The Angels share


The angels share, a term often used around whisky / whiskey distillery’s for the purpose of this blog I will use the former spelling. What does it refer to you ask.

When whisky is slowly ageing in the cask around 2% each year is lost. We now know that this is through the process of evaporation through the wood of the cask and into the surrounding environment. Today this is an easy natural process for us to all understand.


The legend of the angels share

Now take your self back to 1494, Friar John Cor has just received his shipment of malt from king James IV of Scotland. After many hours of hard work he has finished putting the last of his spirit into the casks for maturation.

Alchomix, Whisky casks, Image

After waiting a respectable time of 12 years before returning to sample and bottle his Uisage beatha or water of life. He finds much to his surprise there is much less liquid in each cask, that what he lovingly put in 12 years back. Why would this be he must have thought. Has someone stolen it? They are still sealed so this cant be the reason. Is there any cracks or holes in the cask? Seems unlikely he must have thought, as it had happened to all of the casks. What was the reason behind this.


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Probably after much thought and several samplings of his Aqua Vitae or water of life. He must have thought maybe, it was the angels who have descended down from up high to sample his most predacious of commodities. Thus the angels share was born a small sacrifice if you will, to ensure that each and every bottle of whisky is the best it can be.

Alchomix, Whisky sample, Image

Although the likely hood of this been the real reason for the angel share. It stands as a testament to the relentless efforts of humans, to further understand ones own environment in the best way he or she can. The quest for further knowledge or put simply science.


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