You’re a refined gentleman now and gone should be the days of Jack and Cokes and shots of the cheap stuff. No, after your meal you want a whiskey to wash all that prime-dry-aged-bone-in-ribeye down, so here’s what you need to know about them.


First off, the distilled beverage is made from fermented grain, aged in wooden casks, and depending on the producer, whiskey can be made from barley, corn, rye, or wheat.


You don’t need to know all of them, but you should know the three major types:

Bourbon – is made in America and is made primarily of corn. Because its main ingredient is corn, bourbon is usually sweeter in taste and pairs well with cocktails like Old Fashioneds or Manhattans.

Rye – is also made in America and is primarily made of, you guessed it, rye. It produces a spicier taste and therefore it is sometimes a bit harsher on the tongue. Rye pairs well cocktails like Sazeracs and Boulevardiers.

Scotch – Scotch is basically any whiskey produced in Scotland. There’s a lot learn when it comes to Scotch but you should definitely know this: drink it neat (without ice) or on the rocks (with ice).


And finally, if you want a sweeter Scotch, ask for something from Speyside or the Highlands. If you prefer smokier flavors (peaty), ask for a dram from Islay or the Lowlands.


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