Saturday, November 4, 2017

Wakey Whisky: Trader Joe's Speyside Single Malt Scotch

by Eric Ducote

Good #wakeywhisky morning Tiger fans, and welcome to a beautiful THREE SEC wins in a row sort of morning! That's called a winning streak folks, and yes, it has happened before. Back in 2015 the LSU Tigers rolled off four straight SEC wins to start out the season with three non-conference wins mixed in and were up to #2 in the polls before falling to Alabama.  That has unfortunately been a trend lately, falling to Alabama, so I'm going into this game with my expectations low.  If LSU loses, well, they were supposed to lose... but if they win... then we party!

With those expectations low, I decided to try something new this morning, a whisky that I could go into with low expectations as well. At under $20, I really don't know what to expect from the Trader Joe's Speyside Single Malt Scotch, available obviously at Trader Joe's.

Trader Joe's is pretty secretive about where they source their products from, but I do know that this hails from the Speyside region of Scotland (around the River Spey) and was distilled, matured and bottled all in Scotland.  Rumor is that Trader Joe's buys bulk batches that either weren't up to the distillery standards, or perhaps were overstock, and contracts for them to be bottled and labeled under the Trader Joe's brand.

Either way, it could be a really great surprise, or a total dud.  Hey... remind you of a football game coming up tonight?

Right out of the gate, this is labeled as aged 8 years, and bottled at 40% alcohol-- pretty standard stuff there.  It's on the lighter side, probably not heavily charred barrels or perhaps second run barrels that lost some color to the previous spirit inside. The nose is very mild, with hints of honeysuckle and minerals with a slight grainy sweetness.  The taste is very similar with the grains coming through a little stronger than the nose and the honeysuckle taking a back seat.  It's very easy to drink with minimal alcohol harshness, and pleasant introductory scotch flavors.


For me this is a decent starter scotch, a good call for someone looking to give the whisky a try without going crazy on the pocketbook.  It's not extremely complex, it's certainly not as good as the name brand single malts, but for the price it gets the job done.  If you're a novice scotch drinker, or want to get into it a little more, give this a try next time you're at the local TJ's. Cheers, #wakeywhiskey or #wakeywhisky for you all, and GEAUX TIGERS!

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