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View Full Version : What Sctoch for under 25$



PAspirit1
06-20-2009, 08:49
A post in another sub-forum on this site inspires to ask this. If you could have only one bottle of scotch at your house, and it had to cost 25$ or less after tax, which one would you choose?

Thats tough for me. Chivas can be had for $26.50 so in reality I'd throw in the extra $1.50 in a heartbeat. But for strictly under $25, I don't know. Maybe the Grouse. I should try dewars at some point.

sku
06-20-2009, 09:06
Black Bottle is a nice, smoky blend that hovers around $25 but would be a bit more after taxes.

For single malts, there's Bowmore Legend, Glenfiddich 12 and Glenlivet 12.

Also, if you can find it, Finlaggan is a young, very smoky Islay malt from an undisclosed distillery. I can get it for $17 at Trader Joe's.

boss302
06-20-2009, 11:09
A post in another sub-forum on this site inspires to ask this. If you could have only one bottle of scotch at your house, and it had to cost 25$ or less after tax, which one would you choose?

Thats tough for me. Chivas can be had for $26.50 so in reality I'd throw in the extra $1.50 in a heartbeat. But for strictly under $25, I don't know. Maybe the Grouse. I should try dewars at some point.

For me, the answer would probably be Grant's or Ballantine's.

PAspirit1
06-20-2009, 12:40
Black Bottle is a nice, smoky blend that hovers around $25 but would be a bit more after taxes.

For single malts, there's Bowmore Legend, Glenfiddich 12 and Glenlivet 12.

Also, if you can find it, Finlaggan is a young, very smoky Islay malt from an undisclosed distillery. I can get it for $17 at Trader Joe's.


Wow, you can get both those Glens for 25$. Around here they go for 35$+. I can't get Black Bottle but I opened Bowmore Legend last night and I liked it very much.

AVB
06-20-2009, 20:41
In PA the only single malts available for under $25 (for a 750ml) are the Mcclelland's. For blended scotch I have to go with Buchanan 12 yr which is an SLO for $24.99.

Jono
06-21-2009, 09:35
I have not seen Black Bottle, but then again I never looked for it...something to keep an eye out for....Binny's Blog has an interesting list of value buys:

http://binnys.com/blogs/post.cfm/great-spirits-values

As of Feb 09

"Black Bottle Islay Blend- $17.99"
"Dewar’s 12 year old Blended Scotch- $21.99"
"Lismore Speyside Single Malt- $24.99"

Of these, I would be interested in the Black Bottle...here is an interesting review:
http://whiskyreviews.blogspot.com/2009/03/black-bottle.html

Lost Pollito
06-21-2009, 16:26
If it has to be under $25, I usually say, " have you tried bourbon?" I find that I need to drop at least $50 to get a decent scotch. However, the black bottle is fantastic. If you can spend $30, try Balvenie dbl wood.

AVB
06-21-2009, 18:52
He's in PA and that means paying $47 for Doublewood. Of course, PA is the largest single liquor buyer in the entire world so we should have the best prices right? 30% profit, 18% "Temporary" Johnstown Flood tax (from 1934), 6% sales tax. 54% right off the bat on top of the distributors price.

Martian
06-27-2009, 10:03
Ballantine's and McClelland's Islay Single Malt.

Megawatt
06-27-2009, 14:55
Ballantine's and McClelland's Islay Single Malt.

Agreed. I like Ballantine's for a cheap blend. McClelland's Speyside is quite decent as well.

Frodo
07-03-2009, 09:41
Ballantine's used to be a lot worse than it is now. A major improvement took place sometime in the last two yrs.

melting
07-12-2009, 16:55
Hands down the best deal when on sale is Teacher's Highland Cream. It runs about $26.00 when it's on sale.

jpact
07-14-2009, 18:56
Might break your bank by a buck or two, but I've been very very pleased with the Isle of Skye 8-year old blended I picked up recently. I also have a soft spot for Johnny Walker red label; it was my nightly treat back in the day when I was spending every evening studying for professional exams. Can't disagree with any of the other recommendations.

PAspirit1
07-15-2009, 15:56
Hands down the best deal when on sale is Teacher's Highland Cream. It runs about $26.00 when it's on sale.

