About This Site: Why Whisky?

My name’s Dave; I live in Vancouver BC, and I’ve been a whisky drinker for about 4 years. That makes me a relative newcomer and part of the new wave of whisky drinkers that have helped push their drink of choice  to its current heights of popularity. As I write this in early 2012, we are a few years into a period which is probably the greatest boom in whisky’s long history; certainly when it comes to single malt Scotch and its international siblings, but also including bourbon, rye and all the other types of distilled, oak-matured alcohol which can be lumped together under the same banner.


So what’s so great about whisky? At your first encounter, I know from experience that a great single malt can taste unexpectedly harsh; it’s a strong drink when taken neat, anywhere from 40% ABV (the minimum strength to be called Scotch whisky) up to the heady heights of cask strength bottlings which can be anywhere up to 70% ABV (you might want a drop of water with those). For the novice, the alcohol can overwhelm everything else. But gain some experience and educate your palate a little and complex flavours will begin to jump out at you.


The easiest way to accomplish this is to try different whiskies back-to-back – it’s best to do this with some like-minded friends to spread the cost around! This will open your eyes as to the differences between your chosen drams, and for the first time you’ll be able to say “I like that one; and I don’t like that one as much”. You’ll learn which styles you like, or don’t like – the smoke of Islay whiskies, or the deep sherry influences of a great Speyside; the light, fresh, floral scent of a Highland whisky, or the strong vanilla of a good bourbon. You might like them all.


Once you’re a whisky drinker, god help you. You’re doomed. There are more standard bottlings, special editions, single-cask, and ultra-premium whiskies than ever before, and more are released every month. You have no hope of trying everything – one horrible and wonderful truth about whisky is that every cask of the precious liquid is unique, and there are MILLIONS of them. The best you can do is to join a club to try as many different varieties as possible, and spend a bit of money on the stuff you find you truly love. You’ll want to visit your favourite distilleries, and seek out rare, possibly even unique bottles from distilleries long gone.


This site is a result of my descent into such a hopeless state. I’ll chronicle the whiskies I’m lucky enough to try, the trips I’ll make and the people I meet along the way. I hope you enjoy reading about it, and that a bit of it will rub off on you. When it does, you’ll find yourself in good company!

6 Responses to “About This Site: Why Whisky?”

  1. Curt says:

    Hi, Dave!

    Look forward to watching this site develop. Best of luck. I’ll be popping by to see how things develop. As you get content loaded, drop me a line and I’ll link you on ATW.



  2. admin says:

    Appreciate it Curt. Thanks for reading!

  3. Father Willy says:

    Good to see you again at the SMWS Outturn. I look forward to you and your group to enjoy some whisky at the tennis club soon

    • Dave Smith says:

      You too Willy! I won’t be at the September outturn in a couple weeks as I’ll be in Scotland (assuming that bloody Icelandic volcano doesn’t go off) but I’ll be around as usual after that!

  4. Steve says:

    Hi Dave,

    I am Steve from Calgary. How I came across your website is that several days ago, I was searching for Kensington Wine Market on Google Images and came across the picture of the KWM SIngle Malt Festival back in 2012 that you have on your blog.

    I am hoping that you will be able to share the picture with me as I am the the Asian guy in blue shirt (towards the right side of the picture), and thank you in advance.

    The next time you are in town, please let me know and if time/schedule permits, we may be able to enjoy a dram together if you are up to it.

    Cheers and have a good day,

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