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Drinker or Collector?

Take part in our whisky polls and votes. You can also post your own polls in this forum.

Above which price would you consider a bottle expensive and not open it?

£0-20 ($0-34, €0-28)
0
No votes
£21-30 ($36-52, €30-43
0
No votes
£31-50 ($54-87, €44-72)
1
3%
£51-80 ($88-139, €73-115
9
28%
£81+ ($140+, €116+)
22
69%
 
Total votes : 32

Drinker or Collector?

Postby Scotty Mc » Sat Apr 08, 2006 1:33 pm

After sitting at home with nothing to do, I've been thinking about whether I am a drinker or collector of whisky. I like to collect and also drink whisky but there is a point where the price of bottle, im my eyes makes it a one for the collection.

For example, if I pay upto £30 a bottle I'd drink it. Anything over then it gets collected. I find it hard to open a bottle costing more than that. I know a lot of people will open a £200 bottle and drink it without a second thought, where as I would cry at the thought!

I find anything over £30 is expensive in my opinion and seems a lot of money to drink away
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Postby Bullie » Sat Apr 08, 2006 1:42 pm

Non of the above... I open all my bottles eventually.
If I spend £200 on a bottle, I'll be damned if I don't drink it myself, and of course share it with my friends. :shock:
Why buy it, if one doesn't drink it, since it's a product made for drinking? ;)
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Postby parvus » Sat Apr 08, 2006 1:50 pm

For me, I don't think price is a limiting factor in deciding to open a bottle or not, if it's in my collection I intend to drink it at some stage. If I had the spare cash lying around i'd possibly start hoarding the rarer and more collectable bottles just for the sake of collecting or prosperity, but even then I would be tempted to dip into my own stash and have a taste here and there.

Unfortunately (luckily?) I don't have any friends who enjoy whisky as much as I do, so i'd feel a bit guilty about opening an Ardbeg Provenance or Balvenie 30 just to have by myself, something like that would have to be shared.
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Postby Scotchio » Sat Apr 08, 2006 2:05 pm

A drinking collector. I get nervous when bottles are worth more than £70. The Rare Malts waterline!
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Sat Apr 08, 2006 2:25 pm

I'm a serious drinker and a serious collector :lol:

I tend to try and get a bottle of each expression of irish whiskey that is available but I'd have to drink one too so I'd buy 2 or 3 of each depending on cash flow. I have 3-4 bottles over the £81 barrier open at the moment. 2 Irish, 1 Bourbon and 1 scotch but just finished a Japanesse over that barrier last week. I normally have 20 bottles open so I can relish the expensive beside the inexpensive. As long as they taste good I don't care about the price once open.

However there is always a lot of consideration if I'm opening an expensive Irish whiskey as that is what I collect any thing from any other country I'll open in a flash. However don't get me wrong I don't go out and buy expensive bottles every month and do try and keep it to the £30 mark.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sat Apr 08, 2006 3:36 pm

The hard part is spending the money. But why spend it if you aren't going to drink it? I think twice or three times before opening an expensive one, but they're all for drinking sooner or later.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sat Apr 08, 2006 3:46 pm

I would not buy a bottle I wouldn't open. I've spent in the $200 range for a couple of bottles -- Pappy Van Winkle Family Reserve 23yos, from the first two issues -- that are subsequently gone. I currently plan to open a 1940-distilled, no-longer-made bourbon with some friends later this month that is close to becoming one-of-a-kind. Whisk(e)y's for drinkin', man!
If I want something as a store of monetary value, cash works just fine for that.
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Postby Jan » Sat Apr 08, 2006 4:00 pm

All my bottles are bought for drinking - but an very expensive or a rare bottle are not opened without some thought and/or a special occasion or something.

I do only have a few in that category, among these one of the 1972 OB Ardbegs, that I think could very well be on the shelf for a few years before being opened. But eventually it will. :D

Up to appr. £100 bottles are opened without much thought. (As Mr. TH. notes, it's when one buys the bottle the thinking are done)

Actually I find it harder to get a fine bottle finished in time - I have to force myself to not try to make it last.

