IMG 1846 300x168 - Scotch GlasswareCan different glasses effect the taste of scotch? I recently used myself as a lab rat and tried 3 scotch whiskies from 5 different vessels: The wedding flask, shot glass, tumbler, wine glass and a recent gift, the Glencairn glass.

Often the nature of our drinking determines the glass we choose, or that someone else chooses for us.  This can in turn change our judgement of the scotch  and the way we enjoy it.  A good example of this is in a restaurant, when you often have no choice what type of glassware you get.  Having scotch from the right glass enables you to integrate what you’re drinking to what you’re doing. The sensory experience of taste and smell should be heightened but not exalted.

The Experiment

3 Scotches –  Scapa 14(Orkney), Balvenie Doublewood(Speyside) and Laphoig Quartercask(Islay), or as I thought of it: herbal, sweet and smoky. I made notes on the changes in aroma (using the aroma wheel at Scotch Addict) and flavour (using taste bud profiles) from glass to glass.

The Flask

When you’re drinking from a flask the whiskey is most likely being used as a tool as much as the container. I included it in this test simply for comparison and because inevitably there might be a scotch that tastes better when you need a quick hit.

Surprisingly, the flask did not apply a metallic flavor like in a can of soda. It did seem to splash the scotch onto the front part of my mouth, emphasizing sweetness. The small amount that comes out forces long swigs to get a good taste which favours a milder drink. The flask was very susceptible to temperature changes as well, which is something to consider if it will be next to your body most of the day. An affordable, milder scotch blend would suit this perfectly.

The Shot Glass

Forcing all the fluid straight to the back of your throat kind of defeats the purpose here; fortunately, you’re not likely to be drinking scotch out of this glass very often even when using it as a session drink. The Laphroaig left the strongest impression here because the peatiness lingered after swallowing.

On Wednesday – The Tumbler, Wine Glass and Glencairn…

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