Tag: whisky

How to drink like a rock star

During a long and crazy night in a bar in London, at the end of the ’90s, Liam Gallagher, Oasis lead singer, and Huey Morgan, Fun Loving Criminals frontman, became very good friends. Who was responsible? A mutual friend called Jack Daniel’s, one of the best-rated whiskies in the world, elaborated in Tennessee, USA. Actually, whisky was the favourite drink of Lemmy Kilmister too: the founder of Motörhead ‘created’ the Jack and coke long drink, mixing Jack Daniels with Coca-Cola. An invention that became a classic drink at every party nowadays.

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Jack Daniel’s 1L, the reference for whiskies worldwide

 

 

Since rock’n roll was born, alcohol has always been the most consumed product during the night between a concert and another. And in the summer season when festivals are marking the flow of time, you want to know how to drink like a rockstar.

The festival of Glastonbury is one of the most important events of the British summer and takes place from the 21th to the 25th of June. The line-up is really interesting: headliners are world stars like Radiohead, Foo Fighters, Alt-J and Liam Gallagher, who’s now really concentrating on promoting his new solo album. Talking about whisky loving rockstars – did you know that Dave Grohl, frontman of Foo Fighters loves Brennivin, a typical eau de vie from Iceland.

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Brennivín, a fresh explosion of Icelandic volcano water.

 

 

And talking about rock stars, we can’t avoid mentioning one of the greatest on earth: Mick Jagger. The Rolling Stones frontman has always marked the trends of drinking for years and his passion for vodka is well-known. Actually one of his favourite cocktails is vodka mixed with orange and pineapple juice. Something similar to what Keith Richards, the band’s guitarist, prefers a cocktail called “Nuclear Waste”, that is vodka mixed with orange, cranberry juice and Fanta.

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Smirnoff Blue Label 1L, perfect for preparing amazing cocktails

Buy Smirnoff Blue Labe

 

 

Going back to the United States, we can find one of the latest examples of cocktails that refer properly to a rockstar with his name. The Axl Rose cocktail, obviously named after the Guns’ n Roses singer, is composed by Champagne, cranberry juice and vodka. A huge drink for long rock nights when you need to stay awake and strong. A guarantee of taste, pleasure and booze. But careful, the part of staying awake only works if you don’t drink too much of it.

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Pol Roger Brut Réserve, it combines wonderfully structure and vinosity, elegance and freshness.

Indian Whiskey: taking the big step in the international market

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Although it sounds a bit strange or perhaps unusual, India has gradually been becoming a power in terms of producing high-quality whisky. In the last year, more than 1,500 million litres of whisky was consumed in the country. Yes, we can say that this figure is that high due to the large population, but still is a statistic that should be respected and taken seriously.

The country has many advantages over the strongest competitors, which we can reduce to Scotland and the United States. One of these advantages is that labour is very cheap in comparison to the two aforementioned countries. Another, and very importantly, is that India, alone, is one of the world’s biggest producers of high-quality barley, not to mention the climate that has settled in the region, ideal for the annual ageing of a good whisky.

The two most relevant producers of whisky of India, Amrut Whisky and John Paul, have recently reached US soil and plan to add at least a dozen of Indian whiskies to the market.

John Paul is located in Goa, where the tropical climate governs and remains the same throughout the year, which is perfect to give a faster whisky maturation, helping distillers to have more uniform levels. “There is no need to rotate barrels unlike Americans,” explains Michael D’Souza, Master Distiller at John Paul.

“You cannot compare whiskies one and another, as each malt has its unique character” says D’Souza. “That said, we have been rated very high internationally in comparison to Scotland and, in many cases, we have had the honour of been qualified even higher than they.”

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Amrut Indian Single Malt

 

 

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Amrut Fusion

Matthew McConaughey: from Oscar to Whiskey

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Don’t worry, we’re not saying that the good Matthew has left his career for whiskey. On the contrary, he has left the cameras for a moment to dedicate himself to directing. However, not in the conventional way as many actors do. Something very different: he has debuted as a director of commercials for the original company of Kentucky, in the USA. Wild Turkey Bourbon.

