Friday, July 12, 2024

What’s The Best Kind Of Whiskey

Best Cheap Yeast #: Bakers Yeast

The 10 SMOOTHEST Whiskeys (this nearly broke us…)

Using bread yeast is a perfectly valid option for making whiskey washes.

It tends to produce a very dry finished ferment with quite pronounced esters. However, since bakers yeast isnt intended for whiskey making, theres very little information available about the flavor profiles.

Generally, bakers yeast wont handle high alcohol concentrations, and to avoid stressing the yeast we recommend keeping your mash below ~10% ABV.


  • Cheap: Bakers yeast can be bought in bulk. This means you can pitch large amounts without breaking the bank. We use this one from amazon which is only $7 for a 500gram pouch.


  • Low alcohol tolerance. Generally it will be very hard to get a final ferment to above ~12% ABV as this type of yeast isnt designed to handle high alcohol concentrations. I space is an issue, and you prefer higher ABV washes, then you may be better using one of the following yeasts.
  • Designed for wheat rather that barley.
  • Flavor congener profile is not studied/available. Trial and error required to know what youll get from each brand.

Best Irish: West Cork 8

courtesy of

Region: Ireland | ABV: 40% | Tasting Notes: Dried apples, Honey, Baking spices

While some American consumers regrettably limit their consumption of Irish whiskey to the occasional shot purchased by a casual acquaintance at a sports bar, there’s also a vibrant and growing list of Irish craft whiskies that deserve our attention. West Cork produces a gorgeous single-malt that sees Irish barley and local spring water going into a hand-built copper pot still, with the resulting distillate matured for eight years in first-fill, flame-charred bourbon barrelsleading to far more depth and character than fans of other whiskies may typically associate with the category. The well-balanced palate features pretty notes of dried apple and honey segueing to a baking-spice finish, and all at an approachable 80 proof. You won’t want to shoot this one.

Region: Ontario, Canada | ABV: 43% | Tasting Notes: Vanilla, Raisin, Coffee

Best Canadian Whisky: Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye

When Jim Murray crowned Northern Harvest Rye 2016 World Whisky of the Year in his Whisky Bible, a great number of whisky aficionados were shocked and some even bit dismayed. But it is delicious.

Every bottle is 90 percent rye , so its rye forward but not quite as spicy as youd expect. Big notes of apple and cherry ride an undercurrent of clove and lemon. Its an explosive drink with a lovely, long, and creamy finish. Plus it makes a killer Manhattan.

ABV: 90 Proof | Age: 3 Years | Volume: 750 milliliters

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Ardberg Arrrrrrrdbeg Comittee Release

Scotch whisky distillery Ardbeg may be owned by Louis Vuitton Möet Hennesy, but its fanbase receives treatment more akin to devotees of an indie company. The Ardbeg Committee, as they are called in the tradition of Scottish Parliament, is a free-to-join fan club which receives perks like early access to special bottlings, including the exclusive Ardbeg Committee Release. These special releases sell out incredibly quickly and fetch high prices on the resale market. For instance, although the suggested retail value of the 2021 release is $180, you’ll more likely have to pay $300-500 to get your hands on a bottle. Some previous committee releases even fetch closer to $2,000, according to Whisky Advocate, and a mammoth 4.5 liter edition could cost you $4,330!

Suffice it to say, these whiskeys are coveted, and its not just because of their rarity. Arrrrrrrrdbeg!, the 2021 Committee Release, received a five-star rating from The Whiskey Wash, who described this scotch as such: “If I seem stumped by this whisky it’s because I am … There is a world of complexities within the spirit that emerge different with each tasting.” Arrrrrrrdbeg! also received 9.5/10 from Drinkhacker, who writes, “the palate takes you on an adventure writ small, buttery on the tongue with notes of cinnamon, baked apples, and ripe banana, all filtered through some cigar smoke.” This release is one of Ardbeg’s most unique expressions yet, and surely one of the best whiskeys of 2021.

What Does Canadian Whisky Taste Like

Whiskys Americanos

Generally Canadian whiskies are lighter and sweeter in character but still full of flavor. Considered easy to drink. When the maker mentions that rye is used generously in the finishing of the whisky, it will usually have a nice spicier bite.

