To keep the nose and palate in. You might notice that there are no scores. There’s a good reason for this. I hate scoring. I’ve always had to, but as this is my website and I’m not beholden to others’ whims, I can do what I’ve always wanted to – grade by a star system.

This gives bands of excellence, rather than the frankly absurd idea that you can define quality by a number. Stars give a degree of flex, they operate in bands of excellence. Maybe it will also guide eyes away from ratings and towards the words.

Oh, and what is tasted will be rated according to its competitive set.

Rating system

* Only useful if you need a solvent
** Somewhat disappointing.
*** This is good! I’ll happily have a dram thank you.
**** Hits the spot. I’ll have another.
***** Exceptional. Hold me back!


Batch 13: Speyside roundup

Seven drams, six distilleries, one distiller, two bottlers. Between them a great cross-section of Speyside in mostly distillery-forward…


Batch 12 Prima & Ultima

  On one hand, Prima & Ultima it is an eight-strong series sold by the set for a…

Rum : New Releases

Following on from last week’s look at Scottish distilled rums, here’s an update on some new (and newish)…


Rum : Scottish White and Cask-aged

The history of rum making (and drinking) in Scotland is a long one – have a look here…

Tamdhu Dalbeallie 3

New Whiskies Batch 11: Fettercairn, Glen Scotia & Tamdhu

A pair from Glen Scotia, a brace from Tamdhu and a solitary Fettercairn make up this week’s new…


Batch 9: Bramble Whisky Co & Dram Mór

A double double this week. Two from the estimable Bramble Whisky Co., in Edinburgh and a brace of…


New Whiskies Batch 9 Royal Mile

I lurked in an on-line green room the other night as Arthur Motley of Royal Mile Whiskies and…

New Whiskies Batch 8 Glens Moray and Scotia

Two Glens this week. A new Madeira cask from Glen Moray’s ‘Curiosity’ range and a quartet of dunnage…


New Whiskies Batch 7: Bunnahabhain and Kilchoman

Yes I know the Feis was last week, but.. well.. life. Here’s a wee catch up on some…

Port Ellen 40 YO Open Tray and Bottle

New Whisky Batch 6: Port Ellen 40 year old ‘9 Rogue casks’

It’s unusual to only have a single whisky in this section, but there’s a story behind this one…