American whiskey (Bourbon). It has its own history


American whiskey (Bourbon).
It has its own history



While in Europe whiskey became a commonly used strong alcoholic drink in the second half of the XIX century, in the USA it happened much later - in the first half of the XX century.


In the 60s of the XIX century in Europe, most of the vineyards were destroyed by a pest - the phylloxera fly. As a result, prices for wine and cognac rose significantly. The English were not confused and quickly adapted the Scottish national drink for widespread consumption throughout most of the continent. Europe had no choice but to accept and love whiskey.


For the Americans, the process was much more prosaic. Distillation on the new continent appeared together with English colonizers. When European immigrants traveled to the New World, they brought distillation technology with them. At the same time, the dynamically carried out colonization put its imprint on the technique of obtaining alcohols. In America, malted barley was hardly ever used. Instead, corn and rye were used for distilling raw. Thus, the process of making whiskey was simplified. Of course, the first American spirits were not characterized by good quality: it was ordinary moonshine, besides, sometimes not safe for health. Only in the middle of the XIX century under the pressure of increasing competition producers began to care about the quality of drinks.


Unable to achieve the qualities of Irish whiskey, Americans paid special attention to the purity of the distillate, which required a good filtration technique. Thus, Jack Daniel's (established in 1860) processed maple wood for charcoal. It was crushed and laid in layers 3 meters thick and used as a filter to purify distillates and make them soft. Another specific feature was the exclusion of barley from the production chain. It was replaced by corn, which grew well in America and was very cheap, as well as rye.


Entered into force on January 1, 1920 "Prohibition" became a fertile ground for the flourishing of crime on the basis of production and sale of alcoholic beverages. Criminal mnr quickly reoriented to bootleggerstvo - illegal trade in alcohol: a bottle of whiskey could earn much more money, and with minimal risk. The mafia even took international loans to organize the importation of Scotch whisky into the country.


It was at this time that the technology of American whisky was finally taking shape. In order to increase its competitiveness compared to Irish and Scotch whiskey, the producers made changes in technology. Barrels for aging the drink began to be fired from inside, which gave it a sweet flavor and a beautiful golden color. But not only competition can explain this technological trickery. The main task of those years - without losing the quality of the drink, to maximize the process of its maturation. This is how local spirits gradually "grew" to the high quality American whiskey.


The gigantic size of production and import of this drink prompted Franklin Roosevelt to abolish the "dry law". This decision entailed a reorganization in the world alcohol market. Many Americans have a reverence for this period of their history, the object of their pride is those varieties of local whiskey that appeared and spread in the 20s and 30s. They claim that Old Forester whiskey is the only brand officially authorized for sale during Prohibition (although it could only be bought with a doctor's prescription). After Prohibition was repealed, whiskey finally established itself as the national drink in the United States.




Scotch Whisky (Scotch)
Scotch Whisky (Scotch). A little bit of history
Irish whiskey
Irish whiskey. Scotch's longtime rival
American whiskey (Bourbon)
American whiskey (Bourbon). It has its own history...