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The 20 Best-Selling Scotch Whiskies On Drizly

There’s a lot of great Scotch whisky out there. But as with anything in life, that also means there’s just as much bad and mediocre Scotch whisky hitting shelves too. That makes finding a good bottle a little harder than just grabbing for whatever catches your eye on the liquor store shelf. A little guidance is necessary and one of the best ways to find that guidance is to dig into what everyone else is actually drinking.

That means that it’s time to take a look at the best-selling Scotch whisky on the booze delivery site Drizly. But I’m not just listing their 20 best-selling scotches and leaving it at that. That’s pretty useless information at the end of the day. I’m going to call out my favorite expression from each of the top 20 best-selling brands so you actually do know which bottle to reach for.

Read through my tasting notes and see what speaks to you and then hit that price link to see if the bottle is actually available in your region (most of these will be). Let’s dive in!

Also Read: The Top 5 UPROXX Scotch Whisky Posts of The Last Six Months

20. Aberfeldy — Aberfeldy 18 Finished in Tuscan Red Wine Casks

Aberfeldy 18
Bacardi

ABV: 43%

Average Price: $229

The Whisky:

This year’s limited edition Aberfeldy 18 was finished in special red wine casks. Aberfeldy’s Stephanie Macleod hand-selected Tuscan red wine casks from Bolgheri, Italy to finish this whisky. Once those barrels hit the right spot, they were vatted, proofed, and bottled.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: There’s a cumin and chili powder essence on the nose with vanilla cream, cherry cake, spiced caramel malts, and maybe a fleeting hint of flour tortillas with a hint of lard.

Palate: The palate Leans into the spiced and sweet malts with a dash of sharp green pepper next to lime leaves before moist marzipan and vanilla cake counterpoint the spice with sweetness.

Finish: The end has a soft oakiness that leads to a hint of soda bread with a mild pepperiness to the malt.

Bottom Line:

This new Aberfeldy is legit. The depth of the Tuscan red wine finish plays wonderfully with the sweet and creamy single malt beneath. Make sure to add a little water to really let the deeper flavors bloom in the glass (more creaminess and nuttiness will rise to the top).

19. The GlenDronach — The GlenDronach 15 Revival

Brown-Forman

ABV: 46%

Average Price: $106

The Whisky:

Revival 15 takes its sherried nature very seriously. The juice is aged in a combination of Pedro Ximénez and Oloroso sherry casks for 15 long years. Those casks are married and this whisky is brought down to a very easy-drinking 92 proof with that soft Highland water.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: Dark berry brambles with tart and sweet fruit, stems, thorns, and even a little black dirt draw you in on the nose with a hint of walnut shell and cherry pie.

Palate: The palate is a creamy-yet-bitter dark chocolate orange that leads toward a semi-savory fig countered by ripe apricot.

Finish: The chocolate comes back with cinnamon spice and more dark berries and walnut at the end.

Bottom Line:

This is just a classic unpeated single malt that has real dark depth. This is also a great candidate if you’re looking to move from high-end bourbon to really good single malt.

18. Bruichladdich — Octomore 13.3 Edition Aged 5 Years Super Heavily Peated Islay Single Malt

Octomore 13.3
Rémy Cointreau

ABV: 61.1%

Average Price: $346

The Whisky:

This new limited edition Octomore from Bruichladdich is all about Islay. The whisky is made from heavily peated malts grown on the island (most malts are shipping in from the mainland) back in 2015. In 2016, the whisky was distilled right by the sea at Bruichladdich and then loaded into first-fill, ex-American whiskey casks and second-fill European oak casks from the Rivesaltes region of France and the Ribera del Duero region of Spain. After five years, the casks were vatted and then bottled completely as-is.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: The nose is a subtle mix of salted caramel with sweet caramel malts, apricot jam, gingerbread, and a touch of nasturtium with a whisper of smoked apples and pears before the ashen peat starts sneaking in with a sense of a BBQ pork rib rack smothered in BBQ sauce.

Palate: The palate opens with smoked brown sugar next to rich marzipan with a hint of Almond Joy next to Kiwi boot wax, orange marmalade, dried roses, lemon pepper, and a hint of oyster liquor.

Finish: The end has a caramel maltiness that’s just kissed with sea salt and potpourri cut with mild dark spices and more of that marzipan, finishing on a light fruit soda vibe.

