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Which Critic do you most agree with?

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

Witch critic do you most agree with?

Michael Jackson
23
33%
Jim Murray
37
53%
Dave Bloom
10
14%
 
Total votes : 70

Which Critic do you most agree with?

Postby ScotchPalate » Tue Dec 12, 2006 8:32 pm

I find that agree most with Jim Murray. Certainly, not all the time. Which critic do you find is most alligned with your palate?

If I have missed one, please list he or she.
Last edited by ScotchPalate on Tue Dec 12, 2006 10:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby vitara7 » Tue Dec 12, 2006 8:38 pm

personally, neither.
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Postby Paul A Jellis » Tue Dec 12, 2006 9:01 pm

None of the above, my vote goes to Dave Broom!
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Postby Deactivated Member » Tue Dec 12, 2006 9:10 pm

Mr Picky. As for those others, I'm always happy to read what they have to say, but I don't put a whole lot of stock into any of them particularly.

I believe we had a virtually identical poll a while back, and Murray was the hands-down winner, as I recall.
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Postby ScotchPalate » Tue Dec 12, 2006 9:22 pm

Hmm, maybe I should have searched first.

My apologies to Mr. Broom, as I listed Bloom by mistake.
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Postby Scotchio » Tue Dec 12, 2006 9:37 pm

I believe witches have suffered enough already and further criticism is unnecessary. Regarding whisky I'm a bit of a Murray man myself.
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Postby Drrich1965 » Tue Dec 12, 2006 9:58 pm

I seem to read them all, find their common ground, and compare them to my own whisky experiences (limited that they may). Mainly, I try not to look for things to buy, but what to avoid (I should have listened on the Deanston 12, yuck).

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Postby peergynt323 » Tue Dec 12, 2006 10:15 pm

I can't vote for anyone who gave Bowmore 17yo a 3 or Bowmore 12yo a 2.5. That just takes away all credibility there.

My favorite critic is my girlfriend because she doesn't know anything about whisky (regions, rumors, branding, flavor descriptors, etc.) except for what she likes.

I like Johannes and Craig from malt maniacs too.
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Postby ScotchPalate » Tue Dec 12, 2006 10:17 pm

"I believe witches have suffered enough already and further criticism is unnecessary."

:lol: :lol: :lol:
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Postby Jan » Tue Dec 12, 2006 10:29 pm

peergynt323 wrote:I can't vote for anyone who gave Bowmore 17yo a 3 or Bowmore 12yo a 2.5. That just takes away all credibility there.

My favorite critic is my girlfriend because she doesn't know anything about whisky (regions, rumors, branding, flavor descriptors, etc.) except for what she likes.

I like Johannes and Craig from malt maniacs too.


PG: The low numbers is from a tasting, where the tasters looked for peatiness in progressively older bottlings - and rated the peatiness from 1-5.
They should never have ended up on the website and have nothing to do with the normal ratings on the 10 scale.

Matt, these "peat ratings" continues to be a source of confusion - can't you do something about it - remove them or add an explanation with each malt perhaps ?
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Postby peergynt323 » Tue Dec 12, 2006 10:50 pm

Serious? That is confusing...

Ok, well they all overrate Macallan in my mind. And their tasting notes are like Vogon poetry. I guess Jim Murray is the least painful to read.

When it comes to ratings, that's tough. None of them seem to like the stuff I like. What can I say?
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Postby Oliver » Tue Dec 12, 2006 11:08 pm

Serge
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Postby EdipisReks » Tue Dec 12, 2006 11:31 pm

i take a look at the critic's reviews before i buy a bottle, but it's rarely a large factor in my decisions. fun to read, though.
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Postby maverick » Tue Dec 12, 2006 11:31 pm

Generally I would say I don't have a favorite because sometimes I agree sometimes I think they're totally off. The person I like to agree with the most is me! 8)
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Postby Ardbeg311 » Tue Dec 12, 2006 11:50 pm

I don't think I can name one known "critic" that I am most in line with, although there are some on this forum that I find myself agreeing with time and time again. I seem to be most in harmony with the average score of the Malt Monitor found at Serge's Whiskyfun.com.
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Postby peergynt323 » Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:11 am

Ardbeg311 wrote:I don't think I can name one known "critic" that I am most in line with, although there are some on this forum that I find myself agreeing with time and time again. I seem to be most in harmony with the average score of the Malt Monitor found at Serge's Whiskyfun.com.


