Scotch thread...

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Wheelman, Feb 25, 2013.

  1. Yeah a friend of mine is really into cognac and always gets martell or hennessey. marquis is supposed to be good too.
     
  2. As a Scot, I have to weigh in on this. Blends are where it's at and where teh money is to be made. Single malt distilleries are like beer in Scotland. it's not hard to make, and it's simple. Blends are where teh secrets are, and where teh master artisans come in. The bigger distilleries, like Dewars and such all share aroun dthe single malts they make to other blenders. It's the signature blends that they keep secret even if they are made with the single malts of another major distillery. In Scotland they tend to shake their heads at Americans who think that single malts are the top of the heap.

    That being said, they do love the single malts and the different regions of production and how those regions affect the flavor. As a highlander I'm kind of biased towards the Highland malts, that are smoother and less peaty than the Islay or Island scotches. I don't really care for the peatyness of Laphroiag. Instead, my favorites are Aberfeldy, Edradour, Dalwhinnie and Macallan. But blends based on these whiskies, especially the older varieties, are winners in my book.

    Also, did you know that adding a splash of water to your scotch is like a drop of rain on a spring day? It opens up the flavors of the scotch after it's been sitting in the bottle. Don't worry about diluting the scotch, as it's pre-diluted before you even get it. The distilleries add water to the scotch as it comes out of the cask to get it down to the 40% or so alcohol it is in your bottle at home.
     
  3. the drop of water basically works with any alcohol, even beer.
     
  4. Seems like it would only really work with drinks that have very strong, dense flavors.
     
  5. Yeah, it doesn't work as well with beer, unless it's a very complex beer. And the beer doesn't sit around in drums for years, either, so it's more "ready to go" right out of the bottle.

    The way it was explained to me at the Aberfeldy distillery was that drinking it "neat" tends to get you more alcohol than flavor, as teh alcohol content tends to "burn out" the taste buds before you get the after taste in effect, limiting your experience of the flavors they put in the scotch. Adding a splash of water, takes the initial sting off and lets your tongue experience more of the flavors. This is especially important with the rarer cask stregth scotches that are at 60% alcohol and almost undrinkable right out of the bottle. They need to be poured almost half and half scotch and water to bring them to the level of a typical single malt.
     
  6. #31 F1LM My Car, Feb 26, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2016
    I've yet to have the opportunity to taste JW Blue, but Black (and Green/Gold, for that matter) is a great bottle to keep on hand for sharing. It's definitely a crowd pleaser.

    I haven't been drinking much whisky lately, but I do have a bottle of Aberlour A'bunadh at home that I bought myself as a birthday present: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A'bunadh I absolutely love it.
     
  7. I think I prefer Irish Whiskey to scotch, really like Bushmills
     
  8. I had a bottle of bushmills 16 once, it was great.
     
  9. Someone explain the difference between irish whiskey, scotch whiskey, rye whiskey, and bourbon. i havent a clue. also american and canadian whiskey i guess
     
  10. First time I tried it was 3-4 months ago at a pub in dublin. At some point the guy who suggested it to me lowered his voice and told me "it's protestant whisky" lol
     
  11. Watched Argo again last night with a friend and noticed near the end the bottle of liquor that Ben Affleck's character takes back to the hotel room with him from the Canadian ambassador's residence was a nice looking bottle of Lagavulin - is that scotch any good? The only Scotch's I've ever tried are Dewar's (crap), Johnny Walker Black/Red, Glenfiddich, and Glenlivet.
     
  12. I've never had it but heard it's excellent. It's also $90 a bottle, I believe.
     
  13. Irish whiskey is from Ireland and made of malt

    Scotch whisky is from Scotland and made of malt

    Rye whiskey is made from rye and can be from anywhere

    Canadian whiskey is made in Canada from mostly wheat and some rye

    Bourbon is whiskey from America and is made from a blend of wheat, rye, and corn
     
  14. Lagavulin is in my opinion one of the best scotches available. The 16 year is very nice, and if you can find it the Distillers Edition is even nicer. It's smokey and sweet, very smooth, with lots of peat flavour. It's a completely different type of scotch when compared to Glenfiddich and Glenlivet, which are the Coke and Pepsi of single malt scottish whiskey.
     
