I don’t have the interest in doing a post on ratings as it’s a relatively dull subject. For my own reasons, I prefer to use the Los Angeles Whiskey Society’s ratings. They are in my opinion the least ambiguous and pretty straightforward.
Since I have received a few emails and IMs asking about rating information (which I’ve linked to previously), I’ll very quickly copy this information on ratings over from the LAWS site.
A Virtually ideal. A superstar whiskey.
A- Excellent. Definitely want to own.
B+ Great. Definitely want to own.
B Good. Might want to own.
B- Good whiskey worth trying.
C (range) Fine to drink (if there’s nothing else).
D (range) Unpleasant. Not recommended.
F Horrific swill to be avoided at all costs.
Note that ratings never take into account price. (Macallan 30 for instance would rate lower if it did; something like Very Old Barton may rate higher if it did.) This is generally a tougher scale than most; scores tend to cluster around B-/C+ rather than A-/B+.