Happy Holidays from the Scotch Noob! At this festive time of year, I always notice a significant increase in the amount of traffic I (and other whisky blogs) receive. The Holidays are the perfect storm for whisky appreciation: The weather is colder so a dram of whisky usually sounds better than a mojito. Gifts of high-end booze are a time-honored tradition (and as a consumable gift, a great idea for anyone from spirits newbie to aficionado), and get-togethers between family and friends are always the best time to break out the fine spirits.
The Holidays are also a fantastic time to break open that bottle you’ve been saving. I think it’s better to appreciate special bottles when the memory of what makes them special is fresh. If you dig that dusty bottle out of a closet in thirty years, are you going to remember why you bought it in the first place?
I’m also reminded at this time of year, because David Driscoll likes to harp on the subject on his blog, that pushing high-end bottles of booze in the faces of your family and friends must be approached carefully. A slug in a glass and a “here’s something special for you” will be appreciated far more than a thirty-minute lecture on the closure of the distillery and the extreme trials you went through to secure the bottle. Unless you’re with people who are genuinely interested (and asking questions!), just pour the good stuff and let the whisky do the talking. People will be more impressed with the silent profferance of some observably fine hooch than with a lesson on its origins and factual merits. Even the phrase “…and it’s twenty-one years old!” makes you sound a touch pretentious.
Lastly, don’t be afraid this season to kick up some cocktails with the better stuff. While I would rarely suggest pouring $50 bottles of scotch into a punch bowl, the sacrifice of a few jiggers of single malt can really make a Holiday cocktail into something special. I think this year I’m going to experiment with some single-malt egg nog!
A note: I am now in the process of switching web hosts, so there may be a day or two of shaky connectivity while I make the transition. Hopefully the site will run much faster with the new hardware!
So have a cheerful and memorable Holiday season, and raise a glass to all of the scotch noobs out there!
Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas!
-Nathan, the Scotch Noob