Essential Whisky Facts Everyone Should Know

Here I was ready to write up a massive post about some of the essential things you should know about Whisky (or Whiskey, depending on what you’re drinking) and someone went ahead and did it for me. I’m not going to complain, all the information is correct and presented in a brilliantly concise way, so here you go, over at Asylum UK: Essential Whisky Facts Every Man Should Know. I changed the title to fact that everyone should know, because hey – we’re equal opportunity geeks here, and I will readily acknowledge that any woman who knows her stuff about liquor is an attractive woman to me. And likely would be also to my lesbian friends.

Let’s move on before I get myself in trouble.

Now then, there are a few highlights that I Ray Ban outlet online think are worth pointing out – that aside from the fabulous and storied history of whisky and its many many varieties, some of the most basic things you want to know are the different types of whisky and what differentiates them. So here you go:

The four major types are Irish Whiskey (with an ‘e’), Scotch Whisky, American Whiskey (again with an ‘e’), & Canadian Whisky. The Irish & Americans spell it with the ‘e’; the rest of the world leaves it off to save on printing costs. Let’s break it down:

Irish Whiskey
Distilled three times. Uses pure-malted barley as the grain. Aged at least three years in oak casks.

Scotch or Scottish Whisky
Distilled twice. Also uses barley, which is dried over peat fire, giving scotch it’s characteristic smoky flavor. Aged at least two years in oak.

American Whiskey
Made from a mash (mixture) of cereal Ray Ban outlet grain. Aged at least two years in charred, unused oak.

Canadian Whisky
Uses at least 51 percent malted rye as the grain. Aged at least three years in oak.

Other Fun Facts:
A whisky stops maturing after it’s bottled, so it won’t get “better” over time.

A closed bottle can be kept for more than 100 years and you’ll still be good to go. So, raid your parents’ liquor cabinet and grab that sealed Jameson from Christmas of ’87.

An opened bottle is all right for five years. This is good to know for nicer bottles, but you should be drinking that handle of Beam way quicker than that.

You see that folks? Once it’s bottled, it stops maturing. So stop claiming that you’re letting that bottle of Jameson Reserve in your liquor cabinet “age” until a special occasion. It’s not aging, it’s just getting old.

If you’re saving it, that’s one thing, but you’re not enhancing the flavor in any way.

Oh, one more thing from the article I thought was compelling:

Bourbon is an American Whiskey made from at least 51 percent corn. It no longer has to be made in Bourbon, Kentucky, but 90 percent of it is.

Bourbon County, is a dry county. Which is just stupid. Silly Americans.

Yeah, I’m going to have to back them Occhiali Da sole Ray Ban outlet up on this one. It’s kind of sad that so much bourbon is made in Bourbon County, but none of it can be consumed there. Seriously?

In any event, that’s the scoop on bourbon – it’s a special blend of American Whiskey that’s high in corn content – which, after all, is what the American midwest is practically swimming in. You give the United States an application for corn and we’ll find it, believe me.

That all being said though, the beauty of there being so many different types of whisky is that you can try the best and the worst of different varieties and come away with some fantastically different and interesting flavors. For example, you may learn you’re a huge bourbon fan but not a big scotch fan – it’s entirely up to you, and you have a massive variety of brands, styles, and flavors to try.

In future articles we’ll dive into each of these varieties and highlight some brands and names you should be on the lookout for, and even do some tasting (maybe some video if the demand is there!) so you know what you’re in for when you head to the liquor store. Unlike with wine, there isn’t often someone on-hand who can speak to the quality and taste of liquors like whisky, but hey – that’s why I’m here.

Author Description

Alan Henry

There are 5 comments. Add yours

  1. 21st March 2010 | Rachel says:
    What about explaining how to "nose" whiskey? I don't even really know what it means, but I like the sound of it...
  2. 10th April 2010 | sjon says:
    [quorte] Let’s move on before I get myself in trouble. [/quote] ... to late ... My favourite Whiskys are the Scotisch single malt ones. It's hard to beat a Glenfiddich ^_^
  3. 23rd April 2010 | Alan Henry says:
    Excellent choice! I'm definitely a Single-malt kind of guy myself. I've been drinking a lot of Macallan these days, but Glenfiddich is excellent as well! I just don't have much experience tasting it. I might have to now that you suggest it!
  4. 2nd November 2011 | Ross Morris says:
    I hate to be a pain, but a small correction to your description. Single Malt Scotch Whisky uses only malted barley and can be smoky or not dependant on where in Scotland it comes from. It must be a minimum of 3 years in oak casks to be called Scotch Whisky.
  5. Pingback: Free Scotch Whisky Tastings (And Some Fun Facts) | Yum Blog | San Francisco Food and Restaurants | SF Station January 10, 2012

    […] Once whisky is bottled, it doesn’t get better (like wine)…or worse. So you can drink a hundred-year-old bottle and be fine. (Source) […]

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