The Difference Between Bourbon vs. Scotch
There is a never-ending debate for many people when it comes to which is better – Bourbon or Scotch. Chris Powell a Las Vegas, NV bartender discussed. That it remains a robust discussion; since the first barrel was discovered. However, this doesn’t mean that there is absolutely no difference between these two famous alcohol brands. While one may have a definitive winner, there are several distinct ways that each one can be better than the other.
In terms of taste, both whiskies have their strong points. For those who enjoy a sweeter taste in their drinks, a smooth, mellow liquid such as Scotch can be much more welcoming. Bourbon, on the other hand, has a slightly heavier feel. With the corn and malt’s added sweetness in most malted barley products, the final result is a drink that almost resembles a sugary dessert, Chris said.
The proof is the absolute best way to determine which is the superior product. Distilled from the fermented mash, Scotch must undergo a distillation process that leaves the grain intact. After this step, the alcohol cools, and the flavor is deeply caramelized, unlike bourbon, which goes through a maturation process with a lighter spirit. Most scotches are produced from the end product in the distillation process.
The aging process is also crucial. Bourbon comes aged in oak wooden barrels. On the other hand, most scotches come manufactured in modern stainless steel barrels that do not have to be barrel-aged. Either way, these barrels provide a different taste experience. Bourbon is often blended with neutral or light alcohol to reduce the intensity of its smoky, earthy, or herbal flavors.
A final item you should consider is the aging process. Blended whiskey is always better than a single-grain bottled beverage.
The Bourbon and Scotch Barrel Aging Process
Oak barrels provide extra depth to many blends, and single oak barrels can be very sweet. Whichever method you use, however, you are bound to find your favorite combination. Bourbon vs. Scotch is usually decided by the barrel.
In terms of flavor, both brands have their ups and downs. Bourbon is generally a smoother, gentler spirit.
Scotch is spicier and much more complex. If you are learning the ropes, a cheaper, less complicated brand like Gooseberry is much easier to swallow. Of course, this is all relative.
The Rye/ Bourbon difference.
Rye is simply a rye grain distilled in either a pot still or column still. Cereal rye is generally lighter and less alcoholic than barley. It is also much less susceptible to astringent flavors like barley. So depending on your drinking style, you might want to consider a lighter, less complex rye over a more heavy malt such as Scotch.
Ultimately, it is difficult to draw the line between bourbon vs. scotch. Each has its strong points and its weak points. Your best choice will depend mainly on personal preference. For many, the rich complexity and robustness of whiskey made from malted barley will be their favorite. The intense flavors of rye will be their second priority.
Ultimately, these two whiskeys have very little in common. There is no comparison. Scotch, on the other hand, is a complex, full-bodied malt whisky. It also contains distinct aromas such as toasted malts and coffee. Bourbon, while mostly made from two varieties of malt barley, does contain rye. Rye adds a nutty or caramel taste to the whiskey, which imparts an exciting and subtle smokiness.
Many experts point out that an essential factor in choosing the difference between Scotch and bourbon is the wood after distillation. Most of the whiskies available commercially have been pasteurized, making the distillation process more condensed and less flavorful. Bourbon, on the other hand, is manufactured from different grains, such as rye and wheat. These different wood enhance the different flavors found in each brand.
Another item between the two is their “finish.” Many people are unsure what the finish is and often think that it refers to the level of alcohol left in the whiskey. However, that is not the case. The finish is the amount of time that the distiller’s spirit continues to release alcohol after it has fermented. In Scotch, the finish is short, which results in a more intense and powerful aroma. In bourbon, the finish is medium and results in a more subtle, earthy aroma.
Overall Chris Powell ads, the main differences between Scotch and bourbon vs. Scotch are just cosmetic. When you sit down at your favorite bar stool, you know which one you prefer. They are both very delicious, and both provide their unique style of enjoyment. However, it may come down to personal preference. For many people, their choice will come down to learning more about the differences between the two and understanding more of the history of each main style of traditional rye whiskey.