Scotch Vs Whiskey Vs Bourbon

Bourbon Is Whiskey Scotch Is Whisky

Bourbon vs Scotch: A Whiskey Throwdown

The “whiskey” spelling is used for American and Irish spirits, including bourbon. Conversely, “whisky” is used by the rest of the world, including Europe, Australia, Japan and, of course, Scotland. Regardless of spelling, all whiskey or whisky must be distilled to a minimum of 40 percent and a maximum of 94.8 percent alcohol by volume .

Paths Start To Diverge: The Role Played By The Scots

From early on, even as the spirit was generally adopted as whisky, without an e, a distinction was made up in Northern Ireland, where the local Scots-Irish people proceeded to an e into the name. We dont know the exact cause, but the reasons may be rooted in a stricter adherence to the Irish Gaelic tongue.

These same Scots-Irish, who were persecuted due to their Protestant faith, soon emigrated in large numbers to the USA, taking that spelling with them. In the Appalachian areas in the New World, the Scots-Irish and other immigrants soon set to making grain alcohol in abundance, using whatever materials they could find. It so happened that corn was readily available, so it became a favoured starting material in the manufacture of what came to be known as Bourbon .

Post the 1860 Act and the introduction of continuous still produced whiskies, Irish distillers saw a need to distinguish their traditional, pricier product from the new, cheaper versions flooding in from Scotland. This tension continued for close to half a century.

These tumultuous events finalized the rift between Scotch Whisky and Irish/Bourbon Whiskey. The big Irish distillers began to call their product Irish Whiskey , adopting patriotic vibes to aid their product marketing. The Scotch makers, who by now had come into their own, saw no further need to kowtow to the Irish, so they froze on their brand marketing.

Types Of Scotch Whisky

Scotch whisky is divided into five distinct categories.

  • Single Malt Scotch Whisky is distilled at a single distillery from water and malted barley without adding any other grains.
  • Single Grain Scotch Whisky is distilled at a single distillery from water and malted barley with or without whole grains of other malted or unmalted grains.
  • Blended Scotch Whisky is the product of blending different types of whiskies and sometimes also neutral grain spirits, coloring, and flavorings.
  • Blended Malt Scotch Whisky is distilled at more than one distillery from a combination of two or more single malt Scotch whiskies.
  • Blended Grain Scotch Whisky is made from two or more single malt scotch whiskies from different distilleries.

You can learn more about these whisky categories here.

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The Flavor: What Does Scotch Taste Like Vs Bourbon

Bourbon is considered easier to drink vs Scotch, which has a very distinct flavor. The breakdown in flavors is:

  • Bourbon whiskey has a sweeter, more mellow flavor than Scotch, with notes of vanilla, oak and caramel. But theres a wide variety of different flavors between bourbon brands: one expert breaks bourbons into 4 major categories: grain forward, nutmeg forward, caramel forward, and cinnamon forward.
  • Scotch whisky has a sharp, distinct flavor thats more of an acquired taste than bourbon. Blended Scotch is smoother: malty and buttery, with a spicy finish. Single malt Scotch tastes oaky and woody, with signature peaty and smoky notes. The level of smokiness is due to the time the barley is exposed to peat smoke during drying .

What Is Irish Whiskey

Bourbon vs Scotch: A Breakdown!  A Couple Cooks

Some consider Ireland the birthplace of whiskey, as far back as 6th century AD.

  • Made in Ireland
  • Single-malt whiskey mostly the same as in Scotland
  • 100% Barley in pot stills, usually 3 distillation runs
  • A closed kiln heated by coal or gas is used to roast the malted barley, giving a clear barley flavor instead of the smoky peat flavors often found in Scotch
  • Product of single distillery
  • Aged at least 3 years
  • Corn or wheat distilled in a column still
  • Blended whiskey
  • Combination of single-malt and grain whiskey
  • Single pot still whiskey
  • 100% barley, both malted and unmalted, in a pot still
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    Whats The Difference Between Whiskey And Whisky What About Scotch Bourbon And Rye

    verifiedAmy McKenna

    Have you ever heard the traditional folk song Whiskey in the Jar? Or is that Whisky in the Jar? Just what is the difference between whiskey and whisky? And while we are at it, how do Scotch, bourbon, and rye figure in all of this? First of all, they are all types of whiskey .

