I have discovered the delight of a wee dram

A few months ago, I bought a bottle of Glenmorangie Scotch. I generally shy away from anything stronger than beer, but I had to experience this fabled drink that has such a prominent role in the lives of my most beloved characters. In the Outlander series, it seems that everyone is always drinking Scottish whisky, good times or bad. Jamie is an expert at making the stuff and Roger was in awe of Claire’s ability to knock it back.  Basically, I wanted to know if I could hang with Jamie and Claire.

I started out by pouring it over ice and mixing it with some water. I was surprised at how quickly it grew on me. My husband told his co-workers at lunch one day that he couldn’t get used to the sight of me sitting around sipping on a glass of scotch. They all apparently got a huge laugh out of the idea and joked about me wearing a smoking jacket, sitting by a fire with the hounds at my feet and a shotgun propped against the wall, sipping on my whisky. I’m glad I could be such a source of amusement for the boys at work, but that’s definitely not an accurate depiction. Anyhoo, one of the guys loaned me his copy of The Bartender’s Bible (by Gary Regan) to give me some ideas for mixed drinks.

I flipped immediately to the chapter about Scotch and found myself in an Outlander fangirl’s dream! Names like Whiskey Mac, Black Jack (Randall?), Highland Fling, Macbeth, Ma Bonnie Wee Hen, To Hell with Swords and Garters, and Tartan Swizzle (I could go on, my friends) just scream Jamie Fraser! And when I branched out to include other liquors, I found drinks such as Big Red, Dragonfly (in Amber?), Dunbonnet Fizz, and Gale at Sea (Voyager anyone?). I was so excited to try them out, so I decided to have “Scottish Night” at my place.

I wanted to make an authentic Scottish meal to go with our alcoholic explorations, so I settled on “Rumblethumps” (I got the recipe from Scotland for the Senses– you should check it out, it’s a beautiful site all about Scotland) and bannocks (a.k.a. oatcakes). The Rumblethumps – which is basically just a mixture of cabbage, potatoes, and onions – were DELICIOUS! So cheap, so easy, and so good. My husband even asked if we could have it again sometime this week.

Cheesy comfort food. Mmmmm...

The bannocks, however, didn’t turn out so well. The recipe called for bacon fat, but since everyone at my house was a vegetarian, I opted for butter instead and I think that may have been the problem.

Epic fail.

We pooled our resources and worked with what we had without spending a lot of money. We tried a Black Jack (Randall), Mithering Bastard, and Piper at the Gates of Dawn; all of which were actually really good. The Mithering Bastard was the unanimous favorite.

We kicked off the night with a Black Jack (Randall)

I’ll list a few recipes here to get you started…

Highland Fling (We’d all like to have one of these, eh? *wink, wink*)

  • 2 ounces Scotch
  • 1/2 ounce sweet vermouth
  • 2 dashes orange bitters
  • 1 maraschino cherry

Combine first three ingredients in a mixing glass half-filled with ice cubes, strain into glass and garnish with cherry.

Scotch Mist

  • 2 1/2 ounces Scotch
  • Crushed ice
  • lemon twist

Pour into a shaker half-filled with ice, shake well, garnish with lemon twist.

Whisky Mac

  • 1 1/2 ounces Scotch
  • 1 ounce green ginger wine

Pour both ingredients into a wine goblet with no ice.

Black Jack (Randall– I can’t not say Randall…)

  • 1 1/2 ounces Scotch
  • 1 ounce Kahlua
  • 1/2 ounce Triple Sec or Cointreau
  • 1/2 ounce lemon juice

Combine all ingredients in a shaker half-filled with ice cubes, shake well, pour into cocktail glass.

I had so much fun with this! Party season is approaching, so why not throw a Scottish party?! I’ve already decided that my next spirits endeavor will be with Jameson’s Irish Whiskey, when I will make a toast to Stephen Bonnett. Plus, Jameson’s has my favorite commercial of all time :)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOydQFJdx1k

Happy imbibing, fellow fangirls!!

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7 comments on “I have discovered the delight of a wee dram

  1. Sophia says:

    I’m sooooo thrilled you made rumblethumps! I’m surprised how many people went off and made it. It is incredibly good, so cheap and moorish. Well done. My beloved and I have been on several whisky distillery tours but I have never developed a taste for Scotch. Well done you! :-D

  2. Carol says:

    We don’t have to make whiskey mac here in australia we can buy it …. It’s called stones mac!

    Carol

  3. […] Boxty, Hallowe’en Barm Brack, Faerie Porridge, and Bubble and Squeak (very similar to Rumblethumps!); it also has colorful proverbs, folktales and an introduction to the Celtic Wheel of the […]

  4. Scotia says:

    Thanks to you I made Rumblethumps in the camp oven at our cabin. They were delicious! I have Scottish heritage and was lucky enought to visit Scotland many years ago now. A Diana Gabaldon fan too, your very lucky to have met her I doubt she will ever make it to Australia!
    Thanks for your blog.
    Scotia

    • Hi Scotia! Rumblethumps from a cabin camp oven in Australia sound like the best Rumblethumps ever!! I hope I can visit Scotland someday, were you already a fan of the series when you went? Australia is actually at the top of my vacation dream list too. Thanks so much for stopping by :)

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