The exact date whiskey was discovered is unknown. Yet, sources suggest the date lies between 1000 and 1200 AD. Some would say that whiskey-journey could have begun in 2,000 BC ancient Mesopotamia, which is the modern-day equivalent of an area that covers parts of Iraq and Syria. There, the distillation process was born. However, the actual whiskey itself is reported to have begun in Europe at least 1,000 AD.
With it being discovered over 1,000 years ago, many are interested to know the exact process by which it was found.
Whiskey’s First Journey
Whiskey was distilled in Europe and then made its way to mainland Scotland and Ireland thanks to traveling monks. As both Ireland and Scotland lack the land and climate for vineyards, and therefore grapes, the countries turned to produce whiskey through fermenting grain mash.
First Reports Of Alcohol Distillation
The earliest physical reports of alcohol distillation was in Italy in 1250, which was distilled from wine.
This distillation process was created by Ramon Llull in 1232 to 1315.
Thereafter, the first written records of whiskey itself was later in 1405 within the Irish Annals of Clonmacnoise. Around 89 years later in 1494, the distilling of whiskey was well underway in both Ireland and Scotland.
Selling to the public
It wasn’t until 1536 that the production of whiskey was then sold to the public. This was due to monks looking for independence. To achieve independence, they needed to produce their own income. Hence, they turned to whiskey and sold their creations to the public.
During this time, the monasteries were dissolved when King Henry VIII Of England took charge. Hence, many were lacking money from the monarchy and needed to seek financial support. Distillation was the clear answer.
1600 And Onwards
After 1600, many Europeans were colonizing America and in their cases they took whiskey and in their brains, they took the knowledge of whiskey distillation.
This is where worldwide whiskey knowledge and production were born.
During this time, the Irish and the Scottish were pretty settled in their own space and started to produce their own unique types of grain and mash to distill whiskey.
The First Commerical Distillery
Reports state that the first ever commercial distillery was born in Louisville, Kentucky in 1783. Evan Williams created this distillery on the bank of the Ohio River and from there, whiskey really took off.
It was almost 70 years later that the first-ever blended whiskey was made, which is now enjoyed all over the world. Andrew Usher mixed traditional pot whiskey with a blend of batch from a Coffey still in 1850. Soon after, these blends traveled to the United States, and there, many people enjoyed this blend.
Now, whiskey is enjoyed all across the world from Europe to America thanks to the first-ever discovery of whiskey and its unique distillation process.