Cheers
Jan
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Postby Badmonkey » Sat Apr 08, 2006 5:52 pm

I'd be willing to wait a few years to open a special bottle for a special occasion, but any bottle I buy will eventually end up being poured out into my bloodstream.
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Postby Lawrence » Sat Apr 08, 2006 6:40 pm

There's no limit for me, everything I buy will be drunk eventually (hopefully by me).
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Postby WestVanDave » Sat Apr 08, 2006 7:10 pm

I too am in the "eventually all will be consumed" camp... as the saying goes - I'm not a collector - I'm just behind in my drinking!!!

I just have an insatiable appeitite to grab stuff that I fear will not be there next time if I don't buy it now...and then I find I have too many open, so I defer on adding to the open list - thus I become an "interim collector" ... at 250+ and counting (ouch)...

As guilty as I feel about amassing bottles in such quantities - I am comforted in knowing several friends who put my "few bottles" to shame... and many more who are always willing to assist me in guilt reduction exercises: pour - two - three- four -- pour - two - three - four, repeat as required... :wink: I find they rarely complain about me throwing up such roadblocks as a few more whiskies in the collection.
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Postby Aidan » Sat Apr 08, 2006 7:43 pm

Over EUR 300 and I'd start to worry about opening it. I have opened a few very expensive bottles, and usually been disappointed.
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Open them all and damn the torpedos

Postby Muskrat Portage » Sat Apr 08, 2006 10:14 pm

Scotty:
So far I've only one bottle I won't open; a Signatory 1974 Glen Albyn CS that cost over the limits proposed. If a second one ever comes in range I would then open the first.

So I don't really have a limit and purchase my whisky for eventual ingestion. On that note, I do shudder slightly when I open anything that costs over $150.00 but once I have a dram from it the shudder goes away.

Last weekend we bought 30 bottles of wine, for gifts, that cost $270.00, which wouldn't cover the cost of 6 decent bottles of whisky. Makes you think, eh? Musky P.
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Postby karlejnar » Sat Apr 08, 2006 11:38 pm

Like the majority here my bottles are for drinking :P It's not really a matter of price - not that I buy that many malts at over £100,-
Well I recently got two Glen Grant's 1956 at £145 and £155 just because they're from my year of birth. But they too will be opened at some special occasion - maybe on the big day later this year :D

Perhaps the only one I wouldn't want to open - is the Glenfiddich Solera Reserve I had for free at our recent visit at the distillery. But that's just because it has a personalised label :wink:
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Postby Bullie » Sun Apr 09, 2006 8:26 am

Jan wrote:Actually I find it harder to get a fine bottle finished in time - I have to force myself to not try to make it last.

Cheers
Jan


A nice way to empty the bottle in time, and to get the chance to taste other whiskies before purchase, is to do like we do on http://www.whiskyforum.se , where we exchange samples with other whiskyloving friends. It's a lot of 2-5 cl samples with expensive whisky that changes hands there... :)
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Postby hpulley » Sun Apr 09, 2006 10:25 am

Here's another vote for none. I'm a drinker, not a collector. That said, I do sometimes try to hang onto the last bottle of a case or half case purchased for a while but it rarely works. Bottles are lucky to spend a few months unopened around here.

Also, if I've never had a bottling I'll generally open it the night I get it. Would hate to die never having tried it!!!!

Harry
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Apr 09, 2006 10:58 am

I drink or intend to drink all that I buy. Even if I did buy to collect price would not necessarily be the determining factor. Rarity would.
The most expensive bottle I've had so far is a Balblair 38. It is also the quickest that I've consumed. It's too good to sit mouldering in the cupboard. That fate is reserved for the cheapest of the lot - Ledaig sherry :twisted:
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Apr 09, 2006 11:51 am

I do enjoy a nice single malt, but I am also most definitely a collector.
Having said that, the collectibility of a bottle does not depend upon price, but upon availability and demand.

This is a most interesting discussion, but I feel the original poll based on specific (low) prices is quite misleading. It is very easy to spend well over the 81 GBP and to not have bought a "collectible", but just a very good (hopefully) single malt to drink.

