Tommy Tardie just wants to talk about whiskey. Owner and operator of The Flatiron Room and Fine & Rare, both among New York City’s preeminent vintage and contemporary whiskey-drinking spots, Tardie helped select and build out these venues’ whiskey stocks and continues to host tastings and classes. So when we asked what bottles he’d reach for before being dropped on a desert island, he was prepared. “I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t thought about this question before,” Tardie says. “For me, selecting whiskey is all about mood, location and timing.” From hard-to-find Laphroaig to Scotch to drink on a beach, here’s what whiskey expert Tommy Tardie always keeps in stock.
Laphroaig 30-Year Cáirdeas
“My nights on an island would probably be spent tending a fire, cooking my meals and staying warm. When I think fire, I think of a nice peated Scotch. One of my hands-down favorite peated Scotches to date is the Laphroaig 30 year Cáirdeas. Aged in sherry and bourbon casks, it’s a perfect balance of sweetness and salinity with a whiff of peat. I’d argue this bottle provides just as much warmth as a wool blanket.”
“I’m pretty much always in the mood for a nice bottle of Glendronach, and if I’m trapped on an island why not splurge with the 18-year-old. It’s big, bold and lingers on your palate for what seems like days; powerful notes of dates, chocolate and dark fruits — you could almost convince yourself it’s a meal. And on a deserted island that just might be a good substitute.”
The Balvenie Carribean Cask 14-Year
“Assuming this island is tropical — with sandy beaches, palm trees and lots of exotic fruits — why not embrace it and with a nice bottle of Balvenie 14-year Carribean Cask. It’s light and sweet with hints of mango, passion fruit and oranges. A perfect pour for a day in the sun, and best yet, I’d probably be drinking it from a coconut half.”