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Although whiskey is among a class of spirits — like brandy, vodka, gin and tequila — with zero carbs on their own, flavored whiskey may bring some carbs to the table. Unfortunately, that extra flavor doesn’t always come free! For example, even though a shot of whiskey has zero carbs, a shot of Knob Creek Smoked Maple Bourbon Whiskey has 4.6 carbs.
If you’re interested in adding flavor to whiskey, start by considering what existing notes the whiskey has that you could complement. If it’s an American whiskey, you may want to complement sweet, smoky tones with something like warm spices — these can accentuate delicious tones like honey, nuts, vanilla and caramel. Keep your flavoring elements in the whiskey for about two weeks, shaking it every couple of days.
There are so many great flavored whiskeys out there — and perhaps the best overall choice is Knob Creek Smoked Maple Bourbon Whiskey, which provides a sippable, aromatic whiskey that ticks all the boxes. If you’re after a spicy whiskey, try George Dickel Tabasco Barrel Finish Whisky. Or if you like vanilla, the best choice is probably Crown Royal Canadian Vanilla Whisky.
A whiskey’s flavor starts in fermentation when yeast feeds on sugars and produces alcohol as well as congeners (a fancy word for flavor-enhancing compounds). Another significant contributor to a whiskey’s flavor is the cask it’s aged in. For example, a bourbon cask is made of white American oak and can add notes like spice and vanilla, whereas a European oak wine cask can add clove, dried fruit and orange flavors.