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 18 The Sweet Side

I’m not a man for desserts, but put that aside for this week’s tasting featuring drams from the…


Batch 17: Speysiders

After the smoky bunch which appeared earlier this week (if you missed that click right here), let’s redress…


Batch 16. Smoke!

A romp through some of the smokier new releases which have come my way recently    Brand: Aird…


Batch 15: Diageo Special Releases 2020

Each year, the end of summer is announced with the arrival of Diageo’s Special Releases. This year sees…


Batch 14: New global whiskies

A hugely exciting collection of new, world whiskies from Australia, Brittany, England, Germany, The Netherlands, Pacific North-West, and…


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…