We reveal the best brands of whiskey to taste this alcoholic drink with an intense flavor and not a little glamor . With one of these, you will feel like a real Humphrey Bogart making the ice tinkle in the bottom of the glass. Of course, you will have to scratch your pocket a bit: it is an elite drink.
- It may interest you: The 10 best Rum brands in the world that you should try.
Single malt whiskey brands
Although we all like to show off with a glass of whiskey in hand, it is not easy to recognize a good whiskey. There are several kinds, although single malt whiskey has been a public favorite since the 1970s.
It is on the podium of whiskeys for being one of the most popular among the high-end ones . In the refineries of Aberdeen, in Scotland, this blended (mixture of malt and grain) has been cultivated since 1801, and since then it has become the best-selling in Europe.
Its secret: the care in the barrels and its wide range of first-rate whiskeys.l. We can taste Chivas 12 years old, smooth with an aged and sweet taste; the Chivas 18 years, with citrus and spicy residue; the Chivas 25 years and 30 years, of limited production, and the 38 years, a true relic only available to expert palates.
The Macallan distillery had the peculiarity that, at first, it only aged its liquors in sherry wood, imported from Jerez de la Frontera (Spain). Its proven success in the world places it as one of the favorites and one of the most expensive whiskey brands in the world: in 2007 one of its bottles was sold for 54,000 dollars (world record).
One of their qualities is the great variety they offer, although the most widespread is the Macallan 12 years. It is a smoked whiskey with a long taste and a complex body, which can contain various nuances such as chocolate or lemon. The secret: its smaller stills favor contact between the distillate and the copper.
3. Jack Daniel’s
The oldest distillery in America celebrated a century and a half of life in 2016, consolidating itself as one of the best-known brands that combines elegance and popularity. Its bottling and its label have become an icon for several generations.
In a square bottle with the classic black label with white letters, the Tennessee distillery offers a distinction: it filters the whiskey with sugar maple, and that provides a drink unlike any other. We could define it as a delicately structured whiskey with an aroma that combines vanilla, caramel and dried fruit topped off long.
Jack Daniel’s, among the best whiskey brands. | Image by: Almos Bechtold / Unsplash.
4. Johnnie Walker
Undoubtedly one of the best-selling whiskey brands in the world, the whiskey of the “walker” (by the logo on its label) offers a distillate of malt and grain with 40% graduation, bottled in a classic square bottle
Since its creation, it has launched several modalities on the market.ranging from a luxury blend such as the Black Label (a blend of 40 whiskeys) to the Green Label (a blend of 4 whiskeys with 43% proof). For more exquisite palates, the Johnnie Walker presents the Gold Label, the Platinum Label or the Johnnie Walker Swing.
5. Crown Royal
Although it is not one of the best known, it is the best-selling Canadian whiskey brand in the world: in 2017 it was in the 12th place of the best sellers and for several years it has been the most commercialized in the United States.
For many years Crown Royal has brought out exclusive products of great quality, although in this case we are talking about a higher range. The bottling is of high distinction and offers a light body and a soft yet sophisticated aroma:It is produced through the blending of several different whiskeys aged in oak wood.
6. Old Pulteney
It is without a doubt one of the kings of the moment, and the best NAS (No Age Statement) whisky, without age. That is why it does not certify on the label the years of barrel maturation. In 2016 it was chosen as the best single malt whisky, for the perfect balance of maturation and herbaceous aftertaste . It is packaged at 46% graduation.
The bottle is not too expensive either, about 50 euros. In it we will find a whiskey with a slightly oily body with a smoky and herbaceous contrast in which many nuances have a place. It is not a conventional whiskey , without a doubt, but an experience for the senses and a challenge for experimentation.
Located in a valley (Glenfiddich in Gaelic means valley of the deer) this distillery produces a whiskey labeled under the name of Glenfiddich and the image of a deer, and over the years it has become a single malt favorite. Scottish , for its careful structuring in which no nuance is out of tune.
The most popular of the deer whiskey is the 12 years, a drink aged in oak barrels, marketed for about 25 euros in Spain and bottled in green glass. In the glass it has a golden color with a soft and fruity aroma. What makes it special is the quality-price ratio, since it obtains a great balance of all its ingredients .
Japanese whiskeys have burst onto the market with force and today they are considered the most reputable, above the Scotch ones. The Yamazaki distillery is one of the oldest, and remains the most reputable: founded in 1923, it markets the first quality Japanese whiskey since 1984.
The Yamazaki 12 years is characterized by a pale yellow color and a smell very similar to malt. Scots. It has a medium density and is smooth and silky on the palate, leaving a pleasant orange flavor as it passes through the throat, in which reminiscences of nuts, vanilla and peach are explosively mixed.
