Scotch Whisky (Distilling)
Scotch Whisky is a grain based spirit which comes in a few different forms produced throughout Scotland. All Scotch must be aged a minimum of three years and if any age statment is given the statement must reflect the youngest whisky in the blend. Although the majority of grains used in Scotch are barley; wheat, rye, and other grains may be seen in some Blended Scotch. The major Scotch producing regions are Islay (known for its use of peat smoked malt), Highlands, Lowlands, Speyside, and Campbeltown.
Rye Whiskey (Distilling)
Rye is known to impart a spiced bread-like quality which is indicative of Rye Whiskey. To be labeled Rye Whiskey in the US 51%+ rye must be used in the gain bill. Similar to Bourbon in that the agining requirement is minimum 2 years in new oak barrels.
Bourbon Whiskey (Distilling)
Bourbon Whiskey is an American product which is required to use 51%+ of corn in the mash and a minimum 2 years beging aged in new toasted oaks barrels. This use of aging on new wood gives Bourbon its characteristic copper color and vanillia flavor pulling most of its flavor from the barrel. Two out of three liquor bottles exported from the United States are Bourbon.
A regional beverage produced from the Blue-Agave plant. Tequila is a protected product that must be grown and produced in the Mexican state of Jalisco.
Rum is produced using the sugarcane plant juice or molasses. Although its origins are in the Caribbean, Rum is now produced in all corners of the globe in many different styles ranging from flavored, spiced, gold, dark, etc.
Made by distilling the byproducts (skins, seeds, stems) from the winemaking process. In order to label this Brandy like product in Europe Grappa must be produced in Italy and is a protected product.
Vodka can be made from any startch or sugar rich plant matter, although potatoes are the most well known. The resulting flavor of vodka can vary, but tends to be very neutral and ethanol based.
The base of Gin is a nuetral spirit with herbs and flavoring added. The dominent flavor is Gin is derived from the juniper berry.
Brandy is produced by distilling wine. A secondary aging on oak casks is common although some examples use coloring to simulate the apperance of aging. The most renowned versions come from both Cognac and Armagnac areas of France.