This collaboration was announced in August of this year, and originally McConaughey was first contacted by the sister company of Wild Turkey, Campari, to hire him as the face of the company. However, Matthew had other plans, as he offered to work with them but as a writer, director and star of the campaign.

“I wanted to take the whole project with my own hands,” McConaughey said at a press conference with Jimmy Russell and Eddie Russell, the father and son of the Wild Turkey team. “I would like to be responsible and an important part of the campaign and not just the face of it.”

Unveiled in September at the Wythe Hotel in Brooklyn, New York, a mini-documentary of just 6 minutes was shown where the actor can be seen walking through the distillery tasting whiskey accompanied by the Russells. A shorter, 30-second ad, where you can watch The Hot 8 Brass Band in New Orleans, was launched nationwide in the United States as part of the global campaign.

That will be the first part of 3 more films that Matthew wants to do — as if it was a story divided into three acts. The actor will also be appearing in printed ads. The decision to bring McConaughey to the company and release him as the lead creative for the campaign was taken under the premise of reaching a younger audience, and although the actor admits that he does not have a strong record with whiskey, he says that he enjoys it a lot, as well as red wine.

 TAGS:Wild Turkey 101Wild Turkey 101

Wild Turkey 101: a bourbon with origins in United States with an alcohol strength of 50.5%. Uvinum users give this Wild Turkey 101 4,7 of 5 points.

 

 

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Wild Turkey 81: a whisky produced by Nichols Distilling Company with origins in United States with an alcohol content of 40.5%.

What type of alcoholic beverages is suitable for coeliacs?

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The number of celiacs is increasing. The information on this disease and food and drink they can eat and drink is also increasing. It is no longer a difficult task trying to figure out which products contain gluten. According to the Federation of Associations of Celiacs of Spain, FACE, celiac disease (CD) is the permanent intolerance to gluten in wheat, barley, rye, and oats. It is believed that one can be genetically predisposed for the intolerance. It is characterized by an inflammatory reaction, immune-based, in the small intestinal mucous that hinders the absorption of macro- and micronutrients.

Many celiacs wonder if they can drink alcohol, and the truth is yes, but not all types. Firstly, it is important to note that beer is made from barley, therefore it can not be included in a celiac diet, as well as certain types of whisky.

Some beers can be consumed by celiac patients because they are made from rice or buckwheat. And, also, on certain occasions, both barley and wheat can be part of the production of whisky.

People who suffer this disease can drink many other spirits, such as vodka, tequila, rum and gin, even though the ingredients contain gluten, because it is lost in the distillation process. In all cases, one better make sure before consumption, look at the labels and ask your doctor or nutritionist if you are not completely sure.

Wine is also among the alcoholic beverages you can drink as a celiac. None are made with ingredients containing gluten, and wine also offers many benefits for the body. But on rare occasions when the wine is stored in a container which also has previously stored products containing gluten, cross-contamination can occur.

One can also drink cider as a celiac patient, for it is an alcoholic beverage produced by  the fermentation of apples, and these are gluten free.

If you want to know more, do not miss our article on gluten-free cocktails.

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Bombay Sapphire 47% 1L: a London Dry with origins in England with an alcohol strength of 47%.

 

 

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Mom God Save The Gin: is made by González Byass from England with an alcohol content of 39,5%. 

 

8 Keys to understanding how Brexit might affect the wine industry from a Spanish perspective

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Almost a month since the ‘no’ came from the UK to Europe, the most immediate response in consequences on the economy was the low level of the pound.

The time passed since the referendum has inspired one to envision various possible economic scenarios, especially in the field of food and wine, in which the UK has a primary role as a buyer.

