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on 31 July 2012
Presumably working on the basis that "if it's not broken, why fix it", whisky writer Ian Buxton has just published the follow-up to his best seller "101 Whiskies To Try Before You Die". His new volume now broadens our horizons to take in "101 World Whiskies To Try Before You Die" and must be the result of a great deal of. research and dogged detective work to track down what I presume are some of the more obscure offerings, say from Tasmania or South Africa.
As before, Mr Buxton provides helpful accompanying background information on the people and enterprises producing the whiskies alongwith brief tasting notes, all contained comfortably and clearly within a single page format opposite a picture of the whisky itself.
While I would be more than happy attempting to try all of the 101 World Whiskies he suggests before I died, it probably is (almost) a viable proposition. I'm aware however of other whisky tomes that have jumped on the "Try Before You Die Bandwagon". Some have gone as far as suggesting a mind numbing, bankruptcy inducing 1001 Whiskies to try. That's all very well, but Mr Buxton. has presumably taken his time to select a varied and representative sample of what's on offer from around the world and brought them together in this, concise, gem of a book.
As before, some will argue that their favourite tipple of such and such should have been included, just as I did when the original book was published. However that's part of the joy - coming across new whiskies that may be worth a try and being prepared for a few surprises along the way.
The book is again a handy "pocket size", useful for taking along to tasting sessions with friends or to pick up and read at the end of a hard day with a dram in hand.
This is a little "Aladdin's Cave" of a book that contains a wealth of information in it's pages and is a serious contender when searching for information on what's on offer these days in the World of Whiskies that extends beyond Scotch and Rye.
I can highly recommend this book and it's predecessor.
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on 19 July 2012
A well written book which is easy to read and entices you along the way. The compact format means that you can easily slip it into your pocket, just to make sure that you are ordering the right dram! or as I have done, take it on your phone in the Kindle format - brilliant.
I have only, so far, tried a small number of the whiskies listed but am looking forward to completing the journey and finishing all 101 of them - slange
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on 6 July 2012
Excellent book and very revealing as to different whiskies from around the world and their availability, very well written and just as good as his first book and I think as he does not use a scoring system but gives his views of the whiskies to me it is more valuable that other books about whisky because it is more about enjoying them than classifying them
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on 31 August 2012
Ian Buxton's new edition of '101 World Whiskies to Try before You Die', edition 2012, is a wonderful book, easy to read and full of information. Ian's writing and use of language is rather amusing to read, perfect choice of words with some underlying wittiness. He presents his rather personal selection of whiskies from Australia, Austria...Ireland...Japan, Scotland...USA. There are more whiskies described than the book's title might suggest. Well, he sets the rules and breaks them from time to time as he pleases, it is impossible to be angry with him! His excuses are justified. He certainly loves Highland Park's whiskies as he recommends all of them! He also refers to special investment whiskies though he seemingly "dislikes" them. "Johnnie Walker's Diamond Jubilee" is his Bonus Whisky. It seems as if he does not like peated whiskies either, only a handful were regarded valuable to be mentioned. Positive, there are Blends listed in his rather arbitrary selection, he seemingly likes these and thus matches today's trend. Newcomers like Kilchoman, Glenglassaugh, Great King Street are also proposed to try. Ireland's whiskies are presented at large, also whiskies from Austria, Germany or even Switzerland. Scotland is covered from Whisky 37 to Whisky 68, a mixture in perfect harmony, all major companies are represented. Everyone has to be pleased... Although he disregards international accolades as a selective paradigma for his choice, he mentions from time to time these as if to 'justify' his selection. The reader gets very useful detailed background information about the listed distilleries, Blenders and their particular bottlings. He knows just every detail. Buxton's tasting notes are straight forward and just classic! They are very easy to follow and pretty much down to earth, they are just excellent and are of no fancy description. Useful advices 'How to taste whisky' are given by the author and a short list of 'Further Resources'. However, the recommendations 'Where to buy' are very short, e.g. Japan and other countires are missing. The hardcover binding is excellent, 223pp. This collection of whiskies will certainly please the whisky enthusiast and the beginner. Just buy, read and drink...if you still have got enough time to live..or just hurry up. The Gateway to Distilleries
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 First published back in July of 2012, '101 World Whiskies To Try Before You Die' was whisky connoisseur and enthusiast Ian Buxton's follow-on to his excellent first book '101 Whiskies to Try Before You Die' (2010).

Like with the first '101 Whiskies Book', this second volume is a same sized compact book (measuring approximately 12cm x 18.5cm) offering advice, guidance and tips on a range of important and particularly tasty whiskies from all around the world that Buxton himself has compiled. Like with the first book, again this is not aimed at the whisky collector or those with vast wads of cash rolling around their home. Instead this is a book for everyday folk who simply enjoy a good whisky.

In the first book Buxton included a good range of whiskies from across the globe. However, being simply '101 Whiskies To Dry Before You Die', as one would expect, the vast majority of the whiskies were from Scotland (in fact 70 of the 101 whiskies were Scottish).

