INTRODUCTION

Join with me for the next twenty-four days as we countdown to Christmas with the Drinks by the Dram Premium Whisky Advent Calendar. Each day will present a new whisky adventure ranging from Elijah Craig Barrel Proof to The Half-Century Blend. Check back every day for a brief review of each whisky tasted. I plan to give a quick review of the nose, taste, finish, and general cost range, if I can find it, of the dram with an overall A, B, C type score. Since each sample is only an ounce, the letter grade system allows for a more generalized overview of the whisky. The latest update will be posted to the calendar below, so check back throughout the month of December!

The scoring scale:

A+ = 95 and higher, A = 94-93, A- = 92-90, B+ = 89-87, B = 86-83, B- = 82-80, C+ = 79-77, C = 76-73, — and hopefully there will not be any whiskies at these levels, but just in case C- = 72-70, D = 69-60, F = 59 and lower

On to the fun . .

SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
1
Dalwhinnie 25 Year Old 1989 (Special Release 2015)
Dalwhinnie 25 Year Old 1989 (Special Release 2015)
Dec 1 all-day
Dalwhinnie 25 Year Old 1989 (Special Release 2015)
Dalwhinnie 25 Year Old 1989 (Special Release 2015) ABV: 48.8% Cost: $375-$500 Nose:  honey, floral, crisp green apple and citrus notes – a beautiful richness Taste: spice greets the palate, cinnamon with honey returning along with
2
The Balvenie Peat Week – 2002 Vintage
The Balvenie Peat Week – 2002 Vintage
Dec 2 all-day
The Balvenie Peat Week - 2002 Vintage
The Balvenie 14 Year Old Peat Week – 2002 Vintage          ABV: 48.3%     Cost: $95-$110 Nose:  definitely not Islay peat; musty vegetal note, citrusy lemon, honey, wet wool Taste:  like better than
3
Mackmyra Moment – Malström (Swedish Single Malt)
Mackmyra Moment – Malström (Swedish Single Malt)
Dec 3 all-day
Mackmyra Moment – Malström (Swedish Single Malt)
Mackmyra Moment – Malström (Swedish Single Malt) ABV: 46.4% Cost: $150-175 Nose:  salty sweetness, berry fruits, some dustiness, honey, caramel, oak with a touch of spice Taste:  definitely get the oakiness and spice, a touch
4
The Dalmore King Alexander III
The Dalmore King Alexander III
Dec 4 all-day
The Dalmore King Alexander III
The Dalmore King Alexander III ABV: 40%   Cost: $225-$300 Nose:  luscious red fruits, tart cherries, sweet barley malt, an orange zest note, caramel and butterscotch – very pleasant nose for this dram Taste: blood
5
Old Particular North British 27 Year Old
Old Particular North British 27 Year Old
Dec 5 all-day
Old Particular North British 27 Year Old
Old Particular North British 27 Year Old 1988 (cask 10938) ABV: 50.2%   Cost: $100-$125 Nose:  orange sherbet citrusy notes, honey syrup with some vanilla – a cotton candy like sweetness, but not cloyingly so Taste: the
6
Glenfarclas 25 Year Old
Glenfarclas 25 Year Old
Dec 6 all-day
Glenfarclas 25 Year Old
Glenfarclas 25 Year Old ABV: 43%   Cost: $150-$185 Nose:  oh, the sherry – raisins and figs, a thick molasses sweetness, with some caramel and vanilla, pears in light syrup; such a very pleasant nose
7
Deanston 18 Year Old
Deanston 18 Year Old
Dec 7 all-day
Deanston 18 Year Old
Deanston 18 Year Old ABV: 46.3%      Cost: $125-$165 Nose:  heather honey sweetness, touch of floral, some tartness – lime, subtle vanilla note  Taste:  hefty on the palate – mouth coating, some dark sugars
8
Caol Ila Distillers Edition 2015
Caol Ila Distillers Edition 2015
Dec 8 all-day
Caol Ila Distillers Edition 2015
Caol Ila Distillers Edition Moscatel Cask Finish (2015) ABV: 43%      Cost: $100-$125 Nose:  sweet fruit notes wrapped in lovely Islay peat, raisins, vanilla, some floral elements, a touch of salt – I could
9
Big Peat
Big Peat
Dec 9 all-day
Big Peat
Big Peat Drinks by the Dram Edition ABV: 48%      Cost: $75-$90 Nose:  a syrupy sweet, briny, seashell, peat smoke concoction – with a touch of caramel and vanilla, some citrus, and iodine Taste:  smoky
Dailuaine 16 Year Old
Dailuaine 16 Year Old
Dec 10 all-day
Dailuaine 16 Year Old
Dailuaine 16 Year Old Flora and Fauna ABV: 43%      Cost: $90-$120 (est shipped from Scotland) Nose:  sherry notes at the front, barley malt sugars, fruitcake, raisins, dates, figs, a little spice Taste:  the
Auchentoshan 18 Year Old
Auchentoshan 18 Year Old
Dec 11 all-day
Auchentoshan 18 Year Old
Auchentoshan 18 Year Old ABV: 43%      Cost: $125-$150 Nose:  barley sugars, honey caramel, a touch of vanilla, with some light citrus and fresh cut apples – a pleasant outdoors in an open field
Stagg Jr.
Stagg Jr.
Dec 12 all-day
Stagg Jr.
