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 Highland Park Scotch?

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Ocelot55

Ocelot55

Location : Columbus, OH
Registration date : 2012-03-28

Highland Park Scotch? Empty
PostSubject: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyThu Oct 31, 2013 5:55 pm

I picked up a bottle today. It was reasonably priced so I figured I didn't have much to lose.

Any of you guys had it? What did you think of it?
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Bluefisher

Bluefisher

Age : 46
Location : Seattle, WA
Registration date : 2012-11-02

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyThu Oct 31, 2013 7:20 pm

yeap, it's for sure solid. I think it's a great deal. To me maybe not the most complex of single malts, but I do enjoy it.
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Puff Daddy
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Puff Daddy

Age : 55
Location : South of heaven
Registration date : 2007-12-09

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyThu Oct 31, 2013 8:15 pm

Here it runs about $45 a bottle. It's nice enough, but at that price point there are simply too many other better or more interesting malts available. A friend of mine put it best (regarding Highland Park). It's good, but it's a little bit of everything and not enough of anything. However, I do have to reiterate that it is pretty good stuff and I certainly wouldn't think twice about enjoying a dram of it. Let us know your impressions of it.

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Stogiegila

Stogiegila

Location : Phoenix, AZ
Registration date : 2010-10-13

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyFri Nov 01, 2013 2:29 pm

My scotch of choice is Laphroig 10 yr, but most people hate this stuff. But when I want a nice lighter sweeter scotch, I chose Highland Park.

Everyone's tastes are different but I think it is one of the best choices out there period.

Just my 2 cents
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Ocelot55

Ocelot55

Location : Columbus, OH
Registration date : 2012-03-28

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyFri Nov 01, 2013 2:40 pm

Well, I had my first dram of Highland Park last night. I must confess that the only thing remarkable about this Scotch was how unremarkable it was.

Light, balanced sweetness, very drinkable, but not much depth or complexity. If it was a few bucks cheaper I'd say it would be a great casual scotch, but I can get Balvanie, Glen Livet, or a few others for just a couple more bucks.

Will I buy it again? Maybe....
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Stogiegila

Stogiegila

Location : Phoenix, AZ
Registration date : 2010-10-13

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyFri Nov 01, 2013 3:00 pm

See just goes to show you that everyone has different tastes. I've tried all of these:

Macallan 12 yr
Glenlivet 12 yr
Glenmorangie
Lagavulin
Ardberg 10 yr
Laphroaig 18 yr
Bowmore 12 yr (the most retched stuff ever)
Isle of Jura

and maybe a couple of more that I can't remember. I still prefer Laphroaig 10 yr, but I'd take Highland Park over all the ones listed above.

Ardberg was pretty good, but I prefer Laphroaig better. The only other one that I enjoyed was Glenmorangie. Lighter and sweeter, but a bit different.

Try everything and then find the one you like the best. Very Happy 
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Zeno Marx

Zeno Marx

Registration date : 2010-06-26

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyFri Nov 01, 2013 3:15 pm

It used to be one of the better values here, but all the scotches went up 20-40% in a single day. It was a difficult pill to swallow. It's interesting when anything is a clear value one day, and the next day it is amongst many other peers. One day it is maybe the only thing at that price point, and then the bean counters place it against many other options and better quality. Can't figure out how you hold onto a business with this plan.
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Puff Daddy
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Puff Daddy

Age : 55
Location : South of heaven
Registration date : 2007-12-09

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyFri Nov 01, 2013 3:49 pm

Ocelot55 wrote:
...the only thing remarkable about this Scotch was how unremarkable it was. Light, balanced sweetness, very drinkable, but not much depth or complexity.  
Yeah, it's really interchangeable with many other tame (but nice enough) Highland malts. I've overpaid for an Oban 14 that was no more interesting than HP, and also found that, at $29, a bottle of Glenmorangie is at least as good as both of them.

It's interesting that HP tries to sell itself as a great island malt with a sea oriented nature, as there's barely any trace of the sea in it when compared to it's brethren. It has more in common with a genteel Highland than anything else. Now, if you want to try something really interesting, something kind of Highland Park in nature but having a definite briney, maritime influence, get ahold of some Old Pultney. It's about $15 cheaper than HP too Wink

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mejoshee

mejoshee

Age : 34
Location : Campbell, CA
Registration date : 2013-05-31

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyWed Nov 06, 2013 6:53 pm

Ocelot55 wrote:
Well, I had my first dram of Highland Park last night. I must confess that the only thing remarkable about this Scotch was how unremarkable it was.

Light, balanced sweetness, very drinkable, but not much depth or complexity. If it was a few bucks cheaper I'd say it would be a great casual scotch, but I can get Balvanie, Glen Livet, or a few others for just a couple more bucks.

Will I buy it again? Maybe....
What year/expression was it? 15-18yr starts to get good, but 12yr is just mediocre. (Completely unqualified statement. But I can back it up if you like...)

What were you hoping to get? What do you like otherwise?

