Most whisky drinkers look to the age of a given whisky as an indicator of its quality. Because of that tendency, so many whisky buffs baulk when they see a no-age-statement (NAS) variety of whisky at their local liquor store. Conventional wisdom suggests that, just like fine wine, the more time whisky has to age, the better it tastes. Thus, these seasoned aficionados dismiss NAS whiskies as inferior.
However, as is so often the case, there is more to the story than conventional wisdom may suggest. NAS whisky should not be confused with cheap, low-quality whisky; in fact, the opposite is often the case. Let’s separate the facts about NAS whisky from the myths and see how the increased presence of NAS whisky has opened up new avenues of flavour, aesthetics, and creativity for distillers, bartenders, and whisky drinkers.
Why is NAS Whisky Getting So Popular?
Whisky as a whole has seen a surge in popularity in the last 10 to 15 years. As a result, once-plentiful supplies of aged whiskeys have dwindled. Because fewer aged whiskies can be found on the shelves, NAS whisky has become more common.
That may sound like a letdown to those who are accustomed to drinking aged whisky, but there’s no need to blame whisky newcomers for depleting your supply. NAS whisky can be every bit as tasty and sophisticated as aged whisky, and it has open the floodgates for whisky distillers to experiment with new blends that can revolutionize the whisky-drinking experience!
Although NAS whisky has experienced a popularity boom in recent years, it’s actually been around for a long time. Johnnie Walker is a well-known example of a NAS whisky blend that has been around for a good while. During its time in the spotlight, it has fortified a reputation as one of the world’s most popular whiskies.
How is NAS Whisky Different From What I’m Used To?
When people see a NAS whisky available for sale, they often assume that it hasn’t aged at all. After all, when someone declines to state their age at a birthday celebration or on an online dating profile, they usually have something to hide, right? Well, when it comes to whisky, matters of age are a little more complicated than you may think.
If you see a bottle of NAS whisky, it’s possible that it actually contains a blend of multiple different whiskeys of different ages. Variety is the spice of life, one that can inject the perfect amount of flavour into your glass. The increase in the popularity of NAS whiskies has given distillers and mixologists more liberty to innovate in creating different blends. While the lack of emphasis on the age of the whisky may get some of the most stringent purists worked up, it’s an opportunity for whisky fans to move beyond age as the sole indicator of quality. Why be constrained by a traditionalist mindset that doesn’t actually reflect the quality of your drink?
What are the Advantages of NAS Whisky?
How have distillers used the rise of NAS whisky to their advantage, you may ask? Blending whiskies of different ages enable them to focus on other aspects of a quality spirit. These special elements include things like colour, flavour, and technique. Increased attention to flavour never goes unnoticed by discerning drinkers. Not to mention, a wider range of colour possibilities opens up new aesthetic avenues for distillers and bartenders. If you’ve ever wanted to see how two or more of your favourite whiskies taste when blended together, the movement toward NAS gives you more opportunities than ever to do just that.
Oh, one more thing -- we’d be remiss not to mention this -- NAS whiskey still gets you in the mood for a party, just like the stuff your grandfather used to love! Now you just have even more creative ways to enjoy the experience.
We hope this exploration of the world of NAS whisky has expanded your mind and your palate! There’s an exciting influx of new flavours, colours, and stories behind the whisky on the market today. At Whisky Loot, we’re excited to introduce you to a variety of delicious whisky at a great price! For all the latest on NAS and other varieties of whisky, follow us at WhiskyLoot.com!