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jinenjo
08-02-2007, 11:26
Does anyone know much about Teacher's Highland Cream?

I recently picked up a delicious, presumably older bottle of Teacher's, and want to find the estimated age of bottling it is. I'm interested because Murray talks so highly about Teachers and how it used to be much greater a blend than it is now.

What is curious is in his Whisky Bible he lists it as having an ALC/Vol amount of 40%. My bottle is 43% abv.

The back label says: "Sole U.S. Importer, Hiram Walker and Sons, Inc. Farmington Hills, Michigan"

barturtle
08-02-2007, 20:10
About the best I can tell you is that the metric sizing means it's 1980 or newer...anything else would require more research

barturtle
08-02-2007, 20:21
Okay I took the time to hit Wikipedia:


In the mid 1980s, Allied Lyons PLC entered into a purchase agreement with Hiram Walker-Gooderham & Worts Ltd. (http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Hiram_Walker-Gooderham_%26_Worts_Ltd.&action=edit), the Canadian based distillers of Canadian Club (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_Club) and other brands. The agreement was contested by Olympia and York (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olympia_and_York) who had bought up the vast majority of Hiram Walker stock. Their highly-publicized legal battle for control ended in 1987 with Olympia and York becoming Allied Lyons' largest shareholder.

So assuming they didn't keep using the Hiram Walker name that places your bottling inbetween 1980 and 1987...but they may have...but I'd still say it may fall in that time range

Jake_Parrott
08-03-2007, 08:26
Not sure the age of your bottle, but current release Teacher's is useful stuff.

jinenjo
08-03-2007, 09:25
Many thanks Tim. I should have thought to use wikipedia. I am gonna check out the site to look further into this and see when Fortune Brands acquired the name.

And Jake, it is indeed tasty inside the bottle.

Cheers.

barturtle
08-03-2007, 09:37
I think that was 2005, same time they acquired Maker's Mark.

Joeluka
08-03-2007, 10:03
It was part of the Allied buy-out for Fortune Brands.

Sijan
08-27-2007, 20:38
I like Teacher's quite a bit and think it's an amazing value. Haven't had anything older than a bottle I got 2-3 years ago.

TBoner
09-13-2007, 23:16
jinenjo,

Does the back label discuss the percentage of malt in the blend (I've seen some bottles with text to the effect that a minimum of 45% of the blend is malt whiskey)? If so, you're looking at something pre-1989 or so, because all bottles I've seen with the back legend date to before a 1989 bottle I came across.

I like the current Teacher's quite well. I know Murray is the one who turned me on to trying the blend with his 2004 whiskey bible. Not sure how the current stuff compares to what he was tasting, but I do like it. Wasn't aware that he had said the older stuff was better. Everything I've ever read says that it's a pretty consistent dram.

At any rate, I've been trying to track down some info on Teacher's myself: specifically, I'm wondering when the "Aged 36 months" statement appeared on the label. Stuff from the 1980s doesn't have it. Anything I've found in the last couple of years does. Before that, I wouldn't have been paying attention. I'm just curious as to whether this is the result of a change in the whiskey, a change in labeling laws, or both. Regardless, as I said, I like Teacher's a good bit. In fact, I'm enjoying a very small pour right now.:grin:

Jazzhead
11-11-2007, 08:35
As blended Scotch goes, Teachers is sublime. It has all the smoothness and balance you'd expect of a blend, and a smoky and sophisticated taste that always hits the spot for me. One of my secrets is a little package store in the area which still has some bottles of Teachers with tax stamps - the bottle I'm nipping from as I write this dates, I'd guess, from the early eighties.

This bottle is 86 proof and says on the back "sole U.S distributors Bacardi Imports, Inc., Miami Florida." No age statement, no barcode, no government health warning. However, there's no statement regarding the specific percentage of malt whisky in the blend. The front label states that "Highland Cream contains an exceptionally high proportion of expensive Full-flavored Scotch Whiskies." The text of the back label is as follows:

" In 1830 our Founder, William Teacher, established our Scotch whisky business which today produces Teacher's Highland Cream, one of the earliest registered Scotch blends. The original character of Teacher's Highland Cream is checked four times weekly by the Company's Executive Directors, many of whom are great, or great great, grandsons of Wm. Teacher. These tastings are part of the service and personal attention to detail expected of members of the Family assuring continuation of the high standards set by Teacher's Highland Cream."


