Thursday, June 14, 2012

Dusty Scotch: Haig Blended Scotch

I recently wrote about how hard it is too find good dusty Scotch and complained that the only thing that seems to be left on the shelves is old blends. Well, a friend found an old blend for me so I thought I'd give it a try.

Haig is an old Scotch blend now owned by Diageo, who seems to own most of the blends these days. This bottle is 86 proof, listed in standard measurements with a tax stamp which puts it prior to 1980. I don't know as much about identifying old Scotch as I do American whiskey, but it's most likely from the 1970s.

Haig Blended Scotch, 43% abv.

The nose on this is dreadful. Old gym shorts, plastic notes - like a new rain coat, chemicals. I really don't want to drink this at all. The palate is thankfully better than the nose. It starts with some decent smoke but those notes are quickly subsumed by a sickly sweet flavor similar to an unnaturally sweet dessert wine. The chemical taste returns for the finish as if to bid a final eff you for drinking this. It's lousy.

So, about all those Scotch blends on the shelves...leave them there.


Anonymous said...

Hi Sku
Love these Thursday posts. Tax strip Cutty Sark isn't that bad, it is Berry Bros. I know where you can get a 12 pack of liter bottles in LA. And I've got a Johnnie Walker Red from '79 or so that is pretty good, actually way better than the current bottling.
The best dusty I've found recently was an Old Forester bib from the late '70s, incredible but not scotch.

sam k said...

Really? You're condemning all blended scotch because of this clunker? Seems a bit harsh, kind of like the Haig!

sku said...

Not all of them Sam, just the low end ones I tend to find on the dusty shelves in town.