Producing WhiskyCast has given me the opportunity to taste some really amazing whiskies, and I’m pleased to share my tasting notes with you here. You can search my entire database of tasting notes from this page, and I hope you’ll find it useful.
My scoring system is completely subjective, and I don’t pretend that it’s anything else. I score based on my impressions of a whisky’s nose, taste, and finish. I want something discernible in all three — in other words, a whisky that noses and tastes well, but has a flat finish will score less than what I consider a well-balanced whisky that has all three elements in tune.
I’ve often been accused of being a “high scorer”, but let me explain the scale I use for assigning scores. I decided to use the same scale as the academically rigorous high school my daughters attended. While most high schools would rank any grade above 90 as an “A” and scores between 80 and 90 as a “B”, our school sets the bar higher at 93 points for an “A” and 85 points for a “B”. By the way, an “A+” is anything 97 points or higher. Using that scale, only 23 of the 1,200 whiskies listed here would get an “A+” grade. Here’s how the scale works:
Finally, please don’t take these ratings as anything more than what they are: the grade of one individual whisky lover. If you want to use them as a guide, that’s fine…but remember that everyone has his or her own sense of what a great whisky should be, and these scores are nothing more than my own academic exercise in that pursuit. There is no way to fairly compare scores and notes from different whisky critics, since each of us has our own unique sensory memories and scoring methods.
You can search by the brand name of a whisky, distillery, or a specific country using the “name” and “country” boxes only.
Scotland and the USA (and use “USA”, not “United States”) are the only countries with regional designations, and entering terms like “Speyside” or “Kentucky” in the region box will return whiskies from those regions only.
“Type” refers to the type of whisky, such as Single Malt (all countries), Blended Scotch, Bourbon, etc. “Bottler” refers to the company responsible for bottling the whisky, and official distillery bottlings are labeled as “Distiller”.
You can also enter the name of an independent bottler in this box to see results for that specific company, such as Gordon & MacPhail or Duncan Taylor.
Finally, entering a number in the “Score” field will return all whiskies with that specific score.
This week on WhiskyCast, we'll chat with Two Gingers Irish Whiskey founder Kieran Folliard. He left Ireland for Minnesota 28 years ago, started four Irish pubs in Minneapolis, and then decided they should have their own Irish Whiskey. He created it with the folks at Cooley and brought it to market...just as Cooley was being sold to Beam in early 2012. Folliard wound up selling his brand to Beam as well, on the condition that he continue to oversee the brand. Since then, Two Gingers has gone from being a local whiskey only available in Minnesota to nationwide availability.
In the news, we'll have details on this year's Parker's Heritage Collection whiskey, the Old Forester Birthday Bourbon, the first official distillery bottlings from Royal Brackla, and a really old bottle found in a time capsule buried in a Scottish bridge.
Kieran Folliard is a native son of Ireland, but calls Minnesota his home now. While running a group of Irish pubs in Minneapolis, he and his staff decided they should sell their own special Irish w...
Got the details (and a sample) on this year's Parker's Heritage Collection whiskey from Heaven Hill. It's a rare Straight Malt whiskey (65% malted barley, 35% corn) that was laid down in late 2006 as an experiment for eight years. It's bottled at 54% ABV, and will go on sale in September. As with the last two Parker's Heritage Collection releases, $5 from each bottle will be donated to the ALS Association's "Parker's Promise of Hope Fund" in honor of longtime Heaven Hill Master Distiller Parker Beam, who was diagnosed with ALS nearly three years ago.
August 28, 2015 - For the third consecutive year, Heaven Hill plans to donate part of the proceeds from the annual Parker's Heritage Collection whiskey to fight Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, bette...