This months Whisky Roundtable is hosted by Joshua and the great Jewish Single Malt Whisky Society. His question tackles an always interesting and mildly controversial topic: the scoring/grading of whiskies. I, for one, see a lot of value in attaching a score but at the same time am well aware and oft frustrated by the pitfalls of using a scoring/grading system, so I’m particularly looking forward to everyone’s answers this month.
Here’s the question:
Whisky ratings. We all rate whisky and we all do it in a different way. Many of us, as well as other bloggers, critics & whisky writers, have our own technique. The most popular being the 100 point system. Some have a ten point system or a star system. Then again, some do not use a system at all. What value do you see in a rating system? Do you use someone’s rating to help you choose a whisky to buy? To take it a step further, do you feel a 90pt Ardbeg is equal to a 90pt Wild Turkey Rye or Bushmills Irish Whiskey? Can we actually pit an American or Irish whisk(e)y up against a Scotch whisky or are they too different to compare? Lastly, what holes are there in the current rating system (if any) and do you see the possibility for a unified system for all to use?