Last night at Shelly's, a cigar bar in downtown DC, Galley friend Mike Woody and I stumbled upon a Scotch taste test, laid out in similar fashion to a Pepsi Challenge. The test was sponsored by the Famous Grouse, "Scotland's #1 Scotch." The other two unlabeled scotches were Dewar's and J&B. Our task was to simply rate them from top to bottom. "There is no wrong answer," the Grouse girl reassured us. Mr. Woody and I both agreed on a rating, which pitted the Famous Grouse in the middle of the pack (with J&B in first place and Dewar's last). Of course this was not a competition between the Laphraoig 14, a Macallan 20, and an Oban. But as far as blended Scotches go, the Famous Grouse did just fine.
Owned by Remy (which also owns Macallan), the Famous Grouse was much smoother and sweeter than its rivals--you could easily have more than your share before knowing what hit you. This did pose a few other concerns, as Mr. Woody noted: "Some people drink Scotch because they like a more aggressive old wood and charcoal flavor--that isn't what this is at all. The sweet taste is what draws you, but then why drink scotch?" Still, he admits, "it did taste pretty good." (The Famous Grouse does include single malts like Macallan and can run upwards of $40, depending on the age.)
In addition to a complimentary Famous Grouse drink, we also received free T-shirts with the Grouse prominently displayed on the back. This reminded us of the opening credits of the Partridge Family.
6 hours ago