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All about liquor

What is liquor?

An alcoholic beverage made by distilling a fermented mix of grains, fruit or vegetables, liquor encompasses a variety of styles, so there's something for everybody. Generally, liquor falls into six broad categories, including brandy, gin, whiskey, vodka, tequila and rum. Depending on the type, alcohol by volume (ABV) ranges from at least 20% all the way up to 55%.

Flavor profiles of popular liquors

Whiskey is one of the most popular alcoholic drinks in the world. This category again divides itself into other varieties, including Irish whiskey, American whiskey, Scotch whisky, Japanese whisky, blended whiskey and more. Yes, depending on where the whiskey is made, it's spelled either with or without the "e." Bourbon is a famed version of American whiskey with a smooth texture and sweet, rich flavor.

Vodka hails from Poland and Russia, and it counts fermentable sugars such as rye, barley or potatoes as its main ingredients. It's a colorless, odorless and nearly flavorless drink that fans love to sip neat or on the rocks. Its neutral flavor makes it a great ingredient to create famous cocktails such as the Moscow mule or the cosmopolitan.

Brandy comes from fermented fruit juice that's distilled. Grape is the most popular fruit used in brandy, but apples, apricots or peaches are common, too. A popular style of brandy is cognac, which must derive only from the Cognac region in France. It must feature 90% of stipulated grape varieties, making it low in alcohol with a crisp acidic flavor.

Tequila is a distilled alcohol crafted from the blue agave plant. The popular liquor can only come from one of five districts in Mexico. The flavor of tequila varies depending on its type. Enjoy it over ice, or use it to make refreshing cocktails such as martinis and margaritas.

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