Likewise, if we look at the bottom end of your price poll, I would like to give you one specific example which shows that price does not dictate collectibility:

In late 1996 (or maybe very early 1997) I just happened to be in a whisky shop looking for a purchase. I wanted something I hadn't tried before but was struggling to decide between two or three bottles that immediately appealed.
At this point another customer appeared and asked the shopkeeper for a Macallan to add to his collection of over 200 (Macallan) bottles which his Grandfather had amassed and passed on to him.
At this point one bottle caught my eye and I immediately decided to buy it.

The cost - a mere 26 GBP.

The bottle - Macallan Private Eye.
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Postby Paul A Jellis » Sun Apr 09, 2006 5:02 pm

Another vote for 'none of the above'. Drinker, first, second and third!

I would not buy a bottle if I was not looking forward to opening and enjoying it.

However, I am staring to get a nice collection of whisky glasses and water jugs . . . and empty bottles!

Cheers

Paul
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Postby karlejnar » Sun Apr 09, 2006 5:20 pm

C_I wrote:"The value of the item will be in its container not its content."


Now that is a statement I find very difficult to grasp :roll:

How a bottle with a printed label can ever be the most important or valuable part is beyond me :shock:
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Apr 09, 2006 5:50 pm

WhiskyHammer wrote:...but I feel the original poll based on specific (low) prices is quite misleading. It is very easy to spend well over the 81 GBP and to not have bought a "collectible", but just a very good (hopefully) single malt to drink...


I think that's probably right. And I didn't respond to the poll, because none of the choices fit me.
That said, I probably wouldn't even consider buying a bottle that carried a 'collectible' price. If I wouldn't drink a $600 or $1,000 bottle of whiskey, then I wouldn't buy it in the first place. Which, by the way, I don't.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Apr 09, 2006 6:23 pm

Karlejnar,
that is a very common statement which you will find mostly on Ebay UK.

You must remember that the laws governing the sale of alcohol in the UK are very strict and antiquated.
It is illegal to sell alcohol without a very specific and hard to get licence from the local authorities. It is most certainly only available to businesses, not private individuals.

In order to stay within the law, Ebay UK do not allow the sale of alcohol!
However, they do allow the sale of collectible bottles. Even if the said bottles are full and unopened.

I know many whisky collectors and sellers based in the UK who are having great problems with auction listings being removed at the moment. In fact, one has experienced listings being removed just because they mentioned the alcoholic strength of the contents!

The only way to stay within Ebay's regulations is to use that statement, or a similar one which makes it clear that the container is being sold as a collectible!

Regards,
WH
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Postby karlejnar » Sun Apr 09, 2006 6:55 pm

WhiskyHammer wrote:Karlejnar,
that is a very common statement which you will find mostly on Ebay UK

I might have misunderstood something, but I thought C_I was using the quote to emphasis his "problem" when:
C_I wrote:"bottles will be relatively long on my shelf"


I don't really care too much about the rules of Ebay, due to the fact that I don't have an "urge" to buy whisky through that particular auction-site. That being said - I realise that most of the bottles sold there are genuine, and that most (I hope so) sellers are being honest one's.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Apr 09, 2006 8:08 pm

Karlejnar,
that's just the point, it is UK law. Not specifically the rules of Ebay!

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Drinker or Collector

Postby Danny » Sun Apr 09, 2006 8:23 pm

Me, I am definitely a drinker. I will hesitate over the price of something, but once bought it gets opened.

I would consider collecting, but not based on price but rarity, which of course would likely force the price upwards.
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Postby Frodo » Sun Apr 09, 2006 9:06 pm

Jan wrote:All my bottles are bought for drinking - but an very expensive or a rare bottle are not opened without some thought and/or a special occasion or something.

