I am often asked about the appropriate way to serve whiskies. My answer is to enjoy your dram the way you prefer it.
Having said that I have compiled the section below to enable you in being a bit more exploratory with your drinking styles and also to understand why certain serves provide more flavours while others may not.
I have laid out for you the first three serves which are almost the holy serves to mankind and pretty much the way most people drink their whiskies.
The next section is on mixology, its not like whisky and soda does not warrant a space here, however like i said, given its popularity, i just felt it deserved a special mention.
While drinking, like i said before, there are no rights and wrongs, its only about “your” perfect serve.
Enjoy your dram.
Whisky with Water
Each time you ask people to describe the one flavour that is close to their heart or brings a smile on their faces, rain falling on grass scores above all. Its the same grass, however few drops of rain over it simply unlocks the aroma and diffuses the same into the surroundings.
Water has the same power or reaction when you’re enjoying your scotch. Add water and you can sense the aromas getting unlocked, allowing you to fully appreciate the measure. Not only that, water also makes the drinking experience a lot more pleasurable for whiskies which are either at cask strength or simply high ABV.
Whisky on the Rocks
Many whisky experts defy the use of ice, however in warmer climates, anything at room temperature can quite dampen your drinking experience. What i would most certainly say no to in a drink is adding a handful of ice, right upto the brim.
As liquids become colder, less flavour is apparent, so adding many ice cubes will actually tighten up the whisky for a short while before the release of flavours from the addition of the melted ice becomes discernible.
As a consequence, i would recommend, if adding ice, stick to maximum 1-2, allow it to warm up and melt down and then enjoy your drink or the best would be just add cool water, again the idea is not to chill the drink.
Whisky & Soda
This is quite like water and whisky except for the resilience of carbonation. Its perhaps also the reason why a lot of people prefer these two combinations almost interchangeably.
The effervescence in the liquid adds a renewed liveliness to the dram making it exceedingly spirity. The chunkier the spirit the better the concoction works.
You can water down the whisky without destroying the aromas and adding some fizz along the way. Most of us have our own measures, if I were to add a soda, I would stick to a Premium Blend, with one part whisky and two parts soda.