What is World Whisky Day?
World Whisky Day is an annual, global day of whisky, which invites everyone to try a dram and celebrate the water of life. Taking place annually on the third Saturday in May, this special occasion is celebrated by whisky lovers worldwide with tastings, events, and gatherings.
Although World Whisky Day celebrations have been affected by the pandemic, our guiding principles have remained the same. World Whisky Day is about making whisky fun for all, not about being exclusive or strict.
Let’s get to know a bit more about our whisky….
Whisky roots may be based in Scotland, but these days whisky is making a name for itself in all corners of the globe. For those new to the industry, here’s an outline to the different types of whisky, and how they are made.
First things first. Scotch whisky has to be made in Scotland to be called ‘Scotch’. This type of whisky has five different types, according to The Scotch Whisky Regulations 2009. Here’s how they differ:
Single Malt Scotch whisky must be distilled at a single distillery.. If you're curious to try one we recommend you start with either, Aberlour, The Glenlivet or Tamnavulin.
- Single Grain Scotch whisky is also distilled at a single distillery but made from cereal grains rather than just malted barley.
Blended Scotch whisky combines one or more single malt Scotch whiskies with one or more single grain Scotch whiskies. Chivas and Ballantine’s are great examples of blended Scotch whiskies to try.
Blended Malt Scotch whisky is a blend of two or more single malt Scotch whiskies from different distilleries.
- Blended grain Scotch whisky is a blend of single grain Scotch whiskies, which have been distilled at more than one distillery.
There are five Scotch whisky regions – Campbeltown, Highland (including the islands), Islay, Lowland and Speyside – and all these corners offer a different set of tasting notes.
A neighbour to Scotch whisky, Irish whiskey
is known for its warm, spicy flavours. To qualify as Irish whiskey, a spirit must be produced from malt, cereal grain and barley. It must then be distilled, aged and bottled in Ireland.
Irish whiskey must be aged in wooden casks for a minimum of three years, and often undergoes triple distillation to achieve its signature smooth flavour.
Jameson is a true example of this expression.
It may be relatively new on the scene, but European whisky
is already forging a name for itself on the global whisky stage. Brands like Mackmyra
from Sweden and Bellevoye
from France are winning awards in prestigious competitions and earning worldwide recognition. You can find out more about great European whiskies by visiting World Whisky Masters competition.
Not to be confused with bourbon, Tennessee whiskey is in a category of its own. While distilled spirit must be aged in an oak container to become whisky, or whiskey, Tennessee whiskey goes a step further. It requires that the spirits be first filtered through sugar maple charcoal. It’s then aged in new, charred, white oak barrels to become Tennessee whiskey. It also has to be 51% corn.
Often described as a lighter version of bourbon, the charcoal mellowing takes some of the boldness out of the whiskey, leaving it with notes of toasted oak, caramel, and vanilla, as well as a hint of charcoal or burnt wood.
is a type of American whiskey, distilled from a mash made primarily of corn. Like Tennessee whiskey, for a whiskey to call itself bourbon its mash (the mixture of grains from which the product is distilled) must contain at least 51 per cent corn.
The mash must be distilled at 160 proof or less, the distillate must be stored in charred new oak barrels at 125 proof or less, and it must not contain any additives. You can learn more about bourbon World Whisky Day's blog
is a fantastic example of bourbon whiskey.
American rye whiskey is subject to the same strict legal requirements as the other categories covered in this article. Similar to bourbon and Tennessee whiskey, for a spirit to call itself American rye whiskey, the mash has to be made up of at least 51 percent actual rye grain. Interestingly, these legal requirements don’t apply in Canada, where rye is also a very popular spirit of choice.
Rye whiskies like Sazerac
have a minimum maturation time of two years. The spirit is known for its peppery, more savoury flavour compared to Tennessee whisky and bourbon.
Japanese whisky has been on the radar for a while now, with the country’s first distillery being established in 1934. Since the distillation process of Japanese whisky
takes much of its inspiration from Scotch whisky, the two taste very similar. However, Japanese whisky prides itself on its subtlety of flavour.
Now you know all about the different types of whisky
, let us know which are your favourites!
The only rule we impose for this year’s World Whisky Day is to drink responsibly!