5 Single Malts From the BCLDB That Make Perfect Last Minute Gifts

Just because it's last minute doesn't mean you don't love them

First off, don’t beat yourself up. Did you plan in advance? No. But you can still pull out a pretty awesome present because whisky is almost always the best gift. And while there’s no shortage of prestige whiskies at the BCLDB that will blow anyone away (there are literally 4 different bottles of Dalmore that are worth more than $10,000), I’m trying to keep it somewhat real here in terms of price.

Glenmorangie X $60

This one is a no-brainer. First off, the bottle is new, so the giftee likely won’t have seen it before. Check. Secondly, the normally staid Glenmorangie has been killing it of late in the graphic design department (check out this bottle). Thirdly, it’s got a pretty expressive flavour profile that’s sweeter and richer than most single malts. Fourth—it’s still on a 1 bottle allotment at the BCL so there’s an air of scarcity. All for for $60? C’mon.

Bowmore 12 $61

Are you familiar with the concept of arbitrage? It’s “the simultaneous buying and selling of securities, currency, or commodities in different markets or in derivative forms in order to take advantage of differing prices for the same asset.” Why do I bring this up? Because the fact that we live in a liquor market where both Glenfiddich 12 and Glenlivet 12 are priced higher than the—I’m sorry—vastly superior Bowmore is bonkers. Now, should you load up the F150 and try to sell it in another market (that’s the arbitrage)? Maybe save yourself the hassle—but it still makes for a kick-ass Christmas present.


Ardbeg Monsters of Smoke $64

This one is sort of fun. It’s leftover from a Halloween promotion and the BCL can’t get too excited about marketing it—they don’t even list what three whiskies make up the gift box (for the record, it’s 200mls of Wee Bestie, 10-year-old and An Oa). But their lackadaisical attitude is your gain as this is way underpriced when you consider that the 10 goes for $101 and the An Oa for $110 and it comes in a super cool box. Oh and all Ardbeg is great if you love the peat.

Highland Park 15 $136

I lathered some praise on this bottle when it was part of the Fall Whisky Release (read here) and like quite a few bottles it didn’t 100 percent sell out. This has zilch to do with quality—this is a truly well-crafted whisky—back in November I said: The 15 is such a great balanced expression for Highland Park that several years ago I hand-carried one back from Willow Park as a gift for friend. But this new opaque bottle is also a stunner; from 30 feet you can see something different is going on. And I’m still a huge fan. For the drinker who really knows their malts, but who will not have seen this cool bottle.

The Macallan Harmony Collection Rich Cacao $205

This is another holdover from the Fall Release but unlike the Highland Park there’s only 11 bottles left in the province, and I”m pretty sure those are the only 11 bottles for sale in the country until it has a wider release early next year. And yeah…it’s amazing. It actually goes with chocolate amazingly, unlike 99 percent of the other spirits and wine that people claim go with chocolate. But even on its own it’s a wonder of rum soaked raisins, saddle soaped leather, some light spice. It’s a wonderful present.