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We all know Scotch whiskey is some of the world’s most loved and recognized. But if you’re looking for the best places to try whiskey beyond Scotland, prepare to be amazed.
From the crisp, fresh lakes of Scandanavia, to the searing heat of Asia, whiskey production is happening all over the world.
If you’re eager to try new and exotic whiskies, here are ten places other than Scotland to plan a whiskey-themed trip to.
Best Places to Try Whiskey
1 – Canada
Canada has been distilling whisky since the 1800s. The country is known by whiskey enthusiasts for its light, smooth whiskies, and the introduction of rye into production.
In fact, Canadian law is strict around the production of native whiskies. This includes aging in wooden barrels no larger than 700 liters in capacity.
This helps define Canadian whiskey and its unique, iconic taste globally.
There are various distilleries in places like Alberta and Ontario. Brands to try include:
- Black Velvet
- Canadian Club
- Crown Royal
If you want to try international whiskeys from the comfort of your home, here are some online places to explore a wide variety of whiskeys: Drizly, the World of Whiskey Club from Caskers, and the Whisky Exchange.
2 – United States
America is known for a range of whiskies, including bourbon, rye, malt, characterized by the mashes the whiskies are made from containing over 51% of the named grain.
Tennessee whiskey, seen as a bourbon whiskey, is arguably America’s most well-known export. This is the family Jack Daniel’s belongs too.
There are many other whiskies to try, from all over the US. Some notable and beloved brands include:
- Knob Creek
- Bulleit Bourbon
- Russell’s Reserve
3 – Ireland
At one point, Irish whiskey was one of world’s the most popular spirits. However, the industry saw a huge decline throughout the 20th century.
Thankfully, since the 1990s, Irish whiskey has been making a slow and steady recovery. There are currently twenty-five distilleries in Ireland.
Ireland is known for its single grain, single malt, and blended whiskies, and most are distilled three times.
You’ve probably heard of Jameson, but there are plenty of other brands to try, including:
- Knappogue Castle
- The Dead Rabbit
4 – Germany
Whiskey production only arrived in Germany as recently as the early 1980s, but the country is quickly embracing its smooth and smokey flavor.
German whiskies are influenced by Scotch, Irish, and American whiskies. The country produces single malt, wheat, and blended whiskies.
Some unique and flavorsome brands to try include:
- Coillmór Bavarian
- Blaue Maus
5 – Denmark
Whiskey has been gaining popularity in North Europe and Scandinavia since the 1980s, and Denmark is one of the key players.
Heavily influenced by Scotch whiskey, the Stauning distillery and Braunstein microbrewery are two distilleries that have been at the forefront of Danish whiskey production.
You should definitely give these Danish whiskies a try:
6 – Sweden
Initially, whiskey was produced in Sweden up until the early 1970s, until Skeppets distillery closed down.
It wasn’t until 1999 that Swedish whiskey returned with a bang, courtesy of the multi-award winning Mackmyra distillery.
Swedish brands to try include:
- Spirit of Hven
7 – India
Indian whiskey is distilled in a very similar to way to rum. Similar to Scotch whiskey, Indian single malts are growing in popularity year on year.
The challenging Indian climate has not stopped a number of Indian distilleries bringing some truly delicious whiskies to market.
If you’re new to Indian whiskey, try some of these brands:
- Officer’s Choice
8 – Japan
Japanese whiskey is currently exploding in popularity. So much so, many dilleries have struggled to meet the enormous demand for it.
Whiskey, however, has been distilled in Japan commercially for nearly a century. Japanese whiskey is seen as very similar to Scotch whiskey.
The nine active distilleries in Japan produce a range of exquisite single malts and blended whiskies to the party.
When in Japan, be sure to try whiskeys from brands like:
9 – Taiwan
Like Japan, the fact that many rich, layered whiskeys are coming out of Taiwan, despite its hot climate, is quite remarkable.
The challenge of distilling in such temperatures has pushed Taiwanese distilleries to innovate alternative methods of distilling.
This has led to a range of flavorful, sophisticated whiskies coming to market.
These Taiwanese brands are ones you should definitely try:
10 – Australia
Our final stop on our whirlwind world tour of whiskey takes us to the golden coasts and rural plains of Australia.
Largely known for their single malts, there are nearly three hundred distilleries registered in Australia.
Produced similarly to Scotch, Australian whiskey put itself on the map in 2014 when Sullivan’s Cove won the coveted prize of best single malt whiskey in the world.
This was the first time a whiskey outside of Scotland or Japan had ever won it. Naturally, interest in Australian whiskey exploded.
You can ease into the vibrant world of Australian whiskey by trying some of these exciting brands:
- Sullivan’s Cove
Best Places to Try Whiskey Summary
Even casual whiskey drinkers will know all about Scotch whiskey. But there are so many other flavorsome whiskey brands across the globe to try.
Many countries most people would never think to associate with whiskey are bringing award-winning whiskies to market.
And as the whiskey revival continues in many countries, hopefully, more brands, flavors, and international blends will continue to come to fruition.
If you love drinking whiskey, these ten whiskey producing countries will have plenty of new and exciting flavors for you to try.
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Author: Dale Johnson is a content writer, designer, and strategist, who has been a full-time digital nomad as of 2016. To date, he has traveled to and lived in 30 countries, and counting.
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