I have teamed up with Douglas Laing to create a selection of scotch cocktails for you to enjoy during the festive season (or any season really…). For these recipes, I have used three expressions from their Remarkable Regional Malts range: Scallywag, Timorous Beastie and Big Peat. These are a marriage of Single Cask Single Malts with characteristics of each scotch region and are offered ‘as natural as it gets’, with no colouring or chill filtration.
Scallywag Speyside Malt is a bit richer in flavour compared to the other two whiskies so it works nicely with classics such as Rob Roy or even Boulevardier. Pair it with chocolate and/or coffee for a delicious after-dinner cocktail. Timorous Beastie Highland Malt lends itself to an Old Fashioned cocktail or a Highball. I made two types of syrup, which you can easily mix and match between recipes and different whiskies. Big Peat Islay Malt works really well in sours with some festive flavours.
Need help with sugar syrups? See my previous article ‘The Essential Guide to Cocktail Sweeteners’ for tips.
Scallywag Speyside Malt Scotch Whisky
Scallywag, 46% ABV, is made using a blend of Speyside malts such as Mortlach, Macallan and Glenrothes. It has rich flavours from the ex-sherry casks used for maturation. Expect dark fruits, dark chocolate, Christmas spices (nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger…) and a touch of vanilla.
Fun fact: The dog on the label is a Douglas Laing family Fox Terrier.
Cocktails with Scallywag
45ml Scallywag Speyside Malt Scotch Whisky
20ml Crème de Cacao (white)
15ml Amaro Nocino (Walnut Amaro)
10ml Hennessy Cognac VS
1 Starlino Cherry
Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a Maraschino cherry.
Choc and Awe
40ml Scallywag Speyside Malt Scotch Whisky
25ml Vermouth di Torino Giacomo Sperone
10ml Crème de Cacao (white)
Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with orange peel.
Timorous Beastie Highland Malt Scotch Whisky
Timorous Beastie, 46% ABV, is a blend of selected Highland Malts such as ones distilled at Glengoyne, Dalmore and Glen Garioch. With this one you get notes of malted barley, oak, honey, raisins and a touch of citrus.
Fun fact: The inspiration for the mouse character came from Robert Burns’ famous Scots poem “To a Mouse”.
Cocktails with Timorous Beastie
45ml Timorous Beastie Highland Malt Scotch Whisky
20ml Redcurrant & Cinnamon Syrup*
A Sprig of Rosemary
Simply build the drink over ice and garnish with rosemary.
*To make a flavoured syrup, simply add brown sugar, water and redcurrants and cinnamon sticks to a saucepan. Muddle the berries well to release all the flavour. Stir until the sugar has dissolved. Take off the heat, cover with a lid and leave to sit for 30 minutes to an hour. Strain and store.
Beastie Old Fashioned
60ml Timorous Beastie Highland Malt Scotch Whisky
10ml Amaro Nonino
A barspoon of Maple Syrup
3 drops of Angostura Bitters
Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a tumbler over a large ice cube. Garnish with an orange slice.
Big Peat Islay Malt Scotch Whisky
Big Peat is my favourite of all three whiskies, but I’m partial to peated malts. As you probably guessed, the Big Peat, 46% ABV, is a blend of Islay Malts (such as Ardbeg, Caol Ila, Bowmore, even Port Ellen). It is earthy, smoky and savoury, with lovely sweetness coming through.
Cocktails with Big Peat
Ginger & Rosemary Sour
50ml Rosemary-Infused Big Peat Islay Malt Scotch Whisky*
20ml Lemon Juice
20ml Ginger Syrup**
Sprig of Rosemary for garnish
Dry shake all ingredients. Add ice and shake again. Strain into an ice-filled tumbler and garnish with the rosemary.
*I infused the whisky with rosemary overnight, but if you don’t have time just add a rosemary sprig to the shaker with the rest of the ingredients and shake well.
** To make a flavoured syrup, simply add sugar, water and ginger slices to a saucepan. Stir until the sugar has dissolved. Take off the heat, cover with a lid and leave to sit for 30 minutes to an hour. Strain and store.
35ml Big Peat Highland Malt Scotch Whisky
20ml Yellow Chartreuse
15ml Lemon Juice
2 drops of Ferdinand’s Riesling & Quince Bitters
Shake all ingredients with ice and double train into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon wheel.
Have you tried the Remarkable Malts range? Which cocktail would you choose?
Disclaimer: In paid collaboration with Douglas Laing. Some of the links used are affiliate links. If you buy through the links, I may receive a commission for the sale. This has no effect on the price for you.