An introduction to my review process and system:
While bourbon is my zero for whiskey, I do explore other categories so my reviews will be varied. I also drink scotch, rum, tequila, brandy, and just about anything someone would like me to try. If it’s been distilled and aged, I’m interested. I just default to bourbon.
What you need to know about me to help you better understand my reviews is my preferences and biases. I tend to prefer sweeter spirits. I enjoy balance but not at the expense of excitement; all flavors being equal and flat makes a whiskey boring. I like rich, robust flavors that don’t require a magnifying glass to find. If I need a microscope, forget it. There’s nothing wrong with a delicate whiskey, but if it seems like I’ll break it if the breath from my nostrils emerges too quickly, it’s likely too delicate for me. There may come whiskies that I don’t like but I think are still well crafted. I’ll try to convey that when it happens.
If at all possible, I will do a few sittings for reviews. Whiskey experiences can change from one sitting to the next and I’d hate to give a bad review to something after one sitting that might be fantastic the next time. This also helps me to become more familiar with a spirit, consequently allowing me to better know and understand its nuances, which I can then communicate to you. If I can’t do more than one sitting, likely because I’m working with only a sample, I’ll let you know in the review.
The prices listed with the reviews are for those found around me in Connecticut. I have regular stores that I check frequently and, at the publishing of each review, the prices will be current. I always take price into account when reviewing a whiskey. A good whiskey at astronomical prices will get a lesser review. A decent whiskey at fire sale prices will get a higher review. In either case, I will make a note of this factor.
I’m not a big fan of the 100 point rating system, so I’ll be using my own system. Each spirit I review will fall into these categories:
0. Dump (If you happen upon a bottle of this, dispose of it for the good of mankind)
1. Disregard (This is not worth your time)
2. Friend (Politely acquire a free sample to assess for yourself)
3. Nip/Bar (Pay for a sample to assess for yourself)
4. Bottle (Buy a whole bottle; it’ll be worth the entire experience)
5. Stock (Proudly keep this regularly stocked at home)
6. The End (This bottle is so amazing that it will likely herald the end of days, or at least the end of my blog; I’ve found perfection and need not search any longer)
Whatever happens, and however you approach my reviews, make sure to read my tasting notes. Simply looking at my overall score will do you no good as it will not tell you if you’ll enjoy the nose and tastes of the whiskey. I might rate a super peated bottle of scotch at “Stock”, but if you hate peated scotch you’ll be miserably disappointed and potentially angry with me. I don’t want to open my e-door to find you standing there with a torch and a pitchfork. So read the notes. Please.
Now go forth. Read, experience, and share.