I think Teachers would be on many lists for under 25$. Though I haven't looked lately, I've seen it for under 20$. Last winter I found myself preferring The Famous Grouse to Teachers. I think it the FG had a little extra sweetness.

unclebunk
07-25-2009, 11:38
If it has to be under $25, I usually say, " have you tried bourbon?" I find that I need to drop at least $50 to get a decent scotch. However, the black bottle is fantastic. If you can spend $30, try Balvenie dbl wood.

Black Bottle is an easy "no brainer" purchase at around $20. It holds its own with many bottles that cost twice as much and is easy to drink if you don't mind a bit of smoke. Every one of my Scottish relatives has an open bottle of Famous Grouse in the house--a great, flavorful, easy to drink blend with a bit of Highland Park and Macallan in the mix. What more could you want in a blend? But there's no need to spend $50 or more to get a "decent" scotch when you can spend $40 and get a bottle of Highland Park 12. Michael Jackson (no, not that one) considered it the greatest "all-rounder" in the world and it's hard to disagree with his assessment. I LOVE that stuff more than I love most of the people in my extended family. Slainte, old boy!

Gov
08-01-2009, 17:01
For all you Black Bottle lovers have you tried Islay Mist? It is excellent and tastes of a light Laphroaig 10

unclebunk
08-16-2009, 12:43
For all you Black Bottle lovers have you tried Islay Mist? It is excellent and tastes of a light Laphroaig 10

Just picked up the Islay Mist today and plan on sampling it tonight. Since I can't afford to knock down one bottle after another of Laphroaig 10, I usually have one or two pours and then switch off to Black Bottle in order to keep that "peaty" thing going without breaking the bank. Then I saw the Islay Mist 8 year old today and thought that might be another winner. I'm going to taste the Black Bottle and Islay Mist head-to-head to see how they match up. They're only $1 apart at Binny's ($18 and $19 respectively) and either one should serve my purposes but I'm curious to see how they stack up against one another.

My friend likes the McClelland's Islay as a budget Islay alternative but that's typically closer to $22 and I've read that the MI is essentially five year old Bowmore, so it'll be interesting to see what the extra three years in the cask for the Islay Mist has to offer. I realize that the Black Bottle and Islay Mist are blends but I'm not bothered by that. I happen to love other blends as well (Teacher's Highland Cream, Ballantine's and Famous Grouse to name a few) and was pleased to discover that current bottlings of Teacher's have a nice touch of smoke.

Gov
08-16-2009, 18:03
Just picked up the Islay Mist today and plan on sampling it tonight. Since I can't afford to knock down one bottle after another of Laphroaig 10, I usually have one or two pours and then switch off to Black Bottle in order to keep that "peaty" thing going without breaking the bank. Then I saw the Islay Mist 8 year old today and thought that might be another winner. I'm going to taste the Black Bottle and Islay Mist head-to-head to see how they match up. They're only $1 apart at Binny's ($18 and $19 respectively) and either one should serve my purposes but I'm curious to see how they stack up against one another.

My friend likes the McClelland's Islay as a budget Islay alternative but that's typically closer to $22 and I've read that the MI is essentially five year old Bowmore, so it'll be interesting to see what the extra three years in the cask for the Islay Mist has to offer. I realize that the Black Bottle and Islay Mist are blends but I'm not bothered by that. I happen to love other blends as well (Teacher's Highland Cream, Ballantine's and Famous Grouse to name a few) and was pleased to discover that current bottlings of Teacher's have a nice touch of smoke.


Teachers has the smoke, Islay Mist has the peat!! Teachers, Islay Mist and Black Bottle are my favorite NAS blended scotch whiskies.
Please let us know how you like the Islay Mist :cool:

unclebunk
08-17-2009, 21:17
For all you Black Bottle lovers have you tried Islay Mist? It is excellent and tastes of a light Laphroaig 10

You hit the nail on the head with the "light Laphroig" assessment. I've been drinking Black Bottle (not the 10 year old but the cheaper standard expression) for some time now, and while I love the flavor, I sometimes wish it had a bit more body. Well last night I did a head-to-head comparison between Black Bottle and Islay Mist 8 Year Old and found the latter more to my liking. Due to the presence of some Highland and Speyside malts, it seems fuller in texture and a bit silkier, while still imparting that Laphroaig flavor that I love so much. (The Islay Mist bottle itself goes well out of its way to point out its connection to Laphroaig and is even vaguely similar in design.) The IM will now be my "go to" pour after consuming a bit of Laphroaig. Thanks for the tip!

