Well, Christmas was more like Scotchmas for me. I ended up doing several personal tastings, and buying a lot of Scotch! Here are my very VERY novice reviews on what I had:
Isle of Jura: Love it (not new to this by any means, but I use it as my "control" when tasting other single malts)
Aberlour 12 year: Like it quite a bit. Smoky and minty...
Ardbeg Ten: Not ready for this yet I guess... tasted like iodine and smoke. Was a bit more sweet over ice, still not my favorite.
Macallan 12 year: Loved this. Smooth, sweet, slightly smoky... loses something over ice for me. Better with just a splash of water.
Macallan Cask Strength: This is the stuff dreams are made of. So far, my favorite.
Highland Park 12 year: Very smoky to me at first, grew on me. Like it!
I still have one more to try, I picked up a bottle of The Balvenie 17 year double wood. Will try it this Friday.
Thus the NEWB REVIEW!
I had a great time tasting these and comparing it to other reviews to see if I could taste, smell or feel what they were describing. Although, I am by NO MEANS EVEN CLOSE to being considered "good" at it, I do feel that I have improved in just a week! I have revisited some of the single malts and found more flavors in them than before.