Help! My husband has colleagues coming in from around the world to a meeting in DC. They are big fans of single malt. I need to be able to serve a bottle that will impress. Can you make a recommendation or two that I can buy here in Northern Virginia? Many thanks for your assistance.
From Scotch Hunter Steve:
Yikes! Elizabeth, this is a tough call; not because there are not plenty of good single malts but because I don’t have enough information. Price and preference are key. Most experienced malt drinks (and especially those from the UK) prefer the smoky, peaty malts from the Isaly. The rest will want something robust and complex. There is no need, in my opinion, to be concerned with the softer malts from the Lowlands and Campbeltown. Since the weather has
warmed, stay away from the cask strength malts that will be too powerful for the season.
My favorite stores in DC are the Wine Specialist (2115 M Street, 202-833-0707) and Central Liquors (917 K Street, 202-737-9463). Both can be found on the Internet and stock quite a few malts that sell for more than $100. I am going to pick a few bottles in the $100 – $160 range. These are superior malts that are easily found in good liquor stores. If this is too high, right me back and I can lower the
Highland malts that are robust and complex:
Glenmorangie 18 year old – smooth and fruity
Macallan 18 year old – thick, sherry, sweet
Talisker 18 or 25 year old – toffee, nutty with a hint of sherry and peat
Isaly malts that are smoky and peaty:
Lagavulin 16 year old – thick, rich, and smoky (one of my personal favorites)
Caol Ila 18 year old – salty, smoky, hot and peppery
Let me know if I can be of more help. Thanks so much for writing.