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How to Host Your Own Whiskey Tasting

Organize a tasting party with your liquor-lovin' friends.

Darryl Robinson, host of Cooking Channel's Drink Up, tells us how it's done.

Pick A Theme: With so many whiskeys on the market, it's best to choose a style. Try the scotches from Highland or Islay or do all the different American whiskeys.

Have the Correct Glassware: A snifter or tulip-shaped glass works best for tastings. Have one glass for each person and each kind of whiskey. If your party is larger, have just one glass for each taster.

Limit the Number of Whiskeys: Don't taste more than five or six at a time or you'll overwhelm your palate. Once you numb you smelling senses, it takes 20 to 30 minutes for them to come back.

Food and Water: If you want your guests to actually remember the evening, make sure to have plenty of extra H20 available as well as small bites like unsalted crackers, light cheeses and fruit.

Taste Like A Pro: Pour 1/2 to 1 1/4 ounces of whiskey into a snifter and tilt the glass to observe the color (you're supposed to be determining the age -- darker is older). Then swirl it around to release the aromas and stick your nose into the glass. As you smell the liquor, recognize if it's smoky, bitter or sweet. Finally, take a sip and move it around in your mouth for flavor before you swallow and observe the finish.

Write Tasting Notes: Write down what each smells and tastes like, as well as the sensations each makes in your mouth.

More from The Nest:

The Complete Guide to Whiskey

Barware Made Easy

Cocktail Party Basics

-- The Nest Editors

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