Whisky is a distillate obtained by fermentation and subsequent distillation of various cereals, aged in wooden casks
Peat whisky or traditional whisky?
The debate goes on practically forever and it divides purists, supporters of the authenticity of whisky prepared according to the classic methods, from the ones who can also appreciate other types of flavors and essences, definitely particular.
Scotch peat whisky certainly is, for its intense taste and for that smoky smell which distinguishes it.
Peat whisky generally means a kind of whisky produced in the Hebrides islands, off the coast of Scotland, where the drying process of malt is done in ovens not fuelled by wood or coal, as in the mainland, but with a particular fuel: peat.
Single Malt Scotch whisky
Scotch Single Malt whisky, as the name eloquently says, is exclusively produced with malt, 100%, malted barley, by means of a long and evocative process. The disciplinary is strict, but in some cases not even that strict, there are lights and shadows, although it is the king of whiskies. Barley, for example, can be cultivated everywhere, only the process of transformation into malt must be done in Scotland.
Distillation must be at least double, with some distilleries even going as far as a third distillation. Aging in cask must be of at least 3 years and, as logic would have it, in the label is indicated the age of the youngest distillate, because as for brandy, Champagne, Cognac and Armagnac, single malt is (almost) always a blend of single malts of the same "house".
Aging and bottling must absolutely take place in Scotland. Since 2009 bottling is regulated by a state law. After the basic aging, the distillate is aged in ex bourbon casks and the grand finale is aged in ex Sherry casks in order to round off all the thunderous exuberance of the distillate. Flavors range from Islay assault peat to a walk through a flowery rose garden in pure Speyside style.
Scotch Blended Malt whisky
This is a fine blend, as it comes from a blend of single malts. Actually they are not bad and they are born as very balanced or very peated products such as Big Peat, by giving up the initial purity it is possible to find very interesting solutions. Once they were also called Vatted Malt, but since 2009 this name has been banned.
Single Grain Scotch Whisky
To produce these whiskies is used a malt base, to which are added other cereals. Distillation is done in Coffey column stills and the result is a fresher and lighter distillate.
Blended Scotch whisky
A blend of 1 Single malt Scotch whisky and 1 Single Grain Scotch whisky. No percentages are specified, but if for vatted whisky we are talking about quality whisky, in this case the concept of blend is distorted in order to create distillates suited for a mass market.