A certainly reliable, yet not often seen mode of travel for whisky can be found in the inconspicuous hip flask. As the days grow colder, bringing your favourite libation - in this case whisky - can be a great accoutrement to a body numbing event. Even if it’s a simple walk in the park, bringing along a trusty flask of chest-warming amber fluid can be just the ticket.
Before discussing the perfect flask, the question may arise: what whisky is best for a flask? The simple answer is to pour in your favourite type, since fermentation doesn’t continue and bacteria don’t grow in alcohol. If it is a personal issue, opt for a single cask, hearty whisky.
Considering the variety of flasks available on the market today, the final decision on which type to buy is ultimately up to the consumer. The design and size of the flask should suit the appetite of the user. Normally they can hold enough for a day or a weekend.
Depending on the material used to make the flask, some more discerning palates may notice a difference in flavour. Plastic flasks, while lightweight, durable and easy on the wallet, may leech into the stronger proof whiskies and alter the flavour somewhat. Metal flasks are the traditional option and shouldn’t affect the whisky for at least a week, although pewter-based flasks can alter the taste after two or three days.
A tried and true option that will not cause any taste-spoilage is the glass flask, although due to its heft and delicate nature, it may not be the ideal way to carry your treasured whisky around, especially when the imbiber has emptied it and may be less coordinated than usual!
Certainly the classic titanium hip flask offers the best of all worlds: no reaction with the alcohol and reasonably lightweight. Since the flavour won’t be altered with titanium, it also gives you the option of keeping the whisky in the flask as long as you like, but who would want to do that? The whole point of carrying the flask is to empty it in a timely manner!
The flashy types can opt for the flasks that sell for $250 or more, but there are also some super-hip (pun intended) and fashionable titanium flasks in the market that will suit every taste.
Although these are often referred to as “hip flasks” - beware! The hip is probably the worst place to carry these as the whisky will get jostled around, and the heat that transfers from your body to the alcohol could spoil the flavour.
Finally for all the germaphobes out there, cleaning the flask is not necessary. Since alcohol prevents bacteria from growing there is no need to do anything more than rinse the container with warm water. Never use any type of detergent as it will permanently coat the inside and seriously change the flavour of anything you pour into it. If you don’t want to cross-contaminate flavours of different whiskies, some people recommend rinsing the flask with a squeeze of citrus which will cut through
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