Do you know the flavor differences between malt and grain whiskeys? How about the nuances between seven categories of whiskey? Lynnette answers commonly asked questions as we prepare mixes for this weekend delivery.
Well, most grain whiskeys do have a level of malted barley in them as well as grains – but single malts are just malted barley, no grains. Malts tend to taste sweeter than spicy and dry rye, but not as sweet as corn (Bourbon) – and the flavor profile is toffee or caramel.
At least 51% corn in the mash, but can, and mostly does, contain other grains and barley too. Also legally, must be aged in NEW American oak barrels for at least 3 years.
Made with at least 51% rye, but can contain other grains and barley – is much spicier and drier than bourbon.
Made in Scotland with Malted Barley. Can be single malt or blended, aged in oak casks that have contained rum, port, sherry, marsala wine, or madiera.
Made in Ireland with unmalted barley and grain blends, using the traditional Irish method using a Pot Still, and usually triple-distilled. Generally a tad sweeter, less complex and more approachable.
Typically rye heavy, but can contain multiple grains. Must be made in Canada – which usually prefers a style that is smoother and less…”punchy”.
This is the Japanese take on single and blended malt whiskey. Very much a take on the Scotch tradition, but usually more…precise. Sometimes peaty and medicinal, but not to the extent that scotch is.
Red Fox Special
For this special, we recommend a blended Scotch, which can be imported like Ballentine’s or Johnny Walker or domestic like Bull Run.
Silver Fox Special
For the Silver Fox special, we recommend un-aged, or white whiskey – pretty much moonshine, but more sophisticated. Sweet Baby Moonshine is out of Corvallis and we love it! Ol’ Smokey Tennessee Moonshine will also work.
Specialty silicone molds make this super easy!
The drinkware used can be a mixture of marketing, function, tradition, and very real aromatic science.
Rocks glasses can take a pounding with the muddle, are very masculine and heavy (marketed to dudes) but also draw a fair amount of heat from a person’s hand – making a drink that is meant to sip over time change and evolve as you drink it. The straight sides also cause the boozy aromas of ethanol to gather just above the drink – sometimes making a drink seem boozier than it is….
Coupe or cocktail glassware, on the other hand, is meant to be held by the stem – and the warmth of your hand is meant to be kept away from the drink. These drinks are (nearly) always served up, and are shaken or stirred with ice to chill, and should be drunk cold – leaving them vulnerable to warming up if your hand is on the glass.
Collins or Highball glasses are traditional for drinks that are 1 part spirit and 3 parts bubbly mixer, served on ice. They are usually not shaken or stirred but built in the glass – there are exceptions, we serve Margaritas in them because we like the aesthetic, and because we like a tart Marg – these straight-sided glasses can sometimes trick our brains into perceiving acidity. Plus they’re easy to rim with salt.