7 Outstanding World Whiskies to Try Now

You’ve heard of going around the world in 80 days, but how about going around the world in seven drams? Whether you’re a bourbon believer or a die-hard scotch fan, a trip outside the realm of your own whisky boundaries is a great way to further your education and strengthen your palate. While the countries that produce whisky on a larger scale—the U.S., Scotland, Ireland, Canada, and Japan—create top-notch whiskies, other nations are giving them a run for their money. Just last year, Adnams Rye Malt from England rose above hundreds of whiskies to earn a spot on our 2019 Top 20, while other world whiskies—like Sierra Norte Yellow corn whisky from Mexico and Rampur Select single malt from India—have placed on the list in years past.

Several world whiskies are highlighted in our Summer 2020 Buying Guide, including the standouts below. Each whisky on this list comes from a different country, from Armenia to Australia. If you’re feeling adventurous, seek out these bottles and take a trip around the globe from your glass!

7 NEW WORLD WHISKIES TO SEEK OUT

Dram Hunters 7 year old Southern Coast Distillers Single Cask Australian Single Malt (Cask No. 112)—95 points, $250
Without water, this oddball is deeply herbaceous and spiced with aniseed, coriander, hardwood smoke, brown sugar, and powerful oak throughout the nose and palate. Add some water, and suddenly the sunbeam breaks through the crack in the curtain. There are still plenty of herbal and spice notes, but now more dimension emerges—orange, forest fruits, semisweet chocolate, coffee ice cream, and sweet woodsmoke, fully relaxed in its integration. The finish is savory, then sweet—clean and rich, a revelation. (150 bottles; U.S. exclusive) —Susannah Skiver Barton

Amrut 6 year old Aatma Single Cask Indian Single Malt (Cask No. 4675)—94 points, $215
Sweet saline peat on the nose, along with red berries, milk chocolate, hazelnuts, dates, and nougat. It’s lush and rich, qualities that extend to the palate’s oily, dense character, which is floral and soapy before shifting into plummy red berry fruit, dark chocolate, roasted hazelnuts, and a panoply of spices. The finish is ashy, peppery, sweet, and mouthwatering, with long, lingering smokiness. Water is a must to showcase the rounded, powerfully flavorful balance of this whisky. (360 bottles; U.S. exclusive) —Susannah Skiver Barton

Penderyn 10 year old Madeira Cask-Finished Single Cask Welsh Single Malt (No. 047-3)—94 points, $110
When you feel you’ve earned a treat, pour a dram of this bottled candy. The nose is a tropical fruit basket, with papaya, guava, mango, jackfruit, and dried kiwi; extra goodies come in the form of Jordan almonds and vanilla sandwich cookies. Consistent tropical flavors on the silky palate. Nuttiness, gentle spice, milk chocolate, and coffee bean emerge with water. Intensely satisfying on the finish, with persistent fruit, integrated oak, almonds, and grapefruit peel(243 bottlesU.S. exclusive) —Susannah Skiver Barton

Hammerhead 30 year old Czech Single Malt (Cask No. 378)—91 points, $425
The malt shows well on the nose, with toasted almonds, cooked cereal, and rolled oats; there’s also coriander seed, dill, dewy grass, peaches, and nectarines. It’s intensely spiced and herbaceous on the palate: clove-studded orange, chai, sandalwood, pouch tobacco, and more coriander and aniseed. With water, milk chocolate, almonds, and hazelnuts emerge. The finish is oaky, with hints of tobacco and persistent spice, especially coriander. Compelling. (300 bottles; U.S. exclusive) —Susannah Skiver Barton

M&H Whisky in Bloom Lightly Peated Young Israeli Single Malt—90 points, $55
M&H (Milk & Honey), founded in 2013, is Israel’s first whisky distillery. This expression and its sibling bottling Double Cask are M&H’s first to hit the U.S. Aged 2 years in bourbon, STR (shaved, toasted, and re-charred), and Islay casks, its nose offers candied lemon, lime leaf, tea, and licorice. The palate is soft, fruity, and spiced, with chocolate and light peat. The finish is spiced and lightly peated, with tropical fruit accents. Brilliant texture and an unusual spice profile. —David Fleming

A bottle of Drayman's Highveld South African 5 year old Single Malt.Drayman’s Highveld 5 year old French Oak Reserve South African Single Malt—89 points, $100
This is a highly fragrant young whisky with aromas of peeled satsumas, zested lime, rosebuds, graham cracker, sponge cake, and a trace of aromatic spice. Light to medium-bodied with sweet orange honey, marmalade, walnut, and malt, then a slow crescendo of cocoa, spice, and cereal notes to a finish of grated chocolate. (1,200 bottles) —Jonny McCormick

Hye-Land 12 year old Small Batch Armenian Whisky—87 points, $39
Hye-Land’s inaugural U.S. release, made from 100% malted wheat at Eraskh Winery in Armenia (which also has a distillery), aged in Caucasus Mountain oak barrels, and then finished in Armenian brandy barrels. The nose offers seasoned oak, citrus, ginger, and allspice. The palate brings sweet notes of melon, coconut shavings, tobacco, Christmas cake, ginger, and clove, all lightly accented by black pepper. The finish is viscous and has balanced sweetness. —David Fleming

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