Things to Consider: Different from US rye whiskies in Canada rye doesnt have to be the dominant grain used and is often mostly used in the flavoring whisky portion of the bottling. Because of their ease in drinking, they often blend well in cocktail mixes. Tradition drives the process a Canadian whisky from 15 or 30 years ago will most likely taste nearly identical as same one produced today.

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Angels Envy Finished Rye

Coming in as the most expensive bottle on this list by far , Angels Envy Finished Rye is a great pick if youre looking for a top-shelf option.

Many claim this is the best whiskey theyve ever tasted.

And its unique flavor profile brings a sweet, yet complex component to a hot toddy.

If youre looking for a unique hot toddy and have the budget, this one is for you.

Is It Ok To Store Yeast In The Freezer

Yes, freezing dried yeast is fine and will extent the shelf life somewhat. However, you cant freeze liquid yeast as the freezing of water will rupture the yeast cells, effectively killing them.

Here a rough guide to shelf lifes for both dry and liquid yeast. In general, dried yeast will last the longest and ideally should be stored as cold as possible.


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Best Blended Scotch: Johnnie Walker 18 Year Old Blended Scotch Whisky

As the second child in the Johnnie Walker family, many might look past this 18-year-old release in favor of the brands iconic Blue Label bottling. Where value for money is concerned, this could be considered a mistake. With an average price of around half its elder siblings, this expression comes exceedingly close in terms of quality, complexity, and depth of flavor, delivering a greatest hits of the many styles of Scotch in one harmonious blend. Average price: $91.

Four Roses Yellow Label

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As the #1 budget option on the list, Four Rosess standard option is a great buy.

You can grab a 750ml bottle for around $20 and it has a simple, sweet, and mellow flavor profile.

While it could technically be considered a bottom shelf option, it could hold its own against more expensive bottles in blind taste tests.

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Christmas Spirits: The 10 Best Whiskeys To Gift This Year

If you know someone whos got a well-stocked bar cart, whos always on the lookout for the latest and greatest spirits, perhaps you think you already know what to get them. But not just any old bottle of whiskey will do. No sir, you need to brush up on the 10 best whiskeys to gift this year for the spirits enthusiast in your life, and you need to do it in a hurry, lest you get caught flat-footed in pursuit of some of the finest whiskey on the planet. The holidays are no time to skimp on what youre gifting the whiskey lover in your life.

We guarantee that any of the whiskey bottles below would be seriously welcomed under the tree this season. And if the recipient is feeling hospitable? You just might get to reap the rewards of your excellent gift-giving yourself.

Good For Flavor Distilamax Xp

DistilaMax XP is specially designed for grain whiskey production and has been selected for its ability to handle high temperatures. It produces a congener profile well suited to the flavorful malt whiskeys with higher ester production, generally resulting in increased complexity and fruity notes

It can withstand a wider temperature range between 25C and 36C and has an alcohol tolerance of about 15%, although you probably wont need to take it that high.


  • The natural choice for the best Bourbon distillers and other American whiskey producers
  • Very good and delicate profile of congeners
  • Performs well in all kinds of grains or blends of grains
  • Despite its popularity for US whiskies, it is another good option for grain distilled beverages aged in barrels


  • Only available in 500gram pouches.

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What Is The Speed Of Fermentation

Different yeast has different speeds of fermentation. One with a higher speed will allow you to maximize the capacity of your distillery.

However, fermenting too fast can start to stress the yeast and introduce off flavors.

Generally, a healthy whiskey wash should take around a week to complete the majority of the fermentation and then another week to fully attenuate and clean up. Some commercial yeasts have been designed to operate quicker than this under controlled conditions, so read the manufactures guidance.

What Level Of Ph Is Required

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The level of pH will always limit the growth of microorganisms and lactic acid during fermentation. So you should always be aware of the level of pH required.

Your yeast manufacturer will specify the optimal pH range for that specific yeast strain, which is typically between 3.5 and 5.5.

A well-designed mash should hit this number without you having to do anything, but it always pay to check. You can lower the pH with citric acid or lactic acid if outside the range.

