Day 2 of the Let’s Get Blitzen: Cocktail Advent Calendar brings us this Raspberry Whisky Bramble.
This is a very easy drinking cocktail that elevates the standard “rye and ginger” that you might have enjoyed ordering from Pier 21 when you were in undergrad, and brings it to a much more respectable place. If you don’t get that reference, either you don’t live in Ottawa or you’re too young to be reading this blog.
This would make for a lovely welcome cocktail at your next dinner party. Whenever I’m hosting a dinner or cocktail party, I like to prepare a few cocktails that employ different spirits to ensure there’s something for everyone.
Some friends of mine hate gin, others have tequila trauma, and not everyone shares my unwavering love of whiskey. The addition of a fancy liqueur always seems to impress and Chambord raspberry liqueur is always a crowd-pleaser.
Chambord was probably one of my first liqueur experiences and remains one of my favourites. When I was in grade 12, my parents hosted a Valentine’s Day party and served raspberry martinis, featuring Chambord of course. They let me have one and, while I hadn’t yet developed a taste for alcohol, I thought it was pretty damn tasty.
It’s funny, I didn’t get much into drinking until later in university. I went to Carleton and definitely went on a few Thursday night road trips across the border to dance the night away at Le Bop or Cosmos in first year, but wouldn’t have called myself a big drinker.
I wish I could remember the catalyst for my love of craft cocktails but I can’t put my finger on it. A year or two after finishing grad school, my girlfriends and I got into bourbon right just as it was having a resurgence.
We went to a bourbon tasting at Petit Bill’s and did a workshop at the Wine and Food Show. I remember the bourbon tasting at Petit Bill’s opened with a maple bourbon old fashioned with a slice of candied bacon for garnish – I was in love.
While bourbon definitely enjoys the shortest shelf-life in my bar, thanks to how quickly I tend to consume it, I opted for rye which in this tipple. While both bourbon and rye are whisky, they have very unique flavour profiles.
Bourbon is made from corn mash which gives it a sweet and full-bodied flavour. Rye, on the other hand, is made from, well, rye, which lends it some spicier notes and drier taste.
I invite you to make this drink and experiment with different whiskies to get a better appreciation for how the flavour profile changes.
Fill a Collins glass with ice. Add whisky, raspberry liqueur and lime juice. Top with ginger ale. Garnish with three raspberries on a cocktail pick.
Recipe adapted from: The Martini Club. "Whisky Bramble." Food & Drink. Holiday.