It's always five o'clock somewhere

Fwiffo

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They use caramel E150, it's supposed to interfere with the taste, but gives a consistency of colour between batches.

Macallan appears to have gone out of fashion somewhat. Still good whisky, as is Glenfiddich.
It's all about hunting down that obscure distillery with an unpronounceable name now. That's how my mate looks at it.

Suntory has largely stopped selling a few different types of aged whisky, but I think that was because demand skyrocketed and they ran out of supply. That's the problem when you're making something that you won't sell for another 12 or 18 years - you can't simply ramp up the supply!

Reminds me of when I was travelling through the backblocks of Indonesia and my host in a small town asked me to get some alcohol that we could drink with the dog that his wife was preparing for dinner.

After roaming around town I managed to track down a bottle of whisky in a small store.

Turning the bottle over, the label said:

Ingredients: Alcohol, whisky flavour
Suntory I believe chased short term profits and ruined their own pipeline. One of my old bosses said Hennessy confessed to them on his tour their XO now is nowhere near the quality from before due to excess demand.

I've went to a few tastings of brand new whisky distilleries n Canada. One of them (Forty Creek) joked that all new whisky makers are wine makers for a few years because you need the barrels and you need to make some money whilst your whisky ages.
 

Fwiffo

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I go into a home bar today and the manager goes "Oh no, I didn't get my whisky order in before you came back!"

The bartender then tells me as she walks by - "Fwiffo tell her you're never coming back..."
 

Kingstonian

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Ales from Palmers of Bridport - a long established but not particularly fashionable brewery.
It was at a local pub beer festival. There was music playing and tanked-up old gits playing air guitar and acting the goat. This is my nightmare vision of care homes in days to come.

Anyway there was a singer later. He was doing Frank Sinatra stuff. His opening words were ‘Have you been on it all day?’. I imagine he thought this will be a tough gig. He was very good though and the old gits were soon won round. I think they just wanted a sing song.

Prior to that, we had a Korean meal in the most Korean area in Europe. Very nice and Koreans are decent law-abiding, Christian types who don’t cause any trouble. We also popped into the local Wetherspoons, which I imagine must be the only one in the chain offering Jinro Soju as a manager’s special.
 
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Pimpernel Smith

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Been exploring the latest expressions of various rumbullions for awhile now, my assessment is this, in no order of hierarchy of quality and taste, the very best are: Appleton Estate, Mount Gay, El Dorado and Pusser's. The Havana Club Maestro's not bad either, but there should be a law against their 3 year old anos.
 

Thruth

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Been exploring the latest expressions of various rumbullions for awhile now, my assessment is this, in no order of hierarchy of quality and taste, the very best are: Appleton Estate, Mount Gay, El Dorado and Pusser's. The Havana Club Maestro's not bad either, but there should be a law against their 3 year old anos.
Have you tried Diplimatico?
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Have you tried Diplimatico?
Only the white rum a couple of years ago. Quite popular over here and gets good reviews, but I am not convinced that Venezeulan quality control in these times is going save me from something nasty. So I keep well away on purpose.
 

Thruth

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Only the white rum a couple of years ago. Quite popular over here and gets good reviews, but I am not convinced that Venezeulan quality control in these times is going save me from something nasty. So I keep well away on purpose.
It is fine. The mid-level aged is better than the premium. But it is tasty
 

Kingstonian

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Oakham Green Devil 6%. Very nice. £1.99 a pint in Spoons.

Before that I had a different Oakhams ale round about 4.2 % might have been Northern Pacific. You cannot go wrong with Oakhams. Same with Surrey Hills brewery they don’t make a bad beer.

Meanwhile Greene King has been sold to a Chinaman. It’s all change for English breweries and English companies in general. Low exchange rate makes them tempting targets.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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It is fine. The mid-level aged is better than the premium. But it is tasty
I'll give it a try. From cost to quality, rum at the moment provides the best value compared to whisky and cognac.

