Having started to generate a more than healthy obsession with the varieties of whisky and generally drinking lots and talking to friends and family about how wonderful this all is, had finally started to tell. And so I [or rather my friends and family] came to the answer of the old adage “what do you buy the man who has everything?” – with the perfectly amber clear answer of “whisky of course” – as no man can have every whisky. And so my transition from ‘hard to buy presents for’ to local bottle bank was complete. Only having started to amass as much variety as possible and also armed with the knowledge of what was likely a good whisky for a bargain price many simply started to ask what I would recommend myself were I buying a bottle as a present [to myself for example]. This opened the door to slightly more expensive tastes especially around say significant birthdays and Christmas etc. So with a little direction I gained a bottle of the Glenfiddich 14 year old Rich Oak finish [http://www.glenfiddich.com/] speyside single malt scotch whisky.
Around this time I had also started noticing (and sampling) the whisky available at tax-free shopping outlets at the airports or on the ferry. These being considerably cheaper than the high street or other more specialized whisky shops due to dodging the tax or alcohol duty on the ticket price. The other thing I noticed was not only did these outlets sell 1litre bottles [as opposed to the 70cl standard] but they also stocked “Travel retail exclusive” whiskies not available in the supermarkets. So on my next trip though Edinburgh Airport I treated myself to an Old Pulteney WK209 ‘Good Hope’ limited edition.
On the success of using shop and collect I next suggested my Fiance could treat me to something the next time she flew away for her work. So I scoured the world of whiskies website [http://www.worldofwhiskies.com/] for something unusual and opted for a Lagavulin Distillers Edition, having heard from several friends and sources that this was THE Islay whisky to try. Unfortunately we didn’t realise that Norway was not in the EU and therefore she could not shop and collect. So this big heavy bottle of Lagavulin went to Oslo in her case and was dragged around icy frozen Oslo and finally returned home to me. So I really had to appreciate this one!
The Glenfiddich was superb and disappeared rapidly – too quick for me to even make notes. For the other two see my reviews.