Have you ever wondered why bourbon tends to be bottled anywhere from 4 – 12 years, and Scotch whiskey around 12 – 18 years? Did you know that the majority of the natural colour of whiskey will appear within the first year or so of maturation? What is that colour made of? Curious as to why you only ever see casks made of oak and why they have their distinctive shape? What leads to fruity flavours in whiskey versus, say, tobacco or leather?

Welcome to the second half of our tasting season! Last year we did a wonderful collaboration tasting where we started to dig into the chemistry behind whiskey and beverage alcohol, and I had so much fun, I thought I’d continue the idea. So come join us at Okanagan Spirits where we dive deep into the interactions between maturing whiskey and an oak cask and find the answers to questions we’ve all had about whiskey.

This tasting has some features I’ve wanted to include in an event for a while. First, we’ll have a ton of information to present on various factors that go into producing the whiskies we all know and love with a definite chemistry bent, and I’ll be doing my best to have as much depth in that information as you can handle. Second, the tasting itself will involve vertical comparisons of three separate brands of whiskey, namely Buffalo Trace, Okanagan Spirits and Dubh Glas, complete with the un-aged spirit to compare with the finished product(s). And third, we’ll include a bit of sensory analysis where we can train our noses and palates using chemical standards to pick out certain notes we might suspect exist in our favourite whiskies. I’m really excited to be leading this tasting for you and I hope to see you there.


The whisk[e]y (left to right):
Dubh Glas Virgin Spirit
Dubh Glas Grand Entrance
Buffalo Trace
Buffalo Trace Mashbill #1 White Dog
Eagle Rare
Stagg Jr
Okanagan Spirits Laird of Fintry 6th edition