    Generally speaking, whiskey can be any of a variety of distilled liquors that are made from a fermented mash of cereal grains and aged in wooden containers, which are usually constructed of oak. Commonly used grains are corn, barley malt, rye, and wheat. So what is it that sets these liquors apart? In a nutshell, the name is based on factors such as the type of cereal grain used in the distilling process as well as how and where it was produced.

    So why do you see the name of the liquor spelled both as whiskey and as whisky? No, its not due to a spelling error or typo. It is generally spelled whiskeywith an ein the United States and Ireland. It is spelled whiskywithout the ein Scotland and Canada, which are both well known for their whisky, and in several other countries.

    And rye whiskey? Its a whiskey that uses a rye mash or a rye and malt mash. In the United States, regulations stipulate that the mash must be at least 51% rye in order for it to be called rye whiskey. In Canada, regulations do not specify a minimum percentage of rye.

    So, what IS in the jar? Given that the song in question is a traditional Irish folk song, its probably whiskey. With an e.

    What Is Bourbon Whiskey

    Unlike Scotch whiskies, malted barley often takes a back seat to corn, rye, and even wheat grains in bourbon making. Although a portion of malted barley anywhere from 5 to 25 percent is still used by most distilleries by tradition, bourbon doesnt need to contain any barley. And because the use of lab-produced enzyme additions is not prohibited like they are in Scotland, it is possible to convert grain starch into sugar without malted barley. Craft brands have released bourbon products with zero malt content.

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    Top Bourbon Recommendations For Whiskey Drinkers

    This section is going to contain all of our favorite and top American whiskey recommendations varying in terms of how much alcohol content they contain and the process used in their production and fermentation.

    Make sure that you read each recommendation in full so that you can be sure that youre making the right decision when it comes to the perfect bourbon or scotch whisky that fits your particular taste buds.

    Read this entire section in full so that you can be sure that youre choosing the appropriate bourbon or scotch option to fulfill your taste requirements.

    They Have Different Abv Requirements

    Scotch vs Irish vs Bourbon

    Bourbon must be distilled to no more than 80 percent alcohol and be no more than 62.5 percent when put into casks for aging in new charred oak barrels. Scotch, however, must have an ABV of less than 94.8 percent and is aged in used oak barrels, including those that previously stored Sherry, beer and, yes, bourbon.

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    Scotch Vs Bourbon In Summary

    Bourbon and Scotch are both types of whisky. Bourbon is produced in the United States and is mainly made from corn mash, while Scotch is produced in Scotland and is typically made from malted grains. While theyre both produced differently, have different regulations, and a wide variety of flavor profiles, theyre both excellent options for sipping at almost any occasion. Have you heard of the woman in Britain who recently celebrated her 112th birthday? When interviewed, she attributed her good health to sipping a dram of whiskey each night before bed. So lets raise our glasses to long life, good health, and excellent whisky. Cheers.

    Bourbon Vs Whiskey: The Difference Between Bourbon And Whiskey

    The main differences between bourbon and whiskey are the kind of grain used and where the spirit is produced. Bourbon is an American made whiskey that must contain at least 51 percent corn in its mash and be aged in new, charred-oak barrels. Whiskey can be made anywhere in the world, though there are additional differences depending on production and aging processes. Whiskeys mash can be made from a blend of grains, such as barley, corn, rye or wheat.

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    Bourbon Vs Scotch Alcohol By Volume

    Probably one of the most important factors to keep in mind when selecting any bourbon or scotch whisky type is its alcoholic content by volume.

    The alcoholic content by volume indicator on the bourbon or scotch bottle that you choose will help you determine how intoxicating any given bourbon or scotch whisky variety is.

    In order for alcohol to be qualified and considered as either bourbon or scotch, it must meet specific ABV or alcohol by volume content measurements before going out on the market.

    Both scotch and bourbon have very different distillation requirements and alcohol by volume levels so its important to remember this when youre out shopping for the right scotch or bourbon variety to suit your taste buds and flavor profile.

