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09 July 2006

How To Taste...Whisky

Mwteew If you've ever approached tasting distilled spirits the same way you taste wine, you've likely experienced one thing: pain.  Spirits, such as Whisky, don't lend themselves to being swirled, sniffed, sipped and slurped.  In the past, I have knocked Vodka lovers for critiquing something, which is supposed to be neutral.  However, when it comes to Whisky, there are all kinds of scents and flavors to be discovered.  Kevin, of The Scotch Blog, suggests this 'parlor trick' for those new to Whisky:

Here's a parlor trick you can use at your next tasting. This is particularly useful for novices who can't detect anything in the nose other than "whisky."

  1. Have your guests hold the tasting glass in one hand, while completely covering the mouth of the glass with their other hand.
  2. Then instruct them to vigorously swirl/shake the glass. The palm of their hand should get wet - this has the benefit of aerating the heck out of the whisky.
  3. Have them put down the glass and rub the palms of their hands together - this should be done quickly to generate a little heat and cause the whisky to evaporate.
  4. Have them immediately cup their hands and place them over their nose and mouth. They should then take a deep whiff.

They should now be able to detect some of the more distinct "non-whisky" aspects of the nose. Plus, it is quite entertaining to see a group of people do this.

Visit The Scotch Blog for recommendations, information and reviews.


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