Bottom Line:

This is a great option if you’re looking for huge peated vibes but want a truly well-layered depth of flavor beyond the earthy peat. And if that peat is a bit too much, add a little water or ice to calm it down and try it again.

17. Highland Park — Highland Park Single Malt Scotch Whisky 18-Year

Edrington Group

ABV: 43%

Average Price: $164

The Whisky:

This Viking whisky from high up in the Orkneys takes barreling one step further. Their 18-year expression is matured in casks made from American and European oak specifically for Highland. Those bespoke vessels are sent to Jerez, Spain to age sherry for three years. The same barrels are then sent back to Orkney to age this whisky for 18 years.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: This really feels like a classic scotch at every step. You’re greeted with notes of marzipan, dark berries, honey, and light lines of smoke on the nose.

Palate: Those notes hold on as buttery toffee arrives with a dark chocolate counterpoint, leading towards ripe red cherries and floral honey.

Finish: The end embraces distant billows of sweet smoke with a dry and earthy undertow on the slow, sweet, and berry-filled fade.

Bottom Line:

This whisky has a nice balance between sweet and peated malt that just works. It’s great over a few rocks but shines as a slow sipper on its own as well.

16. Buchanan’s — Buchanan’s DeLuxe Aged 12 Years

Diageo

ABV: 40%

Average Price: $39

The Whisky:

Buchanan’s is making a big comeback. Part of that is due to this expression snagging a Double Gold from San Francisco World Spirit Competiton in 2020; another part is the quality Diageo whiskies in the blend.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: The whiskey opens with a real sense of dark chocolate married to bright orange zest.

Palate: The palate builds on that adding hints of vanilla pudding and dark spices next to a cedar woodiness and a little bit of spicy/ chewy tobacco.

Finish: A whisper of peat arrives late and far in the background as the chocolate orange throughline lasts the longest on the fade.

Bottom Line:

You really only want to have this around for mixing up cocktails or pouring over a glass full of rocks. It’s great for those applications.

15. Aberlour — Aberlour A’bunadh

Pernod Ricard

ABV: 56.2%

Average Price: $109

The Whisky:

A’bunadh (ah-boon-arh) means “the original” in Gaelic and the whisky in this Highland bottle represents that for Aberlour. The whisky is matured in old Oloroso sherry casks exclusively. The whisky then goes into the bottle at cask strength, unfussed with.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: That sherry plumminess is evident right up top, with hints of bright orange oils, clumps of dark chocolate, honey, and nuts, and a hint of oak.

Palate: The taste shines with notes of dark, ripe cherries, prunes, more bright orange zest, dark chocolate, and a good measure of svelte vanilla.

Finish: The slow finish leaves you with a creamy mouthfeel next to bitter chocolate next to sweet cherries and plums, all of which lead towards a warming spice on the tongue at the end.

Bottom Line:

This is a great bridge between the world of high-proof bourbon and high-proof unpeated malt. If you’re a big bourbon drinker, you’ll fall in love with this stuff on your first nose and sip.

14. Chivas — Chivas Regal 18 Gold Signature

Pernod Ricard

ABV: 40%

Average Price: $86

The Whisky:

Chivas 18 is the brand’s signature higher-end blend. The whisky is built around a specially made Strathisla 18 single malt. 20 other single malts support that whisky from around Scotland with various casking processes.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: This just feels classic from the first nose onward. There are clear layers of very fancy dark chocolate that’s equal parts creamy and bitter next to dried red berries with a tart edge, buttery toffee, and a hint of dried roses wrapped in old leather.

Palate: The palate marries the dried roses with the dark chocolate with a hint of smoked cherry and raspberry sneaking next to a touch of old vanilla husks and maybe some dried cedar.

Finish: The end slowly fades through those florals and chocolate toward a sweet smoked note of tart fruit.

Bottom Line:

Chivas is the ultimate “on the rocks” scotch. This is the epitome of that vibe with a really deep flavor profile that also works nicely when poured neat.

13. Ardbeg — Ardbeg An Oa

Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy

ABV: 46.6%

Average Price: $65

The Whisky:

This is a quintessential Islay peaty whisky. The juice is aged in a combo of Pedro Ximénez, charred virgin oak, and ex-bourbon casks before being married and rested again in Ardbeg’s bespoke oak “Gathering Vat,” allowing the whiskies to really meld into a cohesive pour.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: Slow-smoked peaches mingle with soft cherrywood and a bundle of smoky savory herbs — sage, rosemary, ramps — on the nose.

