Whiskey or Whisky, depending on where you are from, is one of the most popular alcoholic beverages in the world. Originated in Scotland, Whisky is loosely derived from the Gaelic term “uisge beatha”, or “usquebaugh”, which translates to ‘water of life. While scotch whisky is usually regarded as the best whiskey in India and abroad, there are several other countries, including our own, that makes top-quality whisky. Furthermore, you get a lot of variations depending on budget, flavour profile, composition, age, colour, and more. In case you are on the lookout for a nice whiskey to treat yourself or your loved ones, we have curated a list of the best whiskey brands available in India – including Scotch and Indian brands. But before that…

What is Whiskey?

As discussed, whiskey or whisky is an alcoholic drink that originated in Scotland around the 16th Century. Since then, it has travelled across the globe with every country trying out its own variation. Originally though, in Scotland, whiskey is defined as an alcoholic beverage made using water and malted barley, and occasionally other cereal grains. It has to be matured in oak barrels for a minimum of three years and must have a minimum alcohol by volume of 40%.

How to drink Whisky?

You can drink whisky in a number of ways; the most popular ones are neat (without any mixing), with ice, and with water or soda. Usually, whisky is also used in several popular cocktails such as Old Fashioned, Highball, and Manhattan. The best experience to drink true Scotch whiskey is neat in a custom glass like the Glencairn or any other option with a tulip design.

List Of 15 Best Indian Whiskey Brands In India

Amrut

Amrut
Amrut

Amrut is one of the pioneers of quality Indian whisky. Started by Amrut Distilleries a few decades back, Amrut is the first single malt whisky brand in India. In fact, it has picked up rare accolades from some of the finest whiskey connoisseurs in the world. Having started with just a couple of single malts, Amrut now sells blended whiskies, rums, gins, and several other alcoholic beverages in India and across the world.

Amrut Fusion is one of the highest-rated single malt whiskies in the world. In fact, in 2010, famed reviewer Jim Murray tagged it the 3rd best whisky in the world.

Paul John

Paul John
Paul John

Following Amrut’s footsteps to create a premium, world-renowned whiskey brand from India, Paul John was set up in 1996 but started on its current vision only in the last decade. Based in Goa, India, Paul John has also impressed connoisseurs across the world with its high-quality single malt whiskey, which uses elements from Scottish peat to create an amalgamation of select Indian and Scottish malts.

The Paul John Nirvana is the brand’s most affordable single malt whisky, which is said to take on the premium single malts of Scotland. The whiskey offers notes of green apple and cinnamon to a lot of reviewers.

Rampur

Rampur
Rampur

Rampur is a part of Radico Khaitan, one of the biggest liquor companies in India. This brand was set up to produce premium single malts with malted barley sourced from the North Indian plains. Rampur is a luxury whisky brand and caters more to the overseas crowd than to Indian audiences just yet. This whisky brand was set up by the company’s management in 2016 to show the world that India can compete with the complex flavour profiles of whiskey from across the world.

Rampur’s latest expression is the Asava Single Malt, which is hand-crafted and aged in the foothills of the Himalayas. It has been matured in ex-bourbon and ex-Cabernet Sauvignon casks for a superb profile.

Kamet

Kamet
Kamet

Kamet is a relatively new player in the Indian whiskey market but has gained a foothold swiftly thanks to its affordable pricing and quality offering. Envisioned by Ansh Khanna and Master Sommelier Ken Fredrickson, this brand focuses on using six-row barley for its expressions to keep a significant USP from other players in India and abroad. Kamet is named after a 20,000-feet+ high mountain in the Himalayas.

The Kamet Single Malt is distilled in copper pot stills and matured in a combination of ex-Bourbon American Oak, ex-wine French Oak, and ex-Sherry casks.

Best Scotch Whiskey Brands Available in India with Prices

Johnnie Walker

Johnnie Walker
Johnnie Walker

Johnnie Walker is one of the oldest and most well-known whisky brands in the world, having originated more than 200 years back in a grocery store in Scotland. Owned by Diageo, JW is known for its blended scotch whisky, which it produces across price ranges and flavour profiles. It is also one of the most sold whiskey brands in the world.

The Johnnie Walker Black Label is one of its most sought-after bottles; probably taking a significant share in the 223 million bottles that Johnnie Walker sells every year.

Glenfiddich

Glenfiddich
Glenfiddich

Glenfiddich is a brand synonymous with single malt Scotch whisky. Originating from the Speyside region of Scotland, Glenfiddich has been in the business of whiskey distilling and producing since 1887. The brand is named after the Gaelic translation of “Valley of the Deer” and has one of the highest whisky sales across the globe.

The Glenfiddich 12 is the brand’s signature whisky, aged for a minimum of 12 years. This whiskey is usually regarded as the stepping stone into premium single malt Scotch.

The Glenlivet

The Glenlivet
The Glenlivet

The Glenlivet, much like Glenfiddich, is a Speyside-origin Scotch whisky brand that has its distillery near Ballindalloch in Moray, Scotland. It is known for producing one of the most subtle kinds of whiskies, synonymous with most Speyside brands. Glenlivet originates from Gaelic for “valley of the smooth flowing one”.

