Apart from the actual content in these three sections I've added a couple of 'generic' pages like the introduction and this sitemap. These pages should help guide you through the site, while you can use the search page to look for a specific single malt or topic. I've tried to answer some frequently asked questions on the help page, but if you can't find an answer there you can always contact me or the other malt maniacs. All these 'generic' items are accessible from every page on this site through the buttons at the top.



Over the last seven years I've been keeping a Liquid Log.
It's a record of my search for the perfect single malt and contains tasting notes and general observations on whisky.
Each page in my liquid log contains 10 log entries and generally covers a period of several months. Navigating the log should be easy; you can access all log entries through the
Liquid Log Overview or jump directly to one of the pages in the log via the links below.

If you're looking for tasting notes on a specific single malt you can use the 'find' function of your browser (Ctrl+F).



The new 'Big Black Book' section replaces my old 'Little Black Book' which became just a little too little for its own good. Well, that might have been some kind of optical illusion. I'm starting to think the book didn't really grow smaller, but it was just me growing bigger. Or my ego at least... Anyway - parts of this site section are still under construction, so watch your step...
Right now, the following items are available within the Big Black Book:


The mAlmanac is sort of a 'Beginner's Guide' to single malt whisky. If you stumbled accross this site by accident or if you just want to learn a little more about the wonderful world of whisky this would be the place to start. Apart from general background information about the history and production of SMSW the mAlmanac offers trivia, hints, tips and tricks.

Parts of the mAlmanac were written a few years ago - revising the content will be one of my next 'projects'.

Distillery Data

The 'Distillery Data' section offers an overview of all active distilleries in Scotland with basic statistics like the year the distillery was founded, the status of the distillery, the ownership and the number of different versions I've sampled. The 'overview' page provides some generic information on all distilleries, but I've also started working on more detailed 'Distillery Profiles'. These profiles offer more detailed information about the distillery, as well as tasting notes for all the bottlings I've sampled.
There are almost 90 active distilleries in Scotland so finishing all profiles will take me a while.
At the moment these distillerey profiles are under construction:

More distillery profiles will be added in the future.
I will try to go about things as alphabetically as possible...

Malt Map

The interactive Malt Map offers a view of Scotland from a geographical perspective.
In this case 'interactive' means you can move your cursor over the malt regions of Scotland to get an instant overview of all the active distilleries in that region - and quite a few inactive ones as well. So, it's sort of a rudimentary 'alcoholic's atlas'.
Every one of the five main whisky regions is analysed in more detail on a separate page;

You can use the map to find all the distilleries in a certain region. If you're looking for information (and ratings) about a specific single malt it would be wiser to check out my Track Record or the Distillery Data section. Or Malt Maniacs of course!

Track Record

My Track Record offers an alphabetical overview of the single malts I've tasted and rated since January 1, 1997.
That was the day I 'officially' started
my quest to find 'the perfect single malt'. I had actually discovered single malt whiskies years before, in 1991. Although my malt madness grew more serious over the years I didn't start taking notes until the end of 1996. Soon after I started writing in my Liquid Log in 1997 I started to regret my laziness, though. As my condition grew more serious my research did so as well. Because I hadn't collected any data, all that was left of my experiences after six years of dramming were some wonderful but vague memories. So even though I had a lot of fun, my dramming didn't serve the betterment of mankind or anything.

To make sure all the tasting experiences during my mission would serve a higher purpose I decided I should document them properly. The Liquid Log offers a chronological overview of my sampling sessions but you can use the alphabetical Track Record to quickly find some basic data on the circa 350 single malts I've tried since the beginning of 1997. The scores I've awarded to the different whiskies should give you a pretty good idea how I personally feel about them.

Hit List / Shit List

The Hit List is a selection of the single malts I've sampled, ranked from best to worst.
Well, 'Best' and 'Worst' according to my purely personal standards, of course. My opinion is just that - an opinion.
One of the things that attracted me to single malts in the first place was the amazing diversity in character and style. It's hard for me to respond emotionally to a whisky that has little personality - which happens to be the case with a lot of blends. In my system 50 points equals a neutral attitude towards an alcoholic beverage - it gets me drunk but other than that I neither like or dislike it. On the way down along the scale it will become increasingly difficult to lure me into drinking the stuff. You may have to get physical to force whisky in the 0-10 points segment down my throat, for example.

I like personality so much that I can forgive a whisky some offensive traits, as long as it has a character of its own. Even though I think they are 'avoidable' I awarded some single malts on the so-called 'Shit List' up to 59 points. The 'questionable' bracket runs from 60-69 points and contains malts that would be very drinkable if there weren't so many better alternatives. Don't let the name of the 'average' bracket fool you; any of these malts (scoring 70-79 points) is good, no question about it. In my system 75 points is sort of a benchmark. Anything scoring over 75 points is better than average - for a single malt, that is...

Things get really interesting at 80 points and above. A score of 80-84 means 'recommendable' and 85-89 stands for 'highly reccommendable'. Very few malts ever reach the summit of the 'close to perfection' bracket (90 points or more).
Do you want to know which ones have? Well, just click onwards to the
Hit List and find out...

Stock List

My life hasn't been the same since my amazing discovery of single malt Scotch whisky.
For one thing, I've had to find room for my slowly expanding
collection of bottles. Apart from a 'drinking collection' of 48 opened bottles I've assembled a 'reserve stock' of unopened bottles to be enjoyed some time in the future. I've even been able to build a small 'trading stock' of bottles I may be able to swap for something else some day.
Click here to find out what I've been spending my hard-earned cash on.

