If you’re new to single malts or scotch in general, then you’re probably balking at the prices. Well, nobody can blame you. Don’t let the price turn you off completely. Single malt scotch is an experience for the senses, and like some other whiskies, it is one everybody should experience at least once.
While it’s an experience everybody needs, it can be a bit scary to pick the perfect scotch for your first time. If you’re worried about what to pick, then don’t worry; here’s a guide to picking a great single malt scotch for your first time.
What’s a Single Malt?
When picking out a scotch, it’s important to know what you’re buying. Single malt is a liquor that has been aged and distilled in Scotland. It gets created using only two ingredients – barley and water. A scotch is only a single malt scotch if it matures for at least three years in oak barrels.
The flavors of a single malt scotch are earthy, almost smoky. It’s a distinct character and experience that isn’t available in the regular liquors in liquor stores. It is a liquor that is an acquired taste, so working up to it is the best way to start off!
What to Look for
When you’re looking for the perfect scotch to start with, every recommendation will be different. However, they’re all similar in that they are sweeter, cheaper, and gentler. Every one of these single malt scotches is matured anywhere between 12 to 14 years. The more mature a scotch, the less likely you are to appreciate it immediately.
It is generally best to go for scotches with fruit infusions. They tend to be sweeter and easier on the palette.
Best Single Malts To Start With
A great single malt to start with is the Balvenie Double Wood. It gets blended in ex-bourbon and ex-sherry barrels. The 12-year scotch is easy to drink and much more palatable to the beginner. It is a classic beginner’s scotch that is not too expensive.
Another classic scotch is the Dalwhinnie Scotch Whisky. Despite being a 15-year old blend, the whisky is notoriously non-complex and easy to palette for all beginners. The flavor profile is not complex but remains simple and fresh.
The scotch has a nutty, vanilla flavor that is easy to palette for most beginners. It is brewed in Scotland and has a reputation for being crisp and gentle.
Single Malt Scotch is a whisky connoisseur’s pride and joy. The liquors are distinct in flavor and have their own unique set of characteristics. Every scotch is an experience for the senses. From taste and smell to the look, every part of a single malt gets curated to perfection.
While it is a connoisseur’s pride, not every beginner can handle a full-bodied scotch on their first time. Often it’s about working your way up to the finer, more mature scotches. When the time comes to savor every last drop of fine scotch, you’ll know why they’re revered.
Picking the right single malt isn’t about diving into the deep end. Rather, it is about starting slowly to not to be put off scotches forever!