Whiskey has always been my husband's "thing", more than mine. Sipping it, especially with his friends, and researching the different varieties are almost a hobby for him. He especially likes the kind that he says tastes like diving face first into peat moss.... and he means that in a good way! As I've discovered over the years, having a dram of scotch is a pre-dinner tradition for his family. The refrain through the house at 5pm is like a clock ringing "Scotch? Scotch? Scotch!".
Since my other half is a Canadian, he also has a soft spot for Rye Whiskey. I've always shied away from whisky in the past, thinking it was too "macho" a liquor. An amber colored drink that was for tough guys and Clint Eastwood-esque cowboys. But, I do love a good mixed cocktail. Hmmm..... maybe a hard lemonade? A touch of mint? A nice swig of fiery whiskey, all served over ice? I'm there.
Here comes one of my new go-to summer drinks, the Whiskey Pucker Up!
Bright lemons are given a quick grilling to release some sweetness to balance their tart juice, slightly charred and juicy. Mixed with smoky whiskey, which announces it's presence with a bang, and then followed by a warm glow. A quick muddle of mint and served icy cold. This is a hard lemonade with a tart pucker.
I may be a convert after all.
The Whiskey Pucker Up Cocktail (grilled lemon whiskey lemonade)
Makes two 6 ounce drinks
6 ounces of grilled lemons, juiced (about 4 large lemons)
4 ounces Canadian Crown Royal Whiskey
2 ounces simple syrup
3 sprigs fresh mint
mint, lemon slices, or edible flowers for garnish.
Wash and dry your lemons and mint leaves.
Halve the lemons and cook on the grill cut side down, for 5 minutes (tart juice) to 8 minutes (sweeter juice). Let cool and then juice. Reserve.
In a cocktail shaker, add the simple syrup and mint leaves. Muddle for 30 seconds.
Next, add the grilled lemon juice, whiskey, and a generous handful of ice to the shaker. Close and vigorously shake for 1 minute, until blended & chilled.
Take two of your favorite cocktail glasses and fill with ice.
Using a small strainer, strain your cocktail directly into the cocktail glass.
Garnish and enjoy!