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Independent Bottlers

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Independent Bottlers

Postby Jacques » Wed Nov 15, 2006 5:24 am

Why do the independent bottlers have such a low rating in the reviews?? they are supposed to fill the caks they mention... Macallan, Ardbeg ... etc... why don't they get the same rating as the Distileries..???
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Postby Deactivated Member » Wed Nov 15, 2006 5:36 am

I'm not sure what you're talking about, Jacques. Lots of IB bottlings are very highly rated. Do you have specific instances in mind?
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Postby Jacques » Wed Nov 15, 2006 6:01 am

Actually, I did manage to buy the guide from Michael Jackson and the rating on his book give much more points to the Distilers than he does to the IB...
Thanks for your response... I would also like to know where to get more "unpolutted" ratings...
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Postby Deactivated Member » Wed Nov 15, 2006 6:15 am

Specific examples?

If you are looking for reasonably comprehensive ratings, there's no substitute for Jim Murray's Whisky Bible. As for "unpolluted", well, all ratings are biased, otherwise they'd all be the same. The best you can hope for is to find a reviewer whose tastes match your own fairly well. Lots of people here swear by Murray, more than any other critic, I think. Me, I think ratings are useless!
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Wed Nov 15, 2006 11:50 am

I agree with Mr T-H. Eventhough I like Murray and find that on certian distilleries I can agree with him. He has others which I find crazy tastings but that's the problem with personal views. At the end of the day you have to grow your own taste but it is no harm looking for other opinions to help you decide. Just beware that it might not suit you.

A prime example for me was all the 'who ha' about Ardbeg. SO off I went and got myself a bottle and did not overly enjoy it eventhough it is a great whisky. I was bitterly dissappointed but learned that eventhough that it might be considered one of the worlds greatest whisky it is not MY greatest!!!!!

I reckon Murray rates whiskies against it's own sector. i.e he might rate an islay a highland a lowland and blend all at 95 points but he is not saying that the blend is as good as the lowland which in turn he is not saying the lowland is as good as the highland etc (but they could be too!!!). All he is saying is this is one hell of a blend and if you are a person that likes blends then this may be the one for you (but only maybe). This is all very general so don't take it too literally.

Loch Foyne Whiskies https://www.lfw.co.uk/main.html have a helpful site that gives the general distillery charachter on the single malts index page which is very useful.
Last edited by irishwhiskeychaser on Wed Nov 15, 2006 12:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Jacques » Wed Nov 15, 2006 12:23 pm

Thank you very much for your responses, that really helps...!!! I am getting new at this "hobby"..sorry i must say..."expensive hobby" and am trying to learn as much as I can from all of you that have been involved since many years.
Also, I will be getting a book by Murray and see what his opinions are...
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Postby Deactivated Member » Wed Nov 15, 2006 12:50 pm

Jacques, you do have a point - Mr. Jackson systematically gives lower ratings in his book to indy-bottles than distillery bottlings. In some cases I've seen his scores and thought 'rubbish!' when I have tasted the indy in question and felt it was far superior to the official bottling.

I suspect Mr. Jackson's policy is systematic in the sense that he always rewards the distilleries in this way, regardless. One could of course argue that the distillery bottlings must be better, as they determine distillery style, character etc. but the bottom line for me at least is that often indy-bottlings are better in quality (although they can be utter soap too on occasion!). Also, they allow us to taste different versions and aspects of the whisky made, thereby increasing the whole flavour palette.

I for one could not imagine whisky scene without the likes of Douglas Laing, Cadenhead's, Milroy's etc.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Wed Nov 15, 2006 2:21 pm

irishwhiskeychaser wrote:I reckon Murray rates whiskies against it's own sector. i.e he might rate an islay a highland a lowland and blend all at 95 points but he is not saying that the blend is as good as the lowland which in turn he is not saying the lowland is as good as the highland etc (but they could be too!!!). All he is saying is this is one hell of a blend and if you are a person that likes blends then this may be the one for you (but only maybe).


