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- No single malt nazis. Single malts, blends and other whiskies of dubious or mixed heritage should be given equal treatment, at least until they’ve proven themselves to be a bit rubbish.
- Don’t knock it ’till you’ve tried it. Price is the enemy, not the goal. Everything deserves its chance, even the bottom shelf, two-for-one VAT 69 & Coke party pack. Don’t become a snob, no matter where your tastebuds may lead you.
- Age shmage. Age statements are generally a good indicator of quality, but they can also be wicked, and deceitful. Be vigilant. Let the memories of those mind-blowing young whiskies and the vom-worthy old ones keep you humble.
- Scotch is the best. No question. But dig a little deeper, and the rest of the world can offer up some fairly incredible fermented cereal juice. When it comes to whisky, be colour blind!
- Don’t be colour blind. A bottle gets extra points if non-chill filtered and untainted by colourant. And not because of any smell/taste snobbery – rather, because it’s enjoyable look at whisky and ponder its composition. Which is tough to do through a veil of pitch black industrial E150a. Also, snobbery.
- Say no to training whisky. Any whisky bottled at less than 43% ABV (86 proof) is considered “training” whisky, and should be rounded up and distributed to public schools in order to get toddlers ready for a life of drinking proper whisky.
- Be “pro-choice” on water. Most whisky should be drunk neat. After tasting, it’s clear some whiskies need complimenting with water, ice, or Sprite Zero. But some heathens believe in diluting it without even tasting it first, drowning the precious liquid prematurely. Instead of fighting this controversial issue on moral or ethical grounds, allow these people the freedom to choose, poor as their choices may be.
- The whisky maketh the cocktail. Some whiskies are made for mixing. Some whiskies aren’t, but turn out to be great for it anyway. Learn to stop worrying and love the cocktail. Be cool.