Whiskey or Whisky, It Doesn’t Matter to Me

whiskeyThere’s been a lot of discussion over the years about the proper spelling of whiskey (with or without the “e”). It was even mentioned in the 2017 film, “Kingsman: The Golden Circle“. I have no thoughts at all on the matter. While distilled liquor has existed for thousands of years, whiskey only dates back to the 13th century. Well, that’s as far as existing evidence indicates. The Wikipedia page can tell you more.

My Drink of Choice

Whiskey is the form of liquor I prefer these days. Just like any alcoholic beverage, there are some excellent as well as some not-so-excellent choices. I prefer it at 40 percent alcohol by volume (ABV) but I can enjoy it at 34 or 35 percent ABV. Anything below that is a waste of time when consumed with ice. The White Castle brand in the Philippines has a light option at 27.5 percent ABV.

I switched from rum and cola to plain rum on ice, and then to plain whiskey on ice while I was in the United States. It wasn’t a quick transition, and it took me more than three years to settle into it. My goal was to cut as much sugar from my diet as possible, and I can’t stand diet soft drinks. Since I can’t drink whiskey from 34 to 40 percent ABV straight, I add ice.

Although I like to drink, I don’t like to get drunk. The amount I drink, on most occasions, is around three shots or three jiggers. Once I feel relaxed, I know I’ve had enough and not too much. My self-imposed restrictions fly out the window when there’s a party in my compound, however, especially when videoke (video karaoke) is involved. It’s usually for some special occasion that also includes a lot of food.

A Whiskey Glass Set

My older son, Joe, gave me a whiskey glass set from Highball & Chaser as a gift in 2021. I don’t remember the occasion. It came with two glasses, eight granite stones (and a velvet chilling bag to hold them), stainless steel tongs and two slate coasters inside a wooden gift box. That box lives on one of my kitchen counters. I have yet to use the stones or either of the coasters.

I’ll eventually try drinking the lighter versions of the brands I like, using the stones instead of ice (especially if it’s all I can find nearby). Ice melts extremely fast in the Philippines, unless I hide in my air-conditioned bedroom. My drinks are always watered down before I get a chance to finish them off.

Whiskey vs. Everything Else

I have a lot of experience with alcoholic beverages of all kinds. Most of it occurred during my 20-year stint in the military. Any type of alcoholic beverage can put me in my comfort zone, so I can be as picky as like. I don’t like weak beverages like beer, wine, and liqueurs. They tend to make me urinate far too many times before doing anything else for me.

I can barely stand brandy, distilled from wine, because of the lingering fruity taste. In fact, I don’t like most hard liquors (other than whiskey or rum). It’s always the taste that turns me away, or the lack of it when it comes to vodka. I no longer enjoy mixed drinks (or highballs) and I avoid sugar in everything.

Here’s a list of all the whiskey brands that I can remember finishing off at least one bottle. I’m purposely leaving out the brands I didn’t like and those where I only had one drink from a bottle:

  • Andy Player
  • Canadian Mist
  • Crown Royal
  • Early Times
  • Evan Williams Honey
  • Jack Daniels Old No. 7
  • Jim Beam Honey
  • Jim Beam Kentucky Straight Bourbon
  • Rich and Rare
  • Seagram’s 7 Crown Light Whiskey Liqueur
  • Seagram’s Imperial Blue Whisky
  • White Castle 5 Years Old Whisky
  • White Castle Whisky Calibre 69

I try to avoid anything that isn’t a proper liquor (a liqueur), and I want it to be 69 proof (or 34.5 percent ABV) or more. The honey whiskeys (liqueurs around 35 percent ABV) are way too easy to drink. I now only buy White Castle Whisky Calibre 69 while I’m in the Philippines. All whiskey in the Philippines is less expensive than in the United States, even the imported brands, because they aren’t as heavily taxed. If I drink an American brand, it’s because someone gave it to me as a gift.

Image by Felix Stember, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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