  15. Ok, so when people say blended is it a combination of any of those together?

    And single, double malt refers to the amount or types of malts included?
     
  16. Blends are usually still just in one of those categories, but blended from multiple batches/distilleries, rather than being from a single distillery or even barrel. Single malt refers to the liquors from a single distillery. I haven't really ever heard "double malt", but I presume that would be a blend from just two specific distilleries.
     
  17. Actually I believe 'bourbon' is now an appellation and has to be specifically from Kentucky.
     
  18. Could be, that would make sense to do. I don't know if the quality is up enough to justify it, but whatever. It'll add cache to the segment.
     
  19. EDIT: Turns out I was wrong, to be labeled "bourbon" a whiskey need only be made in the US from a mash that is at least 51% corn. Additionally, to be called "straight bourbon" the whiskey must be aged at least two years and have no other flavors/colors/spirits added.
     
  20. Speaking of bourbon, anyone try this newfangled devil's cut bourbon extracted from the barrel wood that I've been seeing advertised on tv? Sounds crazy smoky but I'm intrigued.
     
  21. "Malt" in this case meaning "malted barley."

    Other various points of clarification:

    Single malt means a whiskey was produced at a single distillery and made from a single type of grain (in Scotland this must be barley).

    Whiskey which uses something other than malted barley as the primary ingredient is generally referred to as "grain whiskey" as a category. Things like rye, wheat, and corn whiskey are within this group.

     
  22. Yep.

    Also, to be pedantic, even single malt is usually a blend of sorts.
    Typically the distillery will produce a number of barrels during a production run and lay them down for a number of years (a Scottish whisky has to be at least 3 years old before it can be sold as whisky).
    Once the barrels reach bottling age the distillery will combine the whisky from several barrels in order to get a uniform colour and taste for that production run (otherwise bottles on the shelf in the shop would contain slightly different coloured whisky). Ther are also allowed to add a E150 caramel colour to help with the colouring process (although some distilleries such as Bruichladdich never add colouring).

    A Single Malt can also be a blend of different ages of single malts from the same distillery - the age on the bottle is the minimum age of the whiskies used. So if production one year is affected by crop or water shortages, once it is ready for bottling several years later it can be blended with older malts to ensure there is enough.

    Also, whisky doesn't age once it's bottled.... although it might go off <A BORDER="0" HREF="http://www.supercars.net/PitLane?displayFAQ=y"><IMG BORDER="0" SRC="pitlane/emoticons/smile.gif"></A>

    The only Single Malt Whisky which is un-blended comes from a single barrel or cask is marked as Single Cask/Single Barrel.

    Single Malt just means it is produced by a single distillery, made from malted barely and aged in oak casks for a minimum of 3 years.

     
  23. As someone who lives in Scotland I'm not sure I'd agree with your statement that "In Scotland they tend to shake their heads at Americans who think that single malts are the top of the heap".

    There is a huge market for Single Malts over here and distilleries are producing more and more 'expressions' (poncey word I know) of Single Malts. These aren't just made to be exported there is enormous demand across Scotland and the UK.
    I go to several whisky festivals a year and Single Malts easily make of 85-90% of the whiskies on offer.
    Yes, many distilleries sell on a good proportion of their production to be used in blends, but I think blends can be more accessible because (personal opinion) their taste generally doesn't go to the extremes of some single malts.

    I think blends got an undeserved bad rep amongst the whisky snobs, and thankfully there are more and more really good blends on the market, but I've yet to go to a generic whisky tasting or festival where "blends are where it's at".
     
  24. I'm not good enough to sip any whiskey drink straight up
    I wish I was and sometimes imagine myself doing some nice sipping
     
  25. Add some water, or an ice cube. In many cases this is generally considered the proper way to do it (especially with higher-proof whiskies).
     

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