Jim Murray writes a whisky bible in which he rates and ranks whiskies from around the world. The big "scandal" (of sorts) this year is that a Japanese scotch-type whisky was ranked number one; furthermore, no whisky from Scotland made the top five of his ranking.*
Clearly Mr. Murray and I have different tastes (and different budgets). Perusing his rankings from the past on this site, I see very few peated whiskies other than just about anything from Ardbeg, which I like but which is not my favourite. Furthermore the Lagavulins and Laphroaigs on the list were not my favourites from those distilleries. I likely have quite plebian tastes, but my two favourite peated whiskies in past taste tests have been Lagavulin 16 and Caol Ila (see this), neither of which makes his top lists or ratings.
One big shock: the Liquor Control Board of Ontario had quarter-cask LaPhroaig on sale for $10 off yesterday. Wow! I think I prefer the 10-year-old LaPhroaig to their quarter-cask, but I still bought some.
*note: Christine Logan, who was my guide when I toured the Island of Islay, at one time worked for Bowmore Distillery and then later did some work for a Japanese distillery. She had very nice things to say about their whiskies 4 years ago when I traveled with her.
Addendum: after seeing this, a friend who knows something about the industry wrote me:
Jim Murray was a great Ardbeg fan in the early days when he went over to Islay gleaning all information for his writings. I do not rate him highly.