Consequences for the export of Spanish and European wine

Following the referendum, it has opened a horizon of difficult questions for the future. The question is how Brexit will affect the economy? The truth is that it is difficult and complicated to try to provide an answer, although we can highlight some keys to try approach the question.

1. Lowering of the purchase power of the British people. If there is a factor that may affect the current export of wine, we are at the lowest concerning consumption capacity of the English as a result from a weak pound. If this trend is maintained in the future, it could ultimately affect the export of wine to the UK.

2. More depreciation of the pound against the dollar than against the euro. According to information published by the Spanish Observatory Wine Market (OEMV), the pound has depreciated more against the dollar than against the euro, so in this sense, could affect the  Americans wine industry more than the European wine industry. And this, a priori, could be positive for the Spanish and European market.

3. Free trade Tradition and raw material shortages. It is unlikely that the United Kingdom decides to impose new tariffs on European products because of its need for raw materials and its pro-free trade political tradition. Thus, given the circumstances, these two factors could facilitate exchange agreements.

4. The time needed for negocación of new trade relations. As pointed out in the article Brexit for wine lovers, published on Jancisrobinson.com, renegotiating agreements with the United Kingdom as a third country could take up to a decade, considering that within two years it will be necessary to determine the legal precepts from the United Kingdom. Therefore, a span this long could ultimately affect exports.

5. A healthy economy in Spanish wine exports. Despite the uncertainty, the current situation regarding Spanish wine exports to the UK is good, especially in terms of value. Thus, while the future is unclear, the Spanish market is in a good position, which can help offset possible negative effects.

In this sense, according to figures OEMV 2015, Spain exported to the UK a total 159.3 million liters of wine worth 343 million euros, representing an increase of 0.1% in terms of volume and 0.5% in terms of value. In fact, over the past 20 years, the average annual growth was 3.3% in volume and 4.9% in value. We can say, therefore, that the UK is buying Spanish wine, and does so with a growing trend of wines with O.D.

6. Competitive advantage in the price of Spanish wine. Although France, Italy, and Portugal top the list of wine suppliers to the UK, the fact is that the prices of Spanish wines are more competitive than those of other countries, a factor that undoubtedly plays a role for them. By contrast, wine of Burgundy which has been more costly since 2012 and that due to the adverse conditions of the current crop, could do even more- it would be most affected by the loss of purchase power of the English population.

Consequences from the English point of view

The consequences of Brexit, however, may not only affect exports, but also domestic business and exports from the United Kingdom.

7. Boost for English wine. For example, according to the analysis of Brexit for Wine lovers, producers of English wine could benefit from a hypothetical increase in the price of European wine, as they could position itself as a cheaper alternative for British consumers. Due to the fact of having more attractive prices, English wines could also gain a better position in the international market.

8. Loss of advantageous agreements for other industries. Although we have spoken mainly of wine, we can not forget that there is another large industry that could be affected in the medium and long term: namely the whiskey industry.

According to the specialized portal The Drinks Business in late June, the Scotch Whisky Association, they conceive the single European market as “a key to the success of Scotch” and for giants like Diageo and Pernod Ricard which voted to stay, the industry has substantially benefited from free trade agreements with South Korea, Vietnam, and Colombia. It is unclear, therefore, what will be the situation of the industry following the departure from the EU.

A lot at stake, a lot to decide

To conclude, if anything is clear, is that with so much at stake, decisions that will be taken at a high level will not be easy. The coming months will be decisive for the future, but the view must be set already and change is coming. Future scenarios, although not catastrophic, still represent a challenge for the wine- and spirit sector.

Whiskey or whisky? The origin of the words

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The word “whiskey” appeared in the early eighteenth century as the Gaelic translation of the Latin word aqua vitae for “water of life“. In the Celtic language, it is called uisge beatha, although the use of this term finds its roots several centuries ago. Although the distillation of whisky goes back to the ancient Celts, the first written references date back to the late fifteenth century when it was used by the Scottish monks as a medicinal drink.