I kinda like that pledge that the descendants of Wm. Teacher get sloshed four times weekly to make sure I'm still getting their finest blended Scotch!

drrich1965
11-11-2007, 17:02
Well, I will be in decending voice here- I find it dull, with little body, and basically fodder for mixing..For my money, Whitehorse is a much better blend for about the same price, with a slighly stronger Islay influence.

ratcheer
11-12-2007, 05:56
Dissenting?

Tim

drrich1965
11-12-2007, 15:31
Dissenting?

Tim

Bad Rich, no spell check and typing in a rush! Yes, as in dissent :grin:.

jinenjo
11-12-2007, 21:42
jinenjo,

Does the back label discuss the percentage of malt in the blend (I've seen some bottles with text to the effect that a minimum of 45% of the blend is malt whiskey)? If so, you're looking at something pre-1989 or so, because all bottles I've seen with the back legend date to before a 1989 bottle I came across.



I haven't noticed any activity on this thread, so I apologize on the tardy reply. I'm not at home right now, but as far as I can remember the back label says nothing of the percentage of malt in the blend, which leads me to believe, according to your estimation, that this is post-'89 Teachers.

cowdery
11-14-2007, 14:30
Teacher's became part of Beam Global in the break-up of Allied-Domecq.

Gillman
11-15-2007, 02:37
I think Teacher's was and is in the neighborhood of 60% malt, which is a high percentage for a blend. It is a good whisky. It would be interesting to compare the pre- and post-89 examples. I wonder if the current one might be a little less rich due to younger malts being used in the make-up than 20 years ago. Today, the malts have a larger market share than formerly, so (presumably) there are less of them, or less aged ones, to go into the blends. I have found Chivas Regal not as rich as a generation ago, for example, although such impressions can be difficult to validate unless actual comparisons are made of bottles from different eras.

Gary

Edward_call_me_Ed
11-15-2007, 07:10
I remember Murray saying that Teacher's has/had very good grain whiskey in the blend. So, the malt whiskey is good, the grain whiskey is good. It should be good stuff.

I like Teacher's. Not my favorite scotch, but good whiskey at a good price. I am drinking some now.

Ed

dougdog
11-15-2007, 07:18
If my memory serves me correctly, Glendronach is one of the primary Single Malts used in Teaches' blend...

For me, Teachers' ranks in the top "old" blends on the market...others would include, Black & White, Haig and Haig 5 Star, "Old" Dewars 12 (There is a newer 12 yo recently released, I ain't talkin' about that one...)

Slainte'

ratcheer
11-15-2007, 17:00
For me, Teachers' ranks in the top "old" blends on the market...others would include, Black & White, Haig and Haig 5 Star, "Old" Dewars 12 (There is a newer 12 yo recently released, I ain't talkin' about that one...)


When I was a very young man trying to seem sophisticated, Black and White was probably my favorite Scotch.

Tim

Edward_call_me_Ed
11-16-2007, 01:41
Well, I will be in decending voice here- I find it dull, with little body, and basically fodder for mixing..For my money, Whitehorse is a much better blend for about the same price, with a slighly stronger Islay influence.

Tonight I am having a pour of Teacher's with a big dribble of Talisker in it. I like Teacher's by itself, but while I would not say "dull, with little body" it is a bit mild for my taste. This is pretty good. I thought about adding an Islay, but didn't want the brininess. The Talisker added some smoke and some pepper. Just right.

Ed

TBoner
11-24-2007, 15:39
Teacher's became part of Beam Global in the break-up of Allied-Domecq.

I did note the change of labeling a while back (even today, the "new" labels are just stuck on over the old ones in some cases).

Ardmore, one of the single malts Beam acquired, is a Murray favorite and a major component of Teacher's, possibly explaining his love of that blend (he refers to the "kippery" flavor as being from the Ardmore. Ardmore has never been available as a distillery-bottled single malt stateside, though I've picked up some nice Signatory bottles. It's the peatiest Highland malt I've had. I love peat. Now I find out Ardmore is going to be released in a quarter-cask version (a la Laphroaig) in the U.S. in 2008. I'm very excited.

