Things I would like to see on the whisky scene

samples_3It has been too long since I complained about what’s going on in the whisky scene, and i think as 2013 is already in it’s 2nd Quarter it’s time to put it down. So, what do I want to see in the whisky scene, for the next few months. I am not sure the whisky industry will agree, but I do hope you whisky folk / lovers / geeks / aficionados will find them worthwhile:

1. NAS bottling above standard ABV %

Yes, i know complaining about the current “trend” in releasing a lot of NAS bottling by many distilleries is common (The Macallan and their ‘Colours’ series, Highland Park and the ‘Wariors’ and so on). For once i am not here to fight this NAS war, but just to ask distilleries to up the ante of their NAS bottling. Want to release a couple of NAS young spirits, since you have no stock? or want to make more money? Ok. Give us more ABV %. A NAS at 40% is boring, while at 50% it could be a cracker. So, given they are young, and cheaper for you to produce (less ageing) , they could just make one small step, and give us the liquid as we like it. NCF,50%, no Colouring. See the A’bunadh,Farclas 105 etc., these ones are loved and mainly because they are not watered down as most others are. So yes, Give us more Alcohol. if we want, we can dilute it ourselves.

2.Smaller bottles are cool (200 ml)

Yes, we like 200 ml bottles. The Laddie has them, Diageo did some with classic malts, and Coal Ila, Talisker triples of 200ml. They are cheaper, and they let us buy a few drams and not a full bottle, and experiment more. They make excellent gifts, and they are excellent for people on a budget. I think they would be a hit on the market,especially for new releases, where you want more people trying the new dram and when the like it, they are sure top buy the bigger bottles.I am aware of the extra costs of bottling several sizes, but in the long run, they may sell very good and expose more people to the bottling the distillery wishes to.

3.More dram size samples

More and more retailers are offering dram sized samples (Master of Malt is the best example with so many), and whisky folk like it. It’s even cheaper to try a dram than a wee bottle of 200ml, and it also allows you to try very expensive drams, you never could afford. I for once wanted to try a very expensive Ardbeg single cask, and only by means of samples could i ever afford to.

Of course i would love to hear your opinion on those , and if you have more add them to the thread , so those who read this post and can make a difference, take them into consideration.

happy dramming.


7 thoughts on “Things I would like to see on the whisky scene

  1. Yes, yes, and yes! I would be much more likely to take a bottle of whisky rather than a bottle of wine to friends as a gift if 200 ml bottles were more available in quality whiskies. But only on the condition that the distilleries don’t take us to the cleaners on these smaller sizes. Yes, I know we’ll have to pay more per liter, but I don’t want to pay more than half the price of a 700 ml bottles for a bottle that’s less than a third the size. And the same applies to higher-ABV bottlings. Yes, I’m willing to pay a little more, but the distilleries should be thinking in terms of increasing customer loyalty, not clever new ways of justifying higher prices.

  2. I agree. More 20cl bottlings, please. OMC used to do a lot of them. If you ever visit a Cadenhead shop they have a little selection as well (Edinburgh and Campbeltown)

  3. The problem with doing that . more sample bottles is it could effect sales of the 70cl bottlings try before you buy you dont like it, you dont buy it.
    Thats looking at it from a buisness prospective, from a personal point of veiw its a good idea. heres hopping.

    1. Mate, if u dont like a bottle, you tell your friends it’s no good, they wont buy the 700 also, so it’s word of mouth. if more wee ones are there, people will experiment more, and would then buy more afterwards. also those 200ml are lovely gift ideas as Eliyahu (see thread) wrote. one can afford to bring those as gifts for cheaper, thus selling more…

  4. So agree! The number 1 impediment to my early exploration in whisky tasting was the prohibitive cost of buying full bottles just to *try* whiskies. Once you exhaust the shelf selection of your local bars, there’s very few places to turn. I now order large batches of Master of Malt samples (I’m in the U.S., so shipping isn’t cheap) twice a year for the purpose, but I consider this the number one reason why whisky newbies like myself have trouble getting past the Glenlivet 12 & Glenfiddich 12 stage. You’d think that’d be in the best interest of whisky producers too!

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