Don’t worry… I know my George Thorogood and I know those aren’t the words to the song, but humor me for a minute.
Whether you’re a “brown water” fan or not, you might not know the difference between these three types of liquors. And let’s be honest, what’s better than knowing a little more about what you enjoy drinking, pretending to enjoy drinking to impress someone, or wanting to expand your knowledge about these three liquors?
What is the difference between whiskey, bourbon, and scotch?
The main difference between whiskey, bourbon, and Scotch is the ingredients and distillation process used to make them. Whiskey is a broad category of spirit that is made from a variety of grains and can be produced anywhere in the world. Bourbon is a type of whiskey that is made from at least 51% corn and aged in charred oak barrels. Scotch is a type of whiskey that is made from malted barley and aged in oak casks in Scotland. Scotch is typically smoother and more aromatic than other whiskeys due to the peat and malted barley used in the distilling process. Additionally, Scotch is usually aged for a more extended period of time than other whiskeys, giving it a bolder flavor.
Ok… can you go a little deeper into what makes a whiskey a whiskey and not a bourbon?
Whiskey and bourbon are both types of whiskey, but they have some distinct differences. Whiskey is a spirit made from grains such as barley, rye, wheat, and corn, while bourbon is a type of whiskey that is made with at least 51% corn. Whiskey can be made anywhere in the world, while bourbon is only made in the United States and must adhere to strict regulations. Additionally, whiskey can be aged for anywhere from 3-50 years, while bourbon is usually aged for much shorter periods of time. Finally, whiskey is usually bolder and smokier in flavor, while bourbon has a sweeter, smoother flavor.
There is Irish Whiskey and American Whiskey. What’s the difference?
The main difference between American and Irish whiskey is the distillation process. American whiskey is usually distilled once, then aged in charred oak barrels, while Irish whiskey is usually triple-distilled and aged in uncharred wooden casks. The triple-distillation process gives Irish whiskey a smoother, more subtle flavor than American whiskey, and the cask aging gives it a unique flavor that is not found in other whiskeys. Additionally, American whiskey is usually aged for a longer period of time than Irish whiskey, giving it a bolder, fuller flavor.
And yes, I know there is Canadian Whiskey as well, but seeing as I like Jack Daniels and Alicia likes Jamison, I thought we should settle that right here. 🙂
What are some of the top brands of whiskey and where are they made?
Some of the top-reviewed brands of whiskey include:
- Kings County Distillery Straight Bourbon Whiskey (USA)
- Hillrock Solera Aged Bourbon Whiskey (USA)
- Wild Turkey 101 Rye (USA)
- Koval Bourbon (USA)
- Rittenhouse Rye (USA)
- Old Forester 100 Proof Signature Bourbon (USA)
- Michter’s US1 Kentucky Straight Bourbon (USA)
- Lagavulin 16-Year-Old Scotch Whisky (Scotland)
- Elijah Craig Rye Whiskey (USA)
- Kujira Ryukyu 12-Year Whisky (Japan)