Mark Twain famously stated that “too much of anything is bad, but too much good whiskey is barely enough.” But how do we know what’s good for us? Just in time to celebrate National Whiskey Day today, Metro spoke with expert Angela Bosco, senior brand manager at Jefferson’s Bourbon, ahead of her big event at Michael Jordan’s The Steak House N.Y.C. this evening.
What’s the deal with whiskey appreciation?
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We’ve seen a renaissance of brown spirits the past few years. What’s most interesting to me is not just the appreciation for the category in a traditional standpoint, but the willingness to move beyond traditionalism of creating whiskey … which is essentially distilling (from at least 51 percent corn for bourbon) and aging in barrels that sit idly in a rick house, to the maturation process. Whiskey consumers today are looking for the next best thing created in the most interesting way — we like to push the boundaries of bourbon without compromising the tradition.
What makes a good whiskey cocktail?
Balance … and that stands for any cocktail, for that matter. For me, a good whiskey cocktail contains elements that complement the flavor profile of the whiskey (in my case, bourbon). Use ingredients that play off the nuances of the whiskey — not too strong leaning toward one flavor or another. For example, my favorite is Michael Jordan’s Old Fashioned, which uses Jefferson’s Very Small Batch Bourbon. The muddled sugar brings out the spiciness of the predominate rye in our mash bill, the bitters blends the spicy and sweet together while the citrus peel creates a finish that highlights the orange essence in our small batch bourbon.
I’m a beer guy, so what’s the best beginner’s whiskey?
To me, beginner’s whiskey is a farce. Whiskey shouldn’t be feared or only enjoyed by the connoisseurs, it should be sampled by everyone. I tell new people to get out there and try as many different types as possible — don’t be scared.
Bosco will be conducting a complimentary tasting tonight from 6-7 p.m. at Michael Jordan’s The Steak House N.Y.C. located on the balcony of Grand Central Terminal.
Make your own Smoked Rosemary Manhattan
* 2 oz Whiskey
* 1/4 oz Sweet Vermouth
* 2 dashes of bitters
Using a bar spoon, stir with ice in a mixing glass. Break off a piece of rosemary and light it. Hold a large glass upside down over the smoldering rosemary. Let the smoke fill the glass, and drop the rosemary into the rocks glass. Place a large glass over the rocks glass so that the smoke surrounds it. Leave for a moment and remove.