In fact, whisky is one of the many terms adapted to the English spelling and pronunciation that was commonly used until the mid-1700s. There, you can see an equal use with no distinction between the words “whisky” and “whiskey”. Today, however, this additional “e” marks the difference. 

The differentiation that remains today between “whisky” and “whiskey” probably comes from the Irish desire by 1870 to distinguish themselves from Scottish distilleries, which at the time was considered a lower quality.

Nowadays, we understand Irish and U.S.-American distillates under whiskey with an “e”. While Irish whiskey is based on barley malt and experiences a triple distillation, the American one comes from corn and added wheat, rye or malted barley. Whisky mainly refers to Scottish products – Scotch whisky – but also includes whiskies from all around the world. The production of Scotch whisky and the Canadian ones (manufactured from rye and corn) are based on malted barley, in addition to those produced in countries such as Wales and Japan, inspired mainly from processes developed in Scotland.
And while whisky includes nearly all the nationalities, Scotch exclusively works for Scottish whisky products.

Uvinum whisk(e)y recommendations:

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Crown Royal Xo Whisky 75cl: 4 points on 5 is the average score of Crown Royal Xo Whisky 75cl according to Uvinum users. 

 

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Glenfiddich 12 Years: A Single Malt whisky from the Glenfiddich distillery made in Scotland with an alcohol strength of 40º. 

Five places in Scotland to have a great whisky

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Planning a short getaway? If you love whisky as much as we do, Scotland will come to your mind immediately. Discover here the country’s best places to enjoy a glass of good scotch.

1. The Quaich Bar (The Craigellachie Hotel)

There are many ways to enjoy whisky in Scotland, and this is one of the best places. Take advantage of the expertise and knowledge from the bartenders there and use their advice to taste really good malt whiskies. They are very passionate.

2. Bon Accord Pub

This pub is located in Glasgow and has a menu with over 1000 different beers, as well as 380 brands of malt whiskies. The food is served 7 days a week. A perfect choice to enjoy a succulent dish and pair it with scotch. A great place for connoisseurs.

3. Amber Bar – The Scotch Whisky Experience

Located in Edinburgh, the Amber Whisky Bar has made its mission to inform and excite people about scotch. 380 whiskies are available, excellent Scottish cuisine and a friendly and informal atmosphere that invites you to relax directly after your arrival.
The food they offer is a strong point in its favour, from delicious Scottish tapas to a full 3-dishes meal. In addition, they also have a succulent menu of delicious cheeses to pair with their whiskies.

4. Rob Roy Lounge

The Rob Roy Lounge, located at the Drimsynie House Hotel, serves food and fine whisky in a cosy setting. They also offer Paninis and homemade soups for a light lunch and a full menu of hearty food including baked potatoes and beef chilli nachos for a more abundant choice. For dinner, they serve meatloaf, fish and chips, and enchiladas. You’ll love it!

5. Andrew Usher & Co.

Andrew Usher & Co. is a historic trading house craft beer and Scotch whisky with a tradition for more than three centuries back. It is full of the history of the development of Scottish beer and distillation. It has a local menu which sums up the tradition of the place. They even offer the opportunity to create your own bottle of mixed whisky. It is one of the most original bars in Edinburgh.

In the meanwhile, get a taste of Scotland’s best whiskies at Uvinum: 

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Glenmorangie The Original 10 Years Old rises from the perfect combination of Europe’s biggest alambiques and white American oak barrels. This is what gives this Whisky an elegant, floral character.

 

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Aberlour 15 Years 1L: Compared with other malt whiskies of the same quality, the Aberlour 15 Years stands out for its fantastic price. Don’t miss it and snatch a 1-liter-bottle at uvinum.co.uk! 

 

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Dimple 15 Years Old is a classic Blend Scotch Whisky deluxe based on Glenkinchie and a high malt proportion. 

