Holiday Gift Guide:

Scotch

Nothing says the holidays like a bottle of Scotch. But finding the perfect present can be tough. So make sure to check out these five picks from Khaled Dajani, co-owner of San Francisco’s acclaimed Nihon Whisky Lounge, which stocks more than 500 single malts.
  • Arran Single Bourbon Cask Single Malt

    Arran Single Bourbon Cask Single Malt ($130)

    At less than 20 years old, the Arran distillery has flown under the radar of many drinkers. This sweet spirit is bottled at cask strength, but it’s still versatile enough to drink neat or use in cocktails.

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  • The Yamazaki 12 Years Japanese Single Malt

    The Yamazaki 12 Years Japanese Single Malt ($55)

    While this bottling isn’t technically Scotch, it’s pretty darn close. Dajani calls the whisky “Japan’s premier single malt” and praises its mellow flavor and spicy wood finish.

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  • Bowmore 18 Years Old Islay Single Malt

    Bowmore 18 Years Old Islay Single Malt ($130)

    The island of Islay may be pretty small, but it boasts whiskies with pretty big flavors. This Bowmore is no exception: It’s peaty and smoky, requiring some time to open up.

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  • Kilchoman Machir Bay

    Kilchoman Machir Bay ($62)

    One of the newest Scotches on the market is this one from Kilchoman. It’s a combination of three-, four- and five-year-old whiskies, aged together in bourbon barrels and finished in oloroso sherry casks. “An amazing Islay whisky,” Dajani says.

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  • The Balvenie DoubleWood Single Malt

    The Balvenie DoubleWood Single Malt ($50)

    This single malt was matured in American oak bourbon barrels and then in Spanish oak sherry casks. The result is a fruity and quaffable spirit.

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