This new whisky from Cutty Sark ups the ante on proof and flavor without breaking the bank.
'Scotch' on Serious Eats
A Scotch cocktail can be simple: whisky, sugar or honey, bitters, ice. Looking for "a drink that warms and soothes" in a season of bitter cold, Kyle Davidson of Blackbird in Chicago changed the equation a bit, bringing some complexity to the cocktail's flavor without overcomplicating it.
If you've been watching top shelf Scotch pricing lately, you would be forgiven for thinking they were selling bottles of actual liquid gold. Enter the Balvenie Tun 1401. Offered at $250, it's a mind-blowing Scotch that can compete with whiskys at twice or even four times the price.
Now, I realize a single malt bourbon is a contradiction in terms, but hear me out. Glenfiddich's latest release in their limited edition line is very special Speyside Scotch. Unlike the vast majority of its compatriots, this whisky is aged entirely in former bourbon barrels.
Releasing whiskies without age statements is a growing yet controversial trend among distilleries, a move away from 10 year, 12 year, 18 year, etc., offerings. The movement has been met with mixed feelings from connoisseurs and critics, skeptical of the trend as a way to cash in on the current boom in demand for whisky despite the limited stocks of older aged malts at most distilleries. While that is certainly a very real concern, we tend to feel that the proof is in the pudding.
By combining bourbon, Scotch and homemade garam masala-spiced apple syrup, you get a delicious play on fall flavors that'll warm you up from the inside.
Compass Box has many lovely bottlings in their lineup, but arguably their breakthrough whisky was the Peat Monster—an unapologetically peaty blend of single malts that has a balanced sweetness to it that makes it an entirely distinct style of whiskey. This year Compass Box celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Peat Monster with a limited edition anniversary release, bottled at 97.8 proof. We gave this special whisky a try.
Scotch is a tricky ingredient to mix with, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't try. Start with these five drinks: four classics and a modern invention, all delicious.
In some circles, Concords are touted as the ultimate grape. These three cocktails showcase Concords with a fresh puree and an easy Concord grape syrup. They're worth whipping up for the color alone, but the flavors would impress even if your guests were blindfolded.
Trader Joe's currently carries two different bottles of Scotch: a 10-year old single malt Highland priced at $20 and a blended Scotch priced at $9. We gave them a try in a blind taste test.
New Johnnie Walker Platinum is about half the price of Johnnie Walker Blue. We tasted them side by side to see how they compare.
These 3 whiskeys—Jim Beam Signature Craft Rare Spanish Brandy, Ardbeg Adrbog, and Laphroaig Càirdeas Port Wood Edition—stand out from the crowd of recent releases.
The oddity of bright, eccentric murals in the middle of a classic, dark space underlines Brian McCracken and Dana Tough's struggle away from bar trends. Nobody else was paying much attention to scotch, they point out. "Smoked meats and malts," the sign proclaims over the door of the Old Sage, sibling to Tavern Law, Spur, and the Coterie Room, succinctly getting to the heart of the mater.
Having trouble remembering the difference between single-malts and blended Scotches? Not sure what so singular about single malts in the first place? Today's your day.
This is a great combination pack to purchase for the Dad who's considering becoming a Scotch enthusiast. The gentle Speyside flavor profile of Glenrothes' whisky is malty and mild, and makes a welcome introduction for those just getting started with Scotch.
Scotch might not seem like the most likely base for a cocktail. Plenty will still argue that Scotch is for sipping—not polluting with anything other than an ice cube, or maybe a few drops of water if you're feeling frisky. But properly deployed in cocktails, Scotch can take on many roles, whether the aggressive frontrunner or a mellow backdrop to other flavors. Here are ten of our favorites in New York right now—from a light lavender number to a dark, brooding sipper.
"I was looking through older cocktail books, and saw a Wild Redhead, which had an awesome name but it was a really boring drink—just Cherry Heering and lemon juice," recalls Meaghan Dorman, the (red)head bartender at New York's Raines Law Room. She spiced it up with some allspice dram and blended Scotch, and the Wildest Redhead was born.
I was pleased to find out that no alarm bells went off when I poured honey and spices into my Scotch—and the resulting concoction was delicious. This DIY Drambuie isn't a carbon copy of the original—and that's the point.
Peat, if you don't know, is decomposed organic matter—grass, heather, moss—that melds into a chunky, ever-deepening formation along the coastal, boggy lands of places like rainy, verdant Scotland and Ireland. It's amazing stuff—an ever-renewing resource—as it can plunge more than a meter deep and take up to a 1,000 years for the lower parts to form into hardened, coal-like, fossilized organic matter, which gets cut into brick-like shapes and used for heating homes. But the softer, newer top part—that's the stuff that holds the most moisture and smokes when you burn it. That's used in part to truncate the germinating of the little barley bits via heat and, in its most vital act, flavor the malted barley in Islay. And it's what makes it utterly different from any other Scotch whisky you will have.
Today we'll tour Aberlour, a smaller-scale distillery that produces about 3.5 million liters of whisky every year. It's just down the road from Glenlivet.