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Whisky Resolutions for 2020, anyone?

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By @Nozinan @Nozinan on 28th Dec 2019, show post

Replies: page 2/3

@Nozinan
Nozinan replied

@MadSingleMalt

That is one sure way of avoiding a growing collection of "to be opened" bottles. I have had this problem over and over again, especially when my journey started. Bottles bought in the excitement of it, but too many (12-15) bottles already open, so it will wait its turn. Then more of these accumulate..

More recently, in the last year and a bit I bought at least 3 bottles with the purpose of early opening (Laphroaig Cairdeas Fino Sherry, Octomore 10.1 and AP 20). None were opened yet. Part of the reason is I have no room for open bottles.

This winter I discovered a solution for this. Shared bottles. If you buy one and split it with a friend, it by definition gets opened. And, with only half a bottle, it may open up a little quicker, and is less likely to hang around as long.

about one year ago 4Who liked this?

JayRain replied

@Nozinan Very thoughtful and detail-oriented post Nozinan.

Why not set a goal of no purchases this year? You have more than enough special stuff to last so there is no such thing as 'one that got away'.

If you end up purchasing one or two on impulse sobeit, you will still be done considerably versus the year prior.

Also suggest that you let your primary gifters know about your 20 resolution and that they can transition their generosity to other uses.

I did both of these a couple of years back and have seen my collection reduce considerably (last count was 17 closed and 8 open). I probably purchased 3-4 bottles this year (usually from the US when on a sports trip) although recently picked up the Wiser's 23 Cask Strength (price becomes less of a consideration when you greatly reduce quantity).

My ultimate goal (eta of 2 years) is to have 1 nice bottle of the following on the cabinet (vodka - barrel-aged in oak, grappa - barrel aged in oak, gin, tequila, mezcal, cognac or armagnac, rum, bourbon, rye) and 2 scotches of different profiles. Streamlining to 11 bottles total will be easier to manage on wallet and consumption and ensure that the current collection is enjoyed by those who I want to share with).

All are welcome to the 25 YO collection I have built when those get cracked (2021 most likely) - Laphroaig, Talisker, Macallan, GlenFiddich) are all to be shared w the Connosr community).

A healthy & prosperous 2020 to all,

Jayson

about one year ago 4Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@JayRain, I'm definitely going to be a Connosr member in 2021wink

about one year ago 3Who liked this?

@Nock
Nock replied

Last year I had a number of opportunities to purchase a quite a few whiskies at half price closeout sales here in Virginia (Ardbeg 10yo, Bowmore 15yo, Bruichladdich Classic Laddy, and several others). My collection is the largest it has ever been. I will still buy whisky so I am foolish to think I am going to stop. Rather, I really want to focus on only buying high quality whiskies . . . hopefully only at cask strength.

about one year ago 3Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@Nock Makes perfect sense. I'm trying to do likewise.

about one year ago 0

@talexander
talexander replied

My resolutions? To write more, keep collecting, keep opening, keep investing, have people over more often. And keep dreaming about travelling through Ireland and Japan (and returning to Scotland and Kentucky!)

about one year ago 3Who liked this?

@CanadianNinja

@MadSingleMalt, this is still SO HARD for me even after all these years. Haha!

It usually takes me forever to get myself to open a bottle unless I have more than one.

The sooner I open it, the sooner it’s gone.... this makes me sad...

about one year ago 1Who liked this?

@CanadianNinja

If you ever make it over here, be sure to let me know @talexander. ; )

about one year ago 3Who liked this?

@Nozinan
Nozinan replied

So how is 2020 looking?

I don't think that in January any of expected what we were dealt. It's been one disaster after another.

It's affected my whisky position in an interesting way. My purchasing decisions are unaffected, though I have not kept to my original plan of opening most of what I buy. FORO has hit again, with some Wiser's 23 (admittedly, hard to pass up 1/3 off) and some AP CS because it is so good.

I just ordered some whisky and rum (and Everclear, in case I run out of sanitizer) online, sharing the shipping with a friend, and my totals for the first half of the year are not much different from 2019. 5 bottles of whisky purchased, but only 2 gifted, where last year I had 5 gifted. So my numbers are a little down. I expect that whereas last year I lost control with all the great stuff that came out later and the sales (and FORO), my purchases will be much more limited for the rest of the year.

3 more bottles open than last year, but a couple down to the last drams. And currently 3 more sealed bottles than Dec. 31.

