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Five tips for enhancing the whisky tasting experience at home

So you like whisky and you enjoy the odd dram at home. But you want to take things to the next level. We can absolutely help with that. We also have some great tips on how to build the ultimate sandwich at Subway. You didn’t ask. But, you know, if you ever wanted to, you can always just ask.

Anyway, here are five tips to help you get the most out of your whisky tasting.

Five tips for enhancing the whisky tasting experience at home

The famous Glencairn Glass

Choose the right glassware

Glassware is a personal choice. If you have a favourite goblet or sippy cup then by all means enjoy away. But digging our flavours and aromas is an easier experience when you choose a type of glass designed the elevate the tasting experience. A tulip-shaped glass, such as a Glencairn, is ideal for whisky tasting. Its shape helps concentrate the aromas at the top of the glass, allowing you to fully appreciate the whisky’s scent before tasting it. This enhances your ability to detect the subtleties and complexities in the whisky’s aroma. They also look cool and make you seem like you know what you’re doing even if you’re just faking it until you make it. Which is basically what life is all about. Right?

You can find great whisky glassware here. We recommend the Glencairn Cut Crystal Glass and the Denver & Liely Whisky Glass.

Experiment with water and temperature 

Adding a few drops of water to your whisky can open up new flavours and aromas, especially in cask-strength whiskies. In alcohol there’s flavour, so it might seem counterintuitive to reduce the alcohol strength. But it does make it easier to detect other nuances. Master blenders will nose samples at around 20% ABV for this very reason. Have a play with it and find the approach that works best for you. Additionally, experimenting with temperature (such as trying a whisky at room temperature versus slightly chilled) can also alter the tasting experience.

Tastings are yours to make of them what you want

Control the environment

The environment in which you taste whisky can greatly influence your perception of its flavours. If you’re taking it very seriously and want to write professional-level tasting notes, then you need a quiet space with minimal distractions that is free from strong odours or perfumes. Your person is an environment to control too, don’t forget. How perceptive do you think you’ll be if before the tasting you had a coffee and a cigarette? On the other hand, if pure joy is your goal, then you could elevate your experience with music, for example. Creating a playlist for your whisky tastings can be fun, as can adding food pairings or even mixing it up by adding a cocktail to proceedings. A whisky-tasting experience can be whatever you make it, don’t forget. There’s also no substitute for good company. 

Slow and steady wins the race 

Whisky tasting is not a race or a competition. Take your time. Savour the experience. It’s not just about the taste, or what notes you can detect. A really good whisky will create a journey in front of your very eyes/nose/mouth. Allow yourself the opportunity to engage all your senses during the tasting. Observe the colour and viscosity of the whisky. When you taste, let the whisky coat your palate, consider the texture, and the way it makes you feel. Appreciating the complexity and craft that goes into each bottle is a simpler task when you treat your whisky tasting with a little reverence. 

Whatever you do, enjoy your whisky tasting!

Keep a tasting journal

Documenting your whisky-tasting experiences can be incredibly rewarding. Note down the name, age, and type of each whisky you try, along with your observations on its aroma, taste, and finish. Over time, this journal will be the story of your whisky-tasting life. It will help you identify favourites, track your evolving palate, and become a memento of good memories. 

The post Five tips for enhancing the whisky tasting experience at home appeared first on Master of Malt Blog.

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