Summers. Leisure. Relaxation. Comfort. What do you picture when you hear these words? Given that it is mid-July, and the sun is shining down bright and strong– these are the ultimate factors to slowing down and taking it easy. With summer in full swing and leisure at the forefront of everyone’s mind, what better way to enjoy the long days of summer and ward off the summer blues than kicking back on a hammock? Did we drop a hint? If not, well yes, we are talking about National Hammock Day. This day is observed on 22nd July every year. How would you prefer to let your hair down on Hammock Day? Whisk it up with some summer whisky, we say.
Lending a thought to savouring whiskies in a seasonal way – one way of feeling a deeper connection and gaining an accentuated appreciation of the flavours in your glass is by having a dram that is in sync with the season. Listed below are a few weather-appropriate whiskies that you may or may not have tried before, but are sure to take to once you try.
Just like spring whiskies have their own character, summer whiskies too possess a character unique of it kind. A dram as such is likely to be headier. How else can a sandy beach, a bright sun, and summer hues like gold and yellow come alive in a glass? Summer serves are more like mañana (morning) whiskies – the ones that let you unwind and relax while you sit back in a fancy hammock and take slow sips of the dram. You might be especially interested about the soft, lilting nature of the serve. If you also consider how every season is like a part of the day– summer drams are ideally the afternoon sips or the dusk serves on long summer evenings when the sun is setting.
A beaconing assortment of summer serves
Here you go. We give you few whiskies that fit the bill. This is not an exhaustive list, just a few outstanding ones.
Glenmorangie Original – The first taste to hit the tongue is that of vanilla before it curls along the palate and bursting into a flowery fruitiness. The taste of vanilla however softens the aroma of ripening peaches and light citrus notes. The clean and soothing aftertaste that this highland whisky leaves is fruity, with hints of peach and orange. A dram of this is what sits perfectly in the sun’s beacon beckoning you to accompany it.
Chivas Regal (12 year old) – One of the most recognised and best-known blend all over the world, Chivas Regal is a Speyside scotch whisky that has its roots in the oldest operating Highland distillery at Keith, Moray, Scotland – Strathisla Distillery. A balanced blend like this one is voluptuous but not overblown, sweet but not cloying. An aromatic and creamy melange of lemon curd, butter toffee, hints of aniseed and vanilla custard hits your nose while you taste a mild notes of wood shavings and dried banana chips. The hint of these banana chips grow on the palate with an additional whiff of creamy malt enlivened with slight allspice, rounded off with notes of caramel and ground walnut. This spicy yet beautifully balanced blend with notes of cereal sweetness that linger on long after you’ve finished your dram, makes for a cheeky accompaniment on a beautiful summer evening, while you silently peruse your favourite book while tucked in a hammock.
Jameson – Produced at the Middleton Distillery, Jameson is a world famous Irish Whiskey, a flagship whisky of Irish distillers. Aged in bourbon, sherry and port barrels, this popular Irish whiskey is truly versatile. An incredibly smooth dram, it is rich and deep amber in colour, exhibiting notes of toasted wood and sherry undertones resulting from the mellowness of pot still whisky. It has a smooth and sweet finish with woody and nutty tones. Try it on the rocks or with ginger ale topped off with a little wedge of lime if you are looking for the perfect thirst quencher on a sunny day.
Blender’s Pride – A premium Indian whisky – a brilliant blend of Indian grain spirits and imported Scottish malt – is one that is smoky and smooth. A fresh leaf-cut (grassy) nose with woody fruity undertones and a generous touch of peat that doesn’t surmount. What keeps you hooked is the full-bodied taste of the dram – one that is mellow and is buttery sweet on the palate. The aromatic serve is going to leave a pleasant aftertaste that will stay with you long after you have revelled under the beauty of the setting sun while savouring this bright liquor slowly, sip by sip. This is exactly what a summer day of relaxation calls for.
Royal Stag – An iconic Indian brand – a revolution in blending Scotch malts and Indian grain spirits, without using recycled bottles and artificial flavours, makes this an international quality blend. If you take a look at the logo of the brand, you will see it is the picture of a deer. Well, the brand image owes its credit to a specific species of deer that is famous for its antlers, the very same symbolised on the logo. Help yourself with a dram or a serve, what’s prominent on the nose is the leafy aroma punched with a tropical fruity woodiness complete with a touch of smoke, more like the aroma of burnt wood. While the taste is rounded and is medium bodied, it feels smoky and smooth in the mouth. The pleasant aftertaste lingers on your palate for long.
Passport – Light and fruity – if these are words you relate to sunny summer days and evenings, then your go-to drink while chilling in a nifty little hammock is undoubtedly Passport Scotch – a Scotch whisky that is a refined blend of flavoured highland malts with a blend of lowland whiskies made at Seagram's Speyside distilleries. This dram is light on the nose with a sweet and creamy finish on the palate that has fruity vanilla tones and a subtle nuttiness. Leafy and malty are two distinctly quaint characteristics of Passport.