10 Smoky Whiskies to Sip All Winter Long - Peated Select Cask

Published by Jonah Flicker, Esquire on 09-Dec-2017.

To peat or not to peat–for some whisky lovers, that is at least a question, if not the question, when deciding what to drink. Peat can be a very divisive flavor component in the world of whisky. It is most commonly found in the single malt scotch category, although it’s also present in whisky from Japan, Ireland, and even the Pacific Northwest. As malted barley is heated to dry it out and stop the germination process, peat is burned to infuse the grain with smoke and flavor it. How peaty the whisky is depends on how long it’s been exposed to the smoke, measured in PPM (phenol parts per million). The higher the PPM, the smokier the whisky.

There is a wide range of smoky whisky to enjoy, from light and crisp to medicinal and heavy to one of the highest PPMs distilled in recent history. If you think you don’t like smoky whisky, perhaps you just haven’t tried the right one yet. Winter is the perfect season to enjoy a peaty dram, as the cold temperatures, limited sunlight, and dreary skies lend themselves to these flavors, especially when warming up by an equally smoky fire. Here’s a list of some recent entries into the smoky, peated whisky category to hunt down and savor all season long.


Paul John Peated Select Cask

Officer’s Choice, a blended malt, is one of the best-selling whiskies in the world. If you’ve never heard of it, you’re not alone, and you probably don’t live in India. There are some interesting distilleries making whisky there that are gaining recognition, such as Paul John in the Indian state of Goa. The distillery produces a range of whisky that includes a smoke bomb called Peated Select Cask. There are nice notes of sugar and dark chocolate throughout that complement the smoky character and keep things balanced. This release should help to further the reputation of India as a rising force in the whisky world.

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