Palate: The palate is soft and buttery with a sweet burnt toffee vibe next to nutmeg, walnut, Earl Grey, and maybe a touch of woody maple syrup.

Finish: The end takes its time and meanders through salted black licorice, wild florals, more singed savory herbs, and a hint of black-pepper-covered brisket fat that’s been heavily smoked over sea-soaked driftwood.

Bottom Line:

This peaty from Islay is one of the most accessible heavily-peated whiskies out there. There’s a nice balance of sweet and dark fruit, savory herbs, and almost candy sweetness next to earthy and sea-forward peatiness.

12. Dalmore — The Dalmore 12

Whyte & Mackay

ABV: 40%

Average Price: $69

The Whisky:

This Highland whisky is a gateway whisky that feels like a classic. The juice is aged in ex-bourbon for nearly a decade. The whisky is then transferred to former sherry casks for that crucial finishing touch of maturation for around three years. It’s then proofed down to a very accessible 80 proof.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: Oranges studded with cloves mingle with a deep dark chocolate foundation and a hint of eggnog creaminess and spiciness.

Palate: The palate goes even deeper on the orange and spice as heavy vanilla arrives — the husks, seeds, and oils are all present.

Finish: The end is fairly succinct and touches back on the chocolate with a bitter mocha-coffee vibe and more vanilla.

Bottom Line:

This is one of the easier-drinking whiskies on the list that still offers rewarding depth. It’s a great everyday pour that works wonders in cocktails, on the rocks, or on its own in a Glencairn.

11. Monkey Shoulder — Monkey Shoulder Blended Scotch

William Grant & Sons

ABV: 40%

Average Price: $36

The Whisky:

This Speyside blend is crafted as a workhorse whisky. The blend is drawn from the William Grant & Sons stable of distilleries. The whisky is then rested for up to six months after blending to let it mellow even more before proofing and bottling.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: There’s a nice welcoming note of creamy vanilla that almost becomes cream soda, next to hints of zesty orange marmalade, malts, and dark spices.

Palate: The taste delivers on those notes by amping the spices up to Christmas cake territory with a slight tart berry edge next to that cream soda sweetness.

Finish: The end is short and sweet with a nice lightness that really makes this very drinkable.

Bottom Line:

This is the best mixing whisky on the list. It’s built as a mixer, so use it that way.

10. Laphroaig — Laphroaig Càirdeas Warehouse 1

Laphroaig Cairdeas Warehouse 1
Beam Suntory

ABV: 52.2%

Average Price: $99

The Whisky:

This year’s Càirdeas release celebrates the Friends of Laphroaig and how they keep the brand going. The whisky in the bottle is made from Laphroaig’s high-phenol peated malt right next to the sea on Islay. The hot spirit was then filled in first-fill limited edition single barrel Maker’s Mark bourbon barrels. The barrels were then stored in the famed four-story Warehouse 1 right next to the crashing sea until they were just right and then bottled as-is after vatting.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: The nose opens with a huge note of smoked grainy malts next to an un-opened box of Band-Aids, peppery smoked brisket with plenty of smoked fat, and smoked sea salt counterpointed by vanilla sheet cake with a honey icing and dusted with cinnamon and nutmeg.

Palate: The palate opens with burnt yet buttery toffee next to white wildflowers, dried fennel, and rich and creamy honey smoothness and sweetness.

Finish: The end gets a little woody with a fatty smoked peppery vibe next to more toffee and a dash of seawater-washed granite.

Bottom Line:

This is for the funky peat lover. It’s wildly unique, medicinal, and really not for everyone. Still, if you love it, you’ll know at first sip.

9. Glenmorangie — Glenmorangie Nectar d’Or

Glenmorangie Nectar
Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy

ABV: 46%

Average Price: $80

The Whisky:

This dram from Glenmorangie is a much-loved Highland malt. The juice is matured in ex-bourbon barrels for an undisclosed number of years. The whisky is then transferred to French Sauternes barrels which held sweet dessert wines where it spends two more years finishing.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: This has that classic “shortbread cut with lemon and vanilla” vibe that makes some single malts so approachable.

Palate: The sip has a buttery toffee nature that’s layered with subtle oak, mild brown spices, and more fruits tied into a creamy pudding body.

Finish: The spice then leans a little towards ginger with that buttery shortbread as it slowly fades out.

Bottom Line:

This is another bottle that you should 100% have on your bar cart. It’s just that good.

