Blended whiskeys of global brands, for which we are the authorized distributor of Diageo in Turkey, include Johnnie Walker, J&B, Dimple, Vat 69, Bell's;
Single malt whiskeys include Talisker, Lagavulin, Cardhu, Caol Ila, The Singleton of Dufftown, Glenkinchie, and Oban;
And American whiskey includes Bulleit Bourbon.
The word whiskey comes from the ancient Gaelic word "uisce beatha" (base bea) meaning "water of life".
It is made by distillation of the alcohol, which is obtained from high-quality 100% barley (for single malt whiskey) and different grains (for single grain whiskey), natural river or spring water and peat, and aging it in “oak barrels” for long years. The aging step in barrels is one of the essential processes, which gives the whiskey its color, aroma and flavor.
Whiskeys are characterized by the touches to whiskey production and aging processes in the territories where they are produced, and are usually classified by the name of the country they are produced in. The best-known examples include “Scotch” whiskey from Scotland, “Irish” whiskey from Ireland, “Bourbon, Rye” whiskey from USA, Canadian whiskey and Japanese whiskey.
Scotland has all the favorable geographical conditions for whiskey production and consists of four main whiskey regions: Lowland, Highland, Speyside and Islands. Depending on the geographical conditions, climatic differences and characteristics of the natural flora of these regions, the characteristics derived from distilled alcohol and aging processes vary.
Another characteristic of Scotch whiskey comes from the fact that it is produced in a country rich in water resources. Having natural and high-quality spring water, which is one of the essential steps in the production process of whiskey, is one of the secrets of the most widely loved and admired Scottish whiskey.
|THE SINGLETON OF DUFFTOWN
Fermentation is the process of naturally producing alcohol. The starch sugar obtained at high temperatures is cooled and yeast enzyme is added to it. When the yeast sees the sugar, it starts to eat it, and gradually heat, carbon dioxide, and alcohol begin to emerge. In whiskey production, it takes about 40 hours to obtain alcohol during fermentation.
Malting can be called the first stage of whiskey production.
Germination is completed by sprouting and drying. It is necessary to germinate to ensure malting. The collected barley is watered, and the starch in it slowly turns into sugar. In this way, the sugar needed for fermentation is ready.
The sprouting process ends when the starch takes action to grow the sprout. Wet barley is laid out in a room for malting, and under that room, a natural heat source such as peat, electricity, or any other heat source is used to dry the barley. This germination process in dried barley ends, and it is now ready for fermentation, i.e., alcohol production.
Distillation is the process of raising the alcohol level to approximately 8–10 degrees, which has come out of fermentation, in copper vessels or large steel columns, that is, both in the traditional method and in the method we call continuous distillation.
Scotch whiskeys will be distilled twice, while Irish whiskeys will be distilled three times. The higher the distillation amount, the higher the degree of alcohol.
During the maturation period, whiskey takes on the character of the barrel it is in. It is one of the most important periods for whiskey because the barrel it is in has one of the characteristics that gives it an oaky character. The alcohol, called "new make spirit," which comes out of the distillation and is completely clear in color, stays in barrels made of American or European white oak for the targeted time.
According to Scottish whiskey laws, it can be opened after waiting for a minimum of 3 years. However, this process can generally take 10, 20, 30, 40, or even 70 years. Of course, during this aging process, whiskey will take on different colors and flavors.
To give an example, Scots mainly use American bourbon or rye whiskey barrels, as well as rum from South America, cognac, and brandy from Europe.
- Whiskey 101
- What is whiskey made from? Whiskey's three basic raw materials consist of grain,water and yeast. It is used to convert the grain from fermentation and sugar into alcohol. Barley, wheat, rye, corn, and oats are used to make single-grain whiskey. Barley, in particular, is the most preferred observance of the Scotchs. The vast majority of high-prisoner drinks consist of water. For example, the remaining 60% of a 40-degree alcoholic drink contains water.
