A Journey with Whiskies
Start off with a wee sip of the whisky neat and judge if you require a splash of water to help ‘open up’ the whisky. This is particularly beneficial for high strength whiskies.
Remember that whisky distillers have always emphasized that they don’t expect their whiskies to be drunk neat. Whiskies are bottled at various strengths for different reasons. For example, cask strength ABVs are determined by alcoholic evaporation and hence arbitrary and not necessarily the optimal drinking strength. On the other end of the spectrum, as 40% ABV is the lowest legal bottling limit for how much a whisky can be diluted, it too is an arbitrary tasting strength. Non-chill filtered whiskies are usually bottled at or above 46% ABV primarily to avoid clouding, which again may not be optimal for that whisky. Believe me, it won’t make anyone less “macho” if you add just a splash of water to your whisky!
When applying water, there is a ‘sweet spot’ for every bottling which again differs with each person. It may well be that the ‘sweet spot’ is not adding any water at all; the choice is yours.
We also recommend you don’t switch whiskies too much in the course of an evening. We would like you to enjoy each whisky to its fullest and follow how it develops in the glass over time.
These days, it can be difficult to ignore the influences of commercialization. It is more than a coincidence that distilleries that advertise with a publication get more accolades by them. So, it’s not uncommon to see a whisky being awarded more medals than North Korean generals. Having an open mind in your journey with whiskies and other aged spirits will go a long way to make each tasting more enjoyable. Focusing on the brand or distillery, age statements, colour, cask used, country of origin, write-ups or scores can be an unnecessary distraction and may influence your perception and experience.
Alcohol is a charming, delightful and obliging servant BUT a very uncompromising & nasty master. We find that a good way to extend your enjoyment of alcoholic beverages is to be mindful and deliberate when taking each sip so that it can be thoroughly appreciated. Enjoy your whiskies to the fullest but remember, it’s not a race and there always another day. We wish you all a very pleasant & memorable experience with our range of whiskies and invite you to visit our bar 'The ExciseMan' that specialises in whiskies and wines. Cheers!