Should You Get Whiskey On The Rocks
Ordering a whiskey on the rocks may sound cool, but it may not necessarily be what you want. Ice actually numbs your palate and dulls the flavors, Tardie laments. But hey, sometimes you just want a cold glass of whiskey I say go for it.
As for the type of ice, youre best off going with a large ice cube or ice ball. Small cubes or chunks of ice will melt faster than larger pieces, diluting your whiskey more quickly. If you want the chilling effect without the dilution, you might consider adding chilled whiskey stones.
Best Whiskey For An Amaretto Whiskey Sour
You can use any type of whiskey for an amaretto whiskey sour! We prefer it with bourbon, but anything works! Our mantra is that a drink is only as high quality as the liquor. Try for something in the mid-priced range. However in this case, amaretto does help to cover over a sub-par whiskey: so its a drink where liquor quality is less important .
- Bourbon: Our top pick! The sweet flavor of bourbon whiskey is ideal
- Jameson Irish whiskey: Jameson is very mild and makes for an even more balanced drink
- Rye whiskey: If youre a whiskey fan, youll enjoy the spicy finish of rye whiskey
You Can Put Red Wine In It
A barspoon of red wine not only adds a glorious glow to your Whiskey Sour, it also provides it with a slightly altered moniker, aka the New York Sour, and more important adds to the drinks balance. A dry red wine cuts through all that acidity and balances it out, says McCoy. His recommendation: a red with medium tannic structure, like sangiovese or merlot. He also likes to play around with other wine-based aromatized and fortified wines, like vermouth, sherry or amaro.
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The History Of The Whiskey Sour
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The oldest known mention of a whiskey sour dates back to a bartending guide from 1862, though it’s thought to have existed for at least a century before that. This drink has been popular for so long because it requires only four ingredients: whiskey, lemon, water, and sugar. . However, half a decade later, many bartenders were once again ditching the pre-made sour mix in favor of fresh lemon juice. Today, some people prefer that the simple syrup be prepared ahead of time, claiming a smoother mix.
Despite its simple ingredient list, a perfect whiskey sour can be elusive the drink is easily put off balance by a poor ratio of its components. Too much syrup and the drink tastes too sweet like a sour candyand the taste of the whiskey itself is overwhelmed. Because of this, a well made whiskey sour is often considered a sophisticated drink choice, while a poorly made version of the same drink is more commonly associated with rowdy young drinkers.
The Cocktail Bar Standard Aka Using An Egg White
- 0.75 oz. fresh lemon juice
- 0.75 oz. simple syrup
- 1 egg white
Add all ingredients to a shaker tin. Dry shake ingredients without ice for five seconds to whip the egg. Add ice, seal tins and shake hard for 10 to 12 seconds. Strain into coupe or martini glassitll come out white at first, and the color will emerge over the course of a minute under a paper-smooth head of foam. Express a lemon peel over the top of the foam for aroma and discard and decorate the foam with a few drops or dashes of Angostura Bitters.
The smoothest and most elegant way to make a Whiskey Sour is to make it with egg white. Now, if you were disinclined to try it before, I doubt I just sweetened the pot with the promise of a raw egg, but hear me out: Just like when you eat them, egg whites dont taste like anything really, but serve here to give the whole cocktail a velvety texture, a pretty white head, and most importantly, to bind to the tannins in the spirit, smoothing out the rougher edges of the whiskey.
A necessary note: egg whites are largely safe, but if youre nervous or immunocompromised, feel free to use in-shell pasteurized eggs. If youre vegan, you can use aquafaba, which functions more or less identically. If all you have is a carton of pre-cracked, pre-separated egg whites, perhaps consider making it as below.
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Whiskey Sour Classic Cocktail
The Whiskey Sour is an enduring cocktail recipe because its just so reliably delicious. It blends bourbon whiskey with lemon juice, sugar and optional egg white.
The recipe for the this cocktail has evolved a little over the years. For a long time, bartenders made it with bottled sour mix instead of fresh-squeezed lemon juice.
Bottled sour mix gave it a taste more like candy than a refreshing beverage. Now were returning to the old-fashioned way of making this drink, with real lemon juice. The only change I make is to use simple syrup instead of sugar because it mixes so much more easily.
This version also calls for just enough egg white to thicken the drink a little so you can savor it. Egg whites can also minutely improve the flavor of the really cheap whiskey, but theyre mainly there to mellow all the flavors and meld them into one.
Thats the best version of this drink, in my humble opinion. But dont worry, I included a no egg white version, too. Youll notice that it calls for sugar instead of simple syrup. Thats a way to get back some of the texture lost with the egg whites.
However you make your Whiskey Sour, its flavors are tart citrus with just a touch of sweetness to take the edge off. Better quality whiskeys will reward you with a smoother, deeper flavor .
There are so many variations on this recipe, and you should feel free to play with it. You may want to add just a touch of orange juice to the mix that rounds out the flavor considerably.
