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Duty Free Shop - Suggestions

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@SlowPuffs
SlowPuffs started a discussion

My wife is going to Florida tomorrow night for a couple weeks. Upon returning, she leaves Jacksonville, Florida, then a change over in Chicago before coming home to Edmonton. Not sure what is out there in the "Duty free" shops.

I was going to lean towards the Platinum JW (I can get it here for about $180). My favs are smokies like Lagavelin, Ardbeg, Talisker. Then again, maybe just bring back to Canada a Bourbon that I've recently have enjoyed.

Any recommendations, from the airport Duty from the USA to Canada would be appreciated.

11 years ago

25 replies

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@SlowPuffs. I have found standards like Ardbeg 10, Talisker 10, Laphroaig 10, JW Green, Balvenie DW in 1 litre size for $50 or less at duty free. I always grab one of those because Ardbeg 10, for instance, is over $90 for 750ml at home.

11 years ago 0

@Benancio
Benancio replied

@SlowPuffs , Bowmore Mariner 15y, its only sold in duty free shops. See what you can find out about it.

11 years ago 0

@SlowPuffs
SlowPuffs replied

@BlueNote Thank you Blue Note. I have all those in my cabinet. I'm surprised that Ardbeg 10 is at $90. I found one store in Edmonton where I can get it for about $52, sale price. I have 7 bottles in my cabinet :) . It would be easier if the Duty Free Shops would list what they are offering :).

I'm not a JW fan per se, but at some point, I would like to do a comparative tasting. I've only have had the "red" in a miniature. But I was gifted the Blue and Gold 18. I bought the Green, Double Black, Black and was thinking the Platinum would be a "filler" for the series. I just can get past the thought that the new offerings are only "hype".

Now I'm thinking of a Lagavulin that I've been nursing for almost two years !

11 years ago 0

@SlowPuffs
SlowPuffs replied

@Benancio Thank you. This may be an appealing approach... get something that isn't readily available. I will research Bowmore Mariner 15y.

11 years ago 0

@JeffC
JeffC replied

You might want to look at the Chicago airport webpage and see if there are links to the duty free stores. A few weeks ago I traveleved overseas. While leaving the US, I noted that the selection of American and Canadian whisky was very poor and there was nothing I could not find for a better price and selection in a normal shop. The Scotch selections were somewhat better. Returning to the US from Europe, I picked up a bottle of Highland Park 1998 which is ok but not noticeably better than HP 12 in my view.

For the most part it seemed that selections were either one of two things: duty free only like HP 1998 or (originally) Johnnie Walker Double Black or alternatively the same stuff you'll see in any shop (Talisker 10, Gentleman Jack, Black Grouse, etc.) but in a 1 liter bottle instead of the standard 700 or 750ml.

I'm not convinced there is much overall to the duty free experience but it is convenient and a bit fun.

11 years ago 0

@SlowPuffs
SlowPuffs replied

@JeffC Greetings Jeff. Great to see you survived your election down there :). Great suggestion. I went to the O'Hare website. Lots of stores on the website but little about Duty Free, except one comment: "similar to Vegas"

I'm going to change directions. A friend was looking for Pappy Van Winkle’s bourbon whiskey a couple weeks ago. A search of Edmonton was in vain. So I'd be happy if my wife comes across a nice 15 y.o. while she's shopping in Florida. I think a read somewhere here that it's a nice bourbon.

11 years ago 0

@SlowPuffs
SlowPuffs replied

The saga continues...

I received an email from my wife last night. She dropped into one liquor outlet near Jacksonville, Florida and the clerk shared that they had a waiting list of 30 people waiting for Van Winkle. Wow. I'm surprised Diageo hasn't bought this company... then again perhaps they own it.

11 years ago 0

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

If I could just divert this discussion slightly: Does anybody know if the duty free at Sea-Tac airport in Seattle has a decent selection and if so any recommendations for a good buy or two? I'll be passing through there in the next couple of months.

11 years ago 0

@PMessinger
PMessinger replied

@BlueNote Hey I was @ Sea-Tac in August saw mostly JW is lots of supply, Crown Royal, CC, and Brandys were plenty as well. A lot can change in a few months though, hope this was helpful. :)

11 years ago 0

@SlowPuffs
SlowPuffs replied

@Victor Lol. Received another email from my wife. She said that Pappy Van Winkle is considered like gold in Florida.

Interesting saga: I phoned a friend in Edmonton who was looking for Pappy Van Winkle for a friend. Come to find out, his friend is from Houston and is going to be in Calgary this weekend where they are getting together. His friend in Houston is on "a list" of 50 people.

