cinci-hal wrote:In the meantime I would like some recommendations on good starter whiskeys according to my current tastes. As far as spirits go, I am normally a cognac drinker. Flavors that appeal to me: some sweetness, ripe apple and pear, nutty, nutmeg, vanilla, brown sugar, maple, smooth not sharp or stinging.
I'll simply toss a few suggestions out there, as I'm sure others will also chime in with worthy recommendations.
Glenmorangie Original: Balanced, subtle fruitiness with nice touches of nutmeg and ginger. Goes down easily. An everyday sort of whisky.
Maker's 46: The (to my taste, at any rate) Cognac-like persona of Maker's Mark taken to a different level with added maple richness and smoothness.
Glenlivet Nàdurra Cask Strength: The inherently delicate and fruity nature of Glenlivet intensified by sourcing the whisky from first-fill ex-Bourbon casks (not to mention the higher proof contributing greater apparent sweetness). Great value, too.
Booker's Bourbon: An absolute monster as it pours. But add water cautiously, and it transforms into a raisin and spice cocktail of considerable allure.
Glenfiddich 18 Year Old: Spiced honey pots. Lovely stuff.
Glenlivet 21 Year Old Archive: Dessert whisky!
As for ex-Sherry cask matured Scotch malt whiskies, you may need to exercise some care in selection, as the tannic extraction from European oak (where it is utilized) can add a bit of bite to the tail end of the flavour spectrum. That said, you say you like Cognac. So this may not be of great concern to you.
Hakushu 12 - Great easy drinker still with plenty character.
You should find both of these smooth and refined with some of the other characteristics you enjoy.
You'll get plenty of recommendations on Scottish Whisky from others here.
And I totally forgot to mention An Cnoc 12 Year Old, which has to be one of the fruitiest and most approachable malt Scotches out there.
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