An Evening of Scotch Education
Over the past six months, The Chivas Brotherhood has been hosting a series of pop-up clubs all over the United States toasting brotherhood, honor and success with their renowned Scotch whiskies. We were invited to the last stop on the tour, in a decked out loft space in Los Angeles. On top of being a relaxed place to network over a game of pool, they also had experienced bartenders and even master distillers on hand to educate while offering complimentary tastings along with some innovative cocktails. Here's a little of what we learned that night.
What is blended Scotch?
The goal of blending is to harmonize the characteristics and flavors of selected malt and grain Scotch whiskies to produce a smooth Scotch of the highest possible quality. By law, a blended Scotch must contain both malt Scotch whiskey and grain Scotch whiskey. This kind of alchemy requires the master blender to possess an expert 'nose' and decades worth of experience. Blending Chivas Regal is a skill that's been passed down from one generation to the next following the traditions and house style established by James and John Chivas in the 1840s. At the heart of all the Chivas Regal blends is the classic Speyside single malt whiskey, Strathisla, from the oldest operating distillery in the Scottish highlands, dating back to 1786.
The Chivas Regal 18, with notes of buttery toffee and dark chocolate and its velvety warm finish, is ideal for enjoying neat. If you want to mellow it out a touch more, add a splash of water or serve it on the rocks. If that's still a bit too strong, try one of these three cocktails, made with Chivas Regal 12:
- 2 parts Chivas 12
- 1/2 part freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/4 part sugar syrup
- Soda water
Shake the whiskey, freshly squeezed lemon and sugar with ice. Strain into an old-fashioned glass filled with rocks and blast with a short measure of soda water.
- 2 parts Chivas 12
- 1 part ginger beer
- Freshly squeezed lemon juice
Fill your glass with ice, add the Chivas 12 yr., top with ginger beer and the juice of half a lemon. Garnish, if you'd like, with a lemon slice.
- 1 part Chivas 12
- 1 part fresh apple juice
- 1 part sparkling water
- A squeeze of fresh lemon juice
- A dash of St Germain Elderflower
Build in a tall highball glass over ice. Garnish with an apple slice and sprig of mint.
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