You know the kind of people who secretly go through your medicine cabinet when you invite them over? Well, we're not that kind of people. But we never, ever, miss a chance to peek into a home bar. In the third edition of our home bar series, it was Jeff's turn.
It’s actually quite possible Jeff was looking up to a liquor store, because he works in one in New Jersey. “My boss is very good to me as far as letting me buy from him, tasting samples, and getting first crack at limited bottles, like the new Glenmorangie Tusail. I love working there, and enjoy talking about and selling Scotch.”â¨
He’s been building his collection for years, ever since he bought his first townhouse in 1998, to be exact. What started back then as a small corner cabinet in his living room, containing wine, Johnnie Walker, a Vodka, a Rum, a Gin, and some after dinner cordials, has grown to a fully-filled floor-to-ceiling cabinet.
How did this happen?“At around the age of 40, I started my obsessive buying and collecting, always wanting a special bottle for my birthday, Father’s Day, or Christmas. Any reason to buy a nice bottle basically.” It definitely beats another pair of socks or a tie any time. So if your sock drawer is stocked better than your spirits cabinet, it's a good idea to start circulating our Tips for Buying Scotch as a Gift among your friends and family.
It worked great for Jeff: his collection now includes more Scotch names than a beginner Flaviarista has heard of and there's even one shelf dedicated to Bourbons.
Sherry all the way!One of the dearest to his glass is The Macallan. “My love for The Macallan started when a close friend shared a bit of his 25 year old bottle with me and I never tasted any Scotch like that before. I turned to The Macallan 12 year old as an every day bottle, and then started after the 15, 17 and 18 year old. I then went after their other expressions and The Macallan Ruby is by far one of the best bottles I have ever tasted in my life.”
Recently, Jeff’s found love for Glendronach, another sherry cask specialist. He also loves Glenmorangie and Glenlivet, Highland Park, Aberlour, and Scott’s Selection. “I had a 1964 Scott’s Selection bottled in 2009, making it 45 years old, one of the best I ever tasted."
Jeff’s not fond of the recent no-age-statement Whisky trend. “I like it when they put the age of the Whisky on the label, but they stopped doing that for many bottles.” He knows that even the best of Scotches taste better in a great company, so he likes to have friends over to drink the good stuff together. Although, as he figures “at this point, pretty much everything I own is top shelf.”
True. And here's a difficult one for you: What dram would you choose to have from Jeff's bar?