What is the difference between Whisky and Whiskey? The word Whisky itself is simply and anglicization of the term uisge beatha, meaning the water of life. Since the adoption of the more modern word Whisky, it has generally been accepted that whisky (without the 'e') is used in reference to Scotch, Canadian and Japanese whiskies. Irish and American distillers however have over the years adopted the ‘e’ for the spelling whiskey. It is not clear exactly how and why this occurred. There are always exceptions though, such as the American whiskies of Maker's Mark and George Dickel who both use the spelling whisky. It is really the decision of the producer as to whether to include the 'e' or not and has more to do with marketing than law.