There was a time when throwing a shot back and chasing it with a beer was standard procedure!
Then I bought my first bottle of Glenlivet 12, which mind you is an easy whiskey to drink. At 40% alcohol by volume, this 80 proofer is a great starting point in the world of Scotch Whisky.
Realizing I just spent $50.00 on a bottle of whisky, i couldn’t drop a shot down the gullet and be done with it. I had a glass on ice and slowly drank it. it started to taste better and better with every glass.
Was i converting from a twenty something shot shooter to a more sophisticated drinker? Not yet. That’s when I had my wife pour me a glass and she brought it back without ice. This is where everything changed!
The smell was far more intense. I got more vanilla and the mild spicey notes on the nose than before. I sat back and came to the realization that I was spending more time daydreaming on its aroma’s in between sips.
This leads me to talk about the flavor! The Glenlivet 12 is one delicious whisky! Upon first sip, the sweetness hit first but then faded rather fast into a blooming flower of flavors. i got honey and more vanilla than i ever did with ice. there was a floral taste along with woody oak or ceder notes, that kind of spiced it up a bit. The vanilla stayed strong and lingered for a bit creating a very long, creamy, and smooth finish sip after sip.
Well here it is fifteen years later and I have never put ice in my whisk(e)y since!
Today when i enjoy a glass i prefer to use what is known as the Glencairn Glass (pictured below), which has by far opened up my world of whisk(e)y tasting. With its tulip shape, the Glencairn concentrates the aromas and directs them into your nose. This makes finding all those hidden scents or notes more easily accomplished. All the scents take me back to different places in my life or memories I’ve had from childhood. No, i don’t mean that i was drinking whiskey when i was a child. However the smell took me back to butterscotch pudding or vanilla ice cream the first time i tried it. Or that smell i got the first time i tried on a leather jacket.
whether its Bourbon, Scotch, or a Rye whiskey, they all have different and exciting flavor profiles. With each one cut and aged in different types of casks, you can surely bet that drinking whiskey will always be a new and exciting experience!