Liquid Links

I've tried to fill the Big Black Book with as much information as possible.
But everything I've written so far only reflects my own personal opinion, so you'd be well advised to browse around to get a second or even a third opinion. Of course, the
Malt Maniacs section (see below) offers plenty of alternative perspectives. After you're done with Malt Madness and Malt Maniacs you can venture into the vast expanse of the world wide web to continue your voyage of discovery. There are literally hundreds of other websites dedicated to single malts.

The Liquid Links section offers a growing collection of links to sites about single malt Scotch whisky.
I've divided the links into four groups;
Top Sites (my personal favourites), Distilleries (official distillery websites), Personal (sites of other malt afficionados and tasting societies) and Commercial (On-line shops, bars, vendors, magazines, private bottlers, auctions).


I started this 'Malt Madness' site in 1996 and gradually more and more people started sending me reports about their alcoholic adventures. After a while I started to publish some of the more eloquent contributions on the site and by the end of 2001 we had evolved into an interactive collective of twelve 'malt maniacs', reporting from all over the world.

That was when we decided to combine our to collective contributions into an E-zine; Malt Maniacs.
For a while we experimented with a second, seperate website but that proved to be a tad overly ambitious.
So, I decided to re-integrate both sites again. From now on, 'Malt Maniacs' will be one of the three site sections on Malt Madness. Within the site, the first two sections (the
Liquid Log and the Big Black Book) are reserved for my personal reports and observations. The third section, Malt Maniacs, is a collective effort. The 'Maniacs' section itself is divided into 3 parts;


The 'Credentials ' page offers an overview of all the 12 malt maniacs with some 'essential credentials'. Each maniac has his own 'Personal Profile' as well - a separate page with more background information. The profiles contain a brief personal introduction, a Top 10 and overviews of all single malts sampled and all E-pistles written by that maniac.
You can use the links below to jump directly to one of the personal profiles.

These personal profiles should give you a general idea about the backgounds and preferences of the maniacs.
If you want to know how the maniacs 'collectively' feel about some widely available single malts check out...

The Matrix

The concept of the Malt Maniacs Matrix is very simple; a collection of some 200 single malts on one end and the scores the malt maniacs gave them on the other. This way, you will be able to check the opinions of several maniacs about a single malt at a glance. Despite its simplicity the matrix provides a useful frame of reference to compare your own preferences to those of other people. And once you found one or more maniacs with similar tastes you can use their scores as pointers to new discoveries.


The 'Archive' is the largest part of Malt Maniacs by far.
It contains all the E-pistles (and prE-pistles) the maniacs have written since 1998.
Click on a link below to jump directly to one of the issues.

So far we've managed to fill 6 issues with tasting reports, interviews, experiences and observations.
The topic?  Our mutual passion: single malt Scotch whisky, of course!


OK, so there's a fourth site section...
It's the so-called '
Expired ' section, reserved for some old items that were part of the previous version of malt madness but didn't really fit into the new concept and structure. Right now, the section contains six items.

The first proto-version of Malt Madness appeared in 1996. Since then, the site has been growing exponentially. By the end of 2001, it had grown into an uncontrollable malt monstrosity. I was forced to split the original Malt Madness site into two different websites; the new 'purely personal' Malt Madness site you're looking at right now and Malt Maniacs; a collective effort together with 11 other malt maniacs. Some items that were part of the previous version of Malt Madness didn't really fit into the new concept and structure, so I've removed them from the main navigation of the site and collected them in this 'Expired' section.
Right now, the 'Expired' section contains 6 items:

1 - Little Black Book  (Replaced by my Big Black Book on January 1, 2002)
Contents: Tasting notes on the 200 malts I sampled between 01/01/1996 and 01/01/2002.
Reason for expiration: My little black book became just too little.

2 - Little Black Bulletin
Contents: Brief notes on Irish whiskies, blends, vatted malts, etc.
Reason for expiration: I've been sampling single malts almost exclusively lately.

3 - Best-to-Worst List  (Replaced by my Hitlist on January 1, 2002)
Contents: The 200 malts I sampled between 01/01/1996 and 01/01/2002, ranked from best to worst.
Reason for expiration: Variations between different batches made this list rather useless.

4 - Michael Jackson's Ratings
Contents: MJ's ratings for more than 300 single malts, sorted geographically.
Reason for expiration: The majority of the bottlings mentioned are not available anymore.

5 - Vox Populi
Contents: A selection from the posts from 'the public' in 2000 and 2001.
Reason for expiration: Not enough contributions to justify a spot in the new site concept.

6 - Public Whisky Warnings
Contents: Warnings people sent me in response to my 'Worst Whiskies of the World' log entry.
Reason for expiration: Not enough contributions to justify a spot in the new concept.

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So, is there some kind of logic to Malt Madness? Yes, there is.
The site is divided into three sections; my
Liquid Log, the Big Black Book and Malt Maniacs.
Each section deals with another aspect of my Malt Madness and is accessible through the three big buttons at the top right corner of every page. I've tried to increase your surfing pleasure through some elementary form of colour coding. The Liquid Log has a
white background, the pages of my Big Black Book are identified by orange accents and green is the colour for Malt Maniacs. And that's not all...

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