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The Major Types of Whiskey You Should Know

The Major Types of Whiskey You Should Know

There is a whole lot of options in the whiskey world. It is essential to know the category your favorite dram belongs to. Every whisky in the world will fit in one or more of the categories listed here. We have all the best types of whiskey in Kenya at our online liquor shop. Read through and learn of the major whiskey types, pick your favorite, and order for delivery. We offer free whisky delivery in Nairobi and its environs.

Malt Whiskey

This whisky is made from 100% malted barley, water, and yeast with nothing else. This type of spirit follows the traditional method of fermenting and distilling. Some whisky brands in this category use peat fuel during kilning, which imparts a smoky character. Johnnie Walker, Talisker, Ardbeg, and Laphroaig are popular malt whisky brands that use peat.

Single Malt Whisky

Single-malt is exclusively produced by just one distillery and is not blended with any other type of whisky from another distillery. However, a single malt can be a blend of different malt whiskeys but must be from a single distillery. This is how distilleries maintain a consistent flavor in their single malts year after year, by blending different whiskeys into a preferred taste. Single barrel whisky, on the other hand, is made from a spirit from a single barrel.

Single malt whisky is made purely out of malted barley and bears the trademark of the distillery in its taste, which is specific to the distillery. Its one-distillery production makes it taste highly distinguishable from other malted whiskeys. The single malts class has some of the most expensive whiskeys. However, many popular distilleries produce some quality affordable whiskeys to give every customer a classic taste of their products. Some of the best single malt whisky brands that you can order online include; Aberlour, Macallan, Glenfiddich, Glenlivet, Laphroaig, and many more.

Blended Whiskey

The term "blended" means that the final product is made from several different types of distilled products i.e. corn, barley, or wheat blended and contains straight whiskey and neutral spirits. Its production process permits distilleries to preserve quite a consistent flavor and mellower than malt whiskeys. A blend of malt whisky improves the quality of the final product. There is a broad range of blended whisky brands, blending drams from more than one distillery. In this category, you will find blended grain whisky and blended malt whiskey, which is made purely from grain and malt whiskeys respectively. Blended Scotch are made in Scotland only. Some of the famous blended whisky brands include; Chivas Regal, the famous grouse, monkey shoulder blended malt, Johnnie Walker brand, and many more.

Bourbon Whisky

Bourbon Whisky is the finest spirit made in America. With at least 51% corn, this whiskey is distilled at nothing exceeding 160 proofs and stored in new charred oak barrels at no more than 125 proof. The bourbon is then bottled at no more than 80 proof. Marker's Mark, Woodford Reserve, and Bulleit are the best-known Bourbon whiskey brands

Tennessee Whiskey

Tennessee Whiskey is made of corn, usually aged in new barrels for four years or more, and is similar to Bourbon whiskey in composition. The main difference between the two is that Tennessee is put through filtration before aging, a process called the Lincoln County process. Hence, for a spirit to be labeled at Tennesee whisky, it must be produced in Tennessee in America, follow all regulations for bourbon as well as the Lincoln county process. This extra process gives Tennessee whisky a different flavor from the bourbon. The most famous Tennessee brand is Jack Daniels and George Dickel.

Straight Whisky

This type of whisky is distilled at 160 proof and is known for its full flavor and aroma. The minimum strength of the finished product is 80 proof, contains only water and no additives, and is left to age for at least 2 years in charred oak barrels. This whisky name labeling is influenced by the type of dominant grain mash used i.e. when corn is used, it is known as Straight Corn Whisky. Popular examples of Straight bourbon whisky brands are Jim Beam, Buffalo Trace, and Maker’s Mark.

Pure Pot Still Whiskey

It is an Irish whiskey that is distilled in a pot-still, using mash that is composed of malted and unmalted barley. It is exclusively a product of Ireland. An example is Green Spot Single Pot Still whisky.

Rye Whiskey

This type of whisky is mainly made in America with at least 51% rye mash. This spirit is matured in charred oak barrels for at least two years. Rye whiskey is spicy making it good for whisky cocktails. Rye whisky brands that are not blended are dubbed as - straight rye whiskey. Famous examples of Rye brands are Bulleit, Sazerac Rye, and Knob Creek Rye.

Cask Strength Whisky

Cask Strength is a whisky that is bottled as soon as it is taken from the cask, without any dilution. It usually has a higher alcohol content. A good example is Glenfarclas 105 with an ABV of 60%.

The Significant Geographical Regions of Whiskey Production

The main types of whiskey are divided by country of origin. There are many regional characteristics of whisky which produce fine spirit. Each region has its own distilling excellence that gives different taste and flavor profiles. The most common whiskey classification by region is as follows:

Scotch whisky

Scotch whisky is by far the most popular and best-selling whisky in the world. Most of the popular whiskey brands known are scotch whiskeys. These spirits are usually distilled twice and aged for at least three years resulting in a more flavored full-bodied spirit. The most popular types of Scotch are made from peated and dried malted barley which has been distilled after fermentation. In Scotland the malted barley is roasted over open peat fires to dry, this results in the grain picking up the peat flavor. Well-known Scottish brands are Glenmorangie, Chivas Regal, Glenlivet, Johnnie Walker, Laphroaig, Dalmore, and many more.

Irish whiskey

Irish whiskey is not as full-bodied as Scotch whisky. Irish whiskey is distilled in Ireland and, is aged for at least three years. A blended malt of half oats and half barley is used to make Irish Whisky. There is no sweet or smoky flavor and has a blended taste of its own.

The malted barley is dried in closed ovens and is never exposed to smoke. Whiskeys of this type undergo distillation thrice and then spend at least three years in oak casks before they can be ready to drink. This results in a very pure distillate which makes Irish whiskey exceptionally smooth. The iconic Irish whiskey brand is Jameson. More examples include Tullamore Dew, Bushmills, Teeling, and more.

Canadian Whiskey

Canadian whiskey is lighter-bodied than Irish, and Scotch whisky. It can taste slightly fruity, though it's not as sweet as American whiskey. Produced primarily in Canada, and is usually made with corn. However, it can also contain wheat, barley, or rye. The mash is distilled at high proof and before bottling, it is filtered. It is left to age for at least 2 to 3 years before use in a barrel. The taste is slightly sweet and light. A popular example of a Canadian whiskey brand is Crown Royal whisky.

American Whiskey

American whiskey is the sweetest of the whiskeys. It is distilled in America and aged in barrels, though there is no requirement for how long it has to be aged. (At least two years is the norm.) American whiskey can be further subcategorized as bourbon, rye, or Tennessee whiskey. Jim Beam, Wild Turkey, Maker’s Mark, and Jack Daniels are examples of Popular American brands of whiskey.

Japanese Whisky

Japanese whisky type is produced in Japan. It is distilled almost the same way as Scotch whisky and is closely created in the scotch style and to taste. Although Japan’s whiskeys were more like Scotch whiskies, today Japan distillers have evolved and are developing their own style with exceptional character and of high standards. This type of whiskey is aged in oak casks and is drier and comes as single malts or as blended whisky. Popular Japanese whisky brands include Hibiki Suntory, Yamazaki, Hakushu, Kurayoshi, Nikka, and others.

I believe you are wiser now regarding the types of whiskeys. The next step would be to browse through the categories and learn more about the specific products or whisky brands and prices in each category. You can buy whisky online at Drinks Zone, the best online liquor store in Nairobi. We have a vast collection of whiskeys from all over the world. Take a look around and identify your favorite and then order for a home whisky delivery, a single bottle, or in bulk. We have the best whisky price in Kenya.