What Is Whisk(e)y?

What is Whiskey Vatting?

In last week’s article – What is Single Barrel Whiskey?I threw down the gauntlet and you heroically answered.

I challenged you to answer a whiskey question and you blew me away with the quantity and quality of your splendid responses. I was expecting no more than two people to reply and thirty-nine of you proved me wrong.

I’m humbled by your awesomeness.

And so, not only am I going to list the names of everyone who responded correctly, as promised, but I’m also going to do a prize giveaway.

But first…the answer to the question.

Last week we learned what single barrel whiskey is and that most whiskeys are not single barrel. I then asked the question, “For most whiskeys, what step is between opening the whiskey barrels and bottling the whiskey?”

The answer is vatting.

What is vatting?

Vatting is when a single distillery combines multiple barrels of their whiskey together in a vat in order to achieve a consistent brand flavor. When a whiskey is vatted, this is when things happen like filtering, proofing, taste testing, and the addition of E150 coloring if allowed by law.

The words vatted and blended used to mean the same thing and were used interchangeably. But in the modern whiskey world vatted means combining barrels from the same distillery, and blended means mixing whiskey barrels from different distilleries.

Now, would you like to know who the thirty-nine beautiful people are who sent in a right answer?

I proudly present to you The Fine Thirty-Nine:

Scott Ritenbaugh - Dave Ellinger, CA - Ed S. Jr. - Garrett Dugger - Mark Patton - Tamara, CA - Steve, Connecticut - Don Daugherty - Stephen, Virginia - Scott M. - David Wheeler – Derick Zellar, Minnesota - Dustin Patterson - Bill Varnell - Danny Mackey, GA - Bob Skerry - Whisky Jason, Germany - Boris Horvat, Serbia - Tim J. - Sky Matsuhashi - Sam Green, California - Brian B. - Michael Jeffries - Dan, SW Florida – Ratheesh - Andrew Ruiz, Arizona - Steven Pelham, Maryland - Chris, Indiana - Capt. Ron, New Mexico - Daniel Willemse, South Africa - Dal Brazzell - Dave Long, PA - David Shinn - Tom, Belgium - Helen Max Sullivan, Ireland - Darren, Utah - Mayra Martinez - Nick Santos - Dave McLuckie

Now about that prize giveaway.

I was so encouraged by all the responses that I wanted to do something special.

I’m going to give one of The Fine Thirty-Nine this whiskey tasting kit from our Store:

  THE ESSENTIALS – WHISKEY TASTING KIT

THE ESSENTIALS – WHISKEY TASTING KIT


I’ve entered their names into a random selector. Are you ready to find out who will win?

Let’s watch…

Congratulations Tamara from California!

You’ve got a tasting kit coming your way.

That was fun.

Let’s do it again some time.

— Zac Smith