Murray has said categorically that he does not rate whiskies by sector--if he rates one a 95, it's a 95, period. Those of us who look down on blends, particularly, find this hard to believe, but that's the word from the man's own mouth.
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Wed Nov 15, 2006 4:49 pm

MrTattieHeid wrote:Murray has said categorically that he does not rate whiskies by sector--if he rates one a 95, it's a 95, period. Those of us who look down on blends, particularly, find this hard to believe, but that's the word from the man's own mouth.



Doooohhhh !!!! that's that theory out the window so ....
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Postby scotch4ever » Wed Nov 15, 2006 8:45 pm

Lets look at the obvious. When you prefer a certain writer's opinion more often than not than you are actually in agreement with their "pallet". There is no definitive answer to one Whisky being better or worse than another because in the end, "tasting is believing". I am sure there are people who would disagree, however, who are you to tell me what I like and what I do not like?

There are also the compensation issues involved with some opinions. Let's face it a lot of these so called experts are being flown around the world, put up in fancy hotels, and paid "cold hard cash" for there reviews. I recall a certain whisky writer who boasted about a company’s whisky in the Wall Street journal some years ago. In the fine print it states, "Paid for by BIG COMPANY X". Did that just mean the add? Or the notes as well?

This business like all business is just that a business. When there are profits to be made and lost on the strike of a person's prose there is room for negotiation. If your company is a true independant bottler than your ability to strike a deal is less. True indpendants do not have ties to the big whisky companies.

I enjoy jim murray's writings from all the people I have read, but that is my personal choice and opinion just like the whisky I choose to buy.


Just my two pence.
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Postby dram_time » Wed Nov 15, 2006 9:12 pm

MrTattieHeid wrote:
irishwhiskeychaser wrote:I reckon Murray rates whiskies against it's own sector. i.e he might rate an islay a highland a lowland and blend all at 95 points but he is not saying that the blend is as good as the lowland which in turn he is not saying the lowland is as good as the highland etc (but they could be too!!!). All he is saying is this is one hell of a blend and if you are a person that likes blends then this may be the one for you (but only maybe).


Murray has said categorically that he does not rate whiskies by sector--if he rates one a 95, it's a 95, period. Those of us who look down on blends, particularly, find this hard to believe, but that's the word from the man's own mouth.


I have been thinking about that for a while, he rates some blends very highly indeed, better than maybe 85% of single malts. I like to drink blends myself(and malts too), there are some good ones out there (not Bells though!!) but there are loads of not so good ones.

For pure indulgence, a nice malt wins every time.

Dt.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Thu Nov 16, 2006 8:14 am

scotch4ever wrote:Lets look at the obvious. When you prefer a certain writer's opinion more often than not than you are actually in agreement with their "pallet".


For the benefit of latecomers, I refer you to the debut of Mr Picky, 25 Jan 2005:

http://www.whiskymag.com/forum/viewtopi ... ght=#14644

:wink:
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Postby Drrich1965 » Thu Nov 16, 2006 12:29 pm

Indeed. Language has always been socially constructed. What is the orthodoxy now will change in a generation or two. What is considered “proper” English (and I can speak for Spanish as well) has been based upon what is spoken by the mainstream, dominant groups. When minority or “out” groups use language in a manner that goes against the “rules,” it is often labeled in a pejorative manner.

Language can have literal meanings, descriptive means (as was pointed out in that wonderful link), and can be used as a means of communication, liberation, or repression.

Most appropriately, it can be used for ordering a good dram.

Enough pontification, I have to drive my kid to school, (Ir) regardless of the rain.

:wink:
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Postby Jacques » Sun Nov 26, 2006 1:47 am

Now that I have tried some independent bottlers, I can say that rating is very much a personal discussion .... we can all differ and agree on some, but at the end of the day, it all comes out to be what we like best...!!
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Postby The Dazzler » Sun Nov 26, 2006 10:00 am

For more whisky reviews check out http://www.whiskychallenge.com



Slainte![/img][/list][/u][/url]
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