An Un(whiskey)educated Person’s Guide to Whiskey Tasting


What Does Whiskey Tast Like?

 You see it everywhere in movies and TV shows, but what does whiskey actually taste like? Is it like a liquid cinnamon roll? Does it make your mouth pucker up? Or do you just have to shoot it back and pretend to enjoy it? If you’re an uneducated person when it comes to the art of whiskey tasting (like many of us!), this guide is for you.

What are the Different Types of Whiskey?

First things first—all whiskeys are not created equal. There are many different types of whiskey, from Scotch whisky to Irish whiskey to American bourbon. Each type has its own distinct flavor profile and characteristics that make it unique. Here is a quick overview of the most popular types of whiskey:

Scotch Whisky

A single malt Scotch whisky is made from malted barley, water, and yeast in Scotland. It has a smoky aroma with hints of vanilla and spices. Its flavor profile tends to be dry, with a slight sweetness on the finish.

Irish Whiskey

This type of whiskey is made from a mix of malted and unmalted barley, grains, and water in Ireland. It has notes of honey, caramel, vanilla, and spices with a smooth finish.

American Bourbon

This type of whiskey is made from at least 51% corn mash in America. It has sweet aromas such as caramel and vanilla with flavors of oak, maple syrup, leather, smoke, and spices. Its finish tends to be slightly dryer than other whiskeys due to its high alcohol content (40-50%).

Rye Whiskey

This type of whiskey is made from at least 51% rye mash in America or Canada. It has earthy aromas such as spice and clove with flavors of peppermint candy, oak, leather, smoke and nutmeg on the palate. The finish tends to be spicy yet smooth.

How Do I Taste Whiskey?

Now that you know all about the different types of whiskeys available out there let’s talk about how you should go about tasting them! Here are some tips for tasting whiskey like a pro:

Start by smelling the whiskey—this will help you identify some basic flavors before taking your first sip! Be sure to swirl your glass so that all sides are exposed to air before sniffing so that you can get a good sense for all the aromas present in the spirit.  

Take small sips rather than gulping down large amounts at once—not only does this allow you more time to savor each sip but also prevents your taste buds from becoming overwhelmed by too much alcohol at once!  

Don’t rush through your tasting experiencetake your time! Allow yourself enough time between sips so that you can properly identify each flavor note present in the spirit before moving onto another one (this can take anywhere between 5–10 minutes).  

Swallow or spit out after each sip—this will help keep track of how much alcohol you have consumed throughout the course of your tasting session (and prevent any unwanted hangovers!).  

Think critically about what flavors you are experiencing—try writing down your thoughts on each sample as they come up so that you can remember them later or compare them with other whiskeys!   • Enjoy yourself! Tasting whiskey should be an enjoyable experience so don’t feel like you need to take notes if that isn’t something that interests you; simply sit back relax & savor every sip!

 Now that we've gone over all there is to know about tasting whiskey - don't forget - drink responsibly! So grab yourself a glass (or two!) enjoy responsibly while learning all there is about this amazing spirit - cheers! With these steps under your belt - soon enough -you'll be able to impress your friends with your newfound expertise in no time at all! Enjoy!