The word whisky comes from the Gaelic expression 'Uisge Beatha' and means water of life. The exclusive whisky of Swiss Alpine Spirit AG contains pure spring water from the mountains of Graubünden and Valais. Grains native to these mountain regions are brewed in Bieraria Tschlin SA, distilled in the Sempione Distillery in Valais, bottled in oak casks of fine Valaisan red wine and stored in a gallery under the Swiss National Park. Decades of distilling and malting experience are coupled with selected raw materials from the Swiss Alps.
To create a noble, aromatic whisky from natural products of the Swiss mountain regions in cooperation with local partners - that is our vision. Our strength is the cooperation between the cantons of Graubünden, symbolised by the ibex in our logo, and the Valais, symbolised by the Eringer cow.
1. Native cereals
In the sunny Lower Engadine, cereals have been cultivated for over 2000 years. For our whisky, we use mainly cereals native to the Engadin and Wallis, such as barley (for the Glacier Whisky Single Malt), rye and wheat.
After the summer harvest, the grain is malted and delivered to Martina in the Lower Engadine.
2. Crushing and mashing
In the Bieraria Engadinaisa the grain malt is ground to grist and then mixed with hot water in the mash tun.
During mashing, enzymes convert the starch into malt sugar (maltose). This also produces other types of sugar. The aim of the process is to extract all fermentable sugars.
The process of fermentation is similar to that of brewing beer. The mash produced after fermentation now has an alcohol content of five to eight percent by volume.
In the distillery of Sempione Distillery AG in Brig-Glis, which specialises in whisky production, the raw whisky is distilled from the mash. This raw whisky, with an alcohol content of around 50%, is then filled into oak casks, which hold around 250 litres.
Apart from the quality of the grain, the most important factor for the flavour of the whisky is the ageing in an oak cask over many years. Swiss Alpine Spirit whiskies mature in Valais red wine oak casks for several years in a cool gallery in the mountains directly below the Swiss National Park. Our whisky gets its final flavour in the warehouse of Sempione Distillery in the dry, mild Valais.
Regular checks ensure the perfect quality of our whisky and allow us to determine the optimum time for bottling.