Stagg Jr. ABV: 64.9%      Cost: $55-$75 Nose:  classic bourbon notes, caramel, vanilla, a molasses sweetness, a touch of cinnamon spice and oak; one that is really nice to sit with and just enjoy
Royal Brackla 14 Year Old
Royal Brackla 14 Year Old
Dec 13 all-day
Royal Brackla 14 Year Old
Royal Brackla 14 Year Old [Càrn Mòr Strictly Limited 2001 (bottled 2016)]   ABV: 46%      Cost: $95-$115 (approximate cost shipped to US) Nose:  bright honey malt sweetness, sugar cookies – with some lime, pear,
Glenfiddich 21 Year Old Gran Reserve
Glenfiddich 21 Year Old Gran Reserve
Dec 14 all-day
Glenfiddich 21 Year Old Gran Reserve
Glenfiddich 21 Year Old Gran Reserve     ABV: 40%      Cost: $175-$225 Nose:  honey, barley sugars, definite citrus – orange zest, touch of grapefruit, butterscotch Taste:  blast of sweetness initially on the tongue, vanilla toffee,
Wolfburn Aurora Single Malt
Wolfburn Aurora Single Malt
Dec 15 all-day
Wolfburn Aurora Single Malt
Wolfburn Aurora Single Malt ABV: 46%      Cost: $60-$70 Nose:  warm sweet buns out of the oven, honey vanilla, a touch of raisins, green banana, some floral elements also  Taste:  a malty sweet, caramel
The Lost Distilleries Blend Batch 10
The Lost Distilleries Blend Batch 10
Dec 16 all-day
The Lost Distilleries Blend Batch 10
The Lost Distilleries Blend Batch 10    ABV: 51%      Cost: $425-$450 (shipped to US) Nose:  caramel, chocolate, some spiced apple, barley sugars, vanilla crème, some mustiness Taste:  wonderful viscous coating mouthfeel, chewy caramel, spiced
Tullamore Dew 18 Year Old
Tullamore Dew 18 Year Old
Dec 17 all-day
Tullamore Dew 18 Year Old
Tullamore Dew 18 Year Old   ABV: 41.4%      Cost: $110-$135 Nose:  a bright nose, a blood orange citrus – very pleasant note, touch of slightly spiced toffee, peach rings candy, brown sugars Taste:
Talisker 18 Year Old
Talisker 18 Year Old
Dec 18 all-day
Talisker 18 Year Old
Talisker 18 Year Old   ABV: 45.8%      Cost: $150-$175 Nose:  a briny sea salt smokiness, fresh squeezed lime, green apple, fresh fleshy fruit at the market, seashell, some butterscotch, and an ever so
Kavalan Sherry Oak
Kavalan Sherry Oak
Dec 19 all-day
Kavalan Sherry Oak
Kavalan Sherry Oak ABV: 46%      Cost: $140-$175 Nose:  sherried dark fruits, raisins, a tart note – cherries, some damp earthy funk, a sweet and sour battle raging, savory with a light touch of
Kilchoman 100% Islay – 7th Edition
Kilchoman 100% Islay – 7th Edition
Dec 20 all-day
Kilchoman 100% Islay - 7th Edition
Kilchoman 100% Islay – 7th Edition ABV: 50%      Cost: $95-$115 Nose:  sweet barley sugars wrapped in a smoky embrace, sea salt brininess, honeyed vanilla pod with a touch of mint, some citrus and
The Macallan Rare Cask
The Macallan Rare Cask
Dec 21 all-day
The Macallan Rare Cask
The Macallan Rare Cask ABV: 43%      Cost: $275-$325 Nose:  caramel – brown sugar, fudge, sherry dark fruits – raisins, cherries, some orange citrus and pipe tobacco notes  Taste:  classic sherried scotch notes –
Tomatin 27 Year Old – 1988 Batch 3
Tomatin 27 Year Old – 1988 Batch 3
Dec 22 all-day
Tomatin 27 Year Old - 1988 Batch 3
Tomatin 27 Year Old – 1988 Batch 3 ABV: 50%      Cost: $225-$275 (shipped to US) Nose:  barley malt sweetness, a touch of molasses, white grapes and vanilla-honey, some leather-ish elements underneath  Taste:  great
Elijah Craig Barrel Proof – Batch #11 (B516)
Elijah Craig Barrel Proof – Batch #11 (B516)
Dec 23 all-day
Elijah Craig Barrel Proof - Batch #11 (B516)
Elijah Craig Barrel Proof – Batch #11 ABV: 69.7%      Cost: $55-$80 Nose:  caramel, toffee, vanilla, with definite wood spice – wonderful bourbon nose  Taste:  the high proof shines through – mouth coating caramelized
The Half-Century Blend Batch 2
The Half-Century Blend Batch 2
Dec 24 all-day
The Half-Century Blend Batch 2
The Half-Century Blend Batch 2    ABV: 46.4%      Cost: $725-$750 (shipped to US) Nose:  a dusty powdered sugar sweetness, more sugars – caramel and toffee, a green apple tartness with salt added, fruit cocktail

 

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About Author

Senior Staff Writer, Wes, was born and raised in Darlington, South Carolina and attended college at the United States Air Force Academy. After flying helicopters for the Air Force and teaching at the Air Force Academy, he retired in beautiful Colorado Springs, Colorado, after twenty years of military service. He now works in public school education, is married with three children, and leads the monthly Proper Pour Whisk(e)y Club. You can follow him on Twitter @WesModernThirst and e-mail him at Wes@ModernThirst.com.

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