As for purchasing whisky, I'm a bit spoiled here in CA. Except for the detracting local sales tax @ 8.75%, most places have a good or even great selection. I frequent a store called K&L, which unfortunately cannot ship to TX, but, I can make...certain arrangements...

I can also go to Costco nearby and get some large production whisky at good cost: Oban 14yr @ $55 regular price, sometimes the 12/15yr 2 pk of HP, Glenfiddich 18yr $60 I think?

And Puff, to clarify, the HP distillery is actually on the isle of Orkney, not in the Highland region of the Scottish mainland.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Highland_Park_distillery

This is why they have the right to tout themselves as of island ilk. Now, if you are thinking islay (smoky/peaty/briny), then that is not the same thing as isle-type. In fact isle whiskies have more variation in themselves than you'd think. To be clear islay ≠ isles, but islay are a subset of isles.

I'd love to sit and chat about whisky all day long. It's fascinating to me! study 
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Ocelot55

Ocelot55

Location : Columbus, OH
Registration date : 2012-03-28

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyWed Nov 06, 2013 7:07 pm

I had the 12 year Highland Park. Very drinkable, just not much character.

I don't really know what my preference in tastes are yet, but I think that I like Highlands the best. Any good recommendations?
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Puff Daddy
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Puff Daddy

Age : 55
Location : South of heaven
Registration date : 2007-12-09

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyWed Nov 06, 2013 7:16 pm

mejoshee wrote:
And Puff, to clarify, the HP distillery is actually on the isle of Orkney, not in the Highland region of the Scottish mainland. 
Yes, I know. I was trying to say that I thought it was interesting that their malt didn't display the characteristics of an island malt but rather had more in common tastewise with a highland malt.

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mejoshee

mejoshee

Age : 34
Location : Campbell, CA
Registration date : 2013-05-31

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyWed Nov 06, 2013 7:39 pm

Ocelot55 wrote:
I had the 12 year Highland Park. Very drinkable, just not much character.

I don't really know what my preference in tastes are yet, but I think that I like Highlands the best. Any good recommendations?
At the ~$40 price point you are sort of in the gray area, IMHO. Above $50 and you can get really good whisky (and even some deals). For lighter, sweeter scotches in the vein of Highland & Speyside styles, you are right about Glenmorangie & Glenlivet.

Glenmorangie La Santa & Quinta Ruban are a little more interesting than the 10yr, but not super fancy. Macallan 12yr (can be spicy!), Glenlivet 15yr, and Aberlour 12yr are also good for the price point. I've not tried Arran 10yr, but Arran 16yr was quite good if on the subtler side. As I mentioned before, Oban 14yr, which is very smooth and a "typical" Highland, but it's not particularly interesting. An unusual unpeated whisky from a typically peated distillery is Bruichladdich Rocks. Springbank 10yr is a great entree into their portfolio, but it'll be closer to the $55-60 price point.

If you want to venture into the peated territory but just want to get your feet wet, try something from Ardmore, Bowmore, or Bunnhabhain and consider cutting a little with tepid water. Especially if it's a cask strength expression. This opens up the floral aromas, sweetness, and malt and dissipates the smokiness that often is off-putting at first whiff (sea breeze, seaweed, band-aid, iodine, salt water, tar, medicine, etc.). It's definitely an acquired taste, but keep your mind open and try a little at a time. You may be surprised to like it, just like, for example, Latakia!

If you want more reading on product descriptions/reviews, go to klwines.com and browse through the single malt options. You won't be able to get them all over there, but you should get an idea about the both big and small names in Scotland. Then of course you can cross-compare with bevmo.com (a west coast chain institution), but you'll likely find the prices higher.
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mejoshee

mejoshee

Age : 34
Location : Campbell, CA
Registration date : 2013-05-31

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyWed Nov 06, 2013 7:40 pm

Puff Daddy wrote:
mejoshee wrote:
And Puff, to clarify, the HP distillery is actually on the isle of Orkney, not in the Highland region of the Scottish mainland. 
Yes, I know. I was trying to say that I thought it was interesting that their malt didn't display the characteristics of an island malt but rather had more in common tastewise with a highland malt.
Ah, ok. Yeah, there seems to be little rules once you leave the mainland Razz
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DrumsAndBeer

DrumsAndBeer

Age : 47
Location : Northern, CA
Registration date : 2012-04-04

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PostSubject: Re: Highland Park Scotch?   Highland Park Scotch? EmptyWed Nov 06, 2013 8:58 pm

Stogiegila wrote:
My scotch of choice is Laphroig 10 yr.
Of the affordable Islay's, that's my choice as well. I prefer Ardbeg 10 over Laphroig 10 but my wallet prefers the Laphroig.

I haven't had Highland Park 12, but it looks good. BevMo has it for 39.99 and that's about the most I want to pay for scotch. Once every now & again when the coffers are well stocked, I'll splurge for a bottle of Springbank, Glenrothes or Lagavulin.

I have a Glenrothes from 1982 right now that is ridiculous.
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