Whisky Magazine Issue 113
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Our man behind the stick takes a global view
?There are many pretenders to the throne – particularly in the case of Scotch. You simply need to look at the knock off 'whiskies' that crop up in foreign markets, or the fact that more bottles of Johnnie Walker are sold each year than are actually produced for the world markets.
There's no doubting it, and I'm sure none of us will disagree, that Scotch whisky is quite the product. Not only does it form a huge part of the UK economy, it commands a huge amount of prestige around the world.
It's part of gifting culture, it's a status symbol, and it is still seen as the pinnacle of the development of your drinking preferences.
Despite this, there are many whiskies around that are not trying to emulate Scotch whisky.
Sure, many of the world malts do try and piggy back on the success of Scotch; some try to borrow (or fabricate) heritage, some try and use the same model of production and many try and copy the flavour profile. Many of these I don't think are very successful. They're certainly not always interesting.
However, there are some world whiskies that are happy, and proud to be unique. They exemplify their countries of origin, and this is apparent in the way they position themselves.
It's not only Scotch that this happens with too. Chip at Balcones, and many others in the States are happy to be distinct from Bourbon.
By avoiding their rules, and their moniker, these producers can create something that is very much their own and is a complement to the busy and establi...