Discover 6 Top Whisky Regions of the World
Does your Dad love whisky? Does he drink it neat, over ice or in an Old Fashioned? There is no right or wrong way to drink whisky. The “water of life” can be enjoyed in many ways – it all comes down to one’s personal preference.
You can even experiment by trying different glasses and serving temperatures. Try it neat or on the rocks. Add a drop of water or a mixer. Or you can add it to a cocktail, like an Old Fashioned. The main thing is that you find the way you enjoy it.
Whether you are into whisky neat or prefer our Old Fashioned cocktails, join us this September 4th for our special event to celebrate Father’s Day in style. What better way to celebrate Father’s day than with a glass of whisky and delicious food surrounded by friends and family at the best bar in Moonee Ponds.
We will offer a wide selection of Old Fashioned cocktails showcasing the different whisky regions. If you didn’t know Japan makes excellent whisky, this is a good way to learn more about the world’s top whisky regions.
Despite being a small country, Scotland is the biggest producer of whisky in the world. The Scots have five whisky regions: Highlands, Speyside, Lowlands, Campbeltown and Islay. And thanks to its fertile glens, Speyside is the world’s most densely populated whisky region.
You have probably heard of Scotch or Scottish whisky. The original Scotch was made with malted barley, but over the years, commercial distilleries introduced rye and wheat into whisky production. Today, there are over 134 distilleries in Scotland, the oldest being Glenturret, dating back to 1775 and the biggest Glenfiddich Distillery.
The differences between the whiskies made in each region are phenomenal. They all have unique aromas and notes specific to the region. Scottish whiskeys are known to pick up awards each year, and rightly so. They have some of the best whisky in the world, and boasts the most expensive whisky brand.
The most popular Scotch whisky label is Johnnie Walker, best served neat. Most of the whiskies on our drinks menu hail from Scotland, including Chivas Regal, Drambuie, Dimple and Highland Park. If you are not sure how to drink Scotch, our bartenders will give you a few tips. All you have to do is ask!
What came first, Irish whisky or Scotch? Of course, every Irish would agree that Irish whisky came long before Scotch, exactly 90 years before the first records of whisky in Scotland. But what is surprising is that these two neighbouring countries, sharing many similarities in every aspect of life, created two very distinctive spirits. And they even have different spelling – whisky vs whiskey.
Ireland is home to over 32 whiskey distilleries, including the oldest distillery in the world, Bushmills, which dates back to 1608. So you don’t have to wait for St. Patrick’s day to try Irish whisky, but you have to start with Jameson when you feel like trying one. Jameson has been the most famous and best-selling Irish whiskey since 1780.
Ninety per cent of the whiskey produced in Ireland is blended, including Jameson. The spirit is triple distilled, made from a blend of grain and single pot still whiskey. Jameson is smooth, perfect drinking whiskey with spicy, nutty and vanilla notes.
You can drink it straight, or on the rocks, with ginger ale, in Irish coffee, or in cocktails like the Old Fashioned.
You will find a small selection of Irish whisky at Saros, including Jameson and another favourite, Tullamore Dew.
Whiskey (with an ‘e’) is made all across the USA, and they even have their own type of whiskey in America, which you will know as Bourbon.
The whiskey trade was widespread as early as 1870, and many political leaders, including Thomas Jefferson and George Washington, had liquor licences, meaning they were part of the whiskey trade. Today, Kentucky and Tennessee are the best whiskey-distilling regions in the United States.
There are seven major types of whiskey: bourbon whisky (made from corn), Tennessee whiskey, rye whiskey, rye malt whiskey, malt whiskey, wheat whiskey and corn whiskey. Spirits like Jack Daniels, Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark have been popular for decades.
Jack Daniels distillery celebrated their 150th anniversary in 2016. Their bourbon is made following the original recipe Jack Daniel made. It includes a mix of corn, rye, and barley.
