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Choose Your Poison: The Difference of Scotch, Whiskey, and Bourbon

February 28, 2023 | Flasked PH

Choose Your Poison: The Difference of Scotch, Whiskey, and Bourbon How well do you know your liquor? One of the most common things that confuse people—regardless if they are newbie drinkers or seasoned ones—is the difference of scotch, whiskey, and bourbon. Let’s give a quick rundown of each in this article so you can flex your liquor knowledge next time you enjoy your favorite drink.

Scotch, Whiskey, and Bourbon: What’s the deal? 

difference of scotch, whiskey, bourbon
First thing you need to know before we unpack the specific differences between each drink is that scotch and bourbon are both whisk(e)y, though the countries where they are distilled are different from each other. Whiskey, to be specific, is an overall term used for distilled grain spirits that are aged in charred oak barrels. Some of the most common grains used to create them are wheat, barley, rye, and corn. 
Now, the location of where they are distilled is where it gets a little bit tricky. Whiskey, with an ‘e’ refers to drinks that are made in the United States and Ireland. Whisky, however, is a term used for bottles made with Canadian, Japanese, and Scottish grain spirits. 


Scotch vs. Bourbon

difference of scotch, whiskey, bourbon
The difference between scotch and bourbon is once again rooted in their country of origin. Bourbon is made in the United States, usually from corn mash, while Scotch is distilled in Scotland using malted grains. Each type of drink follows different regulations for production and also has different flavor profiles since they are made from different kinds of grains. 
Bourbon, for example, must be made using at least 51 percent corn mash and specifically aged in new but charred oak containers. While it doesn’t have a required minimum of years for aging, bottles that are aged for less than four years should have their aging years clearly indicated on their label. Distilled and bottled bourbon has a minimum of 40 percent alcohol and 80 proof. 
Scotch, on the other hand, is made from malted barley and comes in two types—single malt and single grain. Single malt is made from barley and water at a single distillery while single grain, though produced in a single distillery can contain other unmalted and malted grains. Unlike bourbon, Scotch should be aged for a minimum of three years in oak containers. They also have 40 percent alcohol and 80 proof. 


Differences in flavor profile

difference of scotch, whiskey, bourbon
Though both scotch and bourbon are loved for their charred and smokey notes, each type of drink has distinct differences. Scotch has a sharper flavor profile so it can sometimes require a more acquired taste than bourbon. If you prefer a maltier, smoother, and spicier finish, then blended scotch is the way to go. It’s also more expensive since it uses barley which is costlier than corn. 
Bourbon, on the other hand, has a more mellow flavor profile with hints of vanilla, caramel, grain, cinnamon, and nutmeg. It also has a sweeter finish which it gets from the charred cask used in its aging process. 


Get your preferred poison at Flasked Ph

difference of scotch, whiskey, bourbon

So are you a scotch or bourbon type of person? Regardless of your preference, you can easily enjoy your top alcoholic beverages from Flasked Ph, an online alcohol store that aims to bring high-quality drinks to liquor aficionados straight to the comfort of their homes. We have a wide selection of whiskeys that you can choose from, including well-known labels like Johnnie Walker and Macallan for scotch and Kentucky Straight and Hudson Manhattan Rye for bourbon. We also have a gifting studio and personalization services if you’re thinking of giving away your favorite drinks to your loved ones (or even just yourself)!
Now that you know the difference of scotch, whiskey, and bourbon, it’s a good time to choose which one best fits you if you don’t have a preferred type yet. Place your order now at Flasked Ph by clicking on this link.

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