12 Difference Between Whiskey, Vodka And Gin

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What Is Whiskey?  

Whiskey or Whisky is a type of distilled alcoholic beverage made from fermented grain mash. Various grains are used for different varieties, including barley, corn, rye and wheat. It is believed that whiskey has origins with the Greeks as far back as the third century, when spirits were distilled to make fragrances. It was in Italy in the thirteenth centaury when whiskey was first distilled as a drinking alcohol and medicine. It become an extremely popular drink in Scotland soon after.

Whiskey is typically aged in wooden casks which are often old sherry casks or may also be made of charred white oak. Whiskey’s flavor and aroma depends on where the product was made and how it was aged. Whiskey’s varied taste is primary based on the type of raw materials used and its quality.

What You Need To Know About Whiskey

  • Whiskey is made by fermenting grains like wheat, barley and rye.
  • Whisky has origins with the Greeks as far back as the third century, when spirits were distilled to make fragrances. It later became a popular drink in Scotland soon after.
  • Whiskey is a stronger alcoholic drink than vodka. Every brand has a different taste.
  • After fermentation, whiskey is distilled then aged in a wooden barrel to gain its strength.
  • Types of whisky include Bourbon, Scotch, Irish, rye, Malt, Japanese, Tennessee, Single Malt and Canadian.
  • Whisky has an ABV (alcohol by volume) of between 40-60%.
  • The color of whiskey ranges from light Gold to dark amber.
  • Due to a variety of admixtures used in preparation of whiskey, it is considered less healthy than vodka.
  • Whiskey is traditionally produced in Ireland, Scotland, USA, Canada and Japan.
  • Whiskey is naturally a stronger drink that takes full control of an individual senses and more so gives a strong or severe hangover.
  • Whiskey is only distilled once and aged. The aging usually occurs in oak barrels, giving whisky a distinctive flavor and color.
  • Whiskey is generally aged for a certain amount of time depending on the regulations of the country of origin.
  • Due to its stronger taste, it is recommended to drink in small sips to avoid a burning sensation on the tongue.
  • The best top selling brands of whiskey include: Jameson, Crown Royal, Jack Daniel’s, Jim Beam, Canadian Club, Chivas Regal, Grant’s, Black Nikka, William Lawson’s and Dewar’s.

What is Vodka?

Vodka is a clear distilled alcoholic beverage from Europe.  It is composed primarily of water and ethanol, but sometimes with traces of impurities and flavorings. Vodka is made by fermenting any food containing sugar and starch like potato, sorghum, corn, rye, wheat and barley. Vodka is a colorless spirit, sometimes infused with fruity additives for additional flavor. Grain-based vodka offers a light, crisp taste, while potato-based vodkas are said to have a fuller, heavier feel on the palate.

What You Need To Know About Vodka

  • Vodka is made by fermenting any food containing sugar and starch like potato, sorghum, corn, rye, wheat and barley.
  • Vodka originated in Poland, then spread throughout the Baltic region.
  • Vodka is considered plain, colorless and tasteless. Many say it taste like bread and feels light and soft on the tongue.
  • Vodka is best served chilled.
  • Vodka plays as the main ingredient in many cocktails including Bloody Mary, Screwdriver, Sex on the Beach, Moscow Mule, White Russian, Black Russian.
  • Vodka generally has an ABV (alcohol by volume) of at least 40%%.
  • Vodka is a clean drink, it has fewer congeners or admixtures and is considered a better drink in terms of health.
  • Drinking pure vodka will get you drunk faster than cocktails but still gets the upper hand in giving you mild hangovers.
  • Vodka is distilled twice or thrice.
  • Drinking Vodka is recommended even to those who are newbies in liquors.
  • The best top selling Vodka brands include Smirnoff, Absolut, Khortytsa, Zubrowka, Hlibny Dar, Nemiroff, Svedka, Pyat Ozer, Magic moments and Soplica.

What Is Gin?

Gin is a flavored spirit that is produced by re-distillation of a high proof neutral spirit with juniper berries and other flavoring agents. Popular botanicals or agents of flavor for gin include citrus elements such as lemon or orange peel, as well as a combination of other spices, which may include star anise, dragon eye, coriander, nutmeg, cinnamon, angelica root etc.

What You Need To know About Gin

  • Gin is a spirit with the dominant flavor of juniper berries. Made by either taking another spirit and re-distilling with juniper berries or taking a fermented mash and distilling it with juniper berries from the get go.
  • Popular botanicals or agents of flavor for gin include citrus elements such as lemon or orange peel, as well as a combination of other spices, which may include star anise, dragon eye, coriander, nutmeg, cinnamon etc.
  • Gin originated as a medicinal liquor made by monks and alchemists across Europe, particularly in southern France, Flanders and the Netherlands.
  • The five distinct varieties of gin include London dry, Old Tom, Plymouth, New American and Dutch.
  • Gin comes with aromatic flavors and therefore does not need to be served chilled.
  • Cocktails popularly made with gin include Ramos Gin Fizz, Martinez, Gin Rickey, Red Snapper, Tom Collins, White Lady, Hanky Panky, Clover club etc.
  • Gin is most commonly consumed mixed with tonic water.
  • Gin generally has an ABV (alcohol by volume) of at least 37.5%.
  • Gins are infused with various herbs, fruits and other botanicals to create new blends. It is important to know that Gin producers must include juniper berries regardless of what other botanicals they use.
  • The best selling Gin Brands include: Gordon’s, Bombay Sapphire, Tanqueray, Beefeater, Seagram’s, Larios and Hendrick’s.

Difference Between Whiskey, Vodka And Gin In Tabular Form

WHISKEY VODKA GIN
Whiskey is made by fermenting grains like wheat, barley and rye. Vodka is made by fermenting any food containing sugar and starch like potato, sorghum, corn, rye, wheat and barley. Gin is a flavored spirit that is produced by re-distillation of a high proof neutral spirit with juniper berries and other flavoring agents.
Whisky has an ABV (alcohol by volume) of between 40-60%.   Vodka generally has an ABV (alcohol by volume) of at least 40%%. Gin generally has an ABV (alcohol by volume) of at least 37.5%.
Types of whisky include Bourbon, Scotch, Irish, rye and Canadian.   There are many different varieties of Vodka from Poland, Russia and Sweden. The five distinct varieties of gin include London dry, Old Tom, Plymouth, New American and Dutch.  
Whiskey is only distilled once and aged. Vodka is distilled twice or thrice.   Gin is distilled twice.
The color of whiskey ranges from light Gold to dark amber.   Vodka is considered plain, colorless and tasteless. Generally colorless.
Whiskey can be served chilled.   Vodka is best served chilled.   Gin comes with aromatic flavors and therefore does not need to be served chilled.
Jameson, Crown Royal, Jack Daniel’s, Jim Beam, Canadian Club, Chivas Regal, Grant’s, Black Nikka, William Lawson’s and Dewar’s. Smirnoff, Absolut, Khortytsa, Zubrowka, Hlibny Dar, Nemiroff, Svedka, Pyat Ozer, Magic moments and Soplica. Gordon’s, Bombay Sapphire, Tanqueray, Beefeater, Seagram’s, Larios and Hendrick’s.