It's Scotch Season
College football is here, hunting season looms, bond yields are normalizing, or maybe not: it’s Scotch season. Sure, the only part of the internet you understand is middle aged men drinking bourbon, but step out a little and be the master of your fate. Since the next season of The Crown is coming out, and you likely aren’t a master of television, a good malt whisky will make you seem interested in the Lady of the House’s streaming choices.
Remember that when drinking like an aristo that those guys usually inherited their piles, they don’t really do anything, and in these egalitarian days, they have enormous tax liabilities. Which is my way of saying Duke’s don’t splash out $350 scotch. That’s for the American M&A set, and some of it is epic.
To wit: Glen Garioch 1797 Founder’s Reserve – pronounced “geery” because that’s how the Scots roll - will ping you $50. Still in “vaguely impoverished earl” range or if you just had a lousy performance review. This is a Highland whisky so hasn’t got that wood & peat smoke that the Islay and Island styles. It’s got just enough to know its Scotch without being overly so for the less stout of heart.
The mash-bill is 100% malted barley, aged in ex-bourbon & ex-sherry casks. The nose is malty fruit with some dark chocolate, oak and a touch of spice. Easy on the palette without being boring – the complexity stops before it gets confusing. This is exactly what you think that a Highland scotch should taste like: lighter than the wood-smoke and peat whiskies I’ll get into this winter when it gets cold and wet and I’m skinning a deer.
A word – if you are a fan of one of those all-American fist sized cubes of ice (and who isn’t) this is a little light for those. What happens is that it gets a little too light as the ice melts. Try it with a splash of water or an actual sized cube.