As I start to write this article I’m currently returning to Scotty’s Drams HQ from Poland on the train between Glasgow and the Highlands. For those of you who haven’t been here from the start, the blog had its genesis in Krakow after I decided to change direction with my interest in whisky and to concentrate on something other than Brexit that was flooding social media.
I never managed any whisky this time in Poland, though a couple of bottles of Krupnik were demolished celebrating my wife’s birthday. It’s been some time since I’ve sat at home and enjoyed a whisky so as I travel back I’m thinking of what I could have from the selection I already have open or the numerous samples I’ve amassed. It always seems the amount of samples always goes up and not down, and while away I’ve been bad and have ordered more. This time it’s mostly world whiskies to maybe expand my outlook. I’ve not even reviewed an Irish whiskey yet, though this is on the cards for a change. I’ve a bottle of Waterford that I was gifted, but I’m at the point that if I open a full bottle, then I have to kill another.
The only bottle I have currently near the bottle kill stage is a Daftmill 2006 Winter. It was a hard bottle to get hold of, and I had to time it carefully on the secondary market to avoid paying the flipping premium. I know the whisky wasn’t worth the vastly inflated prices that Daftmill often sees at auction, but having had a sample previously I really wanted a bottle as I enjoyed the whisky a great deal.
It was while contemplating other whisky matters such as how a bottle changes from the initial pour to the last pour, it struck me that for this Daftmill that I couldn’t tell you, simply because I’ve had hardly any of it. I’ve been doing some calculations, and from what I can remember I’ve been lucky to have to have had 5 x 25ml measures. I’ve given most of it away to friends and colleagues, and I’m left having paid significantly over the £95 RRP and have had hardly any of it.
There is a train of thought that whisky isn’t whisky until it’s shared. I’m sorry, I just don’t subscribe to that thought for one second. Not because I’m a tight Aberdonian, but because it will always be the same whether I share it or not. What I have done is given people a chance to sample a whisky that most people had almost zero chance to taste. And despite Daftmill having more regular releases, the small scale of them still means most never will. But has the whisky changed since my first taste of this bottle?
Thus once I had finished the bottle, I have to say that in my opinion there wasn’t really much change, but that is mostly due to the fact that I use inert gas to arrest deterioration in my open bottles. I’d go as far to say that while this whisky is perfectly competent and quite tasty, I’d say that the original price of £95 is a little steep for a 12 y.o but is probably down to the costs of small scale production and it’s scarcity on the market. The whisky isn’t really worth much more. Many whisky enthusiasts are guilty of giving into FOMO, and in this case I just wanted to try and one small sample wasn’t enough. I’m pretty sure I’m not going to be chasing Daftmill in the future. Sure, I’ll stick my name in the hat if I see a ballot come up in the off chance of success, but I’ll not worry if I get the email telling me it’s not to be this time.
Indeed, the fact it has to be balloted on release is a sure sign that the popularity of this dram is in effect its downfall as very few people can get their hands on it at even the expensive for what it is retail price. We quickly skip over and ignore how much I paid for it on the secondary market (£168 including shipping and fees) as it really does make me shiver now I’ve had more experience of it. However I am detecting a nice warm glow within my stone cold heart when I think of all the people I shared it with. Sharing is caring after all. That, coupled with the fact I have another bottle in reserve…
Do you feel lucky?
Yours In Spirits,
All Photos – Authors Own