Stranahan's Colorado Whiskey
American Single Malt — Colorado, USATastedI tried this about 4 years ago right at the Stranahan's Distillery in Colorado and was not impressed enough that I'd ever want to pay $50-$60 for it. Either it has really matured in the last four years or I just didn't have my taste buds right on that first try. This is an excellent whisky. It doesn't taste like bourbon, nor does it taste like scotch. It's just a very nice whisky. A very nice, floral-like nose. The taste and finish give me vanilla, caramel, banana, peach, and other a bit of apple. Some oil with a good medium-long finish. I found this for $40.00 at our big, local discount store, Total Wine. I'll buy it at that price. It's quite good.
Famous Grouse Smoky Black
Peated Blend — ScotlandTastedI am not sure why people are so harsh on this scotch. For under $30.00 I thought it was pretty good. Nice smoke and peat balance. Just a little, but not overstated. I think it's a bit similar to JW Black. Some Vanilla and smoothness. Little oak. Could be aged longer, but still enjoyable.
Jim Beam Black Label Double Aged 8 Year
Bourbon — Kentucky, USATastedThis is a good, full, rich, oily bourbon. Great value. Prefer slightly over Ezra Black-90. Will buy again.
Jameson Caskmates IPA Edition
Blended — IrelandTastedI thought this was very light and thin-tasting. For a little less money, I'd much prefer the Sexton Single Malt. I might detect a hint of spice and perhaps the hops from the cask, but not much going on here. I'd prefer this over regular Jameson, which I find rather ordinary.
The Sexton Single Malt
Single Malt — IrelandTastedMedium-light body. Light overall, but heavy on fruit and sweetness, and a bit of rye like spice. Smooth and very drinkable. This is a good whisky for the price. $22-27.00 in my locale. To me, Irish Whiskies are almost never offensive or unpleasant to drink. But, rarely do they keep me coming back for more. I usually reach for the scotch after the first dram, and this one is no exception.
Hibiki Japanese Harmony
Blended — JapanTastedGot this for Christmas a year before last was extremely excited to try it. Delicious at first sip. Light, light, light, and disappoints after a while because once you get over it's smooth sweetness, there is not much else going on. Very light on peat and smoke. Mostly vanilla and maybe a bit of pear. In a way, reminds me of a good Irish Whiskey, like RedBreast.
Tomatin 12 Year
Single Malt — Highlands, ScotlandTastedI'm not sure why more people don't rate this higher. It always reminds me of vanilla, oak, and chewy caramel. It's one I could drink every night, but then I could say that about a lot of scotches, so maybe I'm the wrong guy to be rating these treasures of liquid gold.
Dewar's 12 Year The Ancestor
Blended — ScotlandTastedThis is a middle of the road 12-year blend. Not a blended malt, but a blended scotch. I think it's a little heavier on the peat and a little less on the fruit than the profile here suggests. I get black pepper and some spice with just a hint of smokiness. Good value at around $29.00
Lot No. 40 Canadian Rye
Canadian — CanadaTastedIt took me a while to warm-up to this. I thought it seemed kind of light at first compared to an American rye like George Dickel. But, it is absolutely bursting with spice - and isn't that what you want in a rye? It's extremely drinkable. I'll buy again sometime.
Rye — Indiana (bottled in Kentucky), USATastedA lot of spice like a rye should have, but I thought this was rather bland. Won't buy again. If I have to keep rye in the house, it's going to be either the Canadian Lot 40 or George Dickel 12.