How To Enjoy Whiskey More

Whiskey is a type of distilled liquor that is made using different types of grains. The most commonly used grains are corn, barley, wheat, rye, triticale, and millet. These may be mixed in different proportions to form a grain mash that is usually aged in wooden barrels for varying maturation periods. 

The resulting spirits have varying flavor and color, which explains why there are different types of whiskey. Drinking whiskey is a magical experience because with every sip, you get to appreciate it more.

What Does Whiskey Taste Like?

The taste of whiskey varies from one type to another because there are so many variables in production. Overall, whiskeys either have a sweet or dry taste, depending on how long they’ve aged. However, these tastes overlap between different styles. Factors that can affect the taste include the predominant grain used, the type of barrels, yeast, and the fermentation and distillation processes.

Bourbon has Caramel and Vanilla notes; while Rye Whiskey may be described as spicy with hints of Black Pepper to dill. On the other hand, Corn Whiskey tastes sweet and vegetal. You can expect most whiskeys to have a prominent cornbread, oatmeal, toasted rye bread, or even wheat flakes taste. 

Other whiskey variants have a toasty or nutty taste, and others have a smoky cinnamon taste. It all depends on the additives that were blended in during production.

pouring a high quality whisky

whiskey and natural ice on old wooden table

Whiskey Drinking Tips

The world of whiskey is so vastly diverse that when you pour two whiskeys side by side, you’ll notice an incredible difference between them. Thanks to the different flavor ranges of whiskey, these spirits may be enjoyed in different ways, with each offering a different sensory experience.

Enjoying whiskey is more than just tasting it. Here are some of the ways you can enjoy whiskey like a pro:

Storing Your Whiskey

Even though whiskey doesn’t go bad easily, how you store your bottle, especially after it’s been opened, significantly affects the taste.  When storing your whiskey, ensure that you keep your bottles upright with the cork in place, and in a cool dry place away from sunlight. This way, the whiskey will retain all its flavors even after being stored for so long.

Choose The Right Glass And Pour Your Whiskey

The type of glass you use can greatly affect your impression of the whiskey. For example, the tulip-shaped glass with a wide bowl allows you to swirl the whiskey a little to release aromas. Small-mouthed glasses would have a different experience. Whatever type of glass you choose, just make sure it is clear and clean. Pour the whiskey light, and don’t fill your glass.

 Swirl And Sniff

Smelling the whiskey is key in “tasting” it. Our nose can identify a whole lot of aromas, while our taste buds can only identify a fraction of that.

As you swirl the glass, avoid holding it by its stem or base as this will warm it. Hold the glass about an inch from the liquid so you can better discern the fumes. While sniffing the whiskey, block out other conflicting odors like concentrated perfume. While smelling, make sure that your mouth stays slightly open.

Enjoy It Neat

Enjoying the whiskey neat is highly recommended for those who enjoy the taste of alcohol.

After sipping, hold it in your mouth and roll the whiskey around on your tongue and expose it to your entire mouth so you can pick up each unique flavor.

As you swallow, breathe through the nose so that the aromas can rise into your sinuses, enabling you to enjoy the whiskey better. Take time to assess the mouthfeel to see if you can taste some of the aromas you detected while sniffing.

On The Rocks

If you don’t like your whiskey neat, and you just need to enjoy a cold glass of whiskey, you can toss some ice into it. Enjoying whiskey on the rocks dramatically enhances its taste.

Use large ice cubes rather than smaller pieces. The latter melt faster, thus diluting your whiskey more. If you want to enjoy a refreshing chilled whisky without diluting it, you should consider adding chilled stones or steel balls.

Add A Little Water Or Mixer

Feel free to add a little water to dilute the whiskey. Doing so brings out new flavors and can also reveal flaws when the two liquids combine. Find a balance that works well for you without diluting the whiskey, which could significantly change the flavor. Don’t add too much water at once.

Drink It In A Cocktail

Cocktails allow you to have fun experimenting with various flavors and add simple twists to your favorite whiskey. There are so many whiskey cocktail recipes that you can follow if you can’t stand the taste of whiskey or are simply looking for new ways to enjoy your drink.

Avoid using whiskey that you would not enjoy on its own because the original whiskey flavor will linger after you’ve swallowed.


Whiskey is one of the drinks that people love and has significantly evolved over the years. Various people enjoy their whiskey in different ways. Whether you’d like to enjoy it neat to taste the maximum flavor and richness or enhance the notes of the whiskey by making a cocktail, it’s all up to you.

There’s no right or wrong way to enjoy whiskey, and the tips we gave are not limited to any type. With every passing day, people are discovering different ways to enjoy the different types of whiskeys available in the market, including the new entrants. Keep in mind that how you enjoy your whiskey may significantly affect its flavor, aroma, and color but as long as you enjoy it—that’s all that matters.

Published on Holr Magazine