There was a time when the world of whiskey, or whisky, as the Scots and Canadians spell it, was simple and straightforward.There was American corn whiskey, or bourbon, which was relatively sweet, sometimes rough and always rich brown in color. There was the lighter and sweeter Canadian whisky. There was perfumed, delicate and faintly oily Irish whiskey. There was smoky, blended Scotch.Then came the single malts, which were all but unheard of in my father’s day but began to proliferate as I ...

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