So you got a bonus at work and want to push the boat out a little with one big and special gift this year? Spending up to £200 is a lot of money regardless of who you are and you don’t to buy a lemon. A growing trend on a number of the large online retailers is to sell older bottles are highly inflated prices to reflect the collectable nature of the bottles. If you want to get into that market I would suggest you go directly to the trade market via online auction houses. That way you can avoid the 200-400% markups.

The Single Malt Choice

Ok the Glengoyne is over budget but its rather excellent and looks amazing in its large box and beautiful nature wooden colour. The 9.3 Octomore is quite a bit under the budget but while also excellent and again in a beautiful bottle I fear its getting to the point of paying over the odds. Buy either bottle depending on if the gift recipient likes sherry matured (Glengoyne) or a peat monster (Octomore 9.3)

The Bourbon Choice

WhistlePig 12 year old bourbon called Old World. The name is given because this bourbon is done in the style of scotch whisky. That is to say that it includes some cask finishing after the required virgin oak maturation which makes this a bourbon. There was a number of different finishes used before being combined together to make this bottling for quite a bit under the £200 budget in the UK. The recipe is 63% Madeira, 30% Sauternes and 7% Port for those interested as well.

The Rest of the World Choice

Overeem is a micro distillery from Tasmania where all the bottles are hand filled and labelled from tiny 100 litre single casks. Each release is a single cask release and this one was matured exclusively in an ex port pipe for 5 years. A port pipe is a very large vessel so it was disassembled and rebuilt down to 100 litres for the purpose of maturing whisky and this gives us a very intense and fruity whisky. To get it into the budget this pick is for the 43% version however they also have a cask strength version at 60% ABV which is a quite astounding £289

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