8. Lagavulin — Lagavulin Offerman Charred Oak Cask Aged 11 Years

Lagavulin Offerman Charred Oak Cask
Diageo

ABV: 46%

Average Price: $97

The Whisky:

This brand-new release is the third collaboration between Lagavulin and Nick Offerman. This time around, the team at Lagavulin took 11-year-old malt and finished it in heavily charred casks that used to hold bourbon and red wine. Those barrels were then batched and built around flavor notes that pair perfectly with a steak dinner.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: The nose opens with a rich peatiness that’s tied to pecan chocolate clusters and dried cranberries with a dusting of sea salt, burnt orange zest, and fine nutmeg.

Palate: The palate dips those red tart berries in dark salted chocolate with cinnamon bark and clove buds next to espresso cream and a whisper of malty vanilla wafers with fresh honey in between.

Finish: The end has this enigmatic mix of smoked toffee, salted black licorice, and brandied cherries wrapped in cinnamon-laced tobacco and folded into an old cedar box.

Bottom Line:

This is a winner. It’s very clean yet deeply flavored with a great balance between subtle peat and choco-fruitiness. It’s a nice mix of flavors that work really well over the rocks or neat.

7. Oban — Oban Single Malt Scotch Whisky Aged 10 Years 2022 Special Release

Diageo Single Malts
Diageo

ABV: 57.1%

Average Price: $128

The Whisky:

This lightly peated Highland whisky from the tiny Oban Distillery is rendered from refill and new American oak barrels. That whisky is vatted and then refilled into Amontillado-seasoned casks for a final rest before batching and bottling as-is.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: There’s a lithe sense of lemon/lime saltwater taffy and Whether’s candies wrapped in white wax paper with a hint of lime leaves and wild sage next to salted smoked lemons and tangerines with a hint of really good and cloudy extra virgin olive oil speckled with smoked sea salt and freshly cracked red peppercorns.

Palate: The palate is silken and full of layers of smoked grapes, smoked plums, and salted chili pepper candies with a fleeting sense of violet and lavender creaminess tied to a lush vanilla underbelly.

Finish: The end has a mild woody chili pepper spiciness that’s dry and leads to a limber finish with warmth, lightly caramelized malts, and smoked apricot jam with brandy cream.

Bottom Line:

This is another must-have for fans of subtly peated whiskies with a seaside vibe. There’s a nuance to this whisky that’s hard to find elsewhere and that makes it a damn near perfect slow sipper.

6. Dewar’s — Dewar’s 18 Blended Scotch Whisky

Bacardi

ABV: 40%

Average Price: $76

The Whisky:

The heart of Dewar’s is Aberfeldy whisky. This blend is a testament to Master Blender Stephanie MacLeod’s prowess in bringing good whisky together to make great whisky. The whiskies are aged for 18 long years in American oak before they’re vatted into a large oak tun and allowed to rest before proofing and bottling.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: There’s that signature Aberfeldy honey on the nose with hints of almonds, stone fruits, and red berries next to a hint of dried leather, Christmas spices, and maybe even some tobacco leaf.

Palate: The palate dials all of this in with a marzipan vibe next to floral honey, bruised apricot skins, and dark chocolate-covered red berries with a hint of tartness and bitterness.

Finish: The end is soft, silky, and brings a final bite of sweet oak with a slight tobacco chew layered with dark chocolate and marzipan.

Bottom Line:

This is a quintessential “on the rocks” pour of scotch.

5. Glenfiddich — Glenfiddich Grand Cru Aged 23 Years

Glenfiddich 23
William Grant & Sons

ABV: 40%

Average Price: $359

The Whisky:

It’s all in the name of this yearly special release from Glenfiddich. The whisky matures for over 23 years in both ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks before it’s vatted and then filled into French Cuvée casks that held Champagne. That whisky is then cut down to proof and bottled just in time for the holiday season.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: This is straight-up classic malt on the nose with stewed apples and pears with a slight tartness and floral impression over a buttery brioche with a hint of maple woodiness.

Palate: The palate is lush and supple with a vanilla foundation and layers of pear candy, old toffees, creamed honey, and orchard wood with a sweet side.

Finish: The end has a pear and apple skin ambiance that leads to barks, cores, and stems with soft floral honey and a tiny bit of proofing water.

Bottom Line:

This is classic and delicious. It’s also soft and almost supple, making it a great whisky for someone looking for subtler unpeated whisky malt flavors.

