Glenfarclas (12 year)

Not substantially better than other sherried 12 year-olds, but priced at the psychologically detrimental $50 mark. Look for this one on sale, or splurge on the older malts in the line.

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Glenfarclas (17 year)

Yum. Very enjoyable. Of course, it’s $90, so… not exactly great value, but if you compare it to some of the $100+ 18 year-olds on the market, it stands up well.

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Cutty Sark Blended Scotch

Well, aside from that obnoxious rotting vegetation odor, it’s not that bad. The milk chocolate notes are impressive, and while the blend isn’t complex, it’s not offensive to the palate. Just don’t… er… smell it.

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Compass Box Hedonism

I don’t know if I’d call it hedonistic, but this is a prime example of what can be done with skillful blending and excellent grain whiskies. The nose is light and sweet, the flavor is packed with bakery sweets and spices, and the finish is crisp, elegant, and flawless.

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The Yamazaki (12 year) Japanese Whisky

…Plenty of people like those banana notes and don’t mind some bitterness in the finish. To them I would say “Branch out! Try some malt from a whole ‘nother country!”… To the rest of us, I say skip it and start your Japanese whisky journey on something else.

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Dewar’s (12 year) Special Reserve Blended Scotch

It has all the hallmarks of the “mid-range” blend: light in style, heavily “watered-down” with cheap grain whisky, and that telltale bitter finish. Another blend bites the dust.

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