Quantcast

Whiskey 101 - KOAM TV 7

Whiskey 101

Updated:
© Helen Rosner / Bonnier © Helen Rosner / Bonnier

By




Whisk(e)y can be made anywhere in the world. It’s a spirit distilled from fermented grains like barley, wheat, rye, and corn, and most of it is aged in oak barrels. Definitions differ depending on where you are (in the EU it must be aged to be called whisky, for example) so we’ll take the American view for simplicity’s sake. We won’t cover everything, just hit the high notes. 

Spelling: American, Irish whiskey. Scottish, Japanese, Canadian whisky. This is not important. 

American Whiskey includes bourbon, rye, Tennessee whiskey, corn whiskey, wheat whiskey; and there are a few American single-malts. 

Chicken recipes at Saveur»

Bourbon is an American whiskey distilled from mostly fermented corn (plus a smaller percentage of other grains), and nearly always in a big column still. Despite rumors to the contrary, bourbon can be made anywhere in the US, though most is made in Kentucky. Nearly all of it is aged for more than two years, and that aging is done in new charred oak barrels which impart a ton of flavor (vanilla, coconut) and all of the color to the spirit. 

Corn Whiskey is made from at least 80% corn. Most of the stuff sold as “moonshine” is perfectly legal unaged corn whiskey.

16 easy casseroles at Saveur»

Tennessee Whiskey, for all practical purposes, is Jack Daniel’s and George Dickel. These whiskeys are filtered through charcoal either after distillation or after barrel aging, or both. Other than that, they are pretty much bourbon. 

Rye is an American whiskey distilled from mostly fermented rye. It is often a little bit spicy (think of rye bread versus corn bread), and is popular in stirred cocktails like the Sazerac and Manhattan. Rye went out of favor for decades, but is now back in a big way. 

Scotch Whisky is made in Scotland and aged a minimum of three years. Most scotch ages in recycled casks that previously held American whiskey. A few regional flavor shortcuts: “Islay” usually indicates smoky scotch, “Speyside” indicates soft and supple scotch, “Lowland” scotch is light in flavor, and “Highland” scotch whiskies have a greater variance from robust and earthy to pretty and floral.

The Saveur 100: Recipes and techniques» 

Single-Malt Scotch Whisky is made at a single distillery from only malted barley (not a blend of grains as in American whiskey) and distilled in pot stills. The age on the label is the age of the youngest scotch in the bottle, though there is often some older stuff mixed in. 

Blended Scotch Whisky (Johnnie Walker, Dewar’s, Famous Grouse, etc.) combines single-malt scotch (usually lots of different ones) with more neutral, column-distilled grain scotch whisky. It is lighter and more subtle than single-malt scotch, and also way more affordable and popular. 

Japanese Whisky mimics scotch whisky for the most part (the guy who created both Yamazaki and Nikka whiskies trained in Scotland), though they prize their blended whiskies just as much as the single-malts. Blended whiskies in Japan are often served in highballs with soda water.

Canadian Whisky is most often a light and easy-drinking blended whisky, usually with flavorings and coloring in the mix. Canadians often refer to their whisky as “rye” but that’s their generic term for whisky rather than an indication of rye grains used. 

Irish Whiskey includes smoky, neutral-tasting, robust, and single-malt variants, but as Tennessee whiskey’s identity is largely defined by Jack Daniel’s, Irish whiskey’s identity is largely understood from Jameson. Jameson is a blend of lighter grain whiskey with heavier “single-pot still” whiskey, and the result is soft and creamy, and a great introduction to aged spirits for those new to the whiskey category.  

Whiskey mixology in a nutshell: It all goes great with ginger ale. If you want to get fancy, make that ginger beer instead, consider a squeeze of lemon or lime, maybe add a dash of Angostura bitters, and garnish with a sprig of mint.



© 2014 SAVEUR
All rights reserved.
  • Recipes from the KOAM Morning NewsAll RecipesMore>>

  • Soy Lady: Cool Crunchy Soy Wrap

    Soy Lady: Cool Crunchy Soy Wrap

    Tuesday, April 17 2018 9:22 AM EDT2018-04-17 13:22:55 GMT

    Cool Crunchy Soy Wrap Ingredients:  1 cup frozen shelled edamame, cooked and cooled 1 cup frozen baby white and gold corn, cooked and cooled 1 cup soy veggie crumbles, cooked and cooled ¼ cup chopped green onions ¼ cup chopped red pepper 1 cup creamy Italian salad dressing ½ cup roasted salted soy nuts Leaf Lettuce or flour tortillas Directions: Combine in large bowl edamame, corn, veggie crumbles, green onions, red pepper and Italian salad dr...

    More >>

    Cool Crunchy Soy Wrap Ingredients:  1 cup frozen shelled edamame, cooked and cooled 1 cup frozen baby white and gold corn, cooked and cooled 1 cup soy veggie crumbles, cooked and cooled ¼ cup chopped green onions ¼ cup chopped red pepper 1 cup creamy Italian salad dressing ½ cup roasted salted soy nuts Leaf Lettuce or flour tortillas Directions: Combine in large bowl edamame, corn, veggie crumbles, green onions, red pepper and Italian salad dr...

    More >>
  • Pittsburg Farmer's Market: Veggie Pizza (Part 2)

    Pittsburg Farmer's Market: Veggie Pizza (Part 2)

    Tuesday, April 10 2018 9:05 AM EDT2018-04-10 13:05:54 GMT

    Nutrition Facts Serves 16  (Amount Per Serving)              (% Daily Value) Calories                                             244 Total Fat           &...

    More >>

    Nutrition Facts Serves 16  (Amount Per Serving)              (% Daily Value) Calories                                             244 Total Fat           &...

    More >>
  • Pittsburg Farmer's Market: Veggie Pizza (Part 1)

    Pittsburg Farmer's Market: Veggie Pizza (Part 1)

    Tuesday, April 10 2018 8:35 AM EDT2018-04-10 12:35:05 GMT

    Veggie Pizza Prep Time 10 minutes Cook Time 2 hours Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes Servings 16 servings Calories 244 kcal Ingredients 2 packages refrigerated crescent rolls 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese softened 1 cup mayonnaise 1 packet dry Ranch dressing mix or make it from scratch 1 cup chopped broccoli 1 cup chopped cauliflower 1 cup chopped or shredded carrots 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese ¼ cup each additional chopped vegetables such as bell pepper,...

    More >>

    Veggie Pizza Prep Time 10 minutes Cook Time 2 hours Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes Servings 16 servings Calories 244 kcal Ingredients 2 packages refrigerated crescent rolls 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese softened 1 cup mayonnaise 1 packet dry Ranch dressing mix or make it from scratch 1 cup chopped broccoli 1 cup chopped cauliflower 1 cup chopped or shredded carrots 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese ¼ cup each additional chopped vegetables such as bell pepper,...

    More >>

EMAIL SIGNUP

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
Powered by Frankly

KOAM - Licensed to Pittsburg, Kansas
Send tips, ideas and press releases to: tips@koamtv.com
Send newsroom questions or comments to: comments@koamtv.com
Phone: (417) 624-0233 or (620) 231-0400
Web comments or questions: webmaster@koamtv.com
Newsroom Fax: (417) 624-3158

Powered by WorldNow All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 KOAM. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.