Auchentoshan American Oak: The Gateway Drug for Scotch Haters

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The Scotch that thinks like a bourbon

Some of us are open-armed in our whisk(e)y adoration.

If it’s great and it’s brown, we welcome it with hands outstretched, ready to give a big ole brown-liquor bear hug. Then there is the sizable contingent who, while happy to bow to the allure of bourbon, can’t leap over the peat-pond funk of certain well-made Scotches.

Now there’s a bottle to bridge the gap: Auchentoshan American Oak ($40)

Aged in casks that have only ever touched bourbon, the new release is an olive branch being waved in the spirit of brown-liquor unification. The American Wood has the citrusy center of a Scotch and the vanilla bean, lightly caramelized, coconut-cream, toasty character of an American bourbon. A hybrid, if you will.

Other good options to consider: Aberlour 12, rife with richness and full of ripe apple, caramel, and toffee notes, and Glenmorangie, the Original. Like Auchentoshan’s, it’s aged in former bourbon casks and gives you your fix of vanilla and stone fruit from start to finish.

See? We can all get along.

Amy Zavatto is the author of The Architecture of the Cocktail, contributing editor to Imbibe, and the Deputy Editor of Edible Manhattan and Edible Brooklyn. She really, really, really likes whisk(e)y in all its lovely forms.

Brands: Auchentoshan
Series & Type: Products
Appears in 2 Collections

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  • AmyZeats posted 3 years ago

    True enough! And maybe this is a bit of an evangelical take on spirits, but I love the notion that you can introduce somebody to an entire category of delicious spirits by gently bringing them into the fold. My husband, for instance: He's never been a Scotch guy, but he loves bourbon. I've introduced him to a few different Scotches that really opened him up to a whole, fun new world of delicious stuff to try out. Not that this is the job of any whisk(e)y or other spirit (or food, for that matter), but when you can open someone's world like that via a gateway, I think it's cool and has merit.

  • markjmillan posted 3 years ago

    This is a great single malt for the price, although since this is the entry-level version you should be able to find it for less than $40. I've been a fan of Auchentoshan for years. It is well worth checking out, especially if the smoke flavor in Scotch turns you off. This tastes like malt and vanilla.

  • sethomas34.febad posted 3 years ago

    I'm afraid I don't see the appeal of wanting to drink a Scotch that tastes like Bourbon - you can buy a lot of outstanding Bourbons for $40 or less.

  • freddymay2 posted 3 years ago

    Hey hey hey!
    Love a bit of Auchy in my diet... Monkey Shoulder is another good option, only using first fill Bourbon barrels, no peat and at around $33

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