Gov
08-19-2009, 16:36
You hit the nail on the head with the "light Laphroig" assessment. I've been drinking Black Bottle (not the 10 year old but the cheaper standard expression) for some time now, and while I love the flavor, I sometimes wish it had a bit more body. Well last night I did a head-to-head comparison between Black Bottle and Islay Mist 8 Year Old and found the latter more to my liking. Due to the presence of some Highland and Speyside malts, it seems fuller in texture and a bit silkier, while still imparting that Laphroaig flavor that I love so much. (The Islay Mist bottle itself goes well out of its way to point out its connection to Laphroaig and is even vaguely similar in design.) The IM will now be my "go to" pour after consuming a bit of Laphroaig. Thanks for the tip!


Youre welcome!! BTW, Binny's and Sam's are the only places in the Chicagoland area that carry Islay Mist

Solomon2
10-14-2009, 16:31
How does JW Black compare with Black Bottle? They're both around the same price, $25/750ml.

AVB
10-14-2009, 16:53
Black Bottle is a blend of only Islay scotch whereas JW Black is a blend of mostly Highland along with some Talisker. If you like the smokey peaty style of Laphroaig or Caol Ila then you should like Black Bottle. If you like just a touch of that then JW Black will fit the bill.

Gov
10-15-2009, 15:17
How does JW Black compare with Black Bottle? They're both around the same price, $25/750ml.

For the money, Black Bottle is a better buy IMHO.

Lost Pollito
10-15-2009, 19:20
For the money, Black Bottle is a better buy IMHO.
I agree 100 %......................

OscarV
10-16-2009, 13:43
If it has to be under $25, I usually say, " have you tried bourbon?"

:slappin: :slappin: :slappin:
I missed this one earlier.

sku
10-16-2009, 13:58
Black Bottle is a blend of only Islay scotch whereas JW Black is a blend of mostly Highland along with some Talisker. If you like the smokey peaty style of Laphroaig or Caol Ila then you should like Black Bottle. If you like just a touch of that then JW Black will fit the bill.

FYI, Black Bottle contains whiskies from 7 of the Islay distilleries, but it's not only Islays. It includes Glenrothes as well as grain whiskies (as it is a blended Scotch). Though it is, as you note, a very Islay-style, peaty Scotch.

unclebunk
10-16-2009, 14:14
How does JW Black compare with Black Bottle? They're both around the same price, $25/750ml.


Black Bottle is a blend of only Islay scotch whereas JW Black is a blend of mostly Highland along with some Talisker. If you like the smokey peaty style of Laphroaig or Caol Ila then you should like Black Bottle. If you like just a touch of that then JW Black will fit the bill.

AVB summed up the differences perfectly. Black Bottle (standard version, not the 10 year old) and Johnnie Walker Black are two entirely different creatures and both are excellent quality whiskies, especially at their price point. But I can't say that one is better than the other because they seem to serve different purposes. BB is for those times when you are in the mood for an Islay whisky and don't want to spend $40 on a bottle of Laphroaig 10. In fact, I usually switch to BB after a few pours of Laphroaig in an effort to stretch the lifespan of my Laphroaig bottle. (I should mention that Islay Mist 8 year old serves the same function and has an even more pronounced Laphroaig flavor.) JWB, on the other hand, is a Highland blend and has been considered one of the best in its class for decades. It is superbly balanced, flavorful and luxurious in texture in a way that you will not find in a pour of Black Bottle, which is somewhat thinner in body and brinier by design. So get them both, Solomon, and enjoy them for their differences. Hope this was helpful.

drrich1965
10-21-2009, 06:25
Whitehorse is a very cheap, but drinkable Islay blend that used to rely heavily on Lagavulin (may have Lagavulin still, but most likley Caol Ila as its base). For single malt, Lismore is not bad, and very cheap. It was, a few years ago, a young Glen Rothes- clean and malty, perhaps a bit spirity. JWR gets not love, but I actaully find it very drinkable. Grants is easy, fruity, unoffenensive. Cutty Sark also really is not that bad. Right now, Binnys has a great sale, and some single malts may be that inexpensive that normally are not.