Three cocktails inspired by mobsters

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One of the most powerful people during the 1920s and 1930s was Al Capone, who in addition to being one of the most famous gangsters of the world was the owner of numerous underground casinos and liquor stores and, of course, a precursor of the cocktail culture.

During the years of the American prohibition law, the consumption of hard liquor increased marking Scotch whiskey as a favourite. The bartenders back then started to experiment with liquor leftovers’ in these underground bars creating new drinks and cocktails.

Al Capone, besides illegally distributing unadulterated whiskey in speakeasies all over the U.S., was also known for his outspoken attraction to forbidden cocktails. Inspired by this fascinating character, we’ll share three amazing cocktails with you. 

Penicillin

Not the medicine, but the cocktail. It was created in 2005 by San Ross Milk & Honey bar in New York and combines the taste of honey, lemon juice, ginger with the strength of the Cutty Sark Prohibition.

Ingredients:

  • 40 ml of Cutty Sark Prohibition edition
  • 10 ml of ginger liqueur
  • 25 ml lemon juice
  • 15 ml of honey syrup

Preparation:

Pour the ingredients into a shaker with crushed ice, mix and serve in a nice glass.

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Cutty Sark Prohibition: During the prohibition in 1920, Captain William McCoy smuggled Cutty Sark blended Scotch whisky into the United States.

 

Barbary Coast

This cocktail is a clear example of risky combinations performed during the period of prohibition because of the little amounts of these liquors. It is a mixture of gin and whiskey.

Ingredients:

  • ¾ ounce of blended scotch whiskey
  • ¾ ounce of gin
  • ¾ ounce cocoa
  • ¾ ounce of heavy cream

Preparation:

  1. Pour all the ingredients into a shaker with crushed ice.
  2. Strain and serve in a chilled glass.

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The Famous Grouse blend include the Glenrothes, Highland Park and The Macallan. Matthew Gloag, the founder of the 200-year-old brand, was a down-to-earth and very modest man from the beginning on.

 

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Saffron Gin: A  Genever gin produced in France with 40º of alcohol strength. 4,1 points on 5 is the average score of Saffron Gin at Uvinum. 

The Scofflaw Cocktail

This cocktail is named after an adjective created in 1924 when contest participants were asked to define “the idea of a drinker without moral, an insolent and bad citizen” in one word.

Ingredients:

  • 1½ ounces of rye whiskey
  • 1 ounce of dry vermouth
  • ¾ ounce of lemon juice
  • ¾ ounce of grenadine
  • 2 drops of orange bitters

Preparation:

  1. Pour all the ingredients into a shaker with ice.
  2. Blend, strain and serve in a chilled cocktail glass.
  3. Garnish with a slice of orange peel.

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Koval Rye Whiskey 50cl (£39.88): A bourbon from the Koval Distillery from the United States. Deserves an evaluation of 4 points on 5 according to Uvinum’s users. 

 

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Dolin Dry Vermouth 75cl: Maison Dolin & Cie produces this Dolin Dry Vermouth 75cl (£10.38), a vermouth from Italy with an alcohol strength of 16º.

The best pairings for smoked salmon

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When we think of food pairing possibilities for salmon our first option’s usually white wine or champagne. However, there are many other possible pairings for this tasty and soft fish. Whether wine, beer or spirits, there is a wide range of drinks: it is just a matter of putting aside traditions and try something new and different.

Wines

  • Sancerre, Pouilly-Fumé and other Sauvignon from the Loire: these wines are known for their dry minerals, with delicate flavours of gooseberry that are perfect for smoked salmon. Other Sauvignons can also work as long as they are not too “herbal”.
  • Chablis: young Chablis’ work better since they have a clean freshness and just the right amount of acidity to counteract the salmon’s greasiness. Chardonnays also go well with hot smoked salmon.
  • Riesling: young German Riesling wines like Kabinett with their intense flavours of green apple combine especially well. Young Alsace wines and Australian Rieslings are also a good choice for this dish.
  • Gewürztraminer: Gewürztraminer and smoked salmon make an excellent couple. Just give this two a shot.
  • Dry sherry. If you like dry sherry, this might be your best choice. The sherry’s salty and spicy taste is perfect as long as it is served cold and directly after the bottle was opened.

