Single grain whiskies - more than just a background canvas for blends.
We love a good single grain whisky, but they're an unusual sight even on the shelves of passionate whisky retailers like ourselves. In Scotland the style can be produced from almost any type of grain, however the most commonly used examples employ wheat and corn with the resulting whisky mostly used to stretch out blends. Not surprisingly, single grains are much maligned by malt snobs.
Yet this underdog category is has its place. Extra matured bottlings of Cameronbridge and North British are worth seeking out for whisky nerds or completionists and 30 or even 50 year old expressions can be surprisingly affordable.
The creation of single grain whiskies is broadly similar to that of malt whisky, only the raw materials and the equipment are different. The mash from which grain whisky is made uses unmalted cereals - usually wheat or maize, it doesn't matter which, so distilleries can buy at the best price - together with a small amount of 'green' malt (barley which has germinated but not been kilned). Usually about 16% of malt is added: it has to be there to convert the starches in the other cereals into sugar, so it can be turned into alcohol by the yeast. Tall column stills are used in place of copper pot stills, the former resulting in a light, clean and fruity spirit.
Buy Single Grain Scotch Whisky online.
While a wide selection is not readily available, Nicks Wine Merchants endeavour to stock at least a few examples of Single Grain Whisky which you can buy online and have delivered to most of Australia.