Review No.51. Whyte & Mackay

This is another bottom shelf that you will find in most supermarkets priced at the lower end of the pricing spectrum for whiskies.  Whyte and Mackay own a few brands, the most notable of which are Dalmore, Jura, Fettercairn, Tamnavulin and Mackinaly’s.  Behind (or in front of) this brand is the man called Richard Paterson who is the master blender and a very colourful and engaging guy.  You will find clips of him on YouTube explaining how you should drink whisky.  I get the feeling that he is either respected or mocked amongst the online community and I get the impression that many are not endeared to his single malts such as Dalmore, Jura and Fettercairn (I will have reviews up for these in the coming months).  I knew all of this when I purchased this bottle but I didn’t let it put me off because 1. it was cheap and 2. even if it didn’t like it is still a learning experience.  I never regret buying a bottle that I don’t end up liking (unless it cost me a lot) because I treat it as a learning experience – sometimes it is easier to know what you like by knowing more about what you don’t like.


Whisky: Whyte & Mackay Triple Matured Blended Scotch Whisky, 40% vol.

Nose: Grain, icing sugar, caramel, cognac

Taste: Icing sugar, grain, dried fruit

Finish:  Short, sugar

Score: 1

Summary: I promise I was not influenced by the negative reputation of this brand but I just did not like this at all.  I found this to be way too sweet, like a cheap rum or Southern Comfort.  The alcohol quality didn’t seem good either, there was a brashness about it, some heat.  The texture was thin too.  You may want to add cola and ice to it to temper the sweet sugary taste to it.  At the price I won’t complain but then when I think what the Highland Black 8 year old from Aldi or Scottish Leader (different flavour profile to this but still..) have to offer at less or similar price then it really makes me wonder how this brand is still selling.  Like I said earlier, you can sometimes learn more about what you like by trying whiskies that you don’t end up liking, so I remain philosophical about this purchase.  There is a 13 year old version of this at higher price, even though I will not be drinking this one again (unless out of politeness) but I am intrigued to see how the 13 year old fares to this one.


Scoring scale: My scores reflect a balance of the overall experience, availability and cost for a whisky,

1 – not to my preference

2 – tastes fine but does not excite me

3 – more to my liking and would revisit occasionally

4 – very much to my liking and would consider as a regular feature on my whisky shelf

5 – permanent feature on my whisky shelf


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