About four years ago my scotch drinking friends bought me a bottle of Macallan 15-year for my birthday after I'd had a belt or two with them during cards. I'd tried a little Cognac previously. A bottle of Hennessy. A bottle of Remy Martin. I worked up to Old Delamain. I've had a few Spanish brandies. I bought a couple Armangnacs. But it was the scotch that got me really going with distilled spirits.

In 2009, on vacation with a friend we bought a Balvenie 15-year, Oban 14-year and at my friend's instance a bottle of PVW 20-year. That bourbon was the best thing I'd ever drank and it sparked a real passion for bourbon. I've been trying a wide variety of bourbons since then and I'm learning as much as I can. Starting with wheater like Pappy is an odd introduction as I find myself back tracking and working through the more commonly available labels for some perspective. Few bourbons are as sweet or as smooth but there is a lot of interesting profiles out there. I'm enjoying ryes too. Well make that some ryes. Anyway, I have a wider range of favorites now but I'm still exploring.

Although I still enjoy scotch and I've got a taste for Islays in addition to Highlands, it's become more about bourbon. Most of my friends were bourbon haters but I've steadily helped them better appreciate what bourbon has to offer. A blind whiskey tasting has become a staple of my monthly card game. And I just got back from taking some friends around the bourbon trail for four days. I feel like I have my bearings but the world of bourbon is a difficult place to unwind and understand.

I've built a solid bunker but I'm working to appreciate what I have purchased and not work through some of the top shelf bottles too fast. That is unless their remains are threatening to oxidize. I'm also thinking it would be great to do a barrel selection in the next year or two so I'm rounding up friends to syndicate it. I'm being accused of being a connoisseur or a collector but I'm really just an enthusiast. I've got a lot to learn but so far so good.

I've come to his board to learn more.