Monkey Shoulder is a popular blended malt Scotch whisky, known for its smooth, rich flavor. It is produced by William Grant & Sons and named after a condition caused by rotating malted barley by hand. Monkey Shoulder has gained a cult following in the US for its affordable price point and mixability in cocktails.
In this article, we will compare Monkey Shoulder whisky prices from major retailers across the USA and outline whether it provides good value for money.
Overview of Monkey Shoulder Whisky
Monkey Shoulder is a blend of three Speyside single malt whiskies – Glenfiddich, Balvenie, and Kininvie. It has an ABV of 40% and uses malted barley dried in kilns fueled by indirect heat, avoiding peat smoke flavor.
It is designed to have a smooth, mellow taste with notes of vanilla, honey, and spiced orange. This makes it very mixable for whisky cocktails like Penicillin or Whisky Sour. It also works well neat or on the rocks.
Monkey Shoulder markets itself as an easy-drinking whisky for younger drinkers and new Scotch explorers in the US. It comes in distinctive triangular bottles with a monkey logo hanging from a shoulders yoke.
Monkey Shoulder Whisky Prices in the USA
Here is a comparison of 750ml Monkey Shoulder whisky prices among major retailers in the US:
|Brand + Volume
|Cost of (750ml) Triple Malt Blended Scotch Monkey Shoulder Whisky
|Cost of (750ml) Blended Scotch Monkey Shoulder Whisky
Total Wine – $29.99
BevMo – $33.99
Costco – $32.89 (in-warehouse only)
Binny’s – $35.99
Goody Goody – $33.49
ABC Fine Wine & Spirits – $36.99
Specs – $39.34
Target – $34.99 (limited availability)
Walmart – $39.98
ReserveBar – $39.99
Drizly – $33.99
Minibar Delivery – $39.00
Instacart – $36.99 (local retailer prices)
Analysis of Monkey Shoulder Price Variation
The cheapest 750ml bottle of Monkey Shoulder can be purchased for around $29.99 from Total Wine stores. This matches many online prices when factoring in delivery fees and tips.
The most expensive options are Walmart at $39.98 and some local liquor deliveries like Minibar at $39. Retailers like BevMo, Specs, and ABC are in the $35-37 range.
For in-store purchases, your best bet is checking Total Wine or Costco if you have a membership. Costco only sells their liquor in-warehouse.
Ordering Monkey Shoulder online from Drizly or ReserveBar can net you solid $33-34 pricing. This makes delivery worth it if you don’t live near a discounted retailer.
Overall, Monkey Shoulder offers good value at around $30-35 for a 750ml bottle depending on where you shop. It’s an affordable blended Scotch comparable to bigger names like Dewar’s and Johnnie Walker. The $10 price fluctuation between retailers is worth noting.
Is Monkey Shoulder Worth the Price?
At its best pricing of $29.99, Monkey Shoulder offers tremendous value for its quality. It punches well above other blended whisky options at the same price point.
The smooth, subtle flavor profile makes it very mixable in cocktails. It’s a great whisky for entertaining or trying Scotch for the first time.
Even at markups of $36-39, Monkey Shoulder remains competitively priced versus similar blends. It’s worth paying a few extra dollars for the distillery expertise of William Grant & Sons.
Compared to single malt Scotch, Monkey Shoulder is priced appropriately for a younger blended whisky. More aged Speyside malts like Glenfiddich 12 Year tend to start around $45 for a 750ml bottle.
Value Over Cheaper Blended Whisky
Savings of $5-10 vs. cheaper blends like Clan MacGregor, Bellows, or Black & White provide noticeably better flavor and complexity. Monkey Shoulder is smooth enough to drink neat.
Value Under Single Malts
You sacrifice some depth for a $15+ discount from most 12-year single malt Scotches. Great for mixing cocktails.
Premium Over House Scotch Brands
Monkey Shoulder is a significant upgrade over low-end bar Scotch like Cluny, Passport, or Balkan for a few extra dollars. Worth trading up.
Best Places to Buy Monkey Shoulder Whisky
Based on price and availability, here are some of the best retailers to purchase Monkey Shoulder whisky:
- Total Wine – Consistent low prices both in-store and online. Frequent sales and coupons are available.
- Costco – Members can buy 750ml bottles for around $32.89 in warehouse liquor stores. Must have a membership.
- Drizly – Solid $33-34 pricing for delivery orders where Total Wine is not available.
- ReserveBar – Next-day delivery to many states with average retail cost.
- BevMo – Often runs promos like $5 off or 90% sales in-store. Decent delivery prices.
- Hi-Time Wine Cellars – Good source for California residents without Total Wine locations nearby.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Monkey Shoulder good for cocktails?
Yes, Monkey Shoulder makes an excellent cocktail whisky. It has a smooth flavor and just enough complexity to shine through mixed drinks. Popular cocktails are Whisky Sours, Penicillins, and Rob Roys.
What foods pair well with Monkey Shoulder?
Monkey Shoulder pairs nicely with smoked salmon, prosciutto, creamy cheeses, beef Wellington, and spice-rubbed pork shoulder. Its honey and orange notes complement sweet or savory foods.
Is Monkey Shoulder peated?
No, Monkey Shoulder does not use peated malts so it does not have a smoky flavor like Islay Scotch whiskies. It has a sweeter, fruitier taste profile.
Where is Monkey Shoulder made?
Monkey Shoulder is blended and bottled at the William Grant & Sons distillery in Dufftown, Scotland. The component single malts are made at their Glenfiddich, Balvenie, and Kininvie distilleries in the Speyside region.
Monkey Shoulder offers great quality and flavor for the price point across retailers in the US. Consistently low prices of around $30-35 for a 750ml bottle make it very affordable. Costco, Total Wine, and delivery services like Drizly provide the best value purchasing options. While prices can vary $10 between stores, Monkey Shoulder remains a worthwhile upgrade over budget blended whisky. Its balance of affordability and mixability has earned it a spot as a popular Scotch for cocktails and new whisky drinkers.