What Is The Difference Between Single Malt and Double Malt?

Single Malt or Double Malt
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Are you a fan of single malt and double malt whiskeys? But can you explain exactly how these two differentiate from one another? A better understanding of single and double malt whiskey can make you enjoy it even more and begin to like it more and more.

Whiskey is an old term that describes strong alcoholic spirits produced from fermenting grains. To make whiskey, brewers use various grains such as maize, barley, wheat and rye. However, Malt whiskey is made entirely of malted barley and is probably the most common type of whiskey.

A Short History of Whiskey

The famous name we all know, whisky, has its origins in the Gaelic expression ‘Uisge Beatha‘ – that translates ‘water of life.’ The oldest whiskey in the world claims remains a point of dispute between the Irish and the Scots. There’s a very nice tale behind the beginning of whiskey. During his first visit to Scotland back in 1822, King George IV asked for a glass of whiskey.

The only problem was that back in these days whisky was illegal. However, no one really wanted to say No to a king’s request. So just a year after that, in 1823, the King passed a law that made whiskey legal. This naturally to the rise of whiskey manufacturers that were now legally allowed to produce, market, and distribute their whiskey.

A Short Guide to What is Malt

First of all, we must understand what malt is. Well, malt is just a dried fermented grain. Malting is a method of transforming a raw grain into a germinated grain. When we talk about single malts, barley malt is probably the most popular grain.

Eventually, malt whiskey is a spirit produced from malted barley.

And What Is Single Malt?

Well, single malt whiskey is created from a single distillery by utilizing only one type of grain. This is usually more costly than other types of whiskey. Lagavulin, Bowmore, Aberlour, Talisker, and The Ardmore Legacy are some of the most renowned single malt distilleries. Scotland, Ireland, and Japan are the main countries that make single malt whiskey, but there are of course others. Whiskey will also be called ‘Scotch’ when it comes from Scotland, regardless if it’s blended or single malt.

So, What Is Double Malt?

well, Double malt whiskey is one that has been mixed with two independent distilleries. Dwarf variations of whiskies with single malt as the foundation element make up double malt or blended whiskey. Most double malts are made with hand-picked scotch malts and the best Indian grains.

The whiskey is then matured in oak barrels until it becomes perfect. The Double Malt whiskey will have the exact right scent and flavors at the end of this process. Wheat and maize are the basic ingredients for creating double malt whisky.

What’s the Difference Between Single Malt and Double Malt?

Well, as for flavoring, single malts have a mild fruity flavor that fades dry. Double malt, on the other hand, has a variety of flavors. It’s more robust in flavor and possesses a prolonged aftertaste. The simple way to make the difference between single and double malt is to try them individually.


Both single malt whiskey and double malt whiskey have distinct characteristics. It won’t be always easy to differentiate between the two. However, if you follow the above tips, you may by now know how to tell the difference between the two.

Want to read more of our latest posts? Check out our tips on how to use Beef Jerky.


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