The Tasting Panel magazine

November 2014

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november 2014  /  the tasting panel  /  91 "We still wanted the whisky to shine through," says Leslie, "and we realized that it was necessary to drain out some of the juice and watery elements from the Michigan apples, but to keep the sugars of the mash, because the watered down juice was diluting the heat of the whisky." If all this sounds a bit geeky, it is. The Kindred Spirit competition, which will send six bars from around the country to Scotland, where a final winner will be picked by a member of the historic Grant family, has inspired Leslie's team to create a serve that also aims to educate their patrons about whisky. By serving a slightly warmed cocktail designed to emulate and magnify the flavors of the Glenfiddich 15, Leslie hopes the heightened character notes will be so obvious to consumers that they'll discover a vocabulary for talking about the elements of whisky in an organic way. Ultimately, that inspiration will lead to more pours from that cherished triangular green bottle—given any of the Glenfiddich's go great with the restaurant's burgers and famous venison stew. The whole concept of education and the presentation of the cocktail impressed Allardice, and he appreciated the efforts to over-emphasize the elements of the whisky. "The challenge for these bars is to hit upon that flavor profile sweet spot of the whisky," says Allardice. "And in my opinion it's about the finish—everything else is a lead up to that. When you assess the nose and mouthfeel—is it soft? hot? etc.—and when you swallow it, that's when you formulate your final opinion of the whisky." In other words, the end may be the best place to begin when decon- structing a drink for the purpose of creating a quality serve—and in this case, it all comes back to the Glenfiddich. The Serve At The Emory in Ferndale, Michigan, Beverage Director Dustin Leslie walks us through his serve. Glenfiddich 12 Year Old Scotch Whisky The sweetness of the 12's finish is balanced by the botanical notes of the infused Bing cherry. Glenfiddich 15 Year Old Scotch Whisky We wanted to amplify this Scotch specifically. Each part of the serve magnifies an aspect of this mellow finished spirit. The heat in the habanero, the sweetness in the blueberry and the honey drizzle are extensions of the flavors. Glenfiddich 18 Year Old Scotch Whisky The oak notes in the 18 are complemented by the bold Stilton, but eased with the sweetness of the honeycomb. Glenfiddich 21 Year Old Scotch Whisky Our serve pays tribute to the long spicy finish of the 21. Il Roy ◗ 2½ oz. Glenfiddich 15 Year Old Scotch Whisky ◗ ½ oz. Carpano Antica Vermouth ◗ 2 dashes blood orange bitters ◗ Pomegranate seeds, Michigan apples, whole cloves and cinnamon stick ◗ Muddle pomegranate seeds, Michigan apples, whole cloves with vermouth and bitters in mixing glass. Top ingredients with Glenfiddich and strain into a brandy snifter. Heat the cocktail with a candle on the snifter. Serve warm with blue Stilton, mango-habanero and blueberry cheddar, honeycomb and a Michigan cherry infused with Carpano Antica. Are You Scotland Bound? There is still time to sign up your bar for a chance to win a trip to Scotland. Email and use #GlenfiddichKS to showcase your serve! David Allardice is a Glenfiddich Brand Ambassador. PHOTO: KIRK WEDDLE

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