We have a large selection of American whiskey at Saros, from Knob Creek, Southern Comfort and Bulleit Rye, to Jack Daniels and Maker’s Mark. There are a few ways to enjoy American whiskey. You can either drink it straight, on the rocks, with ginger ale, club soda or as a part of delicious cocktails.
Australia is new to the game and has only just recently made a reputation around the world as one of the best producers of whisky. With the Distillation Act of 1901, whisky distillation was banned in Australia. If it wasn’t for Bill Lark, who pressured the government to make amendments to the law in 1992, Australia might have never been involved in single malt whisky production.
Known as the Godfather of Australian Whisky, Bill Lark became the first Australian distillery in 154 years to produce single malt spirit. Since then, whisky distilling in Australia has seen a burgeoning growth. Today, there are over 293 distilleries in Australia, of which 50 produce whisky products.
When Sullivan’s Cove won the world’s best single malt whisky at the World Whiskies Awards in 2014, Australian whisky started getting noticed. And eight years later, Starward distillery won distillery of the year at June’s 2022 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. It is safe to say that Australians are making a name for themselves in the whisky industry.
Tasmania and Victoria are the more prominent producers, but regions like Western Australia, New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia are following behind. There are four distilleries in Tasmania, including The Tasmanian Distillery, famous for the award-winning Sullivan’s Cove French Oak single cask.
At Saros, we have four Australian whiskies behind the bar. Archie Rose White Rye, Hellyers Road Peated, Starwood Nova Wine Cask, single malt and Starward Two Fold, all different but superb. Made in a similar way to Scotch, Australian whiskies can be enjoyed the same way.
The Great White North is famous for two whiskies: Crown Royal and Canadian Club. If it weren’t for Prohibition and rye (the two factors that shaped the history of Canadian whisky), we wouldn’t be discussing Canada as a whisky region today.
Although very close to Scotch whisky and bourbon, Canadian whisky has a unique style. What sets Canadian whisky apart from the rest is the influence of rye, for which it’s often referred to as “rye whisky”.
Canadian whisky is made of a mix of grains, corn being the most common. It is distilled three times until a neutral spirit is derived. Then, finally, a second whisky or flavouring is added, typically rich in rye.
At Saros, we offer our guests Crown Royal and Canadian Club. Canadian Club is the only Canadian whisky that is blended first and then aged in white oak barrels. The vanilla, pepper and almond aroma makes this whisky so tasty that you can drink it neat or on the rocks.
But if you want to enjoy it the traditional way, you can buy Canadian Club Dry as a premixed drink (ginger and whisky) or enjoy it as a part of our Canadian Club Sweet Old Fashioned cocktail.
It may sound surprising, but the Japanese make excellent whisky. There are eight distilleries in Japan, enough to produce quality blended and single malt whiskies for consumption and export.
What makes Japanese whiskies unique is the higher content of alcohol (ABV, alcohol by volume) compared to whisky produced in Scotland. The higher ABV is because the whisky doesn’t need to mature as long as Scotch does, with around three years in oak casks.
Because Japanese whisky matures a lot faster than Scottish whisky, the flavour tends to be bolder and richer. However, the rest of the distilling process of single malt whiskies is done in the same manner, from yeast, water and barley.
Two distilleries set themselves apart from the rest: Suntory and Nikka. We recommend the Nikka From the Barrel, a blended whisky with a rich and robust sherry taste, bottled at 51.4% ABV. Nikka From the Barrel won the Whisky Advocate’s 2018 Whisky of the Year. It is made of over 100 whiskeys blended together and aged in sherry butts and bourbon barrels.
Father’s Day 2022
Now you know enough about the different whisky regions of the world, it’s time to experience some for yourself. And the good news is that you don’t even have to travel far and wide for the best whisky as it’s right here in our Moonee Ponds bar. So, there’s no better time to do that than with Dad, for Father’s Day.
Just like wine, whisky can be paired with food and goes great with tapas. But if you’re new to whisky, leave it to the team at Saros Bar + Dining to suggest a few pairing dishes that will make your Father’s day an unforgettable experience.