Grain whisky is a distilled spirit made from either corn, wheat, or unmalted barley. It has a clear coloring and a really high amount of alcohol by volume (ABV). The question is though, what really makes grain whiskey special? And most importantly, is grain whisky worth it at all?

Grain Whisky vs Other Types of Whisky

Two of the most popular Scotch whiskies are malt whisky and grain whisky. Malt whisky is the most traditional one — this was probably this kind of whisky you stole from your parent's bar that one time. This high-end whisky is made with a copper pot still in the common batch process. 

Grain whisky, on the other hand, is made through an entirely different process. It is made on an industrial scale through a modern column still. This process makes the whisky taste less like its traditional flavor, and also causes the whisky to be purer in alcohol.

Is Grain Whisky for Me?

If you like your whisky to have a delicate, sweet, savory and almost fruity taste, this is the type whisky for you. Grain whisky is known for being a spirit "high in alcohol and light in character."

However, before committing to this type of whisky, you have to know that you might have to splurge a little more than your traditional whisky bottle. Since its ABV is stronger than malt whisky's, there is a chance that if you get a cheap bottle of grain whisky, it might end up tasting more like vodka than grain whisky's signature taste. 

Popular Grain Whiskies to Try

Currently, the largest grain whisky distillery is Cameronbridge, which produces up to 105m Litre of Pure Alcohol (LPA) whisky per year. While the smallest one, Loch Lomond, makes up to 18m LPA each year. So yes, the distillery process of grain whisky allows a lot more grain whisky to be produced than malt whisky. So how do you know which bottles to try?

Some bottles worth trying are the Girvan Patent Still No. 4 Apps (which is a single grain Scotch whisky), and the 808 Blended Grain Whisky (which is a blended grain Scotch whisky made with both malt and grain). Another light and sweet bottle option is the Loch Lomond single grain (which is a Highland single grain Scotch whisky). 

If grain whisky is something that sounds appealing to you, just make sure to have at least $40 available to splurge and show your friends that you do know your whiskies. And if grain whisky is not really your thing, you can always try an interesting blended whisky if you feel like going for something outside the box.