Today has been deemed world whisky day, and I for one think it’s about time a drink so ancient and revered to be called “the Water of Life” should have it’s very own day of celebration. Whether you’re a die-hard aficionado like me, or just dipping your toes into said “waters”, today is the perfect opportunity to enjoy one of the most delicious accomplishments of human kind.
What makes whisky, all whiskey, worth celebrating? Well, when you consider that it all begins with something as simple as grain, (corn, barley, wheat, or rye), the complexities of the malting, distillation, barreling, and aging processes, and the beauty of the finished product, of course it deserves celebrating! I’m talking fireworks, parades, marching bands, church bells should be ringing, after all even the angels get their share! Okay, maybe the church bells are a little much, but you get my point. Scotch, bourbon, Irish, and rye whiskies are as close as this age of humanity will ever get to experiencing manna from heaven.
So, make it a point to imbibe in honor of an alcohol that dates back to the 1400’s, perhaps by experimenting with some new flavors, or creating your very own personal libation. If you’re a bourbon fan, I highly recommend Four Roses Small Batch, excellent for sipping alone, or mixed in a cocktail. For my single malt scotch fans, just last night I tried three really lovely whiskies, each sure to please a wide variety of taste preferences. First is the unequivocal Talisker Storm, with flavors of sea salted smokiness, that ripens to a spicy, oaken finish, this Isle of Skye distillation is a treat. Next up is Bruichladdich’s Port Charlotte Scottish Barley Heavily Peated Islay Single Malt. With a PPM of 40, this whisky is a heavyweight when it comes to rich peat smoke flavor, and aroma. It’s truly a lovely aromatic blend that makes me think of barbecuing at the beach, mixed with the rich, savory sweetness of fig, and dark toffee. My first undiluted sip was a marvelous combination of sweet, nutty barley, ocean brine, and charred oak. Adding a splash of water enhanced the surprising sweetness that makes this smooth, crisp whisky an utter delight. This was by far my favorite of the three. Last, but most assuredly not least, is Bruichladdich The Classic Laddie Scottish Barley Unpeated Single Malt Islay. This whisky has a most enticing aroma, fresh, a slight hint of mint that blends nicely with the crisp tang of sea breeze awash with a clean, green scent, like spring wildflowers. Even better than the nose, is this whisky’s palate, tingling with mouth pleasing sweet oak, ripe fruit, and barley, that bursts on the tongue like bubbles of sea spray. This is not your typical Islay, so if you prefer Highland, or Speyside whiskies, you will definitely find the Classic Laddie to your liking.
I realize this is only a small sampling of what’s available, but, one thing you can count on is me always telling you the truth. If I think something is nasty, I will say so. There are a few whiskies I refuse to touch, as I find drinking them no different from swilling finger nail polish remover, or licking a bar room floor, (happened many years ago by accident, remember never fall down drunk with your mouth open) and you probably won’t read about them here, as I don’t see the need to waste any effort talking about them.
Anyway, I hope my selections discussed here will help you better celebrate World Whisky Day 2015.
Remember to drink responsibly, designate a driver, do the same for your friends.