bernstein wrote:There is also an Arran Single Cask Rum Finish 58,5 % (1997/2004) available.
Christian: I was wondering lately, what this Norwegian state monopoly is all about. Is it still the state's attempt to prevent excessive alcohol consumation in long and dark nordic winter nights?
If so - a strict ban of all alcoholic beverages would make more sense to me than ruling out only special expressions INHO.
I guess the authoroties are familiar with the skilled home distillers of the rural parts of my country. Too many blind people because of that and political opposition luckily prevents the idiots forcing a ban on alcholol. However, in all fairness it should be mentioned that both the norwegian state monopoly and the swedish counterpart are probably the better deal for the consumer as availability and selection is quite good even in the standard stores in remote areas. The staff is well trained and the expertise is very good. But most importantly, if you happen to be a wine enthusiast you'd be very lucky to live here simply becaue of the selection and the pricing. It is relatively costly to buy cheap wine but very cheap to buy expensive wine as this was bought when the wine was released to the market - before prices skyrockets on auction sales.
The selection of whisky is also quit good - and I'd say better than many stores on the continent. That is if you include the state monopoly's internet shop where the selection is vastly better compared to most shops.
Does abv play any role? How do Norwegian authorities justify this legal regulation? But again - sympathising with our North-American friends - the world is full of fixed aversions.
Now this is where the political stupidity plays a part. The stronger the spirit the more tax you pay! Thus Cask strength whiskies tends to be on the expensive side. I payed around £ 70,- for the Ardbeg Uigeadail. And that's bloody unfair! Alcoholics don't drink Uigeadail - they drink cheap vodka and beer!
Having said that I wholeheartedly agree with keeping the prices relatively high on the cheap stuff. Most Norwegians cannot behave propperly when drinking and if it helps restrict their intake somwhat I'd say it's a good thing. We're a strange people and most of us (not me of course) drink not to enjoy the beverage but to become drunk. Same thing with food really - it's all about quantity and not quality. The only difference is that norwegians eat all week but drink only during the weekend.
Actually, I hope the Wine Monopoly is secured for the future as it works quite good - believe it or not
Have a look yourself: http://www.vinmonopolet.no/
- there you'll find the standard selection all shops must have.
Then click "ikke lagerførte varer"
where you'll find the whisky they can provide you in a couple of days.