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  1. #1
    Enthusiast
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    So... I bought my first Single Malt Scotch and....

    ... I hate it.

    I bought a bottle of Speyburn 10 year old. I know the reviews are mixed, but the bad reviews I have read mostly complain that the Speyburn 10 lacks in flavor and complexity. Several reviews I read said that they thought it had a nice flavor, just not enough of it. So I figured, this would be a safe entry into Single Malts- a low-cost and entry-level whisky which wouldn't overwhelm my senses.

    I was dead wrong. From the very first sip, I was taken aback by an abrasive harshness followed by a most unpleasant, sour, dirt-and-mold-like flavor I never though possible from a malt-based product. (I brew my own beer- I know a thing or two about malted barley. But this stuff- ugh.)

    I tried to drink it neat. I tried to drink it on the rocks. I tried adding a slash of water. I tried making a Rob Roy. No dice. I just flat hate this stuff.

    The best way I can describe this whisky is thusly: if you put a Kingsford briquet in an unwashed, sweaty gym sock and pour a bottle of Bushmill's through the sock, you've got Speyburn 10.

    I put the bottle back in the nifty canister in came in, put it away, and got out some bourbon to exorcise the demons.

  2. #2
    Irreverent One
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    Re: So... I bought my first Single Malt Scotch and....

    Quote Originally Posted by OldJack View Post
    The best way I can describe this whisky is thusly: if you put a Kingsford briquet in an unwashed, sweaty gym sock and pour a bottle of Bushmill's through the sock, you've got Speyburn 10.
    Would that Kingsford briquet be the plain type, or the kind infused with lighter fluid?
    Scott

    "Remember that your sense of humor is inversely proportional to your level of intolerance."
    - Serge Storms

  3. #3
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    Re: So... I bought my first Single Malt Scotch and....

    It didn't taste at all like lighter fluid- though that might have helped.

  4. #4
    Taster
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    Sep 2007
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    Charlotte, NC
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    Re: So... I bought my first Single Malt Scotch and....

    I have a bottle open now, and really dislike it also. It is harsh, and just not pleseant. This contrasts to a botteling I had two years ago- which was mellow, malty and really decent stuff. Please don't let this be year last bottle of single malt- so many are so wonderful. For an great inexpensive bottle, Glenfarclas 12 is hard to beat. Dalmore 12 is very nice as well, both should be around 35 bucks or so, depending upon your markert.

  5. #5
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    Re: So... I bought my first Single Malt Scotch and....

    I'm sure I'll give Scotch another go- but I plan to try a few out in a high-end bar. I'd rather buy a $12 pour than a $40 at this point.

  6. #6
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    South Eastern PA
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    Re: So... I bought my first Single Malt Scotch and....

    I didn't like my first bottle much either.

  7. #7
    Disciple
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    Alliance,Ohio
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    Re: So... I bought my first Single Malt Scotch and....

    Try some Glenfiddich 12 or 15 yr. These are 2 of my favorites and are available just about everywhere!

    Thomas

  8. #8
    Bourbonian of the Year 2011
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    Re: So... I bought my first Single Malt Scotch and....

    I've had Speyburn and I think it is a good example of a malt on the younger end of the spectrum. It has a hearty taste and texture. It probably was meant to be taken iced or with soda in a whisky-soda. I've given examples in another thread of how I think this can be vatted (by the way is Speyburn itself a vatting, I don't recall?). By adding a little concentrated malt which accentuates the sherry side or the peat side (maybe these can be purchased in minis) I think you would get a drink that exhibited some features of the older malts. If you added a mini each of Glenlivet and Aberlour to it, and ideally one of any well-peated malt, I think it would be very good (say 2:2:2:20). Or cut the Speyburn with Canadian whisky, in effect you would be making a blended scotch-type drink (say 1:2 in that order).

    Gary

  9. #9
    Bourbonian of the Year 2011
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    Re: So... I bought my first Single Malt Scotch and....

    Just a note which leads in to a thread I'm thinking of starting about the pros and cons of water (as added to whiskey).

    A whiskey that has an objectionable feature for some, say it is too chemical/harsh or too woody or too peated or too spirity, often will show considerable improvement when water is added. The water provides a display function, it dilutes the negative feature, in effect transforms it. Sometimes it will accentuate what is "wrong", but more often in my experience the opposite is true.

    A recent vatting of Sazerac rye and JD Single Barrel was superb with a splash of water added. It is still plenty strong, but much improved.

    I found the same with a recent dram of 1792 which seemed a little spirity - a dash of water solved that and revealed underlying complexities in the drink.

    For those who do not want to reduce the strength factor or by very much, adding vodka ofetn works wonders in my experience.

    E.g. I wonder what that Speyburn would be like 2:1 with a good vodka.

    Gary

  10. #10
    Advanced Taster
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    Feb 2008
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    NW Burbs of Chgo, IL
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    Re: So... I bought my first Single Malt Scotch and....

    I disliked scotch (basically all whisk(e)y) the first few times I tried it no matter what I did with it. This was over a several year period too! Anyway, I decided to try it again last October by having some Black Bush. That led into my first scotch (Teachers) then to SMS and now starting into bourbon (which is slowly growing on me). Whisk(e)y is definately an aquired taste, much more than anything else I have ever imbibed. My first single malt was The Glenlivet 12 and Glenmorangie 10. I liked both very much and still do. Around the same time I had The Macallan 12 and disliked it But a few months later I came back to it and really like it now. So dont give up!
    BTW, I have an unopened bottle of Speyburn 10. I hope when I open it, it will be at least decent enough to enjoy

 

 

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