    Bourbon typically has to be distilled to no more than 80% ABV which is 160 proof and it cant be more than 62.5% ABV during the aging process. Scotch whisky, on the other hand, must have an ABV rating of less than 94.8% and it is typically aged in used oak barrels which have retained a lot of unique flavors over the years after being used to ferment several different types of alcohol types and contents.

    Its important to remember the various distillation levels and fermentation processes used in making both bourbon and scotch whisky so that you can ensure youre choosing the right alcohol type for your particular taste needs and wants.

    Scotch Vs Bourbon A Tasters Club Look Into Two Distinct Spirits

    Bourbon versus Whisky the laws

    Scotch vs Bourbon how different are they from each other, and which one is better for sipping? Besides their nutritional value and the fact that theyre both distilled from grains, Scotch and Bourbon are very different from each other, including where theyre produced, their ingredients, their flavor profiles, the legal requirements of each type, and even the spelling of their whisky categories.

    Bourbon is whiskey, whereas Scotch is whisky. The spelling difference comes from the translation of words from the Scottish and Irish Gaelic forms, but now its used to distinguish whether a whisky is made in Scotland or not. Scotch whisky is made in Scotland, and Bourbon whiskey is made in America. Lets discover more about what makes these spirits unique in this guide through Scotch vs Bourbon.

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    Comparing Bourbon & Scotch

    One big difference between Scotch and bourbon is their raw ingredients. Bourbon uses corn of not less than 51% on its mash bill, making it cheaper, while Scotch uses malted barley or malted grains. Both use charred oak containers for maturing, but they have different aging processes.

    Bourbon has no minimum aging period compared to the minimum three years of Scotch, resulting in their flavor differences. Bourbon has a sweet taste and mellow flavor, while Scotch has a peaty flavor and spicy notes.

    Bourbon Vs Whiskey Vs Scotch

    Imagine you enter a liquor store, and hanging signs mark the aisles. You look up and see “whiskey,” “bourbon,” and “scotch” above one aisle whose shelves hold hundreds of gleaming bottles of straw-colored, amber, or brown spirits.

    Imagine you enter a liquor store, and hanging signs mark the aisles. You look up and see “whiskey,” “bourbon,” and “scotch” above one aisle whose shelves hold hundreds of gleaming bottles of straw-colored, amber, or brown spirits. With that much choice, you may wonder which bottle is the one for you or even what distinguishes these types whiskey, bourbon, and scotch from one another. If you’ve ever found yourself in this dilemma, this guide may be helpful to you.

    What Is Whiskey?

    Whiskey is a spirit distilled from grains and aged in wood barrels. The combination of grains that go into a whiskey’s composition is its mash bill. The most common grains featured in mash bills are barley , corn, rye, and wheat. Depending on the type of whiskey, it may contain one, some, or all of these. Some whiskeys, by law, must contain a minimum amount of a specific grain to qualify as a particular variety of whiskey.

    What Is Bourbon?

    What Is Scotch?

    • Be made in Scotland.
    • Not contain additives aside from water and caramel coloring.
    • Be distilled to an ABV no higher than 94.8%.
    • Age in barrels no larger than 700 liters.
    • Age for at least three years .
    • Have an ABV of at least 40% at bottling.

    How To Choose Between Bourbon vs. Whiskey vs. Scotch

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    Single Malt Vs Blended Whisky

    Writing for the BBC, travel Brad Cohen explains the difference between blended and single-malt whisky:

    Blended whisky, which comprises more than 80% of the market, including brands like Johnnie Walker and Dewars, is a mix oÂf malt and grain whiskies that come from multiple distilleries. Single malt, which Scottish drinkers often refer to as malt rather than whisky .

    What Does Irish Whiskey Taste Like

    The real difference between scotch, whiskey, and bourbon

    Smooth and less sweet than bourbon. Doesnt have the smokiness usually associated with Scotch, although there are a few exceptions to that, and that lack of smokiness combined with the smoothness from the triple distillation, makes them easier to consume than Scotch.

