This is not going to be some epic battle played out on the grassy fields or mountains of Scotland, more a simple set of thoughts by your truly. Worldwide sales of blends blow single malt out of the water, but there is a vast snobbery in the whisky world that single malts are better. Many people argue that a pure form of malt must be superior, and a blend just can’t be as good, many will argue that most blends are the staple drink of people who just want a ” scotch ” and they are not looking for the complex flavours or aromas that many lovers of whisky are now after.. More recently though there has been an upsurge of bottlers bottling more up market blends that are outdoing the single malts by a long way, companies like Compass box are taking the battle against single malts to another level. Bottles like ” This is not a luxury whisky ” and ” Artists blend ” to name but two, and two blends at both ends of the spectrum are in thier own rites fantastic blends. These two bottles can hold themselves against many bottles of single malt that is getting released today, on the flip side the single malt companies are starting to churn out a lot of NAS bottles which in all honesty are not as good as what has been produced in the past, younger whisky that in some cases, just is not cutting it ! There is not too much wrong with them other than the pricing structure does not equate to the quality, and that is my main problem these days, we can get the blends at what is a very fair price for what is usually in the bottle ( although in most cases we don’t actually know ) against the ever growing amount of NAS bottles of fancy named young whisky at higher prices.. So just where does the battle come in ? Well more and more of us are standing in front of vast arrays of bottles and wondering which one we will spend our hard earned cash on, and these days the blends are getting picked up more and more.. It is time the whisky industry stands up and looks at what they are churning out… The gap between high end specialist blends and the single malts is getting very much smaller, but the cost difference is getting bigger. So the next time your deciding on which single malt to buy, just take a peek at the blends.. You might be suprised.. I know I am.. I am now starting to pick up more and more blends these days, bottles like Mackinlay’s Rare old highland malt ( Shackleton’s ) from Whyte and Mackay master blender Richard Paterson and ” the one ” that is the release from The Lakes distillery, not to mention the long list from Compass box and Douglas Laing..
This is a typical selection of blends and single malt that are in the same price bracket.. Which ones would you choose ?