That said, I find the smoke level contributed to Teacher's about right for a blend. Between Teacher's and the standard Famous Grouse (and Ballantine's), I find it's very easy to keep three distinct blends on hand, all of which are very richly flavored given the high grain whisky component. I use each for different cocktails, and like each one neat, too. But Teacher's is my favorite.

I have acquired a 1.75L from the early 1980s (and a 1L from about the same time) that I intend to open some time from now, when I retire from teaching (cheesy? of course! but who cares?).:grin:

Martian
12-01-2007, 04:41
Several years ago I read an interview with Mick Jagger. Jagger said he drinks Haig & Haig.

whiskydude
12-01-2007, 08:13
I had an opportunity for someone to bring a liter bottle of the stuff back from London about a year or so ago. On first taste a friend and I found it hot and overpowering, to the point of harsh and not desirable. A few weeks passed, we tried it again. This time it seemed more mellow, still some alcohol burn, but not like before. Then we put just a splash of water in it and wow it turned from what we thought was swill to really good stuff. We had quite a few different bottles of blends and sms to sample, so each one lasts a while. The Teacher's has been gone about 6 months or so. We keep saying we want to get another bottle, hopefully it won't be too different from what our friends across the pond have.

squire
12-05-2007, 14:02
Teachers has been a staple in my cellar for decades. It was created back in the days when Scotch blends were in their hay day and it had to match some stiff competition. The fact that it did so and remains on the market to this day speaks well of this remarkable, traditional, quality blend.

Regards,
Squire

texascarl
12-05-2007, 17:20
Teachers remains my blended Scotch of choice for making Rusty Nails, I like that 'bacon fat' flavour.

~JM~
12-27-2007, 17:17
I like Teachers but the caramel taste can get a little over powering at times...

AVB
12-27-2007, 20:31
The peatiness comes from Ardmore which is something unusual unto itself....a peated highland, not an Islay.


Well, I will be in decending voice here- I find it dull, with little body, and basically fodder for mixing..For my money, Whitehorse is a much better blend for about the same price, with a slighly stronger Islay influence.

Martian
01-30-2008, 22:59
Murray gives Teacher's 90 pts. in his latest 2008 Whiskey Bible. Here are his scores of the old standby NAS blends:
Grant's 94
Clan MacGregor 92
White Horse 92
Black Bottle 91
Buchanan's Red Seal 90
Inver House Green Plaid 90
J&B Rare 90
Teacher's 90
Black & White 88
Cutty Sark 88
Ballantine's 87
Famous Grouse 87
Johnnie Walker Red 84
Dewar's White Label 83
Usher's Green Stripe 83
Passport 82
Bell's 75
Lauder's 74
Scoresby 69
100 Pipers 67

whiskydude
01-31-2008, 09:38
Murray gives Teacher's 90 pts. in his latest 2008 Whiskey Bible. Here are his scores of the old standby NAS blends:
Grant's 94
Clan MacGregor 92
White Horse 92
Black Bottle 91
Buchanan's Red Seal 90
Inver House Green Plaid 90
J&B Rare 90
Teacher's 90
Black & White 88
Cutty Sark 88
Ballantine's 87
Famous Grouse 87
Johnnie Walker Red 84
Dewar's White Label 83
Usher's Green Stripe 83
Passport 82
Bell's 75
Lauder's 74
Scoresby 69
100 Pipers 67
Ironically, a friend of mine received a bottle of Grant's purchased in England, and we could not believe how good it was and for the price paid. It was so good that he didn't leave it here at the house where we usually have a Scotch/Whiskey night. Thanks for the list as it confirms our taste findings about Grants, although I would put Famous Grouse above Ballentines....

Martian
01-31-2008, 16:19
Apparently, Grant's and Clan MacGregor are both blended by the same blender at William Grant & Sons. Murray calls this blender "probably the world's most naturally gifted blender." Murray says that Teachers is a "massive" improvement over the 2005 bottlings.

Jono
01-31-2008, 19:20
I've never had Grant's or Clan MacGregor but based on the high scores they deserve a second look.

I recall my first youthful whiskey experience...Passport Scotch...at some party...not a good result!