That's my main source for data as well. All of the bottlings I like are in the eighties or nineties on the MM.
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Postby Mustardhead » Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:25 am

peergynt323 wrote: And their tasting notes are like Vogon poetry.


Sounds like Oz Clarke and Jilly Goolden talking about wine :D
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Postby Spirit of Islay » Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:32 am

I think Jim Murray has very good taste and knows a good malt when he sees it ! :D :D :wink:
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Postby peergynt323 » Wed Dec 13, 2006 12:58 am

Scotchio wrote:I believe witches have suffered enough already and further criticism is unnecessary. Regarding whisky I'm a bit of a Murray man myself.


So no criticizing the critics? :twisted:
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Postby Di Blasi » Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:30 am

I really look forward to getting my hands on Jim Murray's latest Whisky Bible 2007 to see if I still enjoy his suggestions, like I have in the past.
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Postby Admiral » Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:42 am

It doesn't matter too much whose views you most subscribe to, I think the trick is to simply take their guidance onboard as merely their opinion. In other words, don't treat it as infallible, gospel truth.

Just because MJ (or JM) scores a whisky 93 doesn't mean that it's a good whisky. It just means he really liked it.

Serendipity is my best example. I thought it was a terrible whisky. Too confused; strange profile; bordering on one-dimensional. How on earth JM thought it worth something in the 90's is beyond me, but then that's the whole point, isn't it? It's a very subjective, personal experience.

Cheers,
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Postby Di Blasi » Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:45 am

Admiral wrote:It doesn't matter too much whose views you most subscribe to, I think the trick is to simply take their guidance onboard as merely their opinion. In other words, don't treat it as infallible, gospel truth.

Just because MJ (or JM) scores a whisky 93 doesn't mean that it's a good whisky. It just means he really liked it.

Serendipity is my best example. I thought it was a terrible whisky. Too confused; strange profile; bordering on one-dimensional. How on earth JM thought it worth something in the 90's is beyond me, but then that's the whole point, isn't it? It's a very subjective, personal experience.

Cheers,
AD


Yup, agreed completely! When I agree with JM, or anyone for that matter, I tend to continue to follow their lead, as we seem to have the same taste, enjoy the same whisky. But I also agree, it isn't the truth, but merely their opinion!
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Postby Scotchio » Wed Dec 13, 2006 10:37 am

peergynt323 wrote:
Scotchio wrote:I believe witches have suffered enough already and further criticism is unnecessary. Regarding whisky I'm a bit of a Murray man myself.


So no criticizing the critics? :twisted:


Course you can critisize the critics, M Jackson's wine tasting background comes through in his stream of consciousness notes and many of his references are lost on me as are a number of those used by other critics. I find Murray entertaining and enthusiastic and his references tend to be less esoteric. I also like the way he often reviews in the style of a battle for control between cask and spirit. He just makes more sense to me and although i don't always agree with his ratings I can relate his notes to the whisky.

As regards the witches I'm all for criticising the critics, they were midwives and herbal remedists so their religious persecution seems unnecessary. Regarding modern witches I have only met one, an ecowarrior with an eye for the young ladies who liked to cavort naked in the woods, he also claimed to be a glamour photographer and as a 40 year old amongst 20year olds at college his success and their gullibility were something to behold. :lol:
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Postby Deactivated Member » Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:00 am

I used to be a fan of JM but for me, he lost credibility with the Serendipity bottling. I used to really identify with his marks, but in the third edition, too many looked like political marks for distilleries that "needed support". I have also become increasingly frustrated by his peat bias. This was not so much of a problem when distilleries produced either peaty whisky or unpeated whisky (but not both) because you could use his marks to compare whisky within each distillery listing - even if it was hard to compare between distilleries. But with more distilleries now bottling both peated and unpeated, this is no longer possible. For example, Benriach has both unpeated and peated whisky now. It appears that because of the marks given to unpeated Benriach, the peaty ones need a premium mark that takes them up to silly levels. Ditto the Bruichladdich 3D. I haven't seen the latest Whisky Bible, but would expect to see similarly troublesome marks for some of the new peaty expressions.

