What Does Scotch Taste Like? | World Of Pleasant Flavors!

What Does Scotch Taste Like

Are you planning to get your first dram and are wondering how it would taste? Well, this is for you! First-time drinkers actually get confused over differences like scotch and bourbon! Don’t worry! You’ll surely get to know these differences once you get into the depth of the world of WHISKY OR whiskey! So are you ready for the taste of your first dram? Stay connected then to know what a world of Scotch is and what does scotch taste like!

Usually, whiskey lovers are so used to drinking that the first-timers would not understand their rambling on how they love this drink! But I’m sure you might have got some hints from them right? For example- “Malt or maltiness!”

The most distinguishing flavor of Scotch is the maltiness that is present in every sip you take! No matter what kind of scotch you try, the malt flavor is ever-present in the drink! Why? Well, a scotch is predominantly made from malted barley and every kind of scotch will surely have this key ingredient! You can refer to it as the “key ingredient” to every single malt or blended whisky!

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Despite the malt flavor, it also carries a smoky, vanilla, and fruity flavor! So are you jumping in your seat from excitement now? Well, this much is nothing! Get to know what a real scotch will do to your taste buds!

Also Read: The Most Expensive Scotch Whiskies In The World | Your Pockets Will Run Dry!!

What Does Scotch Taste Like and What You Should Look Forward To?

What Does Scotch Taste Like

Let’s start with a funny schooltime story first! We all had come across a kid in life who used to bluff about everything! Especially the classic boasting that happened in young boy’s circles who competed over how naughty and badass they can be! Well, I’m sure you might have boasted about drinking Scotch from your father’s bar cabinet too, when in fact you DIDN’T! We certainly have a lot of naughty Joshuas out there who are boasting how liquor tastes when they haven’t even tasted a pinch of it! So? Do you want to know what Scotch tastes like? Stay tuned!

This “water of life”, the Gaelic translation of Scotch, has a rich malty flavor that comes from the malted barley used while making the Scotch whiskey! The taste of scotch not only depends on its ingredients but also on how long and where it is stored!

The barrels that are used for storing and aging scotch also play a much larger role in how your scotch will taste! Scotch whiskies are predominantly stored in oak barrels and they add so many more flavors other than Malt!

Oak barrels act as a natural flavoring for our scotches and thus, the whisky acquires whole lots of different flavors from it. These flavors are vanilla, caramel, coconut, maple syrup, almonds, baking spice, smoky, etc! The list of flavors and tastes that a scotch whisky offers is so much that you will get tired of counting them!

The Type Of Cask And Its Origins Has Lots To Say About The Taste Of Scotch!

cask and type of flavor

As mentioned earlier, The cask in which scotch whiskies are put up for maturation play a huge role in deciding the taste of scotch! But do you know that the place from where the cask is coming also matters? Well yeah, it surely does matter! Why? Because the bourbon distilleries in the US require new casks every time rendering the old ones – “useless!” The casks used for storing whiskey differ, they can be charred or toasted which will play a huge role in determining the taste of scotch!

These old casks are then exported to Scotland (the mother nation of scotch) where these casks are then used to store SCOTCH! The old casks that once stored bourbon are now being used for storing scotch, so wouldn’t it affect the flavor of scotch? Well! It sure does!

The scotch stored in American casks will have vanilla, sweet toffee, caramel, coconut, and woody flavor! And not only American casks, even other European casks that come into Scotland decide what flavor the scotch will be! For example, A scotch stored in a European cask will have spicy, dark chocolate, cherry, dried fruit, and dark berries kind of flavor!

Types Of The Wooden Cask And The Kind Of Taste They Give Off

What Does Scotch Taste Like? | World Of Pleasant Flavors!

The type of wood of a cask will also be a deciding factor on what flavor a scotch will have! Let’s see what kind of wood gives off what flavor?

Type Of WoodFlavors
Mizunara OakCoconut and sandalwood
American White OakCaramel, soft, vanilla
MapleSweet, maple syrup taste
European OakSpicy and bitter

Also Read: Top 7 Best Red Wines To Drink in 2021 With Authentic Flavors

Scotch Vs Bourbon: What Does Scotch Taste Like Compared To Bourbon?

scotch vs bourbon, what's the difference
Source: Whiskey Watch

The next most widely asked question by first-time whiskey drinkers is “What does scotch taste like compared to bourbon?” Well, rest assured! You’ve jumped to the right place! Let me start with a simple answer – “the difference lies in the ingredients!”

The taste of Scotch and Bourbon differs because the ingredients used while preparing them are different! Most importantly, the key ingredient which decides how all scotches and bourbons will taste differs! Let’s see what these key ingredients are! 

Bourbon whiskey is made from corn mash and can be aged less than two years. However, a scotch whiskey is required to be matured for at least three years before it is sold in the market! These factors play the most distinguishing part in deciding the flavor and taste of bourbon and scotch. Bourbon is more sweet than scotch whereas the latter is smokier and maltier!

What Do Famous Scotch Brands Taste Like?

taste of famous scotch brands

Every famous scotch brand has some tricks up its sleeves to make their scotch rich and flavorful! Let’s look at some of the famous scotch brands and how their scotch tastes!

  • Ardbeg 10 Year old: This famous scotch tastes like toasted marshmallows and has a rich smoky aroma! 
  • Glenlivet 12 Year old: Which whisky lover has not tasted this delicacy! This Scotch is matured two times, once in a European cask and then in an American cask! This double maturation process helps this Scotch get its fruity and vanilla flavor! 
  • Talisker 18 Year Old: Talisker has a smoky, fruity, and toffee flavor. 
  • Chivas Regal 12 Years Old: Chivas Regal is one of the most famous Scotch whiskies has rich aromas of fruit and wild herbs. And it tastes simply delicious with its creamy caramel, vanilla, and honey flavor! 
  • The Macallan Number 6: Now! Who doesn’t know “The Macallan!” This is one of the most expensive brands and the queen of Scotch whiskies that tastes like a fruit cake! Not only that, it will give you the notes of cinnamon once you drink more of it and not forgetting the nutmeg! 

Scotch Whisky Flavor Guide:

flavors of scotch

Scotch flavors can range from light smoky, delicate to rich! Advanced Mixology provides a rich guide on the different kinds of scotch whiskies and their flavors! Let’s look at some of these scotches and flavors below!

FlavorsDifferent types of Scotch Whiskies with the flavor
RichAberfeldy 12-year, Arran Robert Burns, Balvenie Portwood, 21-year, Macallan 18-year, GlenDronach Parliament 21-year
Rich DelicateGlenmorangie The Original 10-year, Ballantine’s Finest, Chivas Regal 12-year
DelicateJohnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve, Monkey Shoulder
Light DelicateBladnoch 10-year, Glenlivet 12-year, Jura 10-year, Glenfiddich 12-year
LightGlen Moray Elgin Classic
Light SmokyOban 14-year old
SmokyLagavulin 16-year, Ardberg 10-year, Laphroaig 10-year, Caol Ila 12-year, Talisker 10-year
Rich SmokyKilchoman Sanaig, Bowmore 150year, Springbank 10-year

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If you’re having your first dram of life, then wondering how it would taste is completely normal and expected! A sip of Scotch will make you wander around an orchard with its fruity flavor and a caramel factory with its rich creamy flavors! Not forgetting the most common taste of Scotch – malty! Your first dram will taste like Malt, vanilla, caramel, coconut, and many other flavors depending on what brand you buy! But one flavor is ever there, guess what it is – MALT! 

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