A Summer of Luxury | Whisky isn’t just for winter says The Last Drop Distillers
Whisky isn’t just for winter. Forget everything you know about the great (rainy) British summertime: this year, we Brits have embraced an altogether more Mediterranean attitude to match the sizzling temperatures. But as we linger over a late supper, or gather in the garden for an aperitif as you catch the last heat of the day, few would consider reaching for a bottle of fine blended Scotch.
Conventional wisdom – marketing, really – has conditioned us to think of richly-flavoured, lusciously-textured dark spirits as strictly cold-weather drinks. In our collective consciousness, hot weather equals iced beer or chilled rosé – certainly not a glassful of smoky Single Malt with that trademark warming burn. Right? Wrong. At The Last Drop Distillers, we’re well versed in the best ways to enjoy delicious aged spirits year-round. Try our suggestions to make the most of your spirits cupboard, whatever the weather.
If you like your drink…
Long and refreshing
Try a twist on a Whisky Soda, using a blended malt with a slight sweetness to it. Our first ever bespoke bottling, Tom’s Blend No.1, is perfect for this: finished in sherry barrels, the sweetness this imparts is perfect for a summertime cocktail. The twist? Add a measure of lavender and strawberry shrub before topping up with soda. Shrubs, or drinking vinegar, makes drinks mouth-wateringly refreshing – and they’re easy to make at home or purchase online.
Neat or near as
Feeling so hot you want to dive into the nearest pool? You know what goes really well with all that water? Whisky – no, really! Purists may turn their noses up at the idea, but adding a few drops of tepid water to neat whisky reduces the alcohol content and increases the temperature of the spirit slightly. This releases aroma molecules so you get a more intense noseful of aromas than usual as you sip – and less of that warming alcohol burn.
As a cocktail
Dark spirits are frequently relegated to cocktails which are classics of the colder months – think sours and other short drinks. But there are a raft of cocktails old and new which are as refreshing as they are delicious. Whisky pairs brilliantly with citrus, while Bourbon is the base of summer classic, the Mint Julep. And let’s not forget the Sazerac – a whisky cocktail hailing from one of the hottest places in the USA, New Orleans.
If you love a spritz, try it with whisky, lemon juice and soda – even blending in an egg white for fans of a whisky sour. Think you have to leave your Cognac in the cupboard until Autumn? Think again: we love a French 75 Cognac instead of gin. There is no drink we can think of more evocative of hazy, shaded terraces in the South of France.
The possibilities are truly endless – the key is keeping an open mind.