We are a nation of food lovers, sure, but we are also big on filling our guts with alcoholic drinks. According to an international survey by Euromonitor, we are the third heaviest drinkers in the world, next to Russia and South Korea. And while we love our beer, lambanog, gin, rhum, and tequila, we see a growing cult of whisky drinkers in the scene now. Our taste for poison must finally have come of age, eh?
Your first sip of whisky is just to prepare your tongue and palate for some good drinking. But the secret way to better identify the taste of your whisky, according to Lee Watson, spiritual advisor of the Mandalay Whisky and Cigar Bar, is by spreading it in your mouth on your second sip, letting all parts of your tongue taste it before swallowing. On your third sip, the burning sensation is gone, and that’s when you can recognize the right spirit of your whisky.
The only way to know why whisky is booming like crazy is to have a sip for yourself. Here are five whiskies that Lee recommends to spirit novices. Whether or not you love it or hate it, the whisky only wants a noble night with you. You’re in good glass, man. You are.
1) The Yamazaki
Although Scotland is known as the hotbed of single malt whisky, Japan is not far behind. With its murky taste, the Yamazaki has that punch that whisky connoisseurs love to grow into. That’s some adequate non-Scotch whisky right there, man.
2) Auchentoshan 12
If you don’t want to shock yourself, consider this gentler and subtler whisky. There’s so much flavor in here as a result of the traditional tripledistilling of lowland malts. It even smells like your grandpop’s precious wooden study.
3) The Macallan 12
You sip this highland malt whisky and you taste hints of vanilla, honey, and muscovado. This homey taste is something novices can start with and experienced connoisseurs can still look forward to revisiting. It’s that fine.
4) The Glenlivet 12
The opposite of the Auchentoshan 12, this whisky has a more fruity scent to it. With the first sip, you taste dark plums and cinnamon (yes, that level of fruitiness). It’s something you’d do well to offer your girl, if she likes her whisky sweet.
10 Of these five whiskies, the Laphroaig 10 is the one that leaves you wondering what it really is. It smells like a mix of seawater, leather, and, er, a brown paper bag. But its saltysmoky aroma promises to please despite the complexity in its taste.
This story first appeared in the September 2016 issue of FHM Philippines.
Some edits were made by the FHM.com.ph editors.