When someone asks us what their first SIngle Malt Scotch should be, we always suggest whiskies like Glenfiddich, Glenlivet, Auchentoshan, or Balvenie because of their supreme approachability. What’s interesting about the subject of this review, i.e. Monkey Shoulder, is that two of those suggestions are used in the making of it (Glenfiddich and Balvenie with the third component being Kininvie. All three are owned by William Grant & Sons, the makers of Monkey Shoulder), so it sounds to us like our subject was made with approachability in mind.
When you look at the Monkey Shoulder website, they make no bones about the fact that this whisky was developed to be a mixer. I mean, when you land on the home screen it says “100% made for mixing”. For many of us, Scotch & Soda or Scotch and some other mixer was the beginning of our Scotch journey, so our thought is that in addition to approachability, Monkey Shoulder was created as a gateway of sorts to the wonderful world of Scotch whisky.
Here are a few words from the Monkey Shoulder website that we think support our theory:
Early in the 2000’s the team at William Grants recognised an opportunity to bring the world of Scotch to a much bigger audience through championing cocktails and mixed drinks as a new way to enjoy Scotch.
With this brief in mind, an epic blend of Scotch malt whiskies were chosen to create the perfect whisky for mixing and as you will see from our bottle the blend that was chosen was called batch 27!
At the time the idea of blending only malt whiskies was a novel one because blends usually included some grain whisky. But our perfect blend didn’t and so we ended up creating a new category of Scotch ‘a blend of malts’ that no one else had ever released before!
Batch 27’ didn’t have the snappiest ring to it and instead we named our whisky Monkey Shoulder in tribute to our whisky heritage and in 2003 we set out to give the whisky world a good old fashioned shake up.
The rest, as they say, is history!
To find out what we thought of this whisky and its approachability factor, click play on the following video:
If you like what you saw and heard, please subscribe to our blog and YouTube Channel. It’s the easiest and BEST way to find out what we’ll be tasting next!