Making rainy days summer-friendly...
It's going to be hot out soon - maybe, it is Ireland - which means it'll be time to mix yourself up a cool cocktail filled with ice to stave off the sweat. After all, you don't want a drink that's best served inside a dark, quiet pub. You need a drink that transports you to a shaded veranda overlooking the ocean or a rooftop patio as the sun sets.
Typically summer calls for clear, pale spirits, like gin or vodka but just because the temperature is rising, it doesn't mean you need to stash away the whiskey. When properly mixed, whiskey can be a great foundation for summer cocktails.
With that in mind, we went to Orlando Marzo, the world's best bartender - literally - to find out why we should be switching our beloved gin and tonic for something slightly harder.
"Unlike a G&T, a whisky highball brings a new flavour profile, depending on which base spirit you use. For example, if you use Cardhu or Caol Ila, you transition from a smoky flavour to a creamy caramel, and the depth of flavour you achieve is often much more complex than that of a botanical gin."
So while your friends are paying €9+ for a substantial meal while sipping on a cocktail at a rooftop bar, you can whip up four (or more) for the same price thanks to Orlando's new whiskey based take on the classic Tom Collins recipe.
HOW TO MAKE A TOM COLLINS WITH A TWIST:
"For summer, I love something very tall and very refreshing. A Tom Collins is one of my favourite drinks and it is a great choice for using dark spirits in Summer. Usually, summer drinks are associated with clear, pale spirits, like gin or vodka and while these are fantastic, sometimes it’s great to break the mould! A fruity, tangy version of a Johnnie Walker whisky highball is a great way to try a dark spirit this summer." - Orlando Marzo
- 20ml of fruit juice
- 10ml orange blossom honey
- 35ml of Johnnie Walker Black Label
- 120ml of sparkling mixer
- Pick your favourite fruit juice, like a mandarin or orange. Anything in that is in season is usually great.
- Then use a sweetener. Sugar syrup is usually the most popular. One of my favourite additions is honey, such as a light orange blossom honey.
- If you have a shaker, fill it with ¾ ice and then add your whiskey followed by 20ml of fruit juice and the 10ml of sweetener.
- Shake 3-4 times and top up with a sparkling mixer. A bitter lemonade or a grapefruit lemonade would work really well.
Main image by asmaa m