Filling the casks
In small distilleries the whisky is filled straight from the spirit receiver into the casks. Larger distilleries use an intermediate spirit receiver from which the whisky is then pumped into a large collecting tank, the spirit vat, in which the individual batches are already vatted. This way individual taste differences between separate batches can be levelled out.
By law, each cask must be marked with a unique number, the name of the distillery and the distillation year. This used to be done with a template and a paintbrush. However, in recent years more and more distilleries have begun to use barcodes readable only by computers. What a shame!
There are differently sized casks for maturation:
1 Quarter cask = 33 us. gal. (125 Litres)
1 Barrel = 41.7 us. gal. (158 Litres)
1 ASB = American standard barrel = 52.8 us. gal. (200 Litres)
1 Hogshead = 66 us. gal. (250 Litres)
1 Butt = 132 us. gal. (500 Litres)
Pungeons (or puncheons) and pipes 158,5 – 184,9 us. gal.; (600 – 700 litres) are used only rarely.
Filling the crystal-clear new make into casks is the last step in the production of single malt whisky. It is followed by the maturation in the warehouse.