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The Glenlivet Distillery, Banffshire
The oldest legal distillery in Glenlivet.

Food and drink

Scotch whisky

Whisky is Scotland's national drink and our biggest export, enjoyed across the globe as well as right here in Scotland. Skilled distillers take pure water from crystal-clear streams and plump, golden barley from the fields and transform them into a precious spirit, which is then poured into oak casks and tucked away to mature. The spirit can't be called Scotch until it has aged in Scotland for at least three years. However most single malt whiskies sleep for much longer, before emerging for their moment to shine.

With over 130 active distilleries in Scotland spread across five whisky regions, with many offering fascinating tours, there are lots of whiskies to enjoy responsibly and plenty of opportunities to learn how it's made. Each whisky has its own unique flavours and character and whatever your palate, we're sure there's one for you - you just have to taste a few to find it!

Whisky FAQs

  • What is Scotch Whisky?

Scotch whisky is malt whisky, or grain whisky, that is specifically made in Scotland and must be made is a manner specified by law. Scotch Whisky is divided into five distinct categories; single malt, single grain, blended malt, blended grain, and blended Scotch Whisky.

  • What is Single Malt Whisky?

Single Malt Whisky is malt whisky from a single distillery. Under the UK's 'Scotch Whisky Regulations', a Single Malt Scotch Whisky must be made exclusively from malted barley, must be distilled using pot stills at a single distillery, and must be aged for at least three years in oak casks of a capacity not exceeding 700 litres.

  • What is Single Grain Whisky?

This one is also distilled at a single distillery. However, malt whisky must be 100% malted barley, but grain whisky can be made from any cereal grain and in Scotland, this includes small amounts of barley in combination with another grain.