Meanwhile Greene King has been sold to a Chinaman. It’s all change for English breweries and English companies in general. Low exchange rate makes them tempting targets.
One Monday night in Downham Market in 2000/01, I got totally trashed on Greene King IPA. I thought I had 7 pints and had a terrible hangover. The barmaid later in the week told my two chums and me whilst pointing ''I sold 33 pints on Monday night. You drank 11 pints, you drank 11 and you did too!'' I thought it was somewhat quiet in the pub.
 
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Pimpernel Smith

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Suntory I believe chased short term profits and ruined their own pipeline. One of my old bosses said Hennessy confessed to them on his tour their XO now is nowhere near the quality from before due to excess demand.
Interestingly, I don't see any age statements on any Japanese whiskey at present, at least here in the Netherlands. But it's still good, including the blends and it's pretty much all blends now in the Euro 25-45 zone which before Fukishima was a dream. It was all single malts in the Euro 65 plus region.

Back in the early 1990s, my grandfather's favorite Campbeltown which was Springbank suddenly was not available anywhere I knew in the UK. I was told my a a wine merchant that Japanese market had soaked the lot up and good luck with finding any. Now, Springbank is widely available here in 10 and 15 year old expressions for about the same price in Euros I was paying in GBP's back 25 years ago now. So clearly, the Japanese have had enough.

Excess demand is pretty much a problem in the whisky realm now that the speculators have moved in. Whiskies are very up and down in terms of complexity and what works and doesn't to the taste of the time. Not so long ago The Macallan was considered the ultimate in expressions. Well, fashion changes and one eminent critic now says Glen Grant is the best distillery. I remember when JW was pushing the 18 year Gold here in the Netherlands back in 2005 it was something else, a blend of unbelievable splendor, it literally danced on your taste buds. Not now.

I bought a bottle of Bushmills 10 year old, that's been getting great reviews lately. I can confirm, it's pretty good stuff for a Euro 30 bottle. Much better than I remember it.
 

Kingstonian

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Jim Murray hosted a tasting of Glen Grant I attended. It was good stuff. I had seen the Glen Grant distillery man before though - in a tasting South of the river. It’s foreign owned now, of course.

The people at whisky tastings are difficult to fathom. You wonder why they are there, how long have they been interested, do they pay the silly prices for a bottle etc?

Macallan had quality issues and problems with bad casks.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Went to the whisky store in The Hague today. The rum section continues to grow, about a third of the shop. Ending up getting the El Dorado 15, to stop me drinking the 21 year which is absolutely the best sipping rum I've ever had. Like a 30 year old whisky and well under a hundred Euros.

They had one bottle of Port Ellen in, 35 year old and Euros 3,535.00!

The prices of Port Ellen, compared to 15 years ago is phenomenal. To be fair, they may have improved somewhat in that time, but also taken on a lot of the cask. Only speculators and investors are buying that shit. The owner said it's all hype with Port Ellen now. Well, I had 1979 bottle that I paid just over a hundred Euros for and it was one of the best whiskies I've ever tasted and did 3/4's a bottle in and got for work with zero hangover and ill effects the next day. The next bottle I had was double the price and then some more, a 1982 a bottling and it was pretty much not good at all. And that was the end of my flirtation with the legend that is Port Ellen. But I always keep an eye out for the prices which continue to amaze.
 

Fwiffo

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At a home bar. I come in - they already know I want whisky with the giant ice cube. Then the bartenders come and shake my hand.
 

Fwiffo

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Last night we went out for a work dinner. We had two pints and a glass of wine at one place and another two or three pints at a brewpub. Finally grabbed one double whisky for a nightcap. My staff who was travelling with me sent a message he would be late and ended up not showing up at all for the second work day at this office. Reckon he flew straight home. First time I had someone who couldn't make it to work because of the drink.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Opened a bottle of Angostura No.1, not sure of the edition, likely the newest one finished in sherry casks. Very crisp, appears to have no sugar added, opening out a little, but likely not fully for a few weeks and more empty bottle yet. Another example of rums delivering serious price to quality ratio that isn't always guaranteed with whisky and cognacs these days, or you have to go well over the price of a premium rum.
 

