Posted 31 October 2017
Earlier in the summer scientists from Linnaeus University in Sweden raised the heckles of whisky fans worldwide with the publication of their article ‘Dilution of whisky – the molecular perspective’ in Nature Scientific Reports. Their study posited that amphipathic molecules (those which are both hydrophilic and have an affinity for water, as well as being hydrophobic and lacking an affinity for water) are a primary driver for the taste of whisky. They then proceeded to examine one such amphipathic molecule – guaiacol. Media reports of the study took things rather to far proclaimed headlines such as ‘Whisky tastes better with water’ and ‘Scientists prove adding water to whisky makes it taste better’. Cue expected uproar.