Anyway, my Edmonton friend found 10 year old in a store near his house, 3 bottles in the price range of about mid $60 each. Meanwhile, yesterday I dropped into a small "mom and pop" outlet nearby and they had one bottle of Pappy 20 y.o. with a price of $150. After reading some of the reviews, I think I'll wait until I come across a 15 y.o.

Anyway, my wife said she found "something" but I'd have to wait for my birthday next month. I'll cry if if its some spiced up or cherry flavoured thing :( . She doesn't know whiskies. But then again, it's the thought that counts.

11 years ago 0

@PMessinger
PMessinger replied

@SlowPuffs Thats ths spirit wives are awesome to think of giving you whisky for birthday, it truly is the thought that counts. I have been blessed to get whisky for christmas and birthdays and always make room in my cabinet for such things. Good luck happy birthday next month. :)

11 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor replied

@SlowPuffs, yes, with Van Winkle the Pappy Van Winkle 15 is the one you want. But remember it's made at a different distillery beginning Fall 2011 and is not the same juice that built the legend and the followiing. Being made at Buffalo Trace instead of Stitzel-Weller hasn't cut down the demand one bit, though. No other product line, not even the Sazerac Trace Antique Collection, brings out more frenzied competition for bottles among US whiskey drinkers.

11 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor replied

Erratum: should be Sazerac Antique Collection, above. (Made at Buffalo Trace)

11 years ago 0

@SlowPuffs
SlowPuffs replied

@Victor Thanks Victor.... I made the decision to go buy the 20 y.o. anyway and when (and if) I come across the 15 y.o., I'll pick that up. It would be interesting to know what the Buffalo Trace's impact is on the 15 y.o. Pappy.

11 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor replied

@SlowPuffs, I discuss the differences in the 'old' and 'new' PVW15s in my two reviews of them. The 'new 15' is definitely a work in progress, though, and I fully expect that there will be changes and variety in it in the releases coming out now and into the future. By "work in progress" I do not mean that the 'new 15' is bad bourbon, far from it, but rather that there may be a period of adjusting the flavour profile in the product coming out of the new Buffalo Trace source of distillate.

I like PVW20 quite a lot, though it is actually much tamer than the 15. Some Pappy lover love that one best of all. For the money, though, if you can't get the PVW15, the 12 yo Special Reserve "Lot B" and the 107 proof 10 yo Old Rip Van Winkle are very solid choices. (The 23 yo is way too expensive and not as good as the 15 yo.)

Don't forget that the lower proof versions of Van Winkle are a bit more delicate in their flavouring than are a lot of whiskeys. They really need a very clean palate to fully appreciate them.

11 years ago 0

apdz replied

Hey people, Im in the same situation which one...

glenfiddich 15 Distillery edition or glenfiddich 15 solera

and also...

ardbeg 10 or laphroaig cask strength...

I'd be interested in your thoughts.

11 years ago 0

apdz replied

or instead of the glenfiddich's, maybe glenlivet 15? cheers.

11 years ago 0

@Max
Max replied

Maybe a bit off-topic, but my general rule is - in DF I'm usually looking for bottles that are not available where I live.

11 years ago 0

apdz replied

@Max haha in duty free i look for bottles cheaper than where i live... e.g. laphroaig CS is 70nzd vs around 200nzd in shops ... thats just rude. NZ duty free doesnt have many exclusive bottles either though I see where your coming from and good point.

11 years ago 0

@Max
Max replied

@apdz well, of course price is not of the least importance) I am very tempted to grab a bottle 2 times cheaper than in local stores. Ardbeg 10yo is close to 100 USD here, which is insane IMO(

11 years ago 0

@PMessinger
PMessinger replied

@Max Great point I also try to find bottles @ DF that I can't fing locally. Sometimes I get good price sometimes not. The last time I traveled all they had that was new was JW Double Black I can get that @ home so it wasn't a big find. :)

11 years ago 0

apdz replied

@Max wow. 1L ardbeg 10 in duty free at auckland international is 60nzd! (50usd)

11 years ago 0

@Danke
Danke replied

Glenfiddich 15 solera, Bunnahabhain Darach Ur, Glengoyne 12 cask strenght.

11 years ago 1Who liked this?

apdz replied

@Danke I ended up getting the distellery edition glenfiddich 15 since thats not in any local shops. Will look out for the other bottles next time. Cheers.

11 years ago 0