The price of a bottle, in Spain, is around 50 euros: quite affordable. Worth.
The 4 best-selling whiskey brands in Spain
In 2018, whiskey has remained the best-selling distilled beverage in Spain, ahead of rum and gin. With a market share of 27% in our country, these are still the best-selling whiskey brands in Spain.
In addition to being one of the most expensive whiskey brands, Cardhu has carved a niche for itself as one of the most popular. Produced in Scotland, from 2003 it became one of the best-selling whiskey brands , especially in Spain. It was then that the controversy over the denomination arose.
And it is that, although in Spain the issue went unnoticed, in the United Kingdom God is Christ got mixed up because Cardhu stopped calling his whiskey single malt and went on to be called pure malt, which gave the idea of better quality, although it is just the other way around: the single (a single malt) is superior to the pure (a mixture of several malts).
Competing single malts launched a campaign against Cardhu for compromising the single’s reputation, and again had to revert to the original appellation.
The smoothness of its flavor and the lightness of its body make it one of the favorites of the average public in Spain: it pleases both experts and beginners . The secret is in the blend, a secret recipe kept by the distillery’s official blenders since 1827 to maintain quality standards.
That is why for many years it has been number one in sales in Europe and is one of the best sellers in Spain. Through mixing malt and graina light and fine product suitable for all palates is achieved.
Although in recent years it has experienced a slight drop in sales in Europe, it is still one of the best-selling whiskeys in Spain . The price and its adaptation to the new currents of honey-flavored distillates have managed to maintain the classic J&B as one of the favorites in our country.
Justerini & Brooks, or more popularly known as JB, is the third best-selling Scotch whiskey and offers a balanced, smooth blended with a classic and elegant flavor. Its secret: it has the exclusivity of the water from the natural springs that surround its four distilleries .
4. Jim Beam
One of the brands that has grown the most in recent years has been Jim Bean, an American distillery that broke sales records in 2008 . It remains one of the favorite brands of bourbon whiskey among the Spanish public.
Jim Bean, one of the best-selling whiskey brands in Spain, stands out for the production of flavored drinks that have experienced a boom in recent years. The production of these distillates, with aromas of honey and apple, are oriented towards a younger public that prefers whiskeys with softer and more nuanced flavors .
irish whiskey brands
After the Irish whiskey boom experienced in the 19th century, the approval of Prohibition and the independence of Ireland from 1919 greatly reduced production and sales plummeted. In the 1960s there were hardly any Irish whiskey distilleries left.
Selection of the best Irish whiskeys. | Image by: Camylla Battani / Unsplash.
In the 1980s, Irish whiskey made a strong comeback on the market.
Jameson is an Irish distillery that produces blended whiskey: it is produced with malted and unmalted barley. It has been on the market since it was founded by merchant John Jameson in 1780 in Dublin, and after two centuries it has become the best-known Irish whiskey brand outside its borders.
His great treasure is the Jameson 18 years, which is achieved by blending mature whiskeys in Spanish oak barrels that later mature in bourbon wood. The result is a drink with a touch of vanilla, caramel, honey and apples, topped with hazelnuts.
Not only one of the oldest distilleries in Ireland, but also one of the most refined Irish whiskey brands, achieving a refined end product through a process that begins in copper pots and ends in bourbon casks. .
The distillery is located in the town of Kilbeggan, in Ireland, and includes a sophisticated restaurant to experiment with pairing. As far as the whiskey in question is concerned, it isa yellowish malt with a dense body and a long flavor finished off with a taste of almonds whose personality is in the nuances.
Another Irish whiskey to consider is Redbreast, produced in Middleton, County Cork. What distinguishes its quality is that its whiskeys are never less than 12 years old: exclusivity and patient dedication to the product are prized.
This is truly a distinguished whisky, also one of the most expensive whiskey brands, offering both a malted and unmalted barley product. The result is an explosion of flavors that combines baked orange and apple with a hint of vanilla, and a sharp, long peppery finish. It was chosen the best Irish whiskey in 2010.
Curiosities of whiskey
Did you know that whiskey comes from the Scottish Gaelic uisge beatha which means “water of life”
This ancestral drink, resulting from the distillation of fermented barley, appears for the first time in the documents of the Scottish monks of the fifteenth century, although some Theories venture that its origin could lie in China three centuries earlier.
What is really curious is that it began to be taken as a medicinal drink (hence its name “water of life”) and it was not until the 18th century that distilleries began to sell it as an alcoholic beverage. The 19th century marked the whiskey boom in Scotland, and with its export to the Scottish colonies in America it began to perfect itself.
During the 20th century, the refinement of its original recipe began to popularize the taste for this mixture of barley, wheat, rye and corn , which over the years acquired an elitist and refined image. At present it is still one of the most precious dry alcohols.