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Whisky:Questions and Answers

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The whisky
Some frequent asked questions

Blended, single malt, pure malt, vatted malt
Classic Malts
What is Scotch whisky?
What is the difference between whisky and Cognac?
What is the difference between whisky and whiskey?


What is the difference between whisky and whiskey

Alcohol made from grain (malted or not) which is produced in Scotland is called WHISKY while it is called WHISKEY if it is produced in USA or Ireland.

American whiskey is called Bourbon, and is made from grain (at least 51% corn (maize))
The Scotch whisky is generally double distilled (see how whisky is made), while Irish whiskey is generally distilled three times.

What is the difference between whisky (or whiskey) and Cognac?

Whisk(e)y is made from grain (generally barley, but other grains may be used, such as corn of wheat) while Cognac (and Armagnac) is produced from grapes.
The fabrication process is however similar: all the art consists of extracting sugar and transforming it into alcohol.

What is Scotch (whisky)

A whisky which has been produced in Scotland, and which stayed there for at least 3 years is oak casks may be called "Scotch Whisky". It is a "appellation d'origine".

Blend, single malt, pure malt, vatted malt, etc...

A "Single Malt" is a whisky made from malted barley in one distillery.

A "Pure Malt" is a whisky made from malted barley. This appellation has no official character, and can be used as well for whisky from one or more distilleries.

A "Vatted Malt" is a whisky made from malted barley, and is a mix of single malts from different distilleries.

A "Blended Whisky" (blend) is a mix of malt whisky (generally from different distilleries) and grain whisky. (not malted)

Classic Malts

The Classic Malts series is an initiative of the greatest group of Scottish distillery owners (Diageo) to introduce the different whisky producing areas in Scotland. This series has been created in 1985 and the following distilleries are represented:

Region Distillery
Speyside Cragganmore
Highlands Dalwhinnie
Lowlands Glenkinchie
Islay Lagavulin
West Coast Oban
Islands: Skye Talisker

This collection is an excellent introduction to single malt

Last modified: January 04 2014 16:30:52.
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Copyright :Jean-Marie Putz (2003-2014)


Whisky is an alcoholic drink. Let's prefer quality to quantity as the abuse of alcohol beverages can damage the health. Consuming alcoholic drinks during pregnancy, even in small quantities, can seriously affect the health of the child. Consumption of alcohol impairs your ability to drive a car or operate machinery, and may cause health problems.

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