Whisky tastings are a great way to socialize with friends and family, whilst discovering new and wonderful flavours of whisky.
Whether you are a seasoned whisky connoisseur or a newcomer to the world of whisky, hosting a whisky tasting night at home can be a fun and educational experience. But knowing where to start can be slightly daunting. Here to help is The Ice Co, with top tips for how to host a successful whisky tasting night.
Choose your theme
The first step of planning your whisky tasting night is deciding on the theme of your event. Will you choose whiskies that are of a certain age? All from a specific country? Or maybe all one flavour profile?
Whatever you decide for your theme, you should then aim for around five different whiskies for your tasting night.
Make sure to taste your whiskies in order from the lightest to the richest/smokiest, otherwise if you start with the strongest in flavour, it may over-power the lighter ones.
Irish whisky generally tends to be light in flavour, from typically being three times distilled. But remember that lighter in colour doesn’t necessarily mean lighter in taste, so make sure to do your research!
Use the right glassware
If you and your guests are real whisky enthusiasts, then opt for a Glencairn or tulip-shaped glass. However, tumblers will also work nicely for those who aren’t as serious about whisky.
If you’re able to give everyone a different glass for each whisky then great, but it’s really not essential. Just make sure you have somewhere to discard any unwanted whisky from glasses.
Go big on the ice
When serving whisky, it’s best to pour it in a glass over a large ice cube, as opposed to smaller ice cubes, as this will keep the drink cool without losing any flavour.
Extra-large ice cubes such as The Ice Co’s Super Cubes are therefore perfect for whisky, or any whisky-based cocktails such as an Old Fashioned. Not only do they melt extremely slowly, but they also look amazing in the glass!
Prepare the right snacks
What’s a tasting night without snacks? When deciding what nibbles you’ll be serving, it’s important to consider what will match nicely with whisky, and what might overpower the flavour.
Cheese, crackers and charcuterie are a great pairing for whisky, as are chocolate and nuts. However, make sure to avoid anything with a lot of hot spices or herbs, as it may affect your tasting.
Have water to hand
Make sure everyone has a glass of iced water available, either to cleanse their palate between tastings, or if your guests like to add a couple of drops of water to their whisky.
Although, make sure people taste their whisky without water first, before adding water, in case it affects the taste.
Feeling inspired? Take a look at The Ice Co’s tips for how to host the ultimate tequila tasting night too!