Fwiffo

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Opened a bottle of Angostura No.1, not sure of the edition, likely the newest one finished in sherry casks. Very crisp, appears to have no sugar added, opening out a little, but likely not fully for a few weeks and more empty bottle yet. Another example of rums delivering serious price to quality ratio that isn't always guaranteed with whisky and cognacs these days, or you have to go well over the price of a premium rum.
That is true. When I switched salary bands I had to give up indulging in brandy and whisky and went over to dark rums. Much more economical. That said when I restored my pay, I went back to whisky again.
 

Fwiffo

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I was at the footy game last night and drank 36 oz of white wine. Then I had two double Jamesons and 2 shots of Grey Goose and 1 shot of some random tequila. How I got home at 1230 and woke up at 515 to catch a 650 bus is beyond me.
 

Kingstonian

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What is 36 oz of wine in terms of bottles?

For all cheapskates, Ralphy says Lidl Queen Margot 3 year old whisky is good and cheapest stuff he has bought in 15 years. The 8 year old was well reviewed if not hyped.(https://scotchwhisky.com/magazine/from-the-editors/24553/the-fake-news-fallout-of-lidl-s-queen-margot/)

 

Fwiffo

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Walked into a home bar. Bar man grabs a wine glass and a bottle and says "Pinot?"

Bartender woman from competing restaurant walks in and taps me on the shoulder.

Martina comes and starts stroking my back and asking where I was.

Two waiters come and shake my hand asking about my summer. I ask about the one chap's European trip.

Manager woman comes and asks why I haven't been by.
 

Kingstonian

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Just back from a few days on the lash in Bamberg. We started in Munich and stopped off in Nuremberg too.

We decided the British system of buying a drinking and paying for it at the bar is more conducive to pub crawls. No session strength beers there either. Everything is close to 5% or more. Maybe waiting for service helps reduce consumption.

Also visited the oldest brewery in the world in Freising. Airport Brewhouse at Munich airport is remarkably cheap drinking for an airport establishment.

Lovely weather over there too.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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For all cheapskates, Ralphy says Lidl Queen Margot 3 year old whisky is good and cheapest stuff he has bought in 15 years. The 8 year old was well reviewed if not hyped.(https://scotchwhisky.com/magazine/from-the-editors/24553/the-fake-news-fallout-of-lidl-s-queen-margot/)
Lidl's storming the middle class demographic battle zone better than any of the competitors over here in the Netherlands. Shame no supermarkets have hard liquor licenses over here.

You know that a Euro 10 bottle of wine from Lidl is going to be exceptional for the price. I walk into Albert Heijn or Jumbo and it's wall-to-wall New World wines younger than my razor blade about 14-14.5% and undrinkable and will give you a bad head the next day.

Walked into a home bar. Bar man grabs a wine glass and a bottle and says "Pinot?"

Bartender woman from competing restaurant walks in and taps me on the shoulder.

Martina comes and starts stroking my back and asking where I was.

Two waiters come and shake my hand asking about my summer. I ask about the one chap's European trip.

Manager woman comes and asks why I haven't been by.
I was waiting for the punch line there....

Just back from a few days on the lash in Bamberg. We started in Munich and stopped off in Nuremberg too.

We decided the British system of buying a drinking and paying for it at the bar is more conducive to pub crawls. No session strength beers there either. Everything is close to 5% or more. Maybe waiting for service helps reduce consumption.

Also visited the oldest brewery in the world in Freising. Airport Brewhouse at Munich airport is remarkably cheap drinking for an airport establishment.

Lovely weather over there too.
A lady acquaintance of mine, was trying to get me to relocate there not so long ago, in one of the EU things there. If I was a young chap, I would be interested, but not I think long term. Vienna would be different, for the right price.

But I've reached that age, where it's next to impossible to go to some new country and start all over again and make connections and forge a career. Too much baggage and roots here now.
 

Kingstonian

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I don’t know about new country, a new town would not be under serious consideration for me. Old dogs, new tricks etc. Vienna is very nice and civilised too.
 
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