a good first Island, or Highland Park.  I save the Laphroiag and Ardbeg to the serious students as a graduate exercise.

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So here's something for you Whiskey lovers where price is no object. Last night I was at a Whiskey tasting  and got to try the Jim Beam Masterpiece Sherry Cask Finished Bourbon and all I can say is WOW!  Pricey at about $200 but this was some outstanding bourbon.

Jim Beam masterpiece.jpg

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6 minutes ago, SRF said:

Technically, the water used to dilute the whisky, should be the same water it was distilled from.

Yes you are correct. I have used https://www.oldlimestone.com/ before and it works well. Most if time I have to just use regular tap water.

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23 hours ago, Sea Dog said:

I agree. I see that a liquor store near me might have the Antique 107 but is selling it for $149. Might have to splurge.

 

Antique is good but not worth 150 as a drinker.  To have the bottle in your collection I’d say yeah it’s worth it because it looks cool and if you have anyone over who knows bourbons will be surprised to see it.  Put it in your collection....serve a few ounces here or there....and don’t put it into regular rotation.  So many more that you can get for cheaper that are just as good if not better.  

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I agree I would like it for my collection but would only drink it on special occasions. $149 is too much for my weekly sipping. I leave that for my cheaper bourbons and rye whiskeys.

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On 9/16/2019 at 1:09 PM, shellunderwater said:

So, last two cruises... Freedom from San Juan and recently Majesty from FLL, I've wanted some better premium bourbon or scotch, such as Blanton's or an 18 year single barrel.  I just couldn't find it on either ship.  I guess the Freedom is catering to their key clientele with rum.  

 

We will be on Enchantment is a few months and I'd like to set my own mental expectations.  Anything better than their normal Makers, etc? 

 

Not that the top shelf is bad, I'm just willing to pay a couple of dollars extra (above my package) to get a premium pour.

I'm not a scotch drinker, but I have a rather significant taste for bourbon. We sailed on the Liberty this Summer, and some friends reported that they could get decent Scotch in the cigar bar. I found Four Roses Single Barrel and a couple of other great bourbons in the English pub... on the last night of the cruise. Take the first day to walk your ship and look at the bottles each bar has on offer. Happy sailing!

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1 hour ago, Sea Dog said:

$149 is too much for my weekly sipping. I leave that for my cheaper bourbons and rye whiskeys.

 

Ah, rye whiskeys.  Haven't said much about them so far.  What are your favorites?  I haven't tasted a lot, but I do like Knob Creek, Bulleit, a KY local called Old Overholt, and Whistlepig 10.  The Old Overholt is a bargain at ~$15/bottle, and in several local tastings in the Louisville, KY area has stood up against some of the much more expensive ryes.  Many distilleries in KY also make higher end more expensive ryes, single barrel, double wooded, etc.  Not convinced yet that they're worth the extra expense, but would certainly appreciate comments from anyone who has tasted these.  This has been a very informative discussion.  Thanks.

 

Edited by NouCruzer
correct omission

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I've tasting all of them and each of them has their own unique taste. I really like the Whistlepig and Bulleit out of your group. My favorites are Templeton Rye and Michter's Rye which are my go to's. I also love when I want to spend more money, the Colonel EH Taylor Straight Rye. I have a love for just about everything Buffalo Trace puts out.

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20 minutes ago, Sea Dog said:

I've tasting all of them and each of them has their own unique taste. I really like the Whistlepig and Bulleit out of your group. My favorites are Templeton Rye and Michter's Rye which are my go to's. I also love when I want to spend more money, the Colonel EH Taylor Straight Rye. I have a love for just about everything Buffalo Trace puts out.

 

Appears that you enjoy those that are primarily rye mash; Bulleit and Whistlepig being 95%+ rye whereas something like Knob Creek has more corn mash.  I will have to look for Templeton and Michter's.  And being a Louisville resident, I'm at a loss explain why I haven't yet tasted Buffalo Trace.  That might be remedied tomorrow.  

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On 9/18/2019 at 10:40 AM, George C said:

Have you tried JW double black, also like the more expensive JW green and gold. chevis regal is also good. 

My  choice of Scotch is JW Double Black.  I have been able to get it on Allure and Harmony as part of my drink package.  I am not one who loves the flavor of the single malts.  Several years ago, my husband and I were going to Ireland and had a few days in London and Crawley.  On the way from Gatwick to Dublin, I bought a bottle of Glenmorangie to have in our hotel room at night.  The first night I poured some into a glass and was so tired, I fell asleep and never drank it.  I woke up smelling something that I didn't like and it was the scotch.  From then on, no single malts for me.  

 

I know I am a person who isn't into fancy scotch etc. so JW Double Black works well for me.  I honestly wouldn't probably know one from another, other than I have had some that I didn't like.

 

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Has anyone tried Heavens door? New label from Bob Dylan, he has a bourbon, rye and  whiskey. We have all three home, about 50 dollars a bottle.

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5 hours ago, George C said:

Has anyone tried Heavens door? New label from Bob Dylan, he has a bourbon, rye and  whiskey. We have all three home, about 50 dollars a bottle.

I've heard about it and would like to taste it. I'm sure Robert Zimmerman would want to put his name on the highest of quality!

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10 hours ago, Sea Dog said:

So here's something for you Whiskey lovers where price is no object. Last night I was at a Whiskey tasting  and got to try the Jim Beam Masterpiece Sherry Cask Finished Bourbon and all I can say is WOW!  Pricey at about $200 but this was some outstanding bourbon.

Jim Beam masterpiece.jpg

 

Interesting.

 

My normal pour is Glenmorangie 18.  15 years in ex-bourbon casks,then 3 years in sherry casks.

 

BTW, $200 is a medium priced Scotch when you get into the really good stuff. 🙂

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Very impressive! Do you have a favorite? How do you rate the Blanton's among the rest?

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