Yes, today, August 25, is National Whisky Sour Day. However, anyone receiving their fall issue of Whisky Advocate knows I don’t need an excuse to drink this classic cocktail. A well-made Whisky Sour is tough to beat any day of the year.
The number of bartenders who shared their innovative takes on the Whisky Sour with me for the current issue far exceeded the space available on the printed page, so here is a stunning recipe from Joseph Michalek, bar manager at Giovanni’s and Alchemy in Rockford, Illinois that deserves a moment in the spotlight. Michalek’s Bitter Scotsman is an uplifting riff on the classic Whisky Sour, with notes that are both harmonious and complex. Starting with a rye whiskey base, clever additions of Scotch whisky and IPA beer build on the malty theme, while helping this Whisky Sour to strike the all right chords! Whisky Advocate brings you more whisky and more ways to enjoy it, with cocktail recipes in every issue. Subscribe now!
Bitter Scotsman by Joseph Michalek
1.5 oz. Redemption Rye
.5 oz. Smokey Scotch whisky (like Glen Garioch 15 Year Old)
.75 oz. Fresh lemon juice
.5 oz. Smoked honey IPA syrup
2 D barrel aged blood orange bitters (or other orange bitters)
1/2 egg white (optional)
Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a chilled rocks glass. (Note: For an even creamier head, Michalek says you can return the drink to the shaker without the ice and give it a final shake before serving.)
For Smoked Honey IPA syrup
8 oz. Hoppy IPA (Michalek prefer Bell’s Two Hearted Ale)
8 oz. Smoked honey
Add IPA and honey to a small sauce pan over low-medium heat. Stir until honey is fully dissolved and allow to cool.