Home Whiskey Whiskey VS Whisky

Whiskey VS Whisky

20 Dec, 2023 Whiskey

Among the many complexities in the world of distilled spirits, one of the most debated and misunderstood distinctions lies between the whiskey and whisky difference in spelling. Being connoisseurs of whisky and whiskey, House of Assets feel grateful to be able to help educate and answer the stories behind these two spellings.

The Origins of the Spelling:

To distinguish the difference between whisky and whiskey, we must first delve into the historical roots of each term. The spelling largely depends on the spirit’s country of origin. The easiest way to remember the difference is by the general law of ‘whiskey’ being the preferred term in countries with an ‘e’ in their name, such as the United States and Ireland. Meanwhile, ‘whisky’ is the spelling choice in regions without an ‘e’, such as Scotland, Canada, and Japan. 

Irish and American whiskey share the commonality of the ‘e’ in their spelling, but that’s not the only similarity. Both have unique production methods and flavour profiles:

Bourbon whiskey hails predominantly from Kentucky and is primarily made from corn, creating a sweet and robust flavour. The use of charred oak barrels contributes to its deep colour and rich character. 

Like Bourbon whiskey, although lighter, Tennessee whiskey undergoes an additional charcoal filtering process, giving it a smoother and mellower taste. Jack Daniel’s is a famous Tennessee whiskey, for example. 

Irish whiskey often features a blend of malted and unsalted barely and is again typically triple-distilled, resulting in a smoother and lighter spirit. The variety of grains can also contribute to diverse flavours in different expressions. 

But regardless, as far as House of Assets are concerned, all whiskeys, whether Bourbon, Tennessee, and Irish all make great whiskey investment opportunities. 

In comparison…

When you turn your head to Scotch whisky and all its variants like single malt scotch and more, you’ll encounter the ‘whisky’ spelling. 

Scotch whisky, produced in the various regions of Scotland and renowned for its rich history, showcases regional diversity. Islay whiskies are known for their peaty and smoky characteristics, and Speyside whiskies tend to be fruity and elegant, but each still making great whisky investments. All Scotch whisky must adhere to specific regulations, such as being distilled and matured in oak barrels in Scotland for at least three years. So, the influence of the surrounding environment, including the water source and climate, further shapes the final product and investment value while the geographical elements changing the name!

Canadian whisky, often overlooked but steadily gaining recognition, boasts its unique characteristics. The whisky is often a blend of grains, including rye, and is recognised for its light and approachable profile. Inspired by Scotch traditions, Japanese whisky has rapidly earned a reputation for its precision and craftsmanship, with local ingredients to produce a wide array of flavours, from delicate and floral to rich and complex. 

Again, while Canadian, Japanese, and Scotch whisky all differ, the key point to note is that all of them can still make and hold great whisky investment potential! 

In the whiskey vs whisky debate, the devil is in the details. The spelling choice indicates the spirit’s country of origin and hints at the diverse production methods, cultural influences, and flavour profiles in each variety. 

But the spelling is relatively insignificant when it really comes down to it. Whilst it doesn’t directly change the value of the whiskies, House of Assets also aren’t discriminatory to one or the other either. House of Assets still holds a bank of all whisky and whiskeys, so you can find the best single malt investment or triple-distilled Irish whiskey investment that suits your desires. 

For any enquiries about buying or listing your vintage whisky or whiskey assets, don’t hesitate to get in contact. 

Beth Macdonald

Bethany is a seasoned expert in tangible asset investment, renowned for her astute insights in the realms of art, fine wines, whiskey and classic cars. With over two decades of experience in the financial and luxury asset management sectors, and working for other auction houses/marketplaces, she has a deep understanding of the market sector and investment trading. Her passion for tangible asset investments started early in her career and she has keen eye for value and art.

Related stories

Stay informed with House of Assets
top stories, videos, events & news.