What are you mixing together?

Classic cocktails

This week we released the first in a series of videos on blended scotch and cocktail recipes.  This series is a side project for me and I am not exactly sure where it will end or how it will get there.  It started as a revelation to me of how much scotch is sold as blended scotch.  If you don’t know the answer, it is a lot.  In fact, most scotch is sold this way and has been for a long time.  My first thought upon learning this was “I hope they don’t discover single malt, because I won’t be able to afford it.” My second thought was “What are they doing with all that blended scotch?”  I know from years of working in bars that almost every drink I sell is mixed with at least one, and sometimes many, ingredients to craft a good drink.  Scotch is one of the mainstays of any bar and there are many cocktails, both new and old, that showcase some of the best traits scotch has to offer.  This new series is my effort to talk about some of the most prolific scotch producers and show you how to make some of the cocktails scotch inspired.

The Essentials

One of the things I will not be doing with this series is using crazy gadgets or strange ingredients.  I really hate when someone describes a cocktail to me and it sounds wonderful until I look at the ingredients and realize I don’t have ANY of those ingredients at home…or at my fully stocked bars at my restaurant!  I may show you how to make things like syrups or shrubs, but nothing will be complicated and I don’t think it needs to be.  All of the tools I use will be basic and readily available.  A lot of people probably already have some of these or can find suitable substitutions.  Here is what I use at my home bar:


It covers all the basics including pour spouts (not really necessary but kind of cool), a shaker and mixing glass, a peeler for citrus fruits and garnishes, a couple of jiggers to get an exact measure of ingredients, and some nice glassware to serve the drinks.  I also have a muddler stashed under the bar just in case, but a spoon will work fine if you don’t have one.  This is all you need to make most classic drinks, and I am not going to be using anything you wouldn’t likely have around the house.   The series does give me a chance to use some of these fun bar tools for a change.


Let’s get to the Drinks

I was happy to see so many positive comments this week about the series.  When you are thinking about doing a one-off video or a series, you never know if people will understand what you are trying to do and the scotch I am using is not top shelf so I just had to hope it found an audience.  As usual, our viewers do not disappoint, and the comments have been encouraging to me that I am on the right track.  I hope to release one of these a month for a while (as long as I can get volunteers to drink cocktails with me), and I am excited to take a jaunt through history and discover some older, classic drinks as well as some cutting-edge cocktails.  I may even show you how to make a smoke inversion.  I would also love to hear about your favorite scotch cocktail if you have one and may feature it in the series.  Thanks for watching and hope to see everyone on Thursday!