The Stateside Spirit II

(Continued from “The Stateside Spirit” on 11 January 2019) True to the American spirit, the development of bourbon was the result of private enterprise rather than imperial

The Stateside Spirit

Comparatively unchained by customs and traditions, the great U.S. of A. boasts arguably the widest range of whiskey styles anywhere on earth. Having said that, bourbon remains the

The Rhodanien Analogue

Even if bestowed with singular character and outstanding quality, many grape varieties nonetheless remain at the regional level rather than becoming international varieties; not that becoming one is

The Stature of Alsace

Governed by Institut National de l’Origine et de la Qualité (INAO), France’s world-renowned Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée (AOC) system is primus inter pares in Europe, predating its opposite numbers

The Great White North

The second largest country in the world by total area (land and sea areas combined), Canada seems significantly larger than China and the US on the standard world

The Nomenclatural Exception

In the timeless tragedy Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare wrote “ rose by any other name would smell as sweet”. This generally applies to grape varieties – even

The Super Umbrian; or, Lamborghini

Covering some 8,500sqkm and with a total population of just under 900,000, Umbria is one of the smallest and least populous regions of Italy. This landlocked region, one of

The Margravial Legacy

Baden and Württemberg are the two constituent regions of Baden-Württemberg, but they remain two distinct wine regions due to historical reasons. For one thing, they have rarely shared

The Spanish Spirit II

(Continued from “The Spanish Spirit” on 16 November 2018) In the world of wine, both maturation in barrel and ageing in bottle are conducive to improving quality

The Spanish Spirit

Spanish brandy is possibly the firstborn of Europe, and definitely a proud tradition unto itself. Various forms of distillation may have been attempted in the Near East, South

The Thorny Issue

The use of caramel colour is probably the single most controversial subject in the world of whisky. Unlike sulphite in wine, which can be naturally occurring, caramel colour

The Marmite Issue

It is almost unfair that Marmite remains the most widely accepted shorthand, in English at least, for something that is either loved to death or loathed with passion,

The Insular Powerhouses

Despite its cool-headed name, chill filtering is no doubt one of the most hotly debated topics amongst whisky lovers, newcomers and old-timers alike. Detractors, often puritanical, argue that this

The Coastal Tours de Force

Maturation is not the prerogative of scotch; it is an important factor and process in a wide variety of alcoholic beverages. However, scotch has arguably the most exacting and

The Mistaken Identity

Like the plot straight out of a book from the Romantic era, sometimes it takes a masqueraded or mistaken identity to survive. In the vinous world, the protagonist

The Musqué Mutation

Along with Sauvignon Blanc, Gewürztraminer is easily one of the most distinctive grape varieties in the world, instantly identifiable by its signature lychee and rose petal aromas, full body

The Little Rascal

Literally “little rascal” in the local dialect, Arneis is a rather finicky grape variety originating from Piemonte, still largely restricted thereto, apart from pockets of cultivation in the New

The Epicentre of Scotch II

(Continued from “The Epicentre of Scotch” on 14 September 2018) Not for nothing is scotch hailed as the gentleman’s drink, or indeed compared to the making of a gentleman.

The Epicentre of Scotch

Situated at the northeastern corner of Scotland, Speyside stretches from Inverness in the west to River Deveron in the east. It is named after River Spey, by some

The Well of Mary; or, Safe Haven

Covering approximately 78,000sqkm, Scotland has some 10,000km of coastline, in addition to nearly 800 islands around the perimeter of its mainland. Somewhat counterintuitively, those islands situated in the

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