ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How To Drink Whisky - A Beginners Guide / Tips

Updated on November 26, 2012
My favorite whisky
My favorite whisky

Hi all let me make it clear from the start I love whisky! I will never claim to be an expert and much of what I write you may disagree with. I love to drink it, smell it and talk about it. So it seemed like a natural progression to write about it and share some of my opinions with you guys. I always welcome comments back so if you agree with me or think I’m mad please let me know.

It was when I was around 27 that my life changed, up until that moment I had drunk whisky a few times and had never liked it. I’d go round to my girlfriend’s parents and her dad would always finish a meal with a Laphroaig. I tried it a few times and to be honest thought it tasted like TCP! Writing this now I can’t believe I was such a fool! However, something must have happened over the next few years as I was on a night bus in Thailand, chatting to a random stranger and what should he pull out but a bottle of Laphroaig, he offered me a dram and my initial thought was why would I want another slug of TCP? But I thought “hey, I’ll give it another go” and boy am I glad that I did, because now although I could still taste that unmistakable hint of antiseptic, I was also getting deep wood smoke and peat and I couldn’t believe how delicious this drink was. Needless to say I helped him finish the bottle and never looked back.

That was five years and it kicked off my hobby and indeed changed my life. I now have a running collection of about 20 bottles (some nearly empty, some half full) which I taste regularly. I’m not an everyday drinker by any means, but I love nothing more than finishing a huge meal with a large Laphroaig, Lagavulin or Ardbeg. From this list you can probably guess that I like my whiskies smoky and peaty and you’d be right. Most of my favorite whiskies come from Islay, I do though still love the sweetness and carameliness (if that’s a word) of Glenfiddich Rich Oak and 15yr and some of the Speysides like Glenlivet, particularly the 15yr and 18yr.

I am also very much a Scotch Whisky man, I used to love Irish Whisky, Bush Mills and Jameson’s were some of my favorites, but now after drinking the scotches I don’t think I could ever go back, I just find them too sweet. I’m, also sorry to say I feel the same about bourbon. I used to love Jack Daniels, but again just find it too sweet nowadays.

I have now tried most of the readily available, what I would call supermarket whiskies, and know pretty much what I do and don’t like from that range and am now looking a bit further afield for something special. I realize that you have to pay a little more for the special whiskies, but I think it’s important to keep trying new ones and pushing your palette.

I probably spend more time reading about whisky than I do drinking it and I’m not sure if I should be drinking more to make up for it or reading less, but I’m pretty happy with the balance. My favorite book is ‘The perfect dram’ by Iain Banks; it’s a very entertaining read about travelling round Scotland trying different whiskies. I’d highly recommend it.

Despite considering myself a whisky enthusiast and drinking it steadily for the last five years or so I still consider myself a bit of a newbie so am always keen to hear other people’s opinions and experiences and am always happy to hear a suggestion for the next Scotch Whisky I should try.

I will probably write a bit more about my collection and whisky in general so stay tuned.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • dommcg profile image

      dommcg 5 years ago

      I agree, the theory is that the nosing glass has a tulip shape with a thinner glass so the vapours gather in the glass giving you a more potent nosing experience. However, I still prefer drinking my laphroaig out of a nice and heavy cut crystal tumbler. It just looks and feels much more satisfying. I often ask, how would flashman drink his whisky? I don't think there would b a nosing glass in sight.

    • Rain Defence profile image

      Rain Defence 5 years ago from UK

      What sort of glass do you think is the best sort of glass for whisky glugging then? I have tried crystal glasses and generally got on well with those, but then I got bought a whisky tasters glass, which lets you really nose the whisky due to the shape. Oddly though, although the experience should be better, I don't really enjoy using it.

    • rjsadowski profile image

      rjsadowski 6 years ago

      I enjoy fine scoth whiskey too. Unfortunately, I am on a fixed income now so I can only read about it. Keep the articles coming.

    • Rain Defence profile image

      Rain Defence 6 years ago from UK

      Mmmm whisky is delicious. Just reading the word laphroaig made me get my bottle and pour myself a glass.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: ""

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is used to quickly and efficiently deliver files such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisements has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)