The first written records of scotch whisky production date back to the year 1495 in the Exchequer Rolls of Scotland, where it was referenced by its former name: “Aqua Vitae”, or water of life .
For over 500 years, Scottish distilleries have fine-tuned the art of whisky production to a level of mastery. Today, whisky is produced all over the world, in countries as diverse as India, Australia, Switzerland and Japan. Despite the increase in global competition, Scotland still produces many of the most impressive drams, and rightfully maintains the title of whisky capital of the world.
With a near-endless variety of brands, vintages, and expressions to choose from, finding the perfect scotch can be a journey that spans a lifetime. What is considered the “best whisky” will always be a subjective opinion and you should always go with your personal tastes. Nevertheless, there are some bottles which are consistently agreed upon to be exceptional.
To make choosing your next (or perhaps your first!) scotch easier, we’ve collaborated with a team of whisky experts and distilleries to compile the following lists of top-notch single malt and blended scotch to satisfy almost any taste.
Almost all of the bottles we’ve recommended come in at under £100 per bottle, but if you’re looking for something that little bit more special, we’ve also included a few of our experts’ ‘dream drams’.
If you’re looking for a gift for a scotch-loving partner or friend, we’ve also included three of our favourite whisky gift ideas, which would light up the eyes of any budding whisky connoisseur.