- EarlyBird Oct 24, 2012 09:49 AM
I've got a colleague, a Scot, who will be retiring soon. I'd like to get him a decent bottle of Scotch around $40 which is not the typical stuff you can find in the States. Luckily, I've got access to an excellent store with an massive and varied number of different Scotch.
Ideas? I'm not a Scotch drinker.
Most people refer to 750's in threads like this. Buying someone a huge bottle of something they might or might not like is a risky proposition.
Also, if you are trying to get someone a bottle of something more or less special, you would be better to buy a smaller bottle of a decent single malt than a blend like Black grouse - which IMO is decent but nothing special, I prefer Black Bottle which is cheaper.
It would be helpful to know what type of scotch he prefers and what bottles are available to you. Otherwise you are likely to get recommendations of scotch that he might not fancy or that you can't find.
That said, for $50 (okay, 25% over your budget, I know), you might be able to find Michel Couvreur. It's rather interesting as it's distilled in Scotland (by definition), but then aged in France in sherry casks. It is not well-known, so there is a chance it might be new to him. It is in the smokey/peaty Islay style, but not hugely so.
I should note that I have not had this vatted expression, but based upon others that I have had, I bet it's great.
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You can find almost everything in the States now, but I'm assuming you're thinking "Not Chivas, Not Johnnie Walker, and probably not Glenfiddich." It's hard to judge what type of Scotch he likes -- I know die hard peat fans, and then there was my dad (an honorary Scot -- whisky ran in his veins instead of blood, based on the amount of it he drank) was a die hard Macallan fan. Good single malts in that price range to check out would be, IMO - the Balvenie, Glenmorangie, and Dalmore. None are super premium or rare, but all are good drinking single malts and worthy of a gift.
Here is a similar thread from not too long ago:
If you have an excellent store nearby, I would certainly go in there and ask the staff for their recommendations. Unfortunately, $40 does not buy anything special these days. You certainly cannot go wrong with a bottle of Highland Park (or Macallan) 12-year old.
If you go to the upper right-hand corner of this page and do searches for "single malt" and/or "scotch whisky", you will find other helpful past discussions on this topic.