Why You Should Try a Flight

Why You Should Try a Flight

What is a flight?

We’re not talking airplanes or staircases here.  In the world of liquor a flight is a grouping of samples of similar spirits.  They are usually comprised of 3 to 5 different samples.  The main purpose of a flight is to highlight the similarities and differences of the chosen spirits.

Aren’t flights just rounds of shots?

While it may look like your bartender just brought you a round for all of your friends, flights are intended to be sipped.  You’re not trying to get drunk here.  Again, the main purpose of trying a flight is to compare the spirits.  Ultimately you should walk away with a better understanding of the spirit.  If you take each of the samples as a shot, you’re likely to end up stumbling away with nothing gained.

So no shots.  How do I get the most out of a flight?

I’m glad you asked!  When doing a flight, don’t drink all of one sample before moving onto the next.  You want to drink all of the samples in sync to really get the best comparisons.  The beauty of a flight is that you have 3-5 different wines/whiskeys/beers at one time, rather than one after the other.

Ok I tasted them, but I don’t know too much about the spirits in my flight.

That’s pretty normal.  Many bars/restaurants will have handouts to give you more information about what you’re drinking.  These handouts will usually have a tasting description from the distiller/brewer/maker.

Or, see if your favorite watering hole offers guided flight tastings.  These are class-like groups lead by someone who can give you more information such as the history of the spirit and anything special about how it’s made.

One last question:  How do you pick what spirits should go in a flight?

Every good flight has a central theme.  For scotch it could be a collection of blended scotches or the same brand with different ages.  You could try a wine flight of oaked vs unoaked wines.  OR a bourbon flight focused on one flavoring grain.  The possibilities are endless.

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