Origin Of The Whiskey Sour
According to cocktail maestro Hayley Dixon of Proximo, the Sour cocktail is said to have been born out of the original way of making a punch.
Punches are the earliest form of cocktail we know, and due to the similarity in ingredients, many think of the punch leading the way to the Sour. Whiskey was not, however, the first sour.
In 1856 the first mention of a sour appeared on Mart Ackermanns Saloon cocktail list in Toronto, made with Gin or Brandy and then the first recipe didnt appear until 6 years later in Jerry Thomas very famous The Bartenders Guide, which contained a Brandy, Gin and Rum sour.
Interestingly the Whiskey Sour also never contained any egg white, instead, being made more in line with a Daiquiri or . Technically it was the Boston Sour that contained egg white, but thats an argument for another day.
History also suggests sours as an overruling cocktail family existed for several years prior to the publishing of that book, as they were said to be popular with naval sailors.
Why? Because it was found that eating or consuming citrus fruits provided vitamin C, vital in preventing sailors from contracting scurvy. It wasnt uncommon to find naval ships stocked with lemons, lime and oranges and because the sailors enjoyed a drink plenty of alcohol could be found on board too. In their downtime, its said the sailors experimented with mixing their various liquors with citrus juice to create a scurvy-busting and delicious beverage.
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How Should A Whiskey Sour Taste
Go Even-Steven on the Sour and Sweet
Its about trying to find that balance when playing with lime and lemon or simple and demerara, says McCoy. You want to hit this middle point of it not tasting like overpowering lemon, lime or grapefruit and not tasting like a lot of sugar either. It just tastes perfect.
Choose The Right Glass
The first thing you need to consider when figuring out how to drink whiskey is the type of glass you are using.
Many people drink whiskey out of tumblers, which is a short glass with a heavier bottom. These are also known as rocks glasses.
Another typical whiskey glass is a highball. This is a tall and skinny glass that is usually used for mixed drinks.
Regardless, just know that the kind of glass you use can make a difference in how you experience and taste the whiskey.
Some glasses are designed to concentrate the vapors of the whiskey, which will allow you to smell it as much as you taste it. Experiencing the potent smell will significantly enhance the flavor.
Generally, tumblers will be the best glass for enjoying straight whiskey, whiskey on the rocks, or cocktails with ice. And there are subcategories of tumblers called the Glencairn and NEAT glasses.
However, if you are drinking a whiskey cocktail without ice or whiskey neat, you can also use a coupe glass. This glass has a long, skinny stem with a wide bowl. Think of a champagne or martini glass.
Coupe glasses are great for drinks without ice since your hands warmth will only travel to the glasss stem, not the bowl. Whiskey sours are great in coupe glasses.
Be sure to check out our list of the best whiskey glasses to find the right one for you.
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How Is Scotch Different From Whiskey
Scotch is a style of whiskey, and the main difference between scotch and other whiskeys is geographic. They also differ in terms of ingredients and how the word whiskey is spelled. Scotch is whisky specifically made in Scotland. It is distilled from peat-dried malted barley, which imparts its signature smoky flavor, and is either blended or single malt. Scotch also spells whisky without the “e.” Other whiskey styles are distilled in other parts of the world from other grains, including corn and rye.
What Not To Do When Making A Whiskey Sour
Dont slack on the shaking.
There is something to be said about the importance of the technique and glassware for serving a Whiskey Sour. To be served perfectly it must both be shaken well, and shaken to completion, to achieve perfect dilution. If you opt for a rich-bodied Whiskey Sour with an egg white, the technique must be focused as the shaking comes in two parts: the wet shake and the dry shake .
It is important to have the proper head of foam , Abalos explains. Generally when we do training on shaking egg white cocktails, we tell bartenders to pay attention to the sound and feel of the tin. If it still sounds clanky it is not ready you want it to feel and sound like a tennis ball is in your tin.
Start with a vigorous wet shake to emulsify the ingredients and add the necessary dilution to balance the cocktail. Then, dry-shake to further dial in the texture, adding to the frothiness of the Whiskey Sour.
Many bartenders will serve a Whiskey Sour in a rocks glass over ice, even though both Wall and Abalos make the point that it is meant to be served up. While both methods yield a delicious sour, serving the Whiskey Sour over one large cube is our recommended serve as it dilutes slowly due to the ice employed, and keeps your cocktail chilled over the drinking session. If you opt for it up, however, a Nick and Nora glass is your best service vessel.
Dont forget to garnish the cocktail.
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History Of The Whiskey Sour
The whiskey sour made its official debut in Jerry Thomas’ 1862 “The Bon Vivant’s Companion” , which was the first published bartending guide. However, you can trace the cocktail’s roots to a century before that.
