Thursday, April 12, 2012

Space Scotch? Distillery sends malt ingredients into space

I’m a Scotch drinker. Whenever I decide to have something stronger than wine or beer, I reach for (at least) a 20 year-old single malt Scotch whiskey. Pure bliss. As smooth as silk. A hint of peat. Nectar of the Gods.

So when I heard about a possible space matured Scotch whiskey, my thoughts went otherworldly. I imagined a drink even smoother (while still keeping it’s smoky taste) than a 40 year-old single malt Scotch. Oh heavens! Just think of the possibility, and if you’re a Scotch drinker like me, dream that someday you’ll sip a “wee drop.” 

“Ardbeg Distillery, headquartered on the Scottish island of Islay, announced this week that it sent up vials containing unmatured malt ingredients as well as particles of charred oak to the space station, on an unmanned cargo flight that blasted off from Russia's Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan last October. The experiment was facilitated by Houston-based NanoRacks, a company that arranges to send experiments (and the occasional iPhone) to the station for a fee.

Ardbeg's researchers want to find out whether the zero-G environment has an effect on terpenes, chemicals that play a role in giving whisky and other spirits their flavor and aroma. "This is believed to be the first time anyone has ever studied terpenes and other molecules in near zero-gravity," the distillery said in a statement.” (source)

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