It’s almost like a household name for whisky drinkers. This type of scotch whisky is often associated with Scotland, but this can be made anywhere in the world. As the whisky industry continues to grow, a couple of terms have emerged such as single barrel, single cask, single grain, and of course single malt. Let’s focus more on the popular single malt scotch whisky.
The truth is that single malt whisky can be made anywhere in the world, be it India, Taiwan, Japan, Australia, Sweden, Italy, America, and other countries. The category World Whisky is also becoming popular these days. When you say scotch whisky, it means made in Scotland.
The term single in single malt means that the liquid has been distilled in one distillery. When it says Glenfiddich single malt whisky, this means that the liquid was produced at the Glenfiddich Distillery. This does not imply that it comes from one barrel or cask. In fact, it comes from many barrels that have been blended. It is true that a single malt whisky can be technically a mixture of various barrels and of varying ages that are blended together. The bottle often states an age. That age is the age of the youngest whisky within the combination.
It is also good to consider the second term malt. By single malt it means that the liquid is made using only a malted barley as a grain. Bourbon has 51 percent corn as grain while a blended whisky is a combination of malt whisky and whisky made from all other grains. One noteworthy tidbit is that the barley can be from anywhere but when you say single malt it is defined by the country in which it is created.
Now that it is clear to you what single malt scotch whisky is, it’s time we address some misconceptions about whisky. The word single in the term single barrel and single cask is similar to the way single malt is named. If a single malt comes from a single distillery, a single barrel or cask comes from a single barrel. This makes a single cask release more expensive since it is rarer.
It could also help any beginner to know the different types of whisky. These are some of them: Bourbon, American, Irish, Canadian, Islay, Speyside, Lowlands, Japanese, Indian, and Blended Scotch.
Bourbon is younger than other whiskies. This is primarily due to high humidity. That doesn’t really mean that it is inferior, it just matures more quickly than the rest. When it comes to bourbon, look for sweetness and smoothness to its taste.
There are many American whiskies today, but it usually is spicier, rich, as well as punchy. This is meant for those who like to try powerful flavors with a hint of sweetness too.