How to pair whisky and pickles?

Pickles are a regular but much overlooked accompaniment of a whisky lover’s palate. When paired with whisky or other hard drinks, pickles can add some much-needed zing and spice to your tastebuds. There are several pickling procedures and thus, several types of pickles. For example, ‘quick pickles’ as they are sometimes called are the vinegar pickles popular in British and German traditions. On the other hand, the spicier fermented pickles are more of a thing in East Asia and Europe.

Now, if you are wondering who pairs pickles with whisky? We would like to enlighten you with an anecdote about Irish whiskey pairings with sweet bread and butter pickles since forever. Pickles are considered a great accompaniment to the generally sweet character of a blended Irish whiskey.

Vinegar or Quick Pickles

Vinegar or Quick Pickles

The best time to pair these pickles with your whisky is when you are trying a new Scottish malt. Vinegar pickles are not very spicy and provide a blank canvas for your tastebuds to build upon. The pickle will embrace the peaty Scottish malt and defang its bite while leaving the smokiness on your tongue. In turn, the whisky’s taste will also enhance the flavor of the pickle.

Fermented Pickles or Kosher Dills

Fermented Pickles or Kosher Dills

The best way to know if your pickle is fermented is to shake the brine. If the pickle turns cloudy, it’s fermented. Unlike the vinegar pickles, fermented pickles need refrigeration and also have some health benefits. These pickles pair well with American single malt whiskeys which are considered a bit brawnier than their Scottish counterparts.

Good Old Italian and Indian Pickles

Good Old Italian and Indian Pickles

Arguably, the pickles with greatest flavor and complexity are the Italian and Indian pickles. These pickles take kindly to sweeter bourbon or Tennessee variants. The sour and prickly flavor of these pickles can also be paired with smooth whiskies and the sweet rums. In case you have a thing for hot and spicy, you can pair these good old pickles with a straight rye whisky.

Pickle Pairings You Should Try

Pickle Pairings You Should Try

Here are three pairings of whisky and pickles you should try to make up your own mind about them as accompaniments to your favorite drink.

Jameson Black Barrel with Butter Pickles

A must try if you love Jameson whiskey. The charred vanillic sweetness of this Irish whiskey complements the sweetness of the pickle while taming any sugary overload.

Stranahan’s Diamond Peak with Sour Dills

The sour fermented flavors of this dry and oaky malt make for the perfect whisky and pickle pairing and made even better when you have a couple of ice cubes at hand for dousing the fire on your palate.

Chivas Regal 12-Years-Old with Garlic Dills

Talk about the old, mature stocks and a distinct Speyside accent of Chivas Regal and you only think of a spicy garlic pickle that combines superbly with the drink’s complexity.

That’s all for today, we hope this article helps you get out of pickle the next time you are asked for pairing foods and drinks for a party. For more such content, keep following us at The Whiskypedia and our social handles.

Share