A scotch post for Robbie Burns

Well I might be a few days late but every year in honour of Robbie Burns day you see a number of blog posts and write-ups on scotch… I guess it’s an excuse to write about it. Before I got into scotch I certainly had no idea who Robbie Burns was (he’s a Scottish poet who is no longer with us) but like others I took this opportunity to celebrate with a wee dram of single malt and thought I would follow-up with a post on scotch.

So here’s a few tasting notes and recommendations on single malt scotch.

1) The Glenlivet – Nadurra – $81.95, LCBO #89508
This one is a bit tough to find but if you can get your hands on it do it. Basic Glenlivet is your base line single malt and compared to other base line scotches its quite good. But this one is different. Sweet and light, it goes down quite easy. I would almost compare it to a Dalwhinnie (see #4 below).

2) Highland Park 12 yr old – $59.95, LCBO #204560
I have written about this one before and in my opinion there is hardly a better single malt that you can buy at this price point. It’s in a base line single malt price range but you get a good quality scotch. It’s got complexity and flavours that otherwise can’t be found at this price range.

3) Lagavulin 16 yr old – $109.95, LCBO #207126
Alright it’s $110 a bottle but you must try a Lagavulin. The classic Islay scotch, ripe with the classic peat smell you associate and want from that region. Gasoline, paint, and strong, strong alcohol scents are what those around you might find. But for a scotch drinker there is not really a better example of an Islay scotch… at least not in this marketplace.

4) Dalwhinnie 15yr old – $84.95, LCBO #238097
Taking a complete 180 from the Lagavulin the Dalwhinnie comes from the other end of the spectrum. As single malts go I would classify this as light and easy to drink. But do not confuse that with a lack of complexity. The easiness of drinking is a compliment as this scotch is well made and gains its smoothness from the aging process. For those that have never tried a scotch before you would likely enjoy this one as the candy and caramel are on full display.

5) The Edradour 10yr old – $79.95, LCBO #904995
This is the coveted scotch missing in my collection. Made from the smallest distillery in Scotland this is a wonderful scotch. Its been years since I have had it, but I can still confidently recommend it. It was extremely hard to find for awhile but I found it last christmas at the LCBO on Queens Quay. Check the LCBO product inventory before heading out in search of this one.

So let’s all raise a toast to Scotland for giving us golf and Scotch. I think we owe them.

– Mark
Follow me on Twitter: @towineman

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