The world of whisky is varied and often contentious. Good whiskies may be everywhere, but the affordability of said whisky may be questionable. With the price of whisky trending upwards around the world, the way we serve and drink it becomes a controversial part of how we enjoy the precious liquid.
Whisky lovers would agree that there isn’t a correct way of drinking whisky, but there are specific preferred ways of drinking it. We highlight five different styles of drinking whisky below.
Drink it Neat
Drinking whisky neat (just as it is) is a conventional method favoured by many whisky lovers. Taking the liquid as it is and not adding anything helps to retain the flavour of the whisky. The drinker experiences the purest form of the whisky, just as how the whisky maker has tasted it. The excitement comes through when the drinker interacts with the whisky to find the different aromas and flavours over time and oxidation, all without the influence of external substances.
Drink it with Water
Some people enjoy whisky with a little water. There is a whole argument behind the adding of water to whisky. Some people said that water dilutes the alcohol influence in the whisky and opens up the flavours and aromas of the whisky. It allows for a better appreciation for some whisky lovers. The opposite camp argues that drinking a whisky neat is the way to go because one should taste whisky straight from the bottle. There is no right or wrong answer to this – it is merely a matter of preferences.
Drink it with an Iceball or on the rocks
Adding ice is yet another conventional way of drinking whisky – with ice. It can be an iceball or some ice cubes. The idea is to dilute the alcohol level in the whisky as well as to chill the drink. While some whisky drinkers swear by this way of drinking, others feel that the ice spoils the taste and flavours of the whisky.
Make a Highball
A highball is a favourite way of drinking whisky among Japanese and some ladies around the world. It is simple to make – just add lots of ice and carbonated water to whisky, stir it with a long spoon, and you have a highball! The highball lengthens the drink and also dilute the alcohol content to make it palatable for drinkers who dislike the bite of higher abv.
Make a Whisky Cocktail
A cocktail is meant to be light and suitable for people who can’t drink very well. However, a whisky cocktail can be potent, and those who do not take very well to alcohol should be careful before ordering one of these. A whisky cocktail is full of surprises because it can vary from smokey to overtly sweet, depending on the whisky base used. A cocktail made from an Islay whisky is smokey and savoury while a cocktail made from American bourbon tends to be a tad too sweet. Nonetheless, every whisky cocktail has its uniqueness.
Other ways to drink whisky
There are other different methods to drink whisky. One can add cola or green tea to their whiskies, or one can drink it with whisky stones. Whisky stones are made from steel or granite and work to chill the whisky without diluting the taste.
Everyone has their preference, and nobody is right or wrong. Some whisky drinkers may cringe when they see others adding cola or green tea to their whiskies, but nobody should dictate how another drinks his or her whisky. It is entirely up to the drinker.
Therefore, if you are a beginner and did not like the bite of the high abv too much, remember that you can enjoy your whisky in other forms besides having it neat. A whisky highball may be the best drink for you, if only you try it!
Enjoy your drink! No one will judge you.
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