- Who is the master blender? The role of the human in whiskey is critical. Whiskey is a work of craftsmanship; it requires a great deal of experience and mastery. It is the job of the chief blenders to create the characters of the whiskeys.
- What are the types of whiskey? Whiskey types may differ according to the country of production, production method, and raw materials used. There are Scottish, American, Irish, Japanese, or Canadian whiskeys, and these types are also differentiated within themselves. For example, single malt, blended malt, single grain, blended grain, and blended whiskeys made from 100% barley are produced in Scotland. There are also the same species in Ireland and Japan. In the USA, Bourbon and Rye (rye) whiskeys are produced, which must use a minimum of 51% corn. While some whiskeys are made from 100% rye, other grains such as wheat, corn, and oats can be used in others. Apart from this, we can also distinguish them as whiskeys made by traditional distillation, namely whiskeys made in copper alembics or whiskeys made by continuous distillation, that is, continuous distillation.
- What is single malt? "Single malt" is the general name of whiskeys produced in a single distillery using a single grain and the traditional method.
- What is single-grain? Single grain whiskeys, like single malt whiskeys, are produced in a single distillery. However, the distillation methods are different. They are made by the "continuous distillation" or "Coffey-style distillation" method developed by Aeneas Coffey, an Irish inventor in the 1820s, and any grain can be used.
- What is Blended whiskey? “Blended whiskey” is a term used for the blending of whiskeys from different distilleries. In Scotland, if a certain amount of single grain and a certain amount of single malt whiskey were mixed together and harmoniously mixed, blended malts may have emerged. For example, there are whiskeys called vatted or pure malt. If we come across the term pure malt or vatted, let's understand that only single malt whiskeys come together. In the same way, there are also blends of single grain whiskeys.
- Scotch Whiskey
- What are the characteristics of Scottish whiskey? The four main Scotch whiskey regions are basically shown on the map. These are Lowland, Highland, Speyside, and the islands. While Speyside is shown inside the Highland region on some maps, it is possible to divide the Highland into 4 regions, namely north, south, east, and west.
- What are the characteristics of Lowland whiskey? The Lowland is Scotland's most temperate region. Generally, barley fields, flowers, and green plains are in this region. Naturally, the climatic smells and characters of the region and the softness of the flowing rivers also shape the characteristics of the water in this region. Despite the fact that there aren't many distilleries, Lowland whiskeys can be described as high-volume and delicate whiskeys.
- What are the characteristics of Highland whiskeys?
Although the Highlands are sometimes referred to as a stand-alone whiskey region due to their size, it would generally make more sense to divide them into four. Highland whiskeys, particularly those from the north, south, east, and west, have distinct personalities. Because it is a region of high-altitude hills and mountains, whiskeys in the northern Highlands are usually made in cold environments with glacial waters. This gives whiskey a completely different character.Apart from this, the whiskeys of the distillery near the sea in the western Highland are iodic and slightly salty, while the whiskeys on the eastern Highland side are in greener, more forested, and floral regions, so it can be called the region where whiskeys with these characteristics are produced.
- What are the characteristics of Speyside whiskeys? Speyside is named for the region within the Highland region where Scotch whiskey was first produced. The most important feature of this region is that it is a region of rivers. At the same time, the area takes its name from the Scotland's largest and fastest-flowing river. Almost half of the Scottish distilleries are located in this region, and they use the waters of this region for production. Balanced, fruity whiskeys with less sooty or sometimes no sooty notes in Scotland than in the islands carry the character of this region. At the same time, the use of sweet wine barrels is one of the preferences of the distilleries in the Speyside region.
- What are the characteristics of Islay and island whiskeys? There are also Scottish whiskey distilleries on different islands, such as Islay in the west of Scotland, Skye in the north, or the island of Orkney further north. In particular, the character of the distilleries in Islay and on the island of Skye can be described as "iodine, lightly salted whiskeys with intense sooty, smoked notes. In the whiskeys made on the other islands, while there are iodine whiskeys with marine notes next to the sooty ones, many of them still feature old traditional whiskeys.