In general, sour drinks were initially created to fight off scurvy among British Navy sailors during the 1700s. Most often, this meant adding lime to the rum rations . Not only did it ward off disease, the rum or gin helped preserve the perishable fruit juice on long voyages.
From there, the addition of a little sugar enhanced the citrus-liquor combination. The result was a more drinkable and very tasty beverage. These eventually became known as the sour family of drinks, which have remained popular the whiskey sour remains the most notable.
Federal Buffalo Stamp Aka Mixing Up The Sweetness
- 0.75 oz. fresh lemon juice
- 0.75 oz. maple syrup
- 1 thin slice of ginger
Muddle ginger in the bottom of a shaker tin. Add liquid ingredients, add ice, seal tins and shake hard for 6 to 10 seconds. Strain over fresh ice in a rocks glass, and garnish with a lemon wheel.
Using a different kind of sweetness is a fun and interesting way to mix it up a little and circumvent the need for an egg white. If you used honey syrup instead of simple syrup, it would be called a Gold Rush and has a story all its own, but one of my favorite things to do is to recruit the depth of fresh maple syrup and the spice of ginger, which are a wonderful foil to the bourbon and dont bind to the tannins so much as provide such an interesting side show that your palate doesnt really mind.
For bourbon here, Id say 45 percent ABV is a maximum. Buffalo Trace, as always, is a wonderful choice, but this is great with the less expensive end as well, like Evan Williams Black Label or Jim Beam or even a Tennessee whiskey like Jack Daniels.
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Whats The Best Whiskey For A Whiskey Sour
This is a matter of personal preference you can absolutely use whatever whiskey you normally drink in your cocktail. But its typically made with bourbon whiskey , specifically an 80-proof bourbon. Bourbon is a preferred option as its slightly sweeter than other whiskeys, usually with a touch of vanilla.
Whatever whiskey you choose, opt for at least a mid-range liquor. A better whiskey will give you a better drink you will taste the difference!
Why Make This Whiskey Sour Recipe
I wasnt a whiskey sour fan until the drink was introduced to our family by Alexs step-father, Joe. Joe is 1,000% passionate about this sweet tart drink. When hes entertaining, hell always ask: Want a whiskey sour? So of course over the years, this drink has become the standard for festive family get-togethers.
In honor of Joes 50th birthday, we created this an all natural whiskey sour recipe as an alternative to the store-bought mix he usually buys. This recipe uses maple syrup and fresh lemon juice, and truly makes for the very best whiskey sour recipe! Joe started serving it often, and it was a hit with cousins, brothers, sisters, aunts, and uncle alike. Now when our family gets together, youll see a big jug of maple syrup and a ton of lemons on the counter. Want to try out our family recipe?
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To Add In Egg Whites Simply Add 1/4 Oz To The Rest Of Your Ingredients In The Shaker Before Mixing
And you might want to skip pouring over ice if you are adding eggs, many drinkers feel ice cubes, and egg froth doesnt mix. Ice can also cause the egg proteins to break apart too quickly. Instead, try shaking with ice and pouring straight.
You will want the egg whites to be shaken with all the other ingredients*. Otherwise, you miss the point. Shaking blends the eggs and froths them up!
*There is some argument about this method. There are those who say you should dry shake the eggs first to froth them up, wet shake the other ingredients separately, and then combine. I say no. Blending them together is half the fun! But it is up to you.
Personally, this is my favorite version of a Whiskey Sour. I first experienced it in a little speakeasy in Rochester, NY. Its hidden behind a padded door. Its dimly lit. The bartenders wear bowties. And they prepare drinks the old-fashioned way.
I ordered a whiskey sour and was presented with this frothy white mixture that I stared at in horror for a moment or two. Until I tried it and realized Id been doing Whiskey Sours wrong my whole life.
So definitely give it a shot. Its worth it.
You End Up With A Creamier Frothier Cocktail
While the original whiskey sours created didnt use eggs, bartenders somewhere in the 1800s decided they wanted to make the drinks just a little fancier. Whiskey Sours can be harsh, and they wanted something to temper the flavors. Not only do eggs add that quality, but they also make for a creamy cocktail and a head of foam that looks prettier in the glass.
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How To Layer Cocktails
I’d always heard “layer with a spoon”, but I had no clue what that meant. However a lot of observing and a little googling led me to realize that most bartenders do this by pouring the liquid over the back of an upside down spoon held over the drink.
This never works for me.
Instead, I’ve found the easiest, most reliable way to layer a cocktail is to place a spoon right side up directly on top of the bottom liquid, pressing as much of the edge of the spoon as you can against the edge of the glass Then, slowly pour the top liquid into the bowl of the spoon until it starts to overflow the edge, run down the inside of the glass, and layer!
To add spooky streaks of “blood” running down your cocktail, layer it first using the method above, and then use a dropper a heavier liquid like sweetened cherry juice on top and watch it run down! You can also poke down your top layer with a fork or toothpick to create some tendrils running down your drink.