I do only have a few in that category, among these one of the 1972 OB Ardbegs, that I think could very well be on the shelf for a few years before being opened. But eventually it will. :D

Cheers
Jan


This is my thinking as well.
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Postby Mr Ellen » Sun Apr 09, 2006 10:39 pm

I don't vote on this one. I personally don't think the value/price of the bottle is a reason for drinking or not.
Like most of the people here I do have the intention to drink all the bottles I buy but I also like to collect and I know that some of the bottles in my collection probably have more value as a collectors item than as a drink.
If possible (i.e. if my economy allows it) I try to buy at least 2 of every bottling I can so that I'll be able to taste it before I put it into a collection.
I wouldn't mind at all opening a bottle worth £200 or £300. It's not the price that matters. If I want to taste it I do so...no matter what's stated on the pricetag.
For me it's also a thrill trying to obtain the ultimate bottling from that specific distillery. And with well over 700 bottles in my possession there's no urge for me to open a very rare or collectible bottle.
With that said I'll probably get a load of shit thrown in my face. But I think it's up to each one to decide how to spend their money and what to do with their whiskies.
Someday, I'll probably spend a fortune opening a dozen of since long forgotten bottlings and enjoy them in an official tasting or with friends.
In any case I'll not let my collection go by unnoticed.

Now...off to another Port Ellen in the regions of £150.00...Cheers :)

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Postby parvus » Mon Apr 10, 2006 1:27 am

Come on Mr Ellen, enough talk, we want photos!
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Postby Jan » Mon Apr 10, 2006 6:44 am

parvus wrote:Come on Mr Ellen, enough talk, we want photos!


Yeah - and your adress :D

Cheers
Jan
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Postby Jan » Mon Apr 10, 2006 6:59 am

Bullie wrote:
Jan wrote:Actually I find it harder to get a fine bottle finished in time - I have to force myself to not try to make it last.

Cheers
Jan


A nice way to empty the bottle in time, and to get the chance to taste other whiskies before purchase, is to do like we do on http://www.whiskyforum.se , where we exchange samples with other whiskyloving friends. It's a lot of 2-5 cl samples with expensive whisky that changes hands there... :)


Yes, I have thought of the same and recently purchased a number of sample bottles from Loch Fyne, with the view to get some sample swapping going with a few friends. We have not really gotten this going in a serious way, but I'm optimistic still.

Cheers
Jan
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Postby lbacha » Mon Apr 10, 2006 8:31 am

Drinker or Collector, I doubt there are many of us that arn't both, I love to drink all my whiskeys I will ussually buy 2 bottles of anything I get so that I can drink one and save the other, It could be for consumption or for selling at a later date to buy more bottles. I'm not a serious collector who needs to have every bottle of a certain distillery but I do like my "collection" of drinking whiskey. By the way price is ussually irelivant if the whiskey is good, I have had $20.00 bottles that are just as good as $500.00 bottles. I recently bought 2 bottles of Jamesons 15 year old pure pot still. it was expensive 130.00 euros a bottle but I love Irish pot still and the selection is limited so I felt it was worth it, One bottle will be opened as soon as I get home and the other will be put on the shelf until I decide what to do with it.

So for all you that think you arn't collectors just drinkers, go home look at you liquor shelf and admire your collection of drinking whiskys.;

Have fun and enjoy your collection

Len
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Postby corbuso » Mon Apr 10, 2006 8:55 am

I don't see really the point of buying expensive whisky bottles without thinking about opening them one day.
I should have something like 15 bottles opened, from £15 to £130. The only bottles I don't want to crack open are special bottles, like the Bowmore ceramic serie or the Balmenach 25th for the queen's Jubilee. The bottles are really nice and bought them more for the esthetic than the content.

Something I really enjoyed recently is swapping whisky samples and if anyone is interested in such trades, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Corbuso
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Postby Scotchio » Mon Apr 10, 2006 9:22 am

Something I really enjoyed recently is swapping whisky samples and if anyone is interested in such trades, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Corbuso[/quote]

Like Corbuso I believe swapping samples is an excellent way to broaden your horizons without crippling your pocket. Potentially it could be like a giant fluid online whisky tasting in congenial but distant company. Like Corbuso anybody interested in trading samples should not hesitate to contact me also.
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Postby Aidan » Mon Apr 10, 2006 9:59 am

corbuso wrote:I don't see really the point of buying expensive whisky bottles without thinking about opening them one day.


There is a clear point if the whisky goes up in value. The gain can help you buy more whisky that you will drink.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Apr 10, 2006 1:24 pm

The other day, I bought a bottle of very old Port Ellen. I mixed it up in a big bucket with some left-over ends and a fair few bottles of grain whisky.

Because that's what it was made for!
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