Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Hot Summer Night Scotch Suggestion: Islay on Ice!

Presently, it is a very hot, humid, summer evening in Atlantic Canada.  How hot?  98.6 degrees for my American readers with humidity so thick you can cut it with a knife.  For you Canadians and Europeans, 37 degrees celsius.  I have readers in India, China and Hong Kong too.  I have never had the pleasure of visiting your exotic, very hot and humid countries, and so I am unsure whether temperature is recorded in fahrenheit or celsius.  I apologize for my meteorlogical ignorance which knows no bounds.

In any case, all of you (especially in India and Hong Kong) know what unbearable summer heat and humidity can do to one's soul.  Before you know it, it's 3 a.m. and you're staring at an Anthony Robbins infomercial telling you that "you can be all you can be!"  Awaken the Giant Within!  and other jingoisms light on meaning, but big on enthusiasm and insipiring hope (which is not necessarily a bad thing!).  Sometimes hope is a good thing, no matter who is the source of it, including Anthony Robbins.

Anyway, here is my message of hope and inspiration for the lost and overly warm due to terrible summer humidity:.  Add ice to a pour of Islay single malt or even a blended scotch of Islay whiskies.  Huh?  Ice?  I know, I know.  Your mind is racing and thinking does this guy know what he is talking about?  Ice will destroy the flavor, the flavor that some elderly Scottish distillery worker slaved to develop (and no doubt is in the hands of some big multinational that despises blogs like this one) that is the content of the packaging on too many bottles of scotch. 

Ice with scotch?  Yes, it is possible and a religion practiced by many men and women the world over.  Myself included.  A lot of self-professed experts in scotch and whisky appreciation turn their noses up at ice and scotch in the same glass.  Mind you they don't turn their nose up at some cheap blend that they are reviewing if the distillery has hired them as a consultant or supplied them with free samples.  Ok, ok, Jason stop preaching and drop the holier than thou shtick, it's wearing thin.  Got it!

Here's the deal brothers and sistas.  Ignore the snobby guy at work or the stupid git on some site saying that ice and scotch are a 'no-no.'  I am here to shatter that ridiculous position.  Islay whisky on ice is refreshing and just what the doctor ordered on a night of insufferable humidity.

I happen to be drinking Laphroaig Quarter Cask tonight, but it could have easily been Bowmore 12 years, Black Grouse, Islay Mist and a host of other Islay blended or single malt scotch whiskies.  Why? Because these whiskies are remarkably refreshing and pleasing to one's spirits during the crush of summer's heat.

Yes, I am drinking from a tumbler.  Never mind trying to nose of aromas and sip like it is rare scotch found in a shipwreck at the bottom of arctic seas.  Drink your iced whisky from a tumbler and celebrate the fact that you are marching to the beat of your own drum or taking the road less travelled.  Let the peat and smoke refresh and intrigue your senses simultaneously like no other drink can!  Islay single malts and blends on ice are the cure to a midsummer's night humidity!



Copyright © Jason Debly, 2009-2010. All rights reserved.


  1. Many a time I have dropped a cube of ice in my scotch. That particular flavour element the master distiller has worked so hard to achieve might just be the particular flavour element which makes the dram a tad to rich/peaty/smokey for my particular palate. A drop of an ice cube while muting one flavour may give expression to another and a new experience is born.

    And the temperature is a factor, what with the sweat running down the brow and your tongue thick with the heat and the humidity, it may just be the ice that brings the malt back to the intended experience that the distillers and blenders created in the first place.