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Dictionary > Scotch Tasting

gin
How to taste Scotch whisky

Character or style of the blend is defined by the dominant flavours of the blend. These flavours are influenced by the places where the ingredient whiskies were made.

Nose or aroma, of a blend is defined by the smells that you distinguish when you inhale the vapours that rise from a glass of whisky. The smells are often complex and multi-layered.

Nosing Glass to fully savour the aroma of a whisky the whisky producers use. This glass has a wide bowl, a narrow opening and a small glass lid to contain the opening. The same result can largely be achieved using a wine glass or brandy balloon.

Legs roll the whisky around a clear, clean glass and you will notice that it sticks to the side when you place the glass back upright - the striping that result is the legs of the whisky. Two things cause legs: alcoholic strength and natural viscosity. So given that samples are tested at the same strength, sticky, full-bodies whiskies will have longer legs that take more time to slide back to the whisky; lighter whiskies have less prominent legs.

Palate is the depth of the flavour, defined by the taste experience of actually drinking the whisky. It includes the initial flavours from the first sip and the flavours that develop in the mouth as the whisky is swallowed.

Finish is defined as the elements of the whisky (and their flavours) that linger in your mouth long after the whisky is swallowed.

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