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Postby georgebarkman » Fri Apr 20, 2001 12:39 am

Lex, you are absolutly correct on the blind tast test issue. One cannot help but have preconceived ideas and it really would be good to know if blind or not.

Frederick C. Lindgren
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Postby Frederick C. Lindgren » Mon Apr 30, 2001 6:29 am

Thanks first of all to the most generous of all to my responses in Iain's exposure of false advertising in today's whisky market. Let's put it this way, I don't believe a word about any present day distillery in Scotland, much less Manx, before 1800 A.D. Nevertheless, one can go between Crewe and Chester in 1944 A.D. and have found whisky in the Tarpoley Manor House that was the smoothest, smokiest, "peatedist", spicyist and medicinal
whisky ever tasted before or since. What was that all about, I forget, except it had something to do with getting those "damn Jerries" out of the garden. Am still looking for a bottle of Caol Ila here in Milwaukee. It's like finding a needle in a haystack.


Frederick C. Lindgren
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More up-to-date news on this website?

Postby Frederick C. Lindgren » Wed May 02, 2001 3:41 am

Hello everybody,

a question more of less to the editors/moderators and wondering about your opinion:

Should the news on this website be regularly updated?

I noticed that the 'all the latest whisky news' dates 26 March, now it's 30 April. Hasn't anything interesting happened in the mean time?


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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun May 13, 2001 1:37 pm


A blind nosing and tasting could be very nice, but that is nice if you don't want to find yourself deceived by any color or brand. I think that this is more to get your self to your maximum senses, your only reliable tool is your nose. From time to time this could be fun, and you can't misled your self by other opinions from people who are selling a particular brand or their opinions about a specific brand. However I can understand why people say: "no blind nosing and tasting for me" because they want to note the color and its viscosity etc. I think that blind nosing and tasting is useful if there is some "brand benefit" is involved.....



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Postby Deactivated Member » Wed May 16, 2001 2:51 pm

I couldn't agree with you more Huurman.

Blind tastings is the way to go when sampling whiskies Image

Except for on thing: WHy bother comparing or even taking notes on the coulour of whisky? It's pretty pointless, since caramel (E150) or other artificial colouring might have been added to obtain the "corporate colour" or the "right shade of reddish brown"... Image

And Frederick, i think you're mistaken. It is definitely possible to identify Talisker, Laphroaig, Knockando, and other brands in a blind tasting. I've done it and many others too.


Martin B

Frederick C. Lindgren
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Postby Frederick C. Lindgren » Sat May 26, 2001 5:52 am

Martin B & Co.,
We've bin blind tastin' Ardbeg, Lagavolin, Laphraoig, and Caol Ilon (pardon me spellin') for months now and can't come up with the right brand 33.3% of the time. All's I can say is your a better man than I Gunga Din.


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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun May 27, 2001 7:15 pm

Hi Frederick,

Most times my friends and I taste whisky we tend to overindulge things get out of hand, and the tasting turns into a *whisky*-party... Image

However, there are several whiskies from Speyside where I haven't got a clue what brand or age I am drinking. It's not always easy Image

Regards and Skål

Martin B

[This message has been edited by mgmtmbeh (edited 27 May 2001).]

Wee Mark
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Postby Wee Mark » Sun Jun 03, 2001 9:34 pm

I can see your points about blind tastings when trying to be as objective as possible during your tastings, the recent best of the best proves this. however this also something nice about knowing what your drinking and getting side tracked by it all it can make the appreciation of the whisky far more enjoyable. Similar to Jim Murray's point in a previous whisky magazine about how when you taste a whisky at the distillery it is one of the best whisky you will ever taste. So if knowing what you are drinking enhances your enjoyment (and that's what drinking whisky is all about) then it shouldn't be a problem

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Postby Rudy » Mon Apr 14, 2003 7:22 pm

Hello everybody,

although this is an older issue, I'd like to share my experience with blind tastings.

If asked, what the best way would be to enjoy and appreciate whisky my outcome would be:

1. Ex aequo: with your best friends or at blind tastings
3. At 'normal' tastings
4. Alone.

I have participated in some blind tastings and that is absolutely great fun!!
In a group of 20 people we got 10 samples in clear glasses with someone animating the session. After each sample, the discussions and taking notes, the bottle was revealed.
You really find out how your taste buds work. Especially when there's an Irish whisky among them and everybody claims it to be one of the Lowlands...(to be honest, I did not think of Irish either...) I learned quite a lot from the discussions we had.

What you see, is that 'well known' regional characteristics can be identified by many group members, with the experienced participants getting approximately 50% right!

For me that still as a long way to go, but well, I keep on practising!


PS1: there was no brand benefit involved, there were OB's, independents, finishes, cask strengths, limited editions, almost any variation possible.

PS2: Frank, have you found your bottle of Coal Ila by now? Surely since there's a range of OB now. Have you already improved your score of 33.3%? And about high end audio: there are also some very characteristical differences like dynamic vs. electrostatic speakers or solid state vs. tube amplifiers. So here the differences should be noticeable as well...

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Postby skywalker » Wed Apr 16, 2003 9:14 pm


I think its even possible to spot a difference between the Islays, all distilleries have a different character. As a beginner I wasn´t able to figure out a difference between smoky whiskies, but it takes lots of experience to realize the differencies between smoky whiskies. I agree on the point that its not possible to spot certain distilleries.

For me blind tasting is the most interesting way to conduct tastings, I often swap samples with other whisky fans, you would never believe what these tastings reveal. The guess about the distillery is often totally wrong, especially when you´re misguided by peaty batches of Speyside distilleries.

Thinking about the tastings in the whisky magazine I would really appreciate if the way of the tasting is stated-whether blind or not. If the tasters see the bottle or the colour of the whisky they will start their tasting with expectations from what they know from the past.

Marcin Miller
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Postby Marcin Miller » Thu Apr 17, 2003 7:38 am

The vast majority of tastings in Whisky Magazine - new releases, the tastings by region etc and the Best of the Best - are performed blind.

We use plain glasses so the tasters can study the colour, appearance and clarity of the whisky.

Dave and Michael have their samples prepared. They assess and score them once and write their notes. They assess them a second time to 'double check' their notes. The identities of the whiskies are then revealed allowing the tasters to write their comments.

The only exception to this is the occasional food and whisky matching exercise, which tend to be far less formal.

I hope this helps to explain.


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