Bottle: 16 Year. Region: Speyside, the scotch capital of Scotland, boasting more distilleries than any other area and home to staple exports like The Glenlivet (glen-LIV-et) and Glenfiddich (glen-FID-ick). Color: Pale gold. Palate: Of all the scotches on this list, Dailuaine might be the most unique. Smoke, yes, and some fruits, but the real prize is black tea and ginger overtones, some orange and a truly long, fulfilling finish. Price: $62.
Bottle: 12 Year. Region: Islay. Color: Caol Ila can throw some people for a loop and not just because of its absurdly written Gaelic pronunciation; it’s white, or wheat in color, unrecognizable at times as scotch. Palate: Caol Ila is also a unique prize of Scotland; its rich aroma reminds the drinker of the calm after the seaside storm. It’s smoky, fishy, but not in the old dumpster way. With hints of sweet pepper and fresh produce, it’s exceptionally dry and preferred by those with an acquired taste. Price: $87.
Bottle: Laphroaig Quarter Cask. Region: Islay. Color: Most whisky can be easily described as golden, but Laphroaig is closer to an amber, like a shiny new penny. Palate: Now we’re getting to the good stuff. Laphroaig’s color betrays its taste: it is a long, smoky whisky just packed with peat and enough subtle fruits to weave in the right amount of sweetness. The finish lingers long after the last dram, a salty, oceanside swell that will leave you feeling warm and likely wanting more. Price: $63.