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Whisky from Scotland

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The earliest mention of whiskey in Scotland dates back to as early as the 15th century, when Friar John Cor was ordered to make ‘Aqua Vitae’ for the king from 8 boxes of malt. The whisky from Scotland or Scotch whiskey is specifically labeled "whisky" without an ‘e’, whereas whiskies which come from other countries are spelt "whiskey".

There are two main types of Scotch from which all blends are made, single malt scotch made from water and malted barley, and single grain scotch which uses other grains in addition to water and barley. Other types include Blended Malt Scotch, Blended Scotch, and Blended Grain Scotch. Blended Scotch whisky is made from a blend of both malt and grain scotch, which makes for about 90% of whisky produced in Scotland. In 2011, Scotland exported $6.7 billion dollars’ worth of whisky.

Scotland can be divided into four regions — Lowland, Speyside, Highland, Campbeltown and the distilleries in each region have contributed to the extraordinary distinct taste of Scottish whisky. Taste and flavour differs from region to region within Scotland depending factors such as water and climate.

The Lowlands, famous for single malt scotch, have very few distilleries, namely Auchentoshan, Bladnoch, and Glenkinchie.
Speyside consists of nearly half of the distilleries in Scotland. The whiskies produced here are characterised by mild, rich or sweet tastes. Distilleries include Aberlour, Speyburn, Balvenie, Cardhu, Glenfarclas, Cragganmore, Glenglassaugh, the Macallan, Glenfiddich, the Glenrothes and the Glenlivet.
The Highlands occupy two thirds of Scotland, Aberfeldy, Ben Nevis, Balblair, Dalwhinnie, Dalmore, Glen Ord, Oban, Glenmorangie, and Old Pulteney are some of the well known distilleries in this region.
Campbeltown once had more than thirty distilleries — now there are just three; Glen Scotia, Springbank, and Glengyle.

Another region, the Isle of Islay, attracts whisky tourists during the May whisky festival. Notable distilleries include Ardbeg, Caol Ila, Bruichladdich, Lagavulin, Bunnahabhain, and Laphroaig among others.