Gillman
10-21-2009, 07:00
I always thought Ballantine was good quality and value. Dewar's, too.

Gary

unclebunk
10-21-2009, 08:33
I always have a selection of blends on hand and find them more than satisfactory. People tend to sh*t on blended scotch whisky, but I love White Horse and Teacher's, as well as Famous Grouse and Ballantine's. The former two tend to have more pronounced flavor/aroma characteristics, while the latter also have great flavor but are somewhat more subtle in their delivery, IMHO. Islay Mist and Black Bottle (NAS) are routinely on the bar as well and go over extremely well with friends and family. With this small stable of blends I can usually find something that appeals to any visitor who stops by for a casual drink, and can also satisfy my own tastes depending upon what I'm in the mood for on any given night. I should mention that I also have Grant's on hand quite often but find it the most bland of the bunch I've mentioned. It's usually reserved for those visitors who want a scotch but don't care to be challenged much by what's in the glass.

For those of you who may have missed it, Jim Murray has a wonderful short essay on the virtues of blended scotch in the 2009 Whisky Bible. I've had a few friends, who are malt "snobs" and look upon blends dismissively, read the article and then taste a few of the above, and all seemed to have a change of heart afterwards. It's funny, but these same folks have been drinking and loving Irish whiskey, many of which are blends, for years and years, yet they turn their noses up to blends made in Scotland. Strange, isn't it?:grin:

Kevin
10-21-2009, 09:11
I work at a package store in Indianapolis, and an older gentleman with a Scottish accent, gets Old Smuggler ($10/750), I figure if a Scottsman buys it, it is probably good in some rights, your thoughts...

ODaniel
10-21-2009, 18:50
I work at a package store in Indianapolis, and an older gentleman with a Scottish accent, gets Old Smuggler ($10/750), I figure if a Scottsman buys it, it is probably good in some rights, your thoughts...

Well, a lot of Kentuckians get Kentucky Tavern/Gentleman all the time, and I don't think those are good in any right :lol:

Lost Pollito
10-21-2009, 20:55
Well, a lot of Kentuckians get Kentucky Tavern/Gentleman all the time, and I don't think those are good in any right :lol:
Couldn't agree more. Maybe He's Irish? Smuggler is rough.

Solomon2
10-22-2009, 16:43
Thank you, everyone. I decided I would splurge and "break" the price point entirely - though I might not have if MC had Black Bottle on its shelves. I splurged and bought a bottle of Laphroaig 10yr Cask Strength for $54. (The regular Laphroaig 10 is $51, so why should I spend a little less money for something diluted?)

I'll crack it open and compare it with my remaining drams of JWB in the next week.

unclebunk
10-23-2009, 07:49
I splurged and bought a bottle of Laphroaig 10yr Cask Strength for $54. (The regular Laphroaig 10 is $51, so why should I spend a little less money for something diluted?) I'll crack it open and compare it with my remaining drams of JWB in the next week.

I loved the Laphroaig Cask Strength but enjoyed the Laphroaig Quarter Cask (for only a few bucks more) even better. You'll find no similarities between the Laphroaig CS and JWB. They're both great in completely different ways. Try the Caol Ila 12 too if you get the chance.

Chilled
10-29-2009, 06:07
For the Price it's hard to beat Grant's , here in VA it's around $15.
Grouse is a great price point too.

hossman777
11-03-2009, 13:02
I bought a bottle of McClelland Islay a while back...I hated it. Tastes nasty nasty to me. But then again, I'm not much of a Scotch man. Here's my experience with scotch.

Dalmore Cigar Malt is excellent and was about $45.
Balvenie 12 is excellent and might be just a touch more.
McCallen 18 is SUPERB (but not cheap by any means)

Johnny Walker is good. Cutty Sark is drinkable (barely).

To get a good bottle of single malt Scotch, you're looking at around $40+. I can think of lots of $20-25 bourbons that are far superior to a $40-50 Scotch.

Just my $0.02