Scotch whisky........warm, rich, complex and intricate. Best enjoyed in good company, a wee dram of Scotland’s finest is the perfect way to end the day savouring its earthy, aged flavours in front of a blazing open fire.
Derived from the gaelic ‘uisge beatha’ meaning ‘water of life’, Scotch whisky is revered across the world for its quality and authenticity. Its production involves centuries old traditions by master distillers in the five main whisky regions of Scotland - the Highlands, Lowlands, Speyside, Islay and Campbeltown where the art of whisky making has been perfected - shaped by the geography and climate of each individual area.
Just as there are wine experts, there are whisky experts who can help you appreciate the distinct nuances of this exceptional product. Whether you are a whisky ‘newbie’ looking to get to grips with its sophisticated flavours, or a devotee of the superior single malt, a whisky tasting or masterclass is an opportunity to extend your knowledge and try something new.
Usually you can expect to sample between four to six whiskies during a tasting which may involve whiskies of a particular region or those matured in particular cask types.
A tasting will generally incorporate:
- Presentation - neat, with water or over ice.
- Colour - the colour variation of the whisky will give clues to its origins, age and the type of cask used for maturation.
- Swirl - release the aroma and understand the ‘legs’ of the whisky.
- Nose - describe the aroma - chocolate pudding or vanilla cream perhaps!
- Taste - learn to roll the whisky to release the flavours. Some may have a rich peaty intensity with smokey accents, others may be lighter and sweeter on the palate. Contrast and compare the multiple layers and intensity of a rich Highland whisky against the light, youthful taste of a Lowland malt.
There are different options depending on your requirements. This might be a simple tasting in the comfort of your holiday home or a bespoke event tailored to your group - right down to selecting the venue, the theme, the whiskies, and perhaps even the dining menu to complement the theme of the evening.