Whiskey

Whiskey is a spirit produced from the distillation of grain. Debate still rages about whether the Irish Celts or Scots were the first to produce the “water of life,” but the first written recording of whiskey’s creation dates to 15th century Scotland. Origin isn’t the only debate concerning whiskey. Spelling is contentious, too. When distilled in Scotland, Canada, and Japan, it is spelled whisky without the e, while whiskey distilled in Ireland and the United States is most often, but not always, spelled with the e. Technically, whiskey is a distilled spirit produced from a fermented grain mash, distilled to no more than 190 proof, and bottled at no less than 80 proof. All whiskey, with the exception of corn whiskey and “white” whiskey, must be aged for some period of time in oak containers. Whiskey is classified by country of origin (i.e. Canadian whisky) and may be further defined by the type of grain used (i.e. rye whiskey) or the way it is produced (i.e. single malt).

Top Whiskey Posts:

The Top 10 Whiskeys of 2018
The Top 10 Whiskeys of 2017
All About Dusties: 1970s vs. 2018 Bourbon Tasted Side by Side
Top 10 Bourbons Under $20
What Grains are Used to Make Whiskey (And Why?)
From Barrel To Bottle: How Wood Aging Impacts Whiskey

Eades Whisky Breaks Ground on Virginia Distillery

By Christopher Null | October 22, 2008 |

Eades, makers of the Double Malt series of whiskys (which I’ve not yet tried), has broken ground on its bold new whisky distillery project to be located in… Virginia, USA. The Virginia Distillery Company will grow its own barley, malt it, and use local water to make whisky in the style of traditional Scotch. The…

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Review: Buffalo Trace Antique Collection 2008 Edition

By Christopher Null | October 20, 2008 |

Each year the distilling masters at Buffalo Trace release limited-release whiskeys that connoisseurs will want to seek out. This year’s five whiskeys, rarities that may not see store shelves come 2009, are all worth exploring in depth. Some notes on each of the five (all officially 2008 releases) follow. (They are pictured in the order…

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Angels: DENIED

By Christopher Null | October 16, 2008 |

A fascinating piece in the latest Malt Advocate (Q4 2008, page 18) still has me reeling and thunderstruck. It concerns efforts to thwart evaporation of whiskey, a natural part of the aging process. Evaporation is a huge expense for distillers: Conventional wisdom holds that 2 percent of a cask vanishes each year as it evaporates.…

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Review: Charter 101 Bourbon

By Christopher Null | October 15, 2008 |

Here’s a new kid on the block from the good whiskey folks at Buffalo Trace: Charter (aka Old Charter) Bourbon, bottled at 101 proof and retro top to bottom in its gold-trmmed, angular-designed bottle. No age statement on the label, which is the norm for a $24 bottle of whiskey. In the glass, it’s very…

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Tasting Report: WhiskyFest San Francisco 2008

By Christopher Null | October 11, 2008 |

It’s official: WhiskyFest is awesome. Bouncing around the dozens of booths and hundreds of spirits being poured was tons of fun: More intimate than the enormous wine events and studded with wall-to-wall kilts. My final tally: 24 whiskeys tasted (plus a rum and a gin). That’s more than I was expecting to sample, but as…

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Review: The Singleton of Glendullan 12 Years Old (2008)

By Christopher Null | October 6, 2008 |

New Scotch expressions are legion. But Scotch producers making it to the U.S. are pretty rare, considering this country’s love of the stuff. Glendullan distillery presents its first American offering this fall, The Singleton, a 12-year single malt that most Scotch enthusiasts will likely find perfectly pleasant, if a bit entry-level. Produced in the crowded…

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Review: Old Forester Repeal Bourbon

By Christopher Null | October 4, 2008 |

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the repeal of Prohibition (officially ratified on December 5, 1933), so to celebrate, Old Forester is releasing a one-time-only, limited expression of its storied Bourbon whiskey. The whiskey will be sold in a 375ml bottle with a medicine-flash appearance and a replica version of a label from the…

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Review: Highland Park 12, 15, 18, 25, 30, and 40 Years Old

By Christopher Null | October 4, 2008 |

It isn’t every day you get to taste the complete lineup of a serious Scotch producer in one sitting… and have a gourmet dinner to go along with it. While I’m still recovering from gulping down six glasses of Scotch in lieu of wine on Thursday night (pacing yourself when you’re thirsty during a meal…

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Review: The Glenlivet XXV

By Christopher Null | September 29, 2008 |

Glenlivet launches its oldest (permanent collection) Scotch this fall, a 25-year malt called XXV. It’s exceptional. Aged in oak and Oloroso Sherry casks, the XXV has a light playfulness and a near-perfect balance for a single malt Scotch. Bottled at 86 proof, it needs the tiniest splash of water to cut through some pretty intense…

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Review: Four Roses Mariage Collection Bourbon 2008 Edition

By Christopher Null | September 22, 2008 |

Ahhh now here’s something special. I’m on record as being a big fan of Four Roses bourbon already. Now the distillery is launching a limited-edition blended bourbon, at cask strength, no less: A heady 112.4 proof (though my barrel sample was “just” 111.4 proof), which will burn off your eyebrows if you’re not careful. Yeah,…

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