All the spirits questions you've been too embarrassed to ask, answered
You’ve just entered a safe zone. A zone with no judging, no sniggering and no funny looks. A zone to address any spirits questions you’ve been a little bit sheepish to ask. Why? Because knowledge is power, and we want to give you the power to make the best choices about your next tipple. So sit back, relax and enjoy this Toast learning journey.
What exactly is mezcal?
Mezcal is a smoky and smooth distilled beverage made from native Mexican agave plants. Mezcal and tequila share a relationship similar to bourbon and whisky or brandy and cognac – they have similar origins but certain factors in their production make them very different. Both mezcal and tequila are made from the agave plant, however, tequila can only be made from blue agave and only be produced in certain regions, whereas mezcal can be from a number of agave plants.
Is it true that gin can make you emotional?
It has been a long-standing theory that gin can make you depressed or emotional. And to a certain extent, this is true. However, what a lot of people don't realise, is this is also true for all alcohol. The active ingredient – ethanol – is just the same, but it is factors such as how it's consumed, our own expectations and perhaps our own mood that determines the emotional effects of a drink.
Is it whisky or whiskey?
American and Irish liquor producers tend to prefer the spelling as WHISKEY while Scottish, Japanese and Canadian producers tend to prefer WHISKY. Ireland and the United States – names with e’s in them, spell it whiskey while countries without e’s in their names – Scotland, Canada and Japan spell it whisky.
Can you do food matches with spirits?
Absolutely. As you'll see in our Toast pairing chocolate and alcohol article and our three-course cocktails article, there are many ways to pair spirits with food. Think a zesty French 75 with sushi, or margaritas with spicy Mexican food. Delicious.