While there are so many fabulous single malts out there, what about those sociable evenings where folks prefer quantity over quality?
The usual suspects in Mumbai for around Rs 1,000* are Blender’s Pride, Antiquity Blue, etc. However one evening, supplies were dwindling and the local liquor store didn’t have any of these.
That’s when my friendly neighbourhood ‘wine’ shop suggested MaQintosh.
However few outside of India’s local booze shops would know of MaQintosh. Touted as a ‘Premium’ whisky, just what the heck?
- Well… it immediately comes across as fake Scottish with appalling spelling… I mean after all isn’t ‘u’ after ‘q’??
- It declares boldly that it is ‘genuinely’ made from Scottish and Indian malts… (as opposed to…?)
- It is also ‘aged’ and ‘married’ in imported Oak barrels
- Admits uses ‘permitted‘ caramel
- Strength 42.8% and NAS
- Price Rs 900* in Mumbai (That’s $15 for you folks who don’t live in India!)
And tasting notes of the whisky?
- Nose – Toffee sweet
- Palate – Mildly oaky, apples, pleasant but not memorable
- Finish – Warm burn
Yeah, I know… not exactly much, eh?
But here is the deal… If you compare it with your average cheap – oops! I mean ‘premium‘ Indian whisky – it fares better. Far better.
As most folks I know aren’t familiar with MaQintosh, initially they would still reach for the usual suspects. Several parties later, I couldn’t quite seem to convince anyone to polish off the bottle.
But the thing is… that started to change. It began to make an appearance in friends homes as more and more folks began to realise they can get a certain level of taste and enjoyability in an affordable package. Just the other day, at the local Bandra gymkhana, talk turned to “Have you tried MaQintosh?”
Me? I’m still on the quality over quantity side of the equation whereas party whisky should be the opposite.
But that’s just slightly snobby me. Don’t let me stop you!
*This post was originally written in 2015 pre-COVID. Prices have risen significantly and availability varies state to state. Just check with your local “wine shop” in India – if open.
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