Scotch whisky exposes the barley grain to peat smoke during the drying process. This process, along with the time spent ageing in the oak barrel, will impart some very distinctive aromas and flavours in the whisky.
These flavours include:
The presence of each flavour varies based on the techniques used by the distillery where it was produced, the grain mix, and the type of scotch (eg. single malt or grain Scotch).
A malt whiskey has a mash bill that contains at least 51% malted barley. While this is also one of the requirements for Scotch whisky, a malt whisky may use other types of barrels, may not use peat, and may be distilled differently.
What does Malt whiskey taste like?
The most common flavours in malt whisky include alcohol, leather, vanilla, wood/oak, cedar, malt, fruity, nuts, and tobacco.
It may or may not be smokey, depending on the production method used.
What is it?
A rye whiskey has a mash bill that contains at least 51% rye. However, Canadian rye whiskeys may be labeled “rye whiskey” for historical reasons and actually have less than 51% rye.
What does Rye whiskey taste like?
Rye whiskey is similar to bourbon, but not as sweet. It has less body than bourbon, while being spicier and drier. Some of the flavours it exhibits include oak, spices, caramel, vanilla, charcoal, and alcohol.