In terms of output from my collection, I've opened 2 bottles so far (1 was a gift), and I have passed along 2 bottles to new homes. One was a Macallan 12 Sherry. I have been nursing a bottle for 2 years now and it does not excite me, but it is a favourite of the person who will ultimately receive it. The other was a surprise, a bottle of Bladnoch. Once my favourite distillery, I succumbed to FORO when I heard it closed. But I have a lot of the 12 YOs and my brother was looking for something unusual for a friend.

What has really surprised me was my intake. I'm currently at a pace to drink less than half of what I did last year. I'm sure COVID has something to do with it. I just can't get motivated to drink on my own as much, and in the last couple of months my review pace has definitely gone down.

I'm still interested. I enjoy the zoom sessions, I enjoy Connosr, but by the time I'm done work (and I've been on vacation this week and still not poured anything since Saturday) I'm tired. It's funny, because one of our friends who really decreased his intake the last 2 years has told me he's drinking a lot more. I guess that is natures way of evening things out...

I think maybe COVID has helped me to focus on some other things more at the expense of whisky. I hope that when my intake increases, I won't let go those other things...

11 months ago 9Who liked this?

@talexander
talexander replied

@Nozinan For me, 2020 is looking good in some ways, not so good in others. Some days I find I'm drinking more, some days less. With my salary cuts, I'm certainly buying far, far less, and dipping a bit more into my inventory. Which is a good thing since I have a lot of bottles that I've acquired with the hopes of an increase in value, which hasn't happened - c'est la vie. Spending less on alcohol overall is good, though spending less on investments is, well, not so good in the long run. Also disappointing is my lack of spending on whisky "tourism"; when I look back, trips to Scotland, Kentucky, WhiskyFest, etc were unforgettable. Maybe it all washes out in the end. But I firmly believe that things will go back to normal soon, and then this wonderful hobby of ours can be as much a part of our lives as it ever was.

11 months ago 7Who liked this?

Astroke replied

@Nozinan , Wiser's 23 at 1/3 off?

11 months ago 1Who liked this?

Astroke replied

@fiddich1980 Yes, I heard about that one, was hoping the clearance had shown up in another location closer to home.

11 months ago 1Who liked this?

@JasonHambrey
JasonHambrey replied

@victor we were only working with a bottle of Stagg that was about 35% full. If we'd conquered a full bottle, we would have not been walking out there - and probably would no longer have living tastebuds. Unsuprisingly, drinking a lot of cask strength bourbon (especially >70%) goes very quickly from "starting to feel it" to "I'm really feeling it"....

11 months ago 3Who liked this?

@JasonHambrey
JasonHambrey replied

I enjoyed that bottle of Stagg. It was far from my favourite bourbons though, only making it to about the third tier of my rating pyramid.

11 months ago 0

@RianC
RianC replied

@Nozinan - I've bought way more than I'd planned to but, in my defence, the situation has meant being able to spend on little else and most of what I've bought has been on sale or at a good price.

If I were to create a resolution for the remainder of 2020 it would be to only buy bottles I REALLY want, even if that means paying a little more than usual. I've just Checked and Amazon has Clynelish 14 for £35 ... blush

11 months ago 4Who liked this?

@OdysseusUnbound

I had vowed to spend less on whisky this year but that's just gone out the window. Not only am I spending more on whisky, but my rum collection is growing quickly. My next investment may end up being a marriage couselor....or a divorce attorney. laughing

11 months ago 5Who liked this?

JayRain replied

Two bottles for 2020 so far:

1) Kirk & Sweeney 18 Rum - had finished off the Lemon Hart 23 (thanks again Victor/Nozinan for the recommendation) and in looking through the LCBO catalog, decided to give this one a whirl (was a fan of the K&S 12 and I have tried most of the brands in the 18-23 year old age range).

2) Knob Creek Cask Strength - when I went to pick up the rum, it was on sale ($103 to $81) so made an impulse purchase. Considering that it was my first bottle, no concerns but also a reminder to only enter the LCBO when necessary

Drinking far less since the Pandemic hit (no social gatherings) so have more inventory than anticipated (running at 16 bottles closed and 7 open) but still have my vision of 4 bottles by 2022.

Goal transferrence of collecting to streamlining - still stokes an OCDish personality but far better on the wallet.

Biggest saving is on restaurants though - use to eat out/go to cocktail bars 1-2 a week and that is vamoose over the last 3 months (and not sure if I will do with the same frequency when they re-open).

