Whiskey is beer that’s been distilled two or three times. To distill whiskey, you first have to make beer. Beer is a technical term for whiskey wash, regardless of the type of raw ingredients used.
There are more than 2,500 brands of Scotch Whisky, and more than 5000 types of Single Malt Whisky, of which 90 percent come from Scotland.
A blended whisky contains anything from 15 to 50 different malt whiskies. The skill of the blender is to create character and consistency in the product – and to choose only the whiskies that complement each other.
The age of the blended Whisky mentioned on the bottle refers to the youngest whisky in the blend. If it says 10 years it means that the youngest Whisky is matured for a minimum period of 10 years in oak casks.
The barrels made from American White Oak have been claimed to produce the tastiest whisky.
A whisky stops maturing after it is bottled. A closed bottle of Whisky can be kept for more than 100 years and it’s still good to drink. Once it is opened and it’s half full – you can save it for about 5 years. If it’s containing less, then drink it and don’t save it.
As long as the bottle is kept out of direct sunlight, the Scotch will neither improve nor deteriorate, even if it is opened. Whisky that is stored at very low temperatures can become cloudy, but the cloudiness should disappear when the whisky is returned to room temperature.
At any one time, at least 18.5 million barrels of whisky are maturing in warehouses throughout Scotland.
And finally, the answer to a question we’ve never been asked – but who knows, you might come across it in a pub quiz: 36 bottles of whisky are shipped from Scotland every second.