ABV: Alcohol By Volume - The proof percentage of alcoholic content. Tried strength or quality.
Age: How many years the whisky was actually matured for.
Blended Malts: Whisky made from a mixture of up to 50 different single malts.
Blended Scotch Whisky: Producers, mainly in the Highlands and Islands, make small quantities of flavoursome malt whisky, whilst larger distilleries make large quantities of more neutral grain whisky to add volume to the malt. The result is blended Scotch.
Campbeltown: Region lying on the West coast of Scotland.
Cask Strength: Whisky bottled at the alcoholic strength at which it aged in the cask, without being diluted to 40% ABV with water.
COA: Certificate Of Authenticity.
Distilled: The year in which the distillation process took place.
Grain Whisky: Whisky that is distilled from maize or wheat.
Highlands: Largest Region, plenty of variety. We also include the Islands as part of this category.
Islay: Regional island, of which it is said that the whiskies tend to be smoky and peaty! Our most extensive range and home to our specialist Laphroaig selections.
Lowlands: Region where the whisky tends to be light, dry and fruity.
Mothballed: If, for example, a distillery has been mothballed it means it has closed down production whilst preserving production machinery and facilities for possible future use.
NAS: No Age Statement
OB: Original Bottling.
Peat: Used in the malting stage with barley, leaving a smoky smell to the whisky, often found in Islay whiskies.
Proof: 7/4 times the ABV in the UK and twice the ABV in the USA. Proof used to be the term used in the UK to relay to the customer the content of alcohol in an alcoholic beverage, ABV is used more commonly now.
Rare Malts: Collection of limited edition, cask strength bottling. Began in 1995, but has since ceased production, making this array really live up to its name!
Scotch Malt Whisky Society: A group dedicated to fine malt whisky, founded some 20 years ago, now has 10’s of thousands of members and contributes some fine whiskies, some of which you will come across on this site!
Scotch Whisky: A whisky can only be called a Scotch whisky if it was made in Scotland and it has been matured for at least three years.
Single Barrel: Whisky that is bottled from a single cask, from one distillery.
Single Malts: Whisky produced in one distillery, from pure barley malt that is never blended.
Slàinte Mhath: Gaelic term, literally meaning "good health", ideal phrase when toasting a dram of your favourite!
Speyside: Region in which you will typically come across the sweetest malt whiskies.
Unblended: From one distillery, never mixed with anything else.
Vatted Malts: Exactly the same as a blended malt. Does not contain any grain whisky.