The other day, Little Bitty Bits and I were at our local upscale pizza joint (the kind that serves individual pizzas with fancy toppings). The place has a little single malt selection that isn’t the worst ever – Glenlivet 12, Glenlivet 15, Glenmorangie Original, Macallan 12, Lagavulin 16 and the Bowmore Legend. Now, by this visit, I had tried each of those whiskies aside from the the last two. And from my reading up on whisky in the last few months, here is what I know about them: they are both Islays, the Lagavulin is beloved by many as a great peaty whisky, and the Legend is known for being one of the cheapest good whiskies around.
Faced with this decision, you have to understand two things about me. First, I am a wimp. The murderer’s row of Laphroig, Ardbeg, Caol Ila and the like scare me. Well, they don’t scare me scare me. I just have a difficult time seeing myself enjoying something that people describe as having the taste of campfire. Second, I am cheap. Most of the other pours at this place had run me $9 or $10, and I was hoping to maybe give the wallet a slight break (in the end, though, I think they still charge $8.50 for the Legend).
So as the post title shows, I went with the Legend. Here are my notes. They are short and sweet, because drinking this whisky is a pretty short and sweet experience. On the nose, this reminds me a lot of Johnny Walker Black – a little hit of smoke and some citrus-y sweetness in back. On the palate, it is very light bodied – almost watery. Again, you get a little puff of smoke and then a light taste of honey. Then the show’s over.
Reading back, it sounds like I might have been a little too harsh. This is a pretty straightforward whisky, not a peat monster. And it easily passes my “are you pouring it down the drain” test. It is just … simple. But for $26 a bottle, I wouldn’t fault anyone on a budget for using it as their go-to Tuesday night sipper.
Really, though, the whole reason for posting this review is so that I can show you this video that I recently stumbled across. I was on Youtube, checking out some videos by the great Ralfy, and I somehow found an additional review of Bowmore Legend. I just couldn’t have been more entertained. Enjoy:
My favorite part of blogging is when some of my visitors talk whisky in the comments. Almost to a person, they know more than me about the subject, so it is a great learning experience. So I’ll open it up to you – what are your picks for great whisky values?
I’ll start with a few picks of my own. Two bottles that I quite enjoy for under $35 locally are Glenmorangie Original and Old Pulteney 12 (WW reviews both upcoming ) (and actually, if I had to settle on just one value bottle, OP12 might be the one). A couple of dollars higher, and I’m coming to realize that I am all about Highland Park 12 (at $41).
For another data point, we can look to Ryan’s Value Whiskey Reviews. For his highest value rating, he also lists the Highland Park 12, and also highlights Talisker $10, at $48 per. What say you, good readers?