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Whisky in Taiwan

The history of whisky in Taiwan is short but significant. With its establishment in 2005, the Kavalan Distillery marked the birth of the first Taiwanese distillery dedicated to whisky production, and from its inception sparked a wave of innovation that has propelled the country onto the global whisky stage.

Some of the key aspects of Taiwanese whisky include:

1.    Similar to Japan, Taiwan’s climate plays a crucial role in the maturation process of its whisky. The humid tropical weather accelerates the aging process and results in whiskies that mature much faster compared to those in cooler climates. What this means is that Taiwanese whiskies can reach a level of complexity and flavor development in a shorter period of time, supporting the creation of unique whiskies that can only be found in Taiwan.

2.    Known for its pristine quality, the water used in Taiwanese whisky production is often sourced from the central mountain range. Distilleries in Taiwan also us a variety of grains like local barley, corn, and wheat, and some distilleries even import malted barley from Scotland and other countries to create their whisky.

3.    The distilleries in Taiwan draw their inspiration from both Scottish and Japanese whisky-making traditions. They employ copper pot stills and incorporate aspects of traditional Scottish distillation methods and the emphasis is on precision and attention to detail throughout the whisky making process.

4.    Whiskies in Taiwan are often aged in a range of cask types that include ex-bourbon, sherry, and wine casks. The interaction between the whisky and the casks during the aging process imparts both unique flavors and characteristics to the whisky, which contributes to its complexity and depth of flavor.

5.    Known for rich, fruity, and complex flavor profiles, the accelerated aging process in Taiwan’s climate results in whiskies that exhibit vibrant tropical fruit notes, honey, floral undertones, and a balance of flavors that work together in harmony.

6.    Some of the prominent distilleries in Taiwan include Kavalan, often credited with putting Taiwanese whisky on the map, and Nantou distillery, which produces the Omar brand. Both these distilleries have gained international acclaim and have been critical in establishing the Taiwanese whisky scene.

It is important to make note of the fact that Taiwanese whisky is not bound by strict regulations like Scotch whisky or bourbon, which allows distillers the freedom to experiment with different styles and approaches. This flexibility in production has helped to contribute to the innovation and diversity in the Taiwanese whisky scene. Overall, Taiwanese whisky offers enthusiasts a unique and exciting experience that is found seldom elsewhere. With a unique climate, freedom for experimentation, and a dedication to producing high-quality spirits, Taiwanese whisky continues to makes it mark on the international whisky landscape. 

Whisky in India

Indian whisky stands out as a distinct category of whisky because of its unique characteristics, production methods, and flavor profiles.

Indian whisky is typically made from a blend of grains like malted barley, corn, wheat, and occasionally rice. Some Indian distilleries also produce single malt whisky using malted barley, similar to scotch whisky. The whisky is usually distilled in either pot stills, column stills, or a combination of both.

Similar to other tropical whisky-producing countries, the climate in India has a significant impact on the production and maturation of its whisky. Like Taiwan and Japan, the tropical climate accelerates the aging process, resulting in a shorter maturation period for many Indian whiskies, creating complex flavors and characteristics in the process.

There are a variety of cask types used for maturation in India, including ex-bourbon barrels, sherry casks, and even local Indian wine casks. Blending also plays a crucial role in the production of Indian whisky. Indian whisky is known for its extensive use of blending different malt and grain whiskies to create a desired result. This blending allows the distillers in India to achieve a higher level of consistency across batches, as well as allows hem to develop a wide range of flavor profiles to match different preferences.

There are a wide range of flavors in Indian whisky that are influenced by the climate, grains used, and maturation techniques. While not limited to, they can exhibit notes of tropical fruits, spices, honey, vanilla, oak, and sometimes a slight smokiness.

Some of the more well-known Indian whisky brands include Amrut, Paul John, and Blender’s Pride. These brands, among others, have gained recognition domestically and internationally for their quality and character.

Indian whisky has grown in popularity within India and in the global market. Being one of the largest whisky consumers in the world, their whisky industry has flourished and offers enthusiasts a diverse range of flavors, reflecting the unique environment and craftsmanship of Indian distilleries.