4. The Balvenie — The Balvenie French Oak Finished in Pineau Casks Aged 16 Years

The Balvenie 16 Year
William Grant and Sons

ABV: 47.6%

Average Price: $217

The Whisky:

The whisky here is a masterful blend from whisky legend David Stewart. After around 15 years of aging, the whisky is transferred to Pineau des Charentes casks (a French fortified wine) for a final maturation, which is The Balvenie’s first foray into French oak finishing. The whisky is then bottled with a touch of water but as-is otherwise.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: The nose opens with a soft floral note next to fresh honey, green grass, pear skins, cinnamon rolls with vanilla posting, and a hint of orchard woods.

Palate: The palate has a lemon meringue pie aura with subtle hints of honey-soaked gingerbread, shortbread biscuits, rum-raisin, and orange zest with a hint of salted dark chocolate lurking in the background.

Finish: The end has a light mix of ginger candies and cinnamon-laced dark chocolate creaminess with a whisper of apple/pear tobacco.

Bottom Line:

This is a fantastic malt that leans into fruity maltiness with a soft and almost delicate body. It’s enticing and delicious.

3. The Glenlivet — The Glenlivet Aged 21 Years

The Glenlivet 21
Pernod Ricard

ABV: 43%

Average Price: $310

The Whisky:

This redesigned The Glenlivet is still a classic whisky. The hot juice is aged in a triple combination of first-fill Oloroso sherry, Troncais oak Cognac casks, and vintage Colheita Port casks. After 21 long years (at least), the barrels are vatted and proofed down before bottling.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: Leather and winter spices lead the way on the nose with a hint of saffron-stewed pears, ripe peaches, and lush eggnog next to boiled beans with a bay leaf.

Palate: The palate leans into the peaches and pears but puts them in a pie with plenty of cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg next to apricot jam and rum-raisin.

Finish: The mid-palate hits a pine resin note before descending toward brandied cherries and dark chocolate with fresh ginger sharpens and a dash of cinnamon candy.

Bottom Line:

This is a good entry-point brand thanks so a soft flavor profile. If you dig it, then this upgraded expression will add serious depth and nuance to a very accessible style of unpeated single malt whisky.

2. The Macallan — The Macallan Estate

The Macallan Estate
The Edrington Group

ABV: 43%

Average Price: $289

The Whisky:

This ups the ante by using barley from the Easter Elchies Estate around The Macallan distillery, making a single estate whisky. The spirit from that hyper-local mash is aged for an undisclosed amount of time in undisclosed barrels but you can bet there’s some sherry and bourbon involved.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: Woody cinnamon sticks rubbed with orange zest pop on the nose as a thick banana bread batter with walnuts, nutmeg, and plenty of butter leads to a smidge of lemon oil and maybe some river rock.

Palate: The palate has plenty of woodiness from that cinnamon and adds in a touch of clove and allspice before savory figs and meaty prunes lead to a mix of raisins, nuts, and candied orange peels.

Finish: The finish is pure silk with layers of orange cake, cinnamon frosting, and fig jam culminating in a rush of soft woody spices on the back end.

Bottom Line:

There feels like there are a million different The Macallans out there. This is a good place to dive in on the higher end of the spectrum. This is an easy sipper that really highlights the great depth the brand has.

1. Johnnie Walker — Johnnie Walker Green Label

Diageo

ABV: 43%

Average Price: $69

The Whisky:

Johnnie Walker’s Green Label is a solidly crafted whisky that highlights Diageo’s fine stable of distilleries across Scotland. The whisky is a pure malt or blended malt, meaning that only single malt whisky is in the mix (no grain whisky). In this case, the primary whiskies are a minimum of 15 years old, from Talisker, Caol Ila, Cragganmore, and Linkwood.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: Soft notes of cedar dance with hints of black pepper, vanilla pods, and bright fruit with a wisp of green grass in the background.

Palate: The palate really delivers on that soft cedar woodiness while edging towards a spice-laden tropical fruit brightness.

Finish: The finish is dialed in with hints of cedar, spice, and fruit leading toward a briny billow of smoke at the very end.

Bottom Line:

It feels like this should be Johnnie Walker Blue Label, but you don’t need to pay that much for greatness from the brand. Johnnie Walker Green Label is made with stellar malts and the sum of all its parts is something greater. It’s also a great sipper and makes one hell of a cocktail. That’s a win-win, folks.

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