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Old Forester Rye Whiskey

Kentucky distillery Old Forester makes both rye and bourbon whiskey. The original Old Forester is one of Reigler’s favorites for making cocktails. “They started making this in 1870, and it’s very characteristic,” Reigler told Business Insider, “It has caramel notes, and fruity hints of banana and citrus.”

Reigler also recommends the 1910 expression, a newer release, which she explained is “aged in a second barrel that is charred to the point that it would fall apart, if not for the iron bands. It’s really smokey, with a lovely chocolate note.”

Best Japanese: Hakushu 12 Year Old

Region: Yamanashi, Japan | ABV: 43% | Tasting Notes: Green apple, Citrus, Smoke

Japanese whiskey, particularly from Suntory, can be very costly and hard to get, but this bottle from the Hakushu distillery in the Japanese Alps is phenomenal. It features crisp notes of unripe melon and apple, along with just a hint of smoke. This 12-year-old whiskey makes a delicious highball, although you might want to save this to sip. Lynnette Marrero, bar director for Llama Inn and Llama San NYC, calls it delicious, grassy, a little smokier than other Japanese whiskeys.

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What Goes Into Whiskey

Now you have seen our list of whiskeys that are perfect for any beginner, it might be worth discussing the various kinds of whiskey and how they can affect you.

Read on as we discuss the various methods of making whiskeys, as well as the final taste, and overall flavor of different kinds of whiskeys.

Aberfeldy 18 Year Old Limited Edition

What is the RIGHT WHISKEY for you???

Dewars Distillery malt master Stephanie MacLeod made history when she became the first woman to be awarded Master Blender of the Year in the 2020 International Whisky Competition and she has made it again in 2021 with the distillerys just-released flagship single malt that has spent 18 years in a combination of first fill, re-char, and refill casks. After that, the whisky, with its signature honeyed fruit and nut-like notes, was finished for up to five months in Côte Rôtie French wine casks, which added a silky, sensuous raspberry, lingonberry and red current texture to an already excellent whisky.

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The Tastiest Bourbons Ryes And Malts To Buy Right Now

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the bestproducts youcan learn more about ourreview process here.We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

While limited-release bourbons like Pappy Van Winkle or deeply aged single malts like Macallan 25 are hyper-scarce and expensive, you can still find a brilliant whiskey at your local shop and online for more modest sums.

A great whisky is simply one that tastes incredible, says Brendan McCarron, Master Distiller at Distell. The whiskies I love most always have balancelots of different flavors and aromas playing off each other. You need to be able to taste the distillery character and the influence of the wood for a whisky to be truly great.

If youre looking for a delicious whiskey to enjoy, here are top-notch bottles across a variety of styles to try.

If you arent familiar with the story of Nathan Nearest Green, an enslaved man who taught Jack Daniel how to make whiskey, you should be. He is believed to have perfected the proprietary Lincoln County Process for making Tennessee whiskey, which includes a maple charcoal filter that sets it apart from other methods of production.

ABV: 100 Proof | Age: 8 Years | Volume: 750 milliliters

Teeling Small Batch Irish Whiskey

For those craving a more robust Irish whiskey at a higher proof, Powers John’s Lane is a great choice, says marshall. Aged 12 years mostly in ex-bourbon barrels and oloroso sherry casks. This is one of the first Irish whiskeys I tried that made me stop and take notice. For a more affordable option, a few bartenders pointed us toward Powers gold labelbut the Johns Lane is standout whiskey.

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Other Whiskey Terms To Know

Single Malt: When a bottle of whiskey is made from a single batch its called single malt. Although single malts are originally a Scottish tradition many whiskey brands outside Scotland use the term to denote a single-batch whiskey.

Blended: Blended whiskeys are made using multiple types of whiskey. Most big-name whiskeys fall into this category as theyre more affordable and great as go-tos for cocktails.