PAspirit1
02-07-2008, 18:59
Murray gives Teacher's 90 pts. in his latest 2008 Whiskey Bible. Here are his scores of the old standby NAS blends:
Grant's 94
Clan MacGregor 92
White Horse 92
Black Bottle 91
Buchanan's Red Seal 90
Inver House Green Plaid 90
J&B Rare 90
Teacher's 90
Black & White 88
Cutty Sark 88
Ballantine's 87
Famous Grouse 87
Johnnie Walker Red 84
Dewar's White Label 83
Usher's Green Stripe 83
Passport 82
Bell's 75
Lauder's 74
Scoresby 69
100 Pipers 67

That White Horse looks interesting - for a cheapie. He's got it a a hair higher than Black Bottle which seems to be pretty respected.

Megawatt
02-10-2008, 07:19
What does NAS stand for, by the way?

William Grant's Ale Cask is an interesting blend as well. Beer-flavoured whisky! Not very complex, but for the price it's hard to go wrong.

drrich1965
02-11-2008, 02:27
That White Horse looks interesting - for a cheapie. He's got it a a hair higher than Black Bottle which seems to be pretty respected.

White horse is my favorite cheap blend-usually under $13...Its has a good Islay Character, for years was young Lagavulin has been its heart, with the prices of Lagvaulin, who knows, could be Caol Ila as well, in all likelyhood. More malt character than you would expect from both a cheap blend and a peaty blend at that...

As for Teacher's- Murray and I are not on the same page on this one..I find it thin and dull..

Sijan
02-11-2008, 08:52
What does NAS stand for, by the way?


No Age Statement

JeffRenner
02-20-2008, 20:41
Murray gives Teacher's 90 pts. in his latest 2008 Whiskey Bible. Here are his scores of the old standby NAS blends ...

Teacher's today is not NAS, but is only a surprising three years old. I'm not sure how long that's been the case, but I find it not obviously young.

It's one of my standard middle shelf scotch pours, along with Grant's, White Horse, and occasionally Black and White. I rotate what I keep in my decanter just to keep things interesting.

The back label of the Teacher's I just emptied into the decanter says "Imported by Wm Teacher & Sons Ltd. Deerfield, IL."

It is 86 proof and has been all along, as far as I can recall, so Murray is wrong on that account.

Jeff

Martian
02-21-2008, 13:22
Jeff, you are quite right about Murray's listing Teacher's as 80 proof in his book. I also just noticed that Murray has his highly rated Clan MacGregor blend as 86 proof. I have only seen it in 80 proof here in Texas.

Gov
02-22-2008, 17:52
Teacher's today is not NAS, but is only a surprising three years old. I'm not sure how long that's been the case, but I find it not obviously young.

It's one of my standard middle shelf scotch pours, along with Grant's, White Horse, and occasionally Black and White. I rotate what I keep in my decanter just to keep things interesting.

The back label of the Teacher's I just emptied into the decanter says "Imported by Wm Teacher & Sons Ltd. Deerfield, IL."

It is 86 proof and has been all along, as far as I can recall, so Murray is wrong on that account.

Jeff


I really like Teacher's for a blend. I am fairly new to whisky and feel like I have a good nose and taste for it, especially SMS. Anyways, how is White Horse compared to Teacher's? I have seen White Horse at my local store and have been curious about it. I really like whiskies from the Islay region of scotland, Ardbeg, Laphroaig etc.

Thanks

JeffRenner
02-22-2008, 19:40
how is White Horse compared to Teacher's? I have seen White Horse at my local store and have been curious about it. I really like whiskies from the Islay region of scotland, Ardbeg, Laphroaig etc.

Then I think you'll like White Horse. It has more smokey depth, albeit with less finesse, perhaps, followed with a smokey sweetness on the finish. I like it, and having just finished a big tot of lovely Ardbeg 10 yo ncf, I'm thinking that I need to lay in a bottle of White Horse, even though I have a 2/3 full decanter of Teacher's.

And then I really like to keep Grant's on hand as well.

And then there's bourbon.

And rye.

And homebrew.

And wine.

And my liver.

Jeff

Gov
03-05-2008, 09:55
Picked up some White Horse and Grants Family Reserve last week. The White Horse is very good indeed! Grant's I have not had yet. I still like Teacher's a bit better than White Horse, but it's close

Martian
03-06-2008, 18:21
Jeff, I also picked up a bottle of Ardbeg 10 recently. Each sip is a new adventure. So complex for a young scotch. The finish lasts about 2 hours. Murray gave it his highest rating and his whisky of the year award. I won't argue with him.
Steve