The Glenlivet Nadurra is a unique bottle from this brand, as it is drawn from casks made from American White Oak, which have never been used to mature Scotch whiskey.

Laphroaig

Laphroaig

Moving to the lower regions of Scotland, you can find a popular whiskey brand Laphroaig in the Islay region of the nation. Started in 1815, Laphroaig is named after the area of land at the head of Loch Laphroaig on the south coast of the island of Islay. Although the brand known for its peated whiskies started as an independent firm, it has since been acquired by liquor giant Beam Suntory.

The Laphroaig 10 is one of its most popular expressions, offering a blast of smoke and ash flavour to the uninitiated.

Teacher’s

Teacher's
Teacher’s

Teacher’s is one of the finest and most sought-after blended Scotch whisky brands in India and across the world. With a distillery in Glasgow, Scotland, the brand was first introduced to the world in 1884 and is known for its balanced smokey and sweet expressions. Since then, it has been acquired and is now part of Beam Suntory.

The Teacher’s 50 is one of the most popular premium blended Scotch whiskies in India. It offers a smooth taste at an affordable price tag.

Lagavulin

Lagavulin

Another popular brand from the Islay region of Scotland is Lagavulin. Known for making some of the best peated Scotch whiskies in the world, the brand is now owned by Diageo. It started its distillery way back in 1816, with over 200 years of producing Islay malts under its belt.

The Lagavulin 16 is one of the brand’s classic expressions that offers peat lovers that blast of smoke, ash, and barbeque, while also offering mellow notes due to a minimum of 16 years of ageing.

Macallan

Macallan
Macallan

Macallan is a Scotch whisky brand known for producing some of the most coveted whiskey bottles in the world. It started its distillery in Craigellachie, Moray, Scotland back in 1824. The brand offers age statements ranging from 12 years to even 78 years in some limited edition bottles, matured in both ex-Sherry and ex-Bourbon casks.

You can check out the entry-level expression from the brand, Macallan 12, which gives you a sneak peek into one of the most luxurious brands of Scotch whisky in the world.

Monkey Shoulder

Monkey Shoulder

Monkey Shoulder is a Scotch whisky brand that has been gaining popularity for the past few years, especially after reviewers and critics liking the brand in recent times. Developed by the Kininvie distillery in Dufftown, Moray, which produces single malt Scotch whiskey, Monkey Shoulder offers unique blended malts with a subtle and neutral-leaning flavour profile.

The Monkey Shoulder blended malt uses a mix of Kininvie, Glenfiddich, and Balvenie single malts to create a blend that is loved by millions across the world.

Ballantine’s

Ballantine's
Ballantine’s

Owned by Pernod Ricard, Ballantine’s is a popular Scotch whisky brand that sells bottles with as much as 50 single malts and four single grains. In India too, Ballantine’s is one of the highest-selling whiskey brands, especially in the budget range. Its history can be traced back to 1827, set up by George Ballantine in Edinburgh, Scotland.

The Ballantine’s 12 is a popular blended Scotch whisky that offers an age statement along with an affordable price tag.

Aberlour

Aberlour
Aberlour

Another one from the Speyside region of Scotland, Aberlour is a popular whisky brand having been founded in 1879. The current owner is Chivas Brothers, one of the largest liquor companies in the world. Against the success of Glenfiddich and The Glenlivet, Aberlour has always remained a relatively unknown brand among Scotch whiskey drinkers.

The Aberlour 12 is the brand’s top-selling bottle, aged in American ex-bourbon casks. It is known to have notes of apples, ginger, and cinnamon.

Talisker

Talisker
Talisker

One of the more unique brands from the world of Scotch whisky, Talisker is situated in the Island region of Scotland. The brand is currently owned by Diageo, and its flagship whiskey is part of the Classic Malts series by the company. Operations started in 1830 when Hugh MacAskill leased the site from the MacLeods and built the Talisker distillery.

The Talisker 10 is its most popular expression yet. The malt offers a flavour profile like no other whisky from Speyside, Islay, Highlands, or Lowlands regions in Scotland.

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Best Whisky Brands in India With Price List

Best Whiskey BrandsPrice* (Gurugram, Haryana)
AmrutStarting at Rs 900
Paul JohnStarting at Rs 850
RampurStarting at Rs 8,000
KametStarting at Rs 2,800
Johnnie WalkerStarting at Rs 1,000
GlenfiddichStarting at Rs 2,900
The GlenlivetStarting at Rs 2,900
LaphroaigStarting at Rs 3,800
Teacher’sStarting at Rs 1,100
LagavulinStarting at Rs 7,500
MacallanStarting at Rs 5,500
Monkey ShoulderStarting at Rs 3,500
Ballantine’sStarting at Rs 1,000
AberlourStarting at Rs 3,200
TaliskerStarting at Rs 5,399
*Prices are subject to change

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