11 months ago 3Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@OdysseusUnbound, I believe, from personal experience, your money would be better spent on a bigger cabinet...a 3 or 4 bay wall-sized sectional shelving unit or perhaps some robust book shelves with dimensions of 34" wide x 11" deep x 72" high...adjustable shelves and a flat top. Match them with existing furniture. It'll be the best $1,000 to 1,500 you spend ...and likely the last wink tumbler_glass

11 months ago 5Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@paddockjudge You are a bad man, a very, very bad man ( Seinfeld reference, East Indian accent). wink

11 months ago 4Who liked this?

JayRain replied

Continue to succeed in dialling back the whiskey purchases as only bought 3 sipping whiskeys (Knob Creek Cask Strength, Little Book Chapter 3, Masterson's 10 YO) this year and was gifted one (Balvenie 14 YO Caribbean Casks).

Eyeballing the collection, fInished bottles include the aforementioned Balvenie, Knob Creek & Mastersons, Ardbeg Oogie, Colonel Taylor Small Batch, Glendronach 18 Allardice & Royal Lach House of Baratheon (gifted to me in 2019). A net reduction of 3 bottles and down to 17 overall (including a lot of heavyweights which will ideally be shared w Connosr folks in the next couple of years).

Bottles opened in 2020 that will be finished in early 2021 are the Four Roses Small Batch 2013 and the Kavalan Solist Sherry Cask

Next bottles on the shelf to be open are the Little Book 3, a Longrow Peated and First Edition Clynelish 14 YO and will likely get to the Talisker 57 North & Glenfarclas 21 when we get nicer weather and allowed to socialize in smaller circles again.

Inspired by @bwmccoy posts, I also bought a bottle of Bulleit Bourbon & Sazerac Rye to make cocktails with. These are not everyday sippers and not including in the counting stats.

On the subject of rum, a bit of a sinner in the sense I don't mind that extra sweetening from time to time and enjoyed the Zafra 21, Centenario 25 & Kirk & Sweeney 18's & 23 over the year. All were really good but would give the nod to the Zafra as it also caught me by surprise (between the K&S, I would actually give the nod to the 18 although the tasting was not apples to apples in how long the bottle was open). Based on recommendations from others, I have a bottle of the Real McCoy on order.

Normally a fan of oak-based gin however the Black Fox did not really work for me and still fondly remember the Smooth Ambler, Burrough's Reserve & Barr Hill delicious mash-ups.

Suspect that 2021 will be the same, add ~3 bottles, finish 5-6 for another small reduction. I do want to add back 1 cognac to my collection and will do so when seeing a bottle that I want.

Just a recall that my vision is to streamline my collection to 1 of each major spirit (rum, gin, tequila, mezcal, cognac/armagnac) and 5 whiskeys (rye, bourbon, international whiskey, 1 Islay/Islands & 1 Speyside, C-Town Highlands, Lowlands) at any given time. Only buy/replenish when a bottle is finished.

4 months ago 7Who liked this?

@Nozinan
Nozinan replied

@JayRain Very reasonable goals. If I were to follow them I would never but whisky again. I wish I had your self control...

4 months ago 4Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@JayRain You are an example to us all. I'm going to try harder next year to reduce the number of bottles I have (currently 78) before buying any more. Like @Nozinan I don't know where to put the stuff anymore and herself is getting a wee bit testy on the subject.

To all my connosr friends: Best wishes for the holiday season and the coming year. May 2021 bring better things for all of us and our beleaguered planet.

4 months ago 6Who liked this?

@Nock
Nock replied

I am happy to see that my 11 month-old-self demonstrated great wisdom. I totally forgot that I wrote that. But I am pleased to report I have kept that same spirt over the past 11 months. I am pleased to say that I am way down in spending this year over all (you can imagine all of the mitigating circumstances). But, what I did pickup tended toward high strength, high quality, and high price.

I am just now posting my most recent Anniversary/Christmas/now-owe-the-wife-way-overbudge Christmas haul.

4 months ago 5Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote replied

@Nock That's my goal, too: buy fewer bottles, and buy better.

4 months ago 3Who liked this?

@YakLord
YakLord replied

@BlueNote Buy fewer bottles is always a good plan. I've got our group tastings tentative planned out for the next two years, and with what I recieved over my birthday and Christmas this month, I probably won't need to buy anything in 2021...

4 months ago 3Who liked this?

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