Surprisingly, I found the mix too harshly citric—and this coming from me, the most devout of the lemon lovers—but happily, I was simultaneously drinking a ginger beer while self-bartending, so I cut the twang with a little of my beloved carbonated beverage. The warmth of the ginger softened the citrus tones while blending with the smoky undertones of the Scotch and the delicacy of the elderflower.
It’s definitely not as mannish as having a finger of whisky while you hunch over the bar and mumble about the underrated genius of Charles Rennie Mackintosh, but it’s still quite appropriate for a pre-dinner toast by a roaring fireplace. I’m renaming it the Glasgow Ginger in honor of its new ingredients.
And should you be visiting Scotland any time soon, remember that the Scots do love walking as their preferred mode of transportation. A wee tipple can help ease the pain of huffing up a steep hill after a day of sightseeing.
In fact, it’s so effective that when I visited my sister, who studied in Glasgow, we started referring to our nightly cocktails as “the Scotch scooter” for making the long walk back to her apartment feel incredibly short and speedy. Cheers!
The Glasgow Ginger (A Smoky Scotch Ginger Cocktail)
Prep time: 5 minutes
Total time: 5 minutes
Makes 2 drinks
- 2 drops of your finest Islay single malt (I am a Lagavulin/Laphroaig girl myself)
- 1/2 cup blended Scotch
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 3 tablespoons St. Germain elderflower liqueur
- 1 chilled bottle of ginger beer
Pour just a drop of the smoky Islay Scotch into each of two cool retro coupes and swirl it around to “rinse” the glasses. Set aside.
In a cocktail shaker, combine the blended Scotch, lemon juice, and St. Germain with five or six ice cubes. I don’t care what shape or size they are; I’m not a mixologist from PDT, for Pete’s sake. Just take what comes out of your freezer and shake it around for 30 seconds.
Pour into the prepared glasses and top each coupe off with ginger beer.