When you think about Scotland whisky is the first thing that comes to mind. Apart from the spectacular surroundings, rolling hills and beautiful winding roads, whisky is actually what makes Scotland so well-known. The well-known Scotch whisky originates from Scotland. In fact so synonymous has good whisky become with Scotch that in England if you ask for a whisky you will be undoubtedly handed a Scotch unless you specify otherwise.
You will find five main categories of Scotch. These types of groups tend to be single malts, single grain Scotch, blended grain whisky, blended malt Scotch whisky which was earlier called a vatted malt or even pure malt, and blended Scotch. There are some specifics which need to be adopted for a whisky to be known as a Scotch. The first condition being that this whisky must be created specifically in Scotland. No matter what specifications tend to be followed, if a whisky isn�t produced in Scotland it can’t be known as a Scotch. The next thing to bear in mind is actually that after distillation a whisky must be aged or aged in fine oak barrels for a period of a minimum of three years. In fact it has been made compulsory to write the age statement on the bottle.
According to the Scotch Whisky regulations for any whisky to be called a Scotch it has to clear some rules. The first regulation is that such a whisky has to be produced in a Scottish distillery and should be produced with water and malted barley. Other whole grains can be added to this barley. Secondly, this particular concoction has to be processed into mash in a distillery and then fermented only with the addition of yeast. The actual distilled spirit has to have an alcohol power of less than 94. 8% through volume. This particular spirit now has to be left to mature in oak casks in warehouses in Scotland. The capacity of the oak casks is also regulated and cannot exceed seven hundred liters. The actual whisky also needs to mature for at least 3 years. A whisky is declared a Scotch only after it follows these procedures and then goes through the colour and fragrance test.
In order to become a Scotch, a whisky must manage to retain the aroma, color and flavor of the raw materials that go into its making. Apart from drinking water and basic regulated caramel coloring no exterior substances can be added to enhance taste or appearance. Lastly, after following each one of these protocols, a whisky can be declared a Scotch only after it has been through an alcohol strength check. A Scotch has to have the minimal alcoholic strength by volume of 40%.
If you’re visiting Scotland, whisky distillery tours have to be in your thoughts. Just about all distilleries have tours that take the visitor and introduce him to the fine art of whisky producing. There can be many type of whisky tours of Scotland. A few tours take you around the distillery and educate you on the technicalities of whisky making. A few are much more comprehensive and take you down to the cellars as well as let you experience fine whisky in some tasting sessions. You can even go on a whisky trail to gather the full experience of the actual well-known whiskies of Scotland. Both ways you will emerge a whisky lover.