There are so many amazing whiskeys out there right now, and with good reason—whiskey is experiencing a surge in popularity. In the U.S., demand for bourbon and Tennessee whiskeys has never been higher, and American craft distillers are eager to cash in on the craze. So much so, in fact, that the price of whiskey has risen with demand.
As such, it’s imperative to know which whiskies are best for mixing into cocktails. As a rule of thumb, anything labeled as “bourbon” or “ Tennessee whiskey” is your go-to for mixing cocktails. However, if you want to get creative with your drink recipes, don’t hesitate to branch out from those two categories.
What Does Mixing Whiskey Mean?
Mixing whiskey is a process that involves combining two or more different types of whiskey to create a new whiskey that is most suitable for the cocktail you’re currently making. The most common method of mixing whiskey is using a “blend” of various whiskeys. A blend involves combining various whiskeys—usually of different kinds—to create a new whiskey made out of a combination of those whiskeys.
Thus, you can use a blend of bourbon and Tennessee whiskeys, or you can use a blend of different Irish whiskeys to create a new whiskey that is most suitable for your cocktail recipe. You can also find whiskeys that are meant to be used as a base whiskey for mixing. The most common of these is Irish whiskey, which is often used as the base whiskey for Irish whiskey cocktails.
Why Is Whiskey Good for Mixing Into Cockalls?
Since the popularity of whiskey has risen in recent years, the number of bartenders creating whiskey cocktails has risen as well. And why not? Whiskey is a pure, distilled form of alcohol that is rich in flavor. What’s more, whiskey is a versatile spirit that can be used in a variety of different ways.
For example, you can use it in mixing drinks, or you can use it straight. Whiskey also lends itself to various flavors, so it’s easy to create a new beverage using whatever ingredients you want. Whiskey also has a long shelf life, so you don’t have to worry about running low on it. You can keep whiskey around for a few months, even a few years, without fear of it going bad.
The 4 types of whiskey you’ll find in a well-stocked bar
Tennessee Whiskey – This whiskey is produced in Tennessee. It’s an amber-colored whiskey that is smooth and tasty. This is the most common whiskey that you’ll find on a bar’s shelf.
- Bourbon – This is another whiskey that is yellow-colored. It has a strong, spicy flavor and rich aroma. Bourbon is usually aged for at least two years and is the whiskey most commonly used in mixing. You can find bourbon commercially produced in many different countries, including the U.S., Canada, Ireland, Scotland, and Japan.
- Canadian Whiskies – Canadian whiskies are similar to bourbon and Tennessee whiskeys, although they are less spicy and less robust in flavor than those two whiskeys. Whiskey can be made from a variety of grains, including corn and wheat. Canadian whiskies are usually light in flavor and body.
- Irish Whiskey – This whiskey is made from Irish potatoes and is usually dark purple in color. It has a strong, spicy flavor and rich aroma. Irish whiskeys are usually aged for at least three years before they are released for sale.
- Spanish Whiskies – This whiskey is usually pale in color and has a delicate flavor with a fruity undertone. It is usually blended with other whiskies to make it smoother.
Tips for mixing whiskeys safely and effectively
- The best whiskeys for mixing into cocktails are those that are labeled as “bourbon” or “Tennessee whiskey.” However, you don’t need to stick with those two categories. Expand your horizons and look at what’s out there to see what whiskeys you like best.
- Know your alcohol volume. Whiskey is generally made at 80 proof, which means that it is 40% alcohol by volume. For example, if you have a drink that currently has 18% alcohol by volume, adding whiskey to it will give you a drink with 20% alcohol by volume.
- Know your drink recipes. If you plan to mix whiskey into a cocktail that already has a strong taste, such as gin in a gin and tonic, you’ll want to choose a whiskey that does not overpower the original drink ingredients.
- Try a blend of whiskeys if you want a whiskey that has a more mellow flavor. For example, you can use a blend of Tennessee whiskey and bourbon to create a mellower whiskey with a less spicy, mellower flavor.
- Always use a clean glass when mixing whiskeys. And if you have a glass that you use for mixing whiskey, make sure that it is clean as well.
- Always pour whiskey into your glass so that it is at least one inch below the rim of your glass. This will help to prevent whiskey from seeping out of your glass.
- Check out the whiskey’s ingredients. Whiskey, like other spirits, can be made from a variety of ingredients, including corn, rye, barley, and even potatoes. The whiskey ingredients in a bottle of whiskey will tell you what kind of whiskey it is and if it is made from a high-quality, premium ingredient.
Whiskey is the ultimate all-around spirit, and the rise in popularity of the drink has led to a variety of great whiskeys being released. The best way to mix whiskey is to choose a whiskey that is labeled as bourbon or Tennessee whiskey, or b Blend them together to create a new whiskey that is best suited for the cocktail you’re serving. These whiskeys will provide a smooth, complex flavor that will take your whiskey cocktails to the next level.