The Famous Five

  • On this World Whiskey Day, here’s our ode to the fickle Amber Goddess ​

    Any bartender worth his art will tell you that whiskey cocktails are a sin. It is a dram that has to be savoured in luxury – and has a taste that acquires you. It’s that sexy, sullen love which is hard to get at first and then raps you across your face when you least expect it. 

    The addiction of the drama is one of the big reasons why whiskey drinkers – scotch or blend – can never go wayward. Still, in the history of this oldest drink, there have been plenty times when even this amber goddess gave its consent to be mixed, stirred and blended to get to its lovers. 

    The high point was of course era Prohibition (1920-1933). The time when some of the classics of the cocktail world were born, including the famous Manhattan and Old Fashioned. However, Yangdup Lama, India’s leading bartender, says , “Whiskey Cocktails were in vogue even before that – some as a salve, some as a celebratory drink and some made on whim.” 

    What was interesting though, Lama continues, “that most whiskey cocktails were made of the three famous American Whiskies: the Bourbon, the Ryee and Tennesse.” 

    This International Whiskey Day, we get together with India’s first Speakeasy bar called Cocktails & Dreams Speakeasy to celebrate some of the most iconic whiskey cocktails, that became the stepping stone for many to be in love with this most demanding, sensuous and immensely satisfying drinking partner. And still continues to be. 

    Text By: Madhulika Dash