Whisky myths: Does blend = bad?
No, it does not! Seemingly one of the hardest whisky myths to shake is that blended whisky is of an inferior quality. This misconception of the ages could see you missing out on some great products.
There are different types of blended Scotch:
Blended Malt Scotch Whisky – a blend of scotch single malt whiskies from a variety of different distilleries.
Blended Grain Scotch Whisky – a blend of scotch single grain whiskies from a variety of different distilleries.
Blended Scotch Whisky – a blend of the above, with at least one single malt and one single grain.
Creating a blended whisky is an extremely skilful job. The level of flavour complexity found within certain blends underlines the skill required to achieve sensory harmony.
The popularity of blended Scotch whisky is evident: bottled blends accounted for 59% of value exports in 2022 (£3670m), an increase of 43% on 2021.
While globally recognised brands such as Johnnie Walker, Chivas Regal, Famous Grouse and Grants may dominate the blended scotch category internationally, there are a growing number of award-winning smaller blending companies such as Compass Box, Boutique-y Whisky, North Star Spirits and so on. Then there are the long established and respected blending houses such as Thompson Bros, Ian MacLeod and Douglas Laing to name a few.
So, while in some cases blended Scotch may provide a more competitive price point, a quality blend will show no compromise on Scotch whisky flavour.
Whisky can so often seem wrapped up in rules. Sure, there are the regulatory ones (legit) but what about the rest? Who makes these rules, and should you feel bad for breaking them? We’re here to bust the myths and separate the simple mistakes from the marketing speak.