After seeing a wonderful post by the Scotch Club YEG a couple of the members of TWS started debating what the best scotch options were at the LCBO (the options available at $80 sadly could not justify a list here).
With many releases at the LCBO having received price increases over the past few years, the number of “good” value purchases under $100 have diminished. With limited selection from independent bottlers, the scotch selection in Ontario is limited compared to many other markets.
Overall consensus pick: Aberlour A’Bunadh
For just less than $100 the Aberlour A’Bunadh is a delicious cask strength sherry bomb. The profile varies slightly between batches, but consistently the best value under $100 at the LCBO
Additional scotches (single malt and blended) currently available at the LCBO for under $100, recommended by various TWS members:
Ardbeg 10 Years Old Islay Scotch Whisky – While not a great price compared to other markets, still a tasty peat offering for under $100.
Auchentoshan 18 Years Old – Good value for a 18 year old lowland release, hard to find such an old age statement in this price range.
Glendronach 12 Years Old – Although not cask strength, this is a delicious everyday sherried dram. Before recent price increases it provided better value.
Laphroaig Quarter Cask – Another Islay release makes the list, for $70 is it superior to less expensive Islay releases.
Glen Garioch Founder’s Reserve – Balanced and great value from the underappreciated Glen Garioch distillery.
Compass Box Great King Street Glasgow Blend – Compass box makes some of the better blends which are widely available. Good example of a balanced and interesting blended whisky.
While there are limited options at the LCBO, some good values still exist at under $100. Sadly limited stocks are available for some of these releases. The last few years the LCBO has released Laphroaig Cairdeas in the fall at around $100, which is a great value for a higher proof Laphroaig bottling. Keep your eyes open around November for that release.