since 1965  (really?)

Whiskey: Its History and Culture

This course listing applies to a Spring 2010 course. To find current courses, check out the Find a Course page.

Spring 2010
Celtic 198, Section 2
2 Unit(s)



About the Course:

The word whiskey comes from the Gaelic "uisce beatha" meaning literally "water of life." From its humble origins in the monasteries of medieval Ireland and Scotland, the drink has stretched across the globe from North America to Japan and the modern single malt is widely celebrated as the world's premier after table drink. With over 1,000 flavor affecting compounds and a range of around 400 scientifically identifiable flavors, a glass of peated aged single malt Scotch is the world's most complex spirit . This course gives students a detailed insight into the art of the single malt's production and an understanding of the history and culture that led from the coarse medicine of medieval Gaeldom to the modern esteem of Scotland's distilleries as the "Vineyards of the North."

The object of this class is to educate students about the vibrant history of Ireland and Scotland’s national drink and the cultural associations between whisky and the region that produced it. By its conclusion, students should be familiar with the history and composition of the drink as well as the differences between Irish ‘whiskey’ and Scottish ‘whisky.’ We will explore the process through which whisky is distilled and the relationships between the decisions made at each step in that process and the resultant dram. Students will also learn the difference between the drink’s various styles (Single Malt, Blended, Pure Pot Still, Grain Whiskey) and between the distinct characters and heritages of Scotland’s whisky regions (Islay, the Highlands, Speyside, Campbeltown, and the Lowlands.) 

 In this class, students will learn what whiskey really is and gain the necessary skills to appreciate the subtle nuances that make whisk(e)y truely unique!


How to Enroll:

send an email to


first official class on Monday, February 1st

Course Contact: whiskeydecal AT


Faculty Sponsor: Professor Daniel Melia

Time & Location:

Fionnan O'Connor
30247 DwinelleM 5p-8p2/01full

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Course info last modified January 27, 2010. This page has been viewed 2590 times.

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