Laphroaig Sherry Oak Finish Single Malt

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The salty, iodine and seaweed characteristics of Laphroaig are a perfect match for the sweet essences of citrus and slightly salted Spanish Marcona almonds that emanate from González Byass Alfonso Oloroso Seco sherry, so it is a welcome treat for fans of this ultra-smoky Islay single malt to find that Laphroaig distillery manager John Campbell has selected certain casks of his ex-bourbon barrel aged 10-year-old whisky and matured them for an additional 12 to 18 months in barrels that formerly held Oloroso seco sherry. Indeed, the influences of the sherried Spanish oak slightly tames, enhances and sweetens the normally robust flavor of Laphroaig, but leaves enough of this best-selling Islay single malts characteristics to let you know that it is, indeed, Laphroaig.

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Bourbon And Tennessee Whiskey

Bourbon can be produced anywhere in the United States, but most Bourbons are produced in Kentucky. An exception is the state of Tennessee, which could establish the category “Tennessee Whiskey“. There are different types of Bourbon with regard to the production process.

Bourbon must contain at least 51% corn. The rest is a mixture of some barley for the fermentation process, as well as rye and/or wheat. Today many Bourbons are produced using the sour mash process. American Whiskey is mainly distilled in column stills.

According to U.S. law, a no age statementBourbon must be aged for at least two years in fresh, toastedcasks made from American white oak. A finish or extra maturation similar to Scotch Whisky is not allowed. If the Whiskey is not blended, it may be called ‘Straight Bourbon‘.

Tennessee Whiskey differs from Bourbon in that it is additionally charcoal-filtered before it is filled into casks.

What Is The Best Rated Whisky

  • The best overall whiskey is the Four Roses Single Barrel.
  • Rye is best served straight. Pikesville Straight Rye is best.
  • I chose Redbreast 12 Year Old as the best Irish whiskey.
  • The Balvenie DoubleWood is the best Scotch.
  • Bowmore 12 Year Old is the best peated Scotch whisky.
  • Hakushu 12 Year Old wins the award for best Japanese.
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    Widow Jane Oak & Apple Wood Aged Rye

    Brooklyns Widow Jane adds a proprietary spin to its rye whiskey by introducing applewood staves into the barrels during maturation. The finished spirit has rye-forward aromas complemented by a hint of cornbread, while the palate delivers sweetness and spice, with a bitter dark chocolate finish, perfect for a complex Old Fashioned.

    Buying Guide For Best Whiskey Stones


    Anyone who enjoys whiskey will tell you there are few things worse than a watered-down glass. Diluted whiskey falls short of its full flavor and aroma potential. You cant really savor the distinctive taste of whiskey with too much water in your glass. Unfortunately, you run this risk if you want a cold glass of whiskey. Unless you have whiskey stones, that is.

    Whiskey stones can be chilled in your freezer like regular ice. But because the stones arent made of frozen water, they wont melt and dilute your drink. Its important to know precisely what to look for when shopping for whiskey stones. You’ll want to consider the material of the stone, its shape, and how many you want to get.

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    What Are The Different Kinds Of Whiskey

    Before trying a new bottle of whiskey, its important to remember the core varieties. Below are eight of the most important types of whiskey to be familiar with.

    Bourbon: Bourbon is the go-to for many whiskey drinkers because it has a sweet, smokey flavor thats easy to sip on its own or mixed in an old fashioned. Sometimes called American whiskey, bourbon is corn-based , aged in a charred oak barrel and 80 proof or higher.

    Tennessee: Tennessee whiskey is technically bourbon, but Tennessee whiskey distillers might not agree with that. This is because Tennessee whiskey must be produced in the state using a charcoal steeping process called the Lincoln County Process before aging. This mellows the whiskey, creating a smoother taste.

    Rye: Rye whiskey is pretty self-explanatory: it must be made primarily from rye. The American whiskey uses the same aging process as bourbon in charred oak barrels. It also yields a spicy flavor that makes it the whiskey of choice for certain cocktails such as Manhattans.

    Irish Whiskey: The Eire and Northern Ireland produce Irish whiskey using yeast-fermented grain mash or a mash of malted cereals. The aging process in Ireland takes about three years in wooden casks and produces a very smooth liquor.

    Scotch Whisky: The Scots make their whisky using malted barley or grain, oak casks and an aging process of at least three years. Scotchs flavor is often likened to bourbon but shows off some extra bite and salt-caramel notes.

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