Re: Single-malt

Ron Resnick (
Mon, 11 May 1998 06:02:54 -0400

Jay Thomas wrote:

> Collection's up to 24 bottles (Boston area FoRKers drop me a note for a
> tasting :)

Heh. I'll take that as an invitation. Expect me on your doorstep
one of these days..

Well, you're clearly up on your malts. Just to play penis-length
games on a subject with some class, I have to humbly stack
my 9 against your 24 - the 3 Islays mentioned, and a fairly standard
assortment of Highlands/Speysides (Glen Grant, Macallan, Cardhu,=20
that sort of thing.) You win - but I'm playing catch-up :).

> Just added a rarity...1968 Glenngoyne single-cask, cask
> strength. Its around 57% alcohol, deep rich toffee colour, amazing
> aroma & taste. Only 186 bottles in the world. Worth the =A3=A3=A3.

Ouch. I can imagine just how many '=A3' are in that '=A3=A3=A3'...

> If you're into Laph, BTW, try Ardbeg. Verrrrrry smoky & medicinal.
> Like Laphroaig on steroids.

Hmm. Yes, you mentioned that last time. It's available from
independent bottlers only, and till now I've bought all my
stuff in Duty Free shops, which tend to have only larger-volume
distillery bottlings. I think I'm about to start venturing
into the mail-orders in order to find these more offbeat things.

I really do seem to like the Islays, hence my interest in Port Ellen.
The Lagavulin and Bowmore, while subtler than Laph, are both
great - esp. the Bowmore.
Also on my want-to-get list are other island stills like Highland Park
and Talisker. As to Ardbeg, comments I've read are that while
it's technically peatier than Laphroaig (50 ppm vs. 40 ppm),=20
that doesn't show up in the tastings,=20
and it's the least distinctive of the
southern Islays. Guess the only way to find out is try it!

You'd also suggested the different rackings of Glenmorangie. I
picked up a sherry-racked Glenmorangie, but was ultimately
disappointed. I find I really like peat, and the sherry
was distracting (ditto in the Macallan).

> > Am contemplating
> > ordering a Port Ellen & Laphroaig cask strength from
> > - they will ship to Israel, though
> > not to US/Canada. Still, if anyone knows of a store I could
> > find Port Ellen and cask strength Laph in the US (pref. Bay area),
> Try Loch Fyne Whiskies ( ). They have a Cadenhead
> bottling of 1980 Port Ellen for =A328.50 or for the heartier soul, Cask
> strength (64%) for =A348.40. Also, 1984 56% Laphroaig aged in Sherrywo=
> for =A337.90. Reasonable prices, they've shipped to me here in MA, USA
> (nickname: Restriction-ville) with no hassles, excellent selection &
> they try to fill requests if its not on their list.

Thanks for the tip! I had a look. Site is not operational yet -
they simply say "This site will be launched in a few days time.
To be notified exactly when that moment is click below...Guestbook."
Meanwhile, does take orders over the Web, and has
much better selection than any other online site I've found.
It sells a 16-yr Port Ellen for =A327 and a cask strength
Port Ellen 1980 (64.7%), Gordon & MacPhail bottling, =A349.00 - which
is probably the same as the one you listed above, for about
the same price.

> Good luck :)
> Jay.

Thanks. We teach courses in Nashua NH every so often. I'll see
if I can do one of those in the next few months to swing
by the Thomas Malt Collection (TMC) :).