    Things to Consider: There are only 3 working distilleries in Ireland, however each of them make multiple spirits. For example there is the Midleton distillery which makes Redbreast, Midleton, Paddy, Powers, and Jameson and all of their individual brands variations. And remember, it isnt Irish Coffee unless you use Irish whiskey. Otherwise it is just a coffee with whiskey ).

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    Bourbon Vs Whiskey: Whats The Difference

    All bourbons are whiskeys but not all whiskeys are bourbon.

    David Crockett/Getty Images

    Layla Khoury-Hanold is a contributor at Food Network.

    Bourbon and whiskey are both popular spirits among mixologists and home bartenders alike. While these brown liquors might look the same in the bottle, they each possess unique characteristics. Whether you like to sip whiskey or bourbon, mix them into cocktails or simply want to quench your curiosity, it pays to know which spirit youre imbibing and discussing. Here, we break down the differences between bourbon and whiskey. Hint: all bourbons are whiskeys but not all whiskeys are bourbon.

    Let’s Talk About Irish Whiskey

    Whereas most Scottish whiskey is distilled twice, Irish whiskey goes through three rounds of distillation before it’s bottled. Compared to the Scottish stuff, Irish whiskey uses a lot of barley and doesn’t have that smoky, burnt-rubber taste that you’ll find from the peat that’s in Scotch. Fun fact: legally, Irish whiskey must be aged in Ireland for at least three years in wooden casks to be considered whiskey!

    Irish whiskey tastes like: Very, very smooth and less sweet than most American bourbons. Great for sipping.Brands you should know: Jameson, Midleton, Green Spot

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    How To Enjoy Whiskey

    Whiskey is a versatile beverage that can be enjoyed in many ways.

    Most people drink whiskey straight or neat, which means by itself. Its typically recommended to drink whiskey this way at first to get a better idea of its flavor and aroma.

    That said, adding a splash of water can help bring out its more subtle flavours. Additionally, you can drink whiskey with ice, commonly known as on the rocks.

    If you dont like whiskeys taste by itself, you can try it in a cocktail.

    Here are some popular whiskey cocktails:

    • Old Fashioned. This cocktail is made from a combination of whiskey, bitters, sugar, and water.
    • Manhattan. Made from a combination of rye or bourbon whiskey, bitters, and sweet vermouth , a Manhattan is typically served with cherries.
    • Classic highball. This drink is made from any style of whiskey, ice cubes, and ginger ale.
    • Mint julep. Typically served at derbies, a mint julep is made from a combination of bourbon whiskey, sugar , mint leaves, and crushed ice.
    • Whiskey sour. This cocktail is made from a combination of bourbon whiskey, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Its commonly served with ice and cherries.
    • John Collins. Made similarly to a whiskey sour, this drink also contains club soda.

    Keep in mind that many of these drinks contain added sugars and can pack a lot of calories. Like any alcoholic or sweetened beverage, its best to enjoy these drinks sparingly.

    How Whiskey Is Made

    Bourbon vs Scotch

    Fermentation relies on sugars. To produce alcohol, yeast consume sugar molecules and release CO2 and ethyl alcohol as a result. This occurs in nature when overripe fruits are exposed to ambient yeasts in the environment, and the result is fermentation on the vine. You may have seen humorous videos of drunk animals as evidence of this phenomenon.

    Our human ancestors were early to pick up on this.

    Many of the first alcoholic drinks found by archaeologists were mead, made from a mixture of honey and water. The natural sugars created by bees are easily digestible by yeast, so fermentation happens naturally. This knowledge was applied to wine, where fruit sugars were combined with water to create a solution perfect for fermentation.

    As civilization and horticulture evolved to incorporate the harvesting of cereal grains, fermentation followed. But these grains contain starches not sugars which are not naturally digestible by yeast.

    An extra step called saccharification is needed to convert the long starch molecules inherent in cereal grains into edible sugar molecules. In this step, cereals are milled and combined with water and cooked, releasing enzymes in the grains that facilitate this process.

    Once beer was invented, the next step was to distill it into a spirit with a higher percent alcohol.

    And when you distill beer, you get whiskey.

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