LEXICON: From Ian MacLeod to isopropanol

Brands of bottler Ian MacLeod include Chieftain’s and Dun Bheagan.
The abbreviation ‘IB’ stands for ‘independent bottling’ by a specialised bottler.
Adding ice to a blend is fine, but it should be avoided for single malts.
Whiskies in the ‘Ichiro’s Malt’ series are selected by Ichiro Akuto from Japan.
'Ileach' is a Scottish Gaelic word for an inhabitant of the isle of Islay.
The brand name 'The Ileach' is used for a peaty bastard malt from Islay.
The Imperial malt whisky distillery was mothballed as recently as 1998.
The old imperial system of units originated in the British empire in 1824.

The smell and taste of iodine are typical traits of some Islay malt whiskies.
Irish whiskey is spelled and distilled different from Scotch & other whiskies.
The small island Islay is part of the Hebrides - and home to eight distilleries.
The Isle of Harris is not an entire island. The other half is called 'Lewis'.
Even though it is right next to Islay, the Isle of Jura has just one distillery.
Just like Isle of Harris, the Isle of Lewis is just half an island.
The name 'Islebrae' was used for a peated malt whisky distilled at Moffat.
Isopropanol is also known as ‘isopropyl alcohol’ with the formula C3H8O.

Casks of whisky are stord 'in bond' between distillation and bottling.
Inchfad is one of the many different brands produced at Loch Lomond.
The Inchgower distillery was built in 1871 near the town Buckie.
The brand Inchmoan has been used by Loch Lomond distillery in the past.
... and Inchmurrin is yet another Loch Lomond name suitable for dick jokes.
An independent bottler used to do just that, but some now own a distillery.
Just the kind of bottling that an independent bottler would release.
Interbev is an international brand management conglomerate....
... that owns the Inver House Distillers subsidiary in Scotland (+/- UK).
The Invergordon grain whisky distillery was founded around 1960.
Inverleven was a malt whisky distilled in the Dumbarton grain whisky plant.

I could think of less than two dozen ‘I’ words and phrases related to malt whisky.
There probably are many more, so if you spot any whisky phrases I’ve missed,
please let me know so I can update the information on MM. And don’t forget to
check out some of the other sections of Malt Madness, like the distillery profiles,
the Beginner’s Guide to Scotch whisky or the interactive whisky map of Scotland.


IB / Independent Bottling

Independent bottling

Smaller liquor stores often offer a range of ‘official bottlings’ from maybe
one or two dozen malt whisky distilleries in Scotland. So, most people are
familiar with the bottles that are released by Glenfiddich, Glenlivet, etc.
But if it wasn’t for independent bottlings the general public would never
get the chance to taste a single malt from Allt-A-Bhainne or Glentauchers.

In the past independent bottlers exclusively bought casks from distilleries
to bottle them under their own label. Some distilleries even forbade bottlers
to use the name of the distillery on the labels of the independent bottlings.
During the lean years of the whisky industry bottlers had their pick from the
best casks of many distilleries. Unfortunately, in recent years selecting the
casks is no longer possible for many smaller independent bottlers.

Nevertheless, the number of independent Scotch whisky bottlers has been
growing steadily over the past two decades, especially if you count all the
whisky clubs that bottle the occasional cask for members. And a few bottlers
like Adelphi even decided to simply build or buy their own distillery.


Water is an ingredient of whisky - and sometimes adding extra water to your glass can be a good thing.
However, that goes for the liquid form of H2O. Its solid state ice may look and feel cool, but you can
destroy a perfectly fine malt whisky by adding ice cubes to it. Many of the carbohydrates that give each
malt whisky its unique bouquet (including esters and phenols for example) need a temperature of at
least 20-30 degrees Celcius to be released. Adding ice to a simple blended whisky is fine though...

Ileach (2)

The word ‘Ileach’ doesn’t just mean a person living on Islay, but it’s also a whisky brand - more precisely
a bastard malt whisky from one of the distilleries on the island. The brand has been around for decades,
during which period the ownership of many distilleries changed. So, the ‘recipe’ may have changed too.

Imperial system

The British imperial system was defined for the first time in the Weights and Measures Act of 1824, but it
was largely based on much older measures like the furlong, the rod and the pint. For decades I did not
understand why Britain introduced a faulty system 30 years after the French had already come up with the
superior metric system. After the British voted for Brexit in 2016 I concluded that spite is in their nature.

Ileach (1)

An ‘Ileach’ is one of the inhabitants of the Isle of Islay off the Western Coast of Scotland.
These days, there are only a little over 3,000 Ileachs left - if we only count those still living on the island.
With 8 active distilleries (and more on the way), whisky is very important for the economy on Islay. During
the annual ‘Feis Ile’  whisky festival that lasts for a week, the population of the island more than doubles!
Another fun fact: famous whisky and food writer Martine Nouet is now is one of those Ileachs as well.

In Bond

You don’t have to be Donald Trump to evade the taxes on whisky that is stored ”in bond” - because that
is the only kind of (legal) whisky where taxes and duties have not been levied yet. The casks and bottles of
untaxed whisky might seem like the dream target for for criminals looking to score a hat-trick (they
would be committing larceny and then tax evasion AGAIN), but those bonded warehouses are guarded.
(Besides, I’ve looked into the logistics of it and you would need a lorry and a five man team... ;-)

Inver House

The foundation for the company Inver House was laid in 1956 when Publicker Industries (from the USA)
introduced their Inver House Rare blended Scotch whisky. Inver House Distillers Ltd was founded in
1964 and for a brief period of time the company owned their own whisky distilling complex at Airdrie.


Most variants of the compound isopropanol (a.k.a. isopropyl alcohol) have the chemical formula C3H8O.
Isopropanol is a simple secondary alcohol, useful for use in antiseptics and detergents but not in drinks.


The spirits conglomerate Interbev was established in 2006 as the international branch of Thaibev.
Some of its brands (in 2017) are Balblair, Balmenach, Knockdhu, Pulteney, Speyburn & Hankey Bannister.

Irish Whiskey

The Scotch Whisky Association likes to suggest that (malt) whisky was invented in Scotland, but there is
some evidence for the fact that the Irish actually beat them to it. This is a largely moot point - Scotland was
named after the Irish tribe the Scotti who settled in many parts of Northern Britain and even one millennium
later (In the 16th and 17th century) people and knowledge migrated between these two regions. The legal
distinction between the two types of whisk(e)y and the difference in production is a fairly recent invention.

(* The old technology used for Malt Madness doesn’t allow me to present the information in the most user-friendly
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