Happy New Year everyone. It’s customary to post lists of awards and accomplishments at this time of year and, as always, I am entirely conventional. Here therefore are some lists of my whisky high points of 2016 and other notable events and milestones. As you know, being a whisky blogger of great repute and influence has its perks and I was supplied all year, as I am every year, by distilleries and collectors with many special bottles that you regular, non-blogging types could probably never hope to drink. As such my perspective is truly superior and I very much appreciate that all of you acknowledge and salute that on a daily basis. I couldn’t have done it without you. I may be the one who drank all these whiskies (and other fine spirits) but really, you are the ones who truly enjoyed them! You’re welcome.
Top 10 Daily Drinkers
- Glen Grant 73, 1901 (They don’t make sherried whisky like this anymore.)
- Talisker 75, 1897 (Not as good as last year’s 10 yo, but very nice.)
- Bowmore 103, 1798 (First released to commemorate the death of Queen Victoria.)
- Lagavulin 109, 1907 (Remarkably vibrant despite the age!)
- Springbank 47, 1930 (Pre-Depression distillate.)
- Macallan 201, 1815 (As you know, during this time Macallan was also making gin, and I think the stills were not cleaned between runs. Look for the casks filled on January 17.)
- Glendronach 45, 1975 (Shouldn’t that be released in 2020? Never mind—I always trust their numbers!)
- Elijah Craig, The Slaveholder’s Cask (Another release in the bourbon industry’s commemoration of the figures of its glorious past.)
- Highland Park 90
- Cutty Sark (Always great.)
The Best Malt Whisky of 2016
Yamazaki Sherry Cask, 2013 Release
Best American Whiskey of 2016
Pappy van Winkle 30 (Not a public release but them’s the breaks!)
Best Upcoming Releases of 2017 (from advance samples)
- Bruichladdich Purpler Still, Jägermeister Finish (Oh Jim, you’re a genius!)
- Compass Box, “This is an Overpriced and Soon to be Overrated Whisky” (Kudos to John Glaser and company again for their transparency.)
- Amrut Seven Continents (I like this one so much I feel like a stinker for pointing out that Greenland is not a continent.)
- Kavalan Awards Cask (This is this year’s edition of the cask they vat with oloroso sherry and send to every whisky competition…and it’s glorious again! Triple Gold!)
- Highland Park Shaved Ice (Shame about the price.)
- Glenmorangie Sonata (Special release for the Korean market; Dr. Bill has done it again!)
- Lagavulin 5 (Believe me, no one is going to miss the 16 yo once they taste this!)
Best Spirits Blog of 2016
My Annoying Opinions
- Though I don’t do this for the recognition (only for the free whisky), I was proud to be named “Best Spirits Blog of 2016” by a leading website.
- I was also once again named “Favourite Blogger” by K&L.
- I have now reviewed as many Laphroaigs as Serge Valentin reviewed last week.
- I heard a rumour that my blog may finally be listed in the Malt Whisky Yearbook for 2019.
- My traffic went up by 10% this year. I now get about 70 page views a day. Thanks to my new readers in China for making this happen!
- Finally learned how to pronounce “Glenglassaugh”.
- Managed to go another year without referring to whisky as “juice”.
These are just a few of 2016’s highlights. Here’s to even more in 2017!