Whiskey Fact: Not one barrel is the same.

whiskeybarrelsMalt whiskey is made exclusively from malted barley which is still prepared and distilled using traditional methods, but on a very large scale. Variations such as the climate or type of the barrel’s oak that the whiskey is aged in, can influence the character of the whiskey.

Due to the many factors that influences a whiskey’s character, nearly all the bottles that you see in the market are made from mixing different whiskies together to achieve that one consistent taste.

It is impossible to get a barrel that will fit the brand’s flavor right away because no two individual barrels will ever be the same. To achieve a brand’s taste, it requires a blend of whiskies from many different barrels and this is where a master blender comes in.

A master blender is a person at the distillery who will taste the whiskies from the barrels, before proceeding to mix them to create a taste consistent with the brand’s flavor profile. This is why your favorite whiskey brand tastes the same from bottle to bottle!

Whiskey Fact: A single malt whiskey is NOT a product of a single barrel.

20120209singlemaltvsblendwhisky-thumb-625xauto-217393Single and blended – We see these two words on bottles so often that it leads us to having the misconception that a single malt whiskey, is a whiskey made from a single barrel and a blended whiskey, is a blend of many other whiskies. In fact, a single malt whiskey is actually a blend of other whiskies.

So if both are blends, then what is the difference?

A single malt whiskey is the end product with blended whiskies from a SINGLE distillery, whereas a blended whiskey is a blend of malt and grain whiskies from MULTIPLE distilleries.

For example, a bottle of Glenlivet 12 Year Old single malt Scotch whiskey is a mixture of whiskies made from one distillery. On the other hand, a bottle of Dewar’s 12 Year Old Blended Scotch whiskey can contain a mixture of different whiskies from thirty different distilleries.

Stay tuned for more whiskey facts!