4 reasons to fall in love with whiskey
SPSCC’s non-credit leg, Corporate and Continuing Education (CCE), was definitely on to something when they decided to partner with The Whiskey People for a five-class certificate series covering whiskey.
While trips to wine country have been popular destinations for years, how many times have you tasted—or learned much about—whiskey? Shy of SPSCC’s new Craft Brewing and Distilling program, the 15-hour whiskey certificate series covered more than any beginner could wish to know about whiskey, from terminology and ingredients to origin and pairings.
Didn’t hear about the classes? Let us recap some of the coolest takeaways and give you four reasons to fall in love with whiskey—and maybe even register for the next offering of the series later this year in September.
1. You don’t have to like the same whiskeys as the critics and connoisseurs.
According to instructor and founder of The Whiskey People, Treacy Duerfeldt, an important distinction between being a wine lover and a whiskey lover is how to appreciate the drink. One part of appreciating whiskey is acquiring a taste for the spirit. What’s more important, however, is learning what flavors and tasting method you like the best. Treacy says that, “First you learn it, then you like it, then you love it.” And once you get there, you can focus on drinking what you like while others can have what they like. Say goodbye to snooty tasting rooms. Sip and enjoy!
2. You can squeeze an extra workout into your day with “whiskey yoga”.
The classes offered several techniques to taste a variety of whiskeys, like drinking it straight or adding a little water. Treacy’s favorite method allows the whiskey to rest in the mouth and rise to body temperature, followed by inhaling through the nose—all before swallowing. He calls the method whiskey yoga, which releases the deepest flavor elements and gives you more insight to the ingredients and distilling process used.
3. You get to expand your vocabulary with words like “peaty”.
Once you’ve got whiskey yoga under your belt, it will be easier to appreciate the flavor components that are used in your favorite whiskeys. When it comes to describing the whiskey you’re tasting, there’s no need to get fancy. Feel free to stick to familiar words like “buttery” or “smoky” or “fruity”. On the other hand, why not explore a whole new world of adjectives like “peaty”, “husky”, or “kippery” (go on… look them up). Better yet, why not learn how to use your own words and fully understand and connect to what they mean?
4. You can support small business and local distilleries in Thurston County.
Washington State’s distilling industry has boomed in the past five years. The Washington Distillers Guild estimates Washington’s 100+ retail distilleries to be the highest of any state in the U.S. and Thurston County boasts various brands close to home, like Sandstone Distillery in Tenino. And most of the local craft distilleries source their raw ingredients directly from the region, including grains, potatoes, and even hogs (for infusing the whiskey with bacon, of course).
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