However, in this second book there's far more of an eye on bringing the reader whiskies from all across the globe - mentioning the obscure, the unheard of and the often overlooked. The whiskies are listed in alphabetical order by the country that they're from. And Buxton brings you whiskies from Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, the Czech Republic, England, Finland, France, Germany, Holland, India, Ireland, Japan, Scotland, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, USA, Wales and finally a World Whisky.

In the exact same format as his first book, two pages have been allocated to each respective whisky. On the first of these two pages you have a large colour photograph of the whisky bottle, together with the name of the producer, the location of the distillery (not applicable if it's a blend), whether or not there is a visitor centre, the general availability (e.g. specialists, supermarkets, duty free etc) and a rough guide to the price.

Again, as with the first book the pricing guide is broken into five categories. These are:
(1) Under £25, (2) £25-39, (3) £40-69, (4) £70-£150, (5) Over £150.

Once again, Buxton has flat-out ignored any whisky that ventures over the £1,000 barrier. Indeed, you'll find most of the whiskies in the book coming in to around £40, which is far more accessible and realistic for most people's price range.

On the second page of each entry, Buxton again gives the reader a brief description of the whisky and its producer, with a little background information on its history etc. Then he gives some very readable tasting notes that don't fall into the trap of being too meandering and obscure (as is so often the case with whisky tasting notes). Indeed, Buxton gives very honest, understandable, identifiable and most importantly unpretentious points on the whiskies taste, flavour and depth. No nonsense whatsoever!

Buxton has purposefully avoided using any scoring or ranking of the whiskies detailed in the book. After all, what one person thinks is an utterly divide whisky, the next may find near undrinkable. It's subjective - therefore making scoring a nonsense. Instead, he details each ones merits, their own uniqueness and where they fit in (or not) within the greater picture of whiskies of the world.

Finally, at the very bottom of each listing the book offers up two blank lines for you to write your own verdict (and/or very brief notes) on the whisky. In fact, this is one of the biggest delights about these books - it makes for a 'whisky enthusiast's project' of sorts. I for one have utterly enjoyed slowly working my way through the first volume, writing my own personal notes as I go (I'm still a long way off sampling them all though). And now I have another 101 whiskies to start to work through!

Once again Buxton has delivered another truly invaluable and thoroughly interesting book on whiskies. Flicking through the pages, it's amazing how many whiskies there are out there in the far reaches of the world (as well as much closer to home) which you probably had no idea about the existence of. Take the Finish 8 year old 'Teerenpeli', or the German 'Blaue Maus', or indeed the Spanish 'Embrujo de Granada' for three such prime examples. If anything, flicking through the book is an eye opener for most amateur whisky enthusiasts.

Even though the books is called '101 World Whiskies To Try Before You Die', Buxton has slipped in an additional 'Special Bonus Whisky' at position number 102. It's a whisky that well-and-truly breaks the 'Accessible whisky for real people' rule that the rest of the book has followed. Priced at over £100,000, the Johnnie Walker Diamond Jubilee is not a whisky you'll likely be hunting down anytime soon. But the cheeky inclusion of it just shows Buxton's sense of humour.

To be honest, since getting the book holidays abroad now have a whole new scope to them. It's now a case of flick through Buxton's '101 World Whiskies To Try Before You Die' before setting off, and if there's a good number in there from the country you're visiting (such as the USA, Ireland or Japan) then my advice would be to pop the book into your hand luggage before you go!

The book runs for a total of 224 pages, which includes a six page introduction by Ian Buxton, a basic and down-to-earth one page 'How to Taste Whisky and Use This Book', a 'Further Resources' page, and a final page on 'Where to Buy'. Finally, the book itself is a high quality hardback, with full colour glossy pages throughout.
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on 22 October 2012
The whisky wizard writes again! As if the first book was not enough to last a lifetime for most of us, here is another even more tantalising glimpse into whiskies you have never tasted. But once you have read Ian Buxton's forthright explanation of them, curiosity and intrigue are aroused, along with your taste buds. This book makes you want to taste even more whiskies you had never heard of before, from places you never knew made whisky. Now we've all got 202 whiskies on the list, we had better get to work before the next book comes out.
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on 22 October 2012
If, like me you devoured Ian Buxton's 101 Whiskies to Try Before You Die (as well as devouring quite a few of the recommended drams!), you will love this companion volume of whiskies from around the world.
The author brings the same opinionated, witty writing style to this collection of whiskies, many of which, I confess I had never heard of - I am looking forward to giving them a go though!
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on 10 December 2014
Following the same format as his first book, Ian Buxton takes us on a new tour of 102 - yes I did mean that - whiskies from around the whole world. With the same tasting notes and advice on cost and availability for each entry, this is an excellent manual for the Whisky Explorer who wishes to travel farther afield.
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on 22 March 2013
I brought this for my partner for a stocking filler and he loves it.

Its an A5 size type book and I was expecting it to be slightly larger but then again its designed to be taken around with you so I am sure its better to be smaller.
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on 21 March 2013
A really good read. I wasn't aware just how many countries produce whiskies. It's going to be a hard job working my way through this book, but I'm willing to give it a try.
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