Please do note that this is not intended to be a personal criticism, but rather an illustration of the difficulties of awarding objective marks - particularly if the marks are to hold a constant value between categories and over time.
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Postby laphroaig10_65 » Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:01 am

The web site of Johannes van den Heuvel is very useful to approach single malt whiskies.
I disagree with the critics when they don't see a clear difference of quality between the single malts and the more commercial blended.
Bye
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Postby Scotchio » Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:42 am

Nick Brown wrote:I used to be a fan of JM but for me, he lost credibility with the Serendipity bottling. I used to really identify with his marks, but in the third edition, too many looked like political marks for distilleries that "needed support". I have also become increasingly frustrated by his peat bias. This was not so much of a problem when distilleries produced either peaty whisky or unpeated whisky (but not both) because you could use his marks to compare whisky within each distillery listing - even if it was hard to compare between distilleries. But with more distilleries now bottling both peated and unpeated, this is no longer possible. For example, Benriach has both unpeated and peated whisky now. It appears that because of the marks given to unpeated Benriach, the peaty ones need a premium mark that takes them up to silly levels. Ditto the Bruichladdich 3D. I haven't seen the latest Whisky Bible, but would expect to see similarly troublesome marks for some of the new peaty expressions.

Please do note that this is not intended to be a personal criticism, but rather an illustration of the difficulties of awarding objective marks - particularly if the marks are to hold a constant value between categories and over time.


Good points Nick, and well worth taking into account when reading TWB, I'm sure it's been discussed many times but incremental subjective ratings can be taken a little too seriously, they have some value when comparing expressions from one distillery but become less and less useful the broader the comparisons become ie Irish v blendedv single malt etc.
Gives everyone something to talk about and provides a benchmark to compare your own equally valid tastes to though.
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Wed Dec 13, 2006 6:31 pm

I voted JM becasue out of the 3 I prefer his writing style simple as that. But as many have said before I don't let their rating decide what I am to buy.
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Postby vitara7 » Wed Dec 13, 2006 6:58 pm

i feel all three of them may have alteriar motives at times.
one of the few who i feel gives unbiased honest opion is RJ from loch fyne whiskies
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Postby lbacha » Wed Dec 13, 2006 8:16 pm

I voted for Jim because I keep his book with me as i travel and I've learned to understand what he finds good and bad, It doesn't mean I agree or disagree but his notes give me an insite into what I'm trying. I would probably say the same obout the other two but I don't have their books or notes to review allthe time.

Len
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Postby Paul A Jellis » Wed Dec 13, 2006 9:07 pm

Jacko's good, Broom is better, Jim Murray - who's he?
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Postby Paul A Jellis » Wed Dec 13, 2006 9:08 pm

vitara7 wrote:i feel all three of them may have alteriar motives at times.
one of the few who i feel gives unbiased honest opion is RJ from loch fyne whiskies


I'll second that.
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Postby Scotty Mc » Sat Dec 16, 2006 1:18 pm

After all, it is whisky writers/critics that help to sell malts as people tend to buy what they rate.

Personally I like reading general whisky books and was put off from tasting guides after reading the last JM bible. The amount of drivel and utter nonsense he talks made me put it back on my shelf in the hope it disappears :roll: I'm not interested in reading about his life or his 32 year old Brazilian girlfriend.
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Postby martin grant » Fri Jan 05, 2007 6:27 pm

All three are enjoyable to read, but the only person who knows what I like is me. Yes, whisky writers can drop a few clues and guide me on the way but the only person who can give a true appraisal of any drink is yours truly. I would contest that everyone's pallate is different. What JM or any other writer tastes is down to his own individual profile. Just because a writer can pick up an oily taste or a hint of peat doesn't mean that I can taste it. I like to keep a copy of The Whisky Bible close by, but only because it easily fits in my overnight bag and no other reason. I look to this book as a guide and certainly not as a Bible

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Criticising the critics?

Postby Muskrat Portage » Sat Jan 06, 2007 2:54 am

I find that I really don't identify with any one critic as they don't echo a lot of my personal interpretations. I enjoy reading what Martine Nouet has to say about SM and would tend to give her opinion a certain amount of credibility. Dave Broom is another critic whose opinions I find quite tolerable.
To be honest, I find that I get a lot from the opinions of the forum posters, who fearlessly provide their comments free of charge and subject to immediate global reaction.
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Postby parvus » Sat Jan 06, 2007 7:33 am

I have to say that I find my palate is most aligned with Dave Broom, in that when he describes something a certain way, my own notes seem to indicate similarities.

I also agree with muskrat, Martine's notes have always seemed precise and clear. I find myself quite put off by Jim Murray at times, and I have issues with Arthur Motley's notes of late.
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