26 August 2019: If you’ve ever had to google the difference between “whiskey” and “whisky,” this blog is for you.
In short, the Scots spell it “whisky,” and the Irish spell it “whiskey”, with an extra 'e'.
Rum, Rhum or Ron. Silmilarly, Whiskey or Whiky.
This difference in spelling comes from the translations of the word from the Scottish and Irish Gaelic forms.
Whiskey with the extra 'e' is also used when referring to American whiskies.
According to mensjournal.com, in order to drink either of the two “like a pro”, you need to: consume only one or two ounces (between 30ml and 60ml) at a time; swirl the liquid so it coats the glass; breathe deeply with your nose about five cm from the liquid; open your mouth as you inhale to let the alcohol fumes escape so you can better discern other flavour notes; add a splash of water; “chew” your drink by rolling it around in your mouth and breather through your nose.
So, that is how “a pro” should drink whiskey, but what does this have to do with rum?
How to drink Rum? Like whisk(e)y.
Those of you who attended one of our tastings might recall that I often recommend drinking a proper rum the same way you would drink a decent whiskey.
Why? What most people don’t realise, is that a decent rum is and should be just as sophisticated as a good brandy, cognac or whiskey. And, when drinking a good brandy, cognac or whiskey, you won’t typically drink it with a mixer. You would drink it neat, so you can really appreciate the spirit for what it is and not corrupt it with a mixer.
Similarly, we often ask people whether they are whiskey drinkers to make a call on whether they are open to experimenting. From experience, we have learned that people who like whiskey like experimenting and exploring options around the types of whiskey they drink. They also drink it neat. They try to appreciate the spirit for what it is without mixing it.
If people say they do not drink whiskey, it mostly indicates to us that they like mixing spirits, which means we can advise them on how to mix our rum because Whistler is made in such a way that it works brilliantly in cocktails as well as being consumed neat.
Whistler African Style Rum is a more versatile spirit than most other spirits, so if someone says they prefer mixing it, we could also advise them on which spirit we recommend they taste first, as well as how to mix it optimally.
So, if you are a whiskey-drinker and prefer to not mix your Whistler, here are the three things you need to know:
- Use the right glass. We recommend a big tumbler – a glass with volume at the bottom that narrows slightly at the top but not to the same extent as a wine glass that has a much narrower opening. Something like a cognac glass would be ideal to concentrate the fragrances as they escape the glass.
- Taste the rum neat first: Start by tasting the rum as is (neat). No mixers, no ice. When we present tastings, this is always how we start.
- Add one ice cube. Once you have tasted the rum neat to get a sense of the taste, add one cube of ice, allowing you to enjoy the rum over a long period. As the ice melts and more water goes into the glass, other tastes and fragrances are released.
Most importantly, whether you like it neat or mixed, remember – life is too short to drink kak rum.