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Grand Regnard Chablis 2013: a white wine with Chablis DO with the best bunches of chardonnay from the 2013 vintage and with an alcohol content of 12º.

 

Beers and spirits

  • Czech or German pilsner beer: the freshness and slight bitterness of pilsner is just the thing to serve with your dish of smoked salmon.
  • Weissbier, Witbier or wheat beer: the ‘white’ beers go with most types of seafood in addition to smoked fish. An excellent option that will go great with your meals.
  • Malt Whisky: it may not be the first thing on your mind thinking of smoked salmon but it makes for an excellent choice. Choose a light malt whisky if the taste of salmon is soft or an Islay whisky if it’s stronger.
  • Aquavit: this is an aromatic spirit from the Nordic countries and a very original option to enjoy with salmon. Its dill and cilantro aromas make it a perfect partner for the fish’s taste.
  • Vodka: good cold Polish vodka can work just fine. With this combination, you get to give an unexpected twist to your evening dining.

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Absolut Electrik Silver: a vodka from distillery The Absolut Company from Sweden. 

7 false myths about whisky

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Whisky is an excellent traditional drink, probably the most popular spirit and also the one with the most misconceptions. We share with you some of these preconceived ideas about this mythical drink. You may even end up enjoying whisky even more.

1. You must drink it pure

If you understand that whisky is forty percent of alcohol, you can also understand why you need to add a little water to drink it: after someone consumes more than three glasses, the taste buds are numbed and lose their ability to taste the whisky.

Not all whiskies must be consumed in a glass without ice, this depends on how the liquor has aged. There are smoky whiskies, powerful in their flavor and aroma, that need an ice cube to balance the strong taste.

2. The more expensive, the better

The best advice here is to try all possible whiskies and select the ones you like. You have to try every variety of whisky to discover your favourite.

The greater maturity, the more expensive the whisky. But that does not mean it is the only thing that marks the quality since one can find very nice whiskeys from little barrels. There are types with low ageing that can be enjoyed just as much, it’s a matter of knowing how to choose the whisky.

3. You have to drink it quick

To enjoy the whisky it is not necessary to drink large amounts or finish the drink very fast. Unlike tequila or rum, whisky must be taken slowly to savour. You can even enjoy one glass over an hour.

4. Do not drink from tall glasses

Although some people may find it a strange way of drinking whisky some prefer this one. And for years, the Scots have been drinking whisky from a Quaich (a special kind of shallow two-handled drinking cup or bowl).

5. The whisky should be warm

In Colombia, for example, it is customary to drink whisky to cool off and refresh yourself while in Scotland people use the drink to warm up. It is a personal choice, a matter of taste.

6. Cheap whiskies cause hangovers

The cheap whisky has the same alcohol as the expensive ones. But if you add hyperactivity, physical exhaustion, dehydration, mental excitement and the speed you drink it, and maybe a poor diet, then you are in danger of a hangover.

If you drink whisky during dinner and over the course of a conversation, the intake is not as high. However, there should be no difference between single malt whiskies and blends (mixes of malt and other grains). Chemically it could be said that single malt gives less hangover because it contains less concentration of sugar.

7. You can not pair whisky with food

Drinking whisky while enjoying a meal is quite different from that of wine. But it is possible. If a whisky is 12 years old, sweet, fruity or fresh with almond aromas, you could go with the fresh flavors of Ceviche, Tuna Tartar or grilled Octopus. When enjoying a whisky with food, it is suggested consuming it with a little water or ice.

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The Famous Grouse 1L: The Whisky is named the Red Grouse, like Scotland’s national bird.

 

 

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Nikka From The Barrel 50cl:  a Cask strength whisky native of Japan with 51.4º of alcohol content.