How I Celebrated World Whisky Day

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Instead of opening a bottle of whisky to celebrate World Whisky Day on May 17, 2013, for World Whisky Day, I had an ale.

It wasn’t just any ale, though… It was an Embrasse beer, “a beer to embrace”, from Belgium. And why is that good for World Whisky Day? The brewery bought Ardbeg casks and aged their already incredible beer in those casks.

Brouwerij De Dochter van de Korenaar is the brewery that makes this wonderfully dark ale, a Belgian strong ale, and putting in Ardbeg casks makes this one of my top choices. Nothing finished off a great, malty, dark ale like a bit of peat smoke added!

The only thing that keeps me from stocking up on this is that it costs over $13/bottle.

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Ardbeg at the Pub

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Bourbon Compote

I was recently in the South, and, yes, I meant to capitalize the “S”; if you’ve been to Savannah, Georgia, you know what I mean!

Anyway, my wife and I were actually just driving through Savannah, between Jacksonville, Florida, and Charleston, South Carolina, and we decided to stop in Savannah for lunch. We pulled into town, driving by live oaks and Spanish moss, and decided to go to a place on E. Bay called B. Matthews Eatery. It seemed to be place that does the local farm thing, and it was busy enough to say the food should be decent. I got duck sausage and waffles, a twist on the traditional chicken and waffles, and asked for a side of what they called chutney.

The chutney was really more of a compote to me, as it was more syrupy than what I think of with chutneys. It had bourbon, apples, cinnamon and pecans in it, and it was, well, fantastic. Good enough to make me want to come up with my own version of it.

So now we’re back home in Ohio, and I decided to try out my take on this compote before I forgot how good it was. I used a secret weapon, though, Maguey’s Sweet Sap!

Maguey Sweet Sap

The ingredients are simple, but oh-so-worth-it:

  • 1 1/2 cups Maguey’s Sweet Sap
  • 1 cup bourbon (I used Maker’s Mark)
  • 2 apples, peeled and sliced into 1/2″ slices
  • 1 cup pecan halves/pieces
  • 1 tsp (or to taste) cinnamon

Grilling Apples

The steps are simple, too. I started by combining the Maguey’s Sweet Sap and the bourbon, and heating it to a simmer. while this was starting up, I peeled and sliced the apples, and the apples went onto the grate of a grill at a medium heat (400 degrees F or so). the apples were cooked through, flipping after several minutes, for a total of about 10 minutes on the grill, then I chopped the apples and added this to the bourbon mixture, along with the pecans and cinnamon. Everything simmered for about an hour total, until the liquid was a syrupy consistency.

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The compote can be used at a topping for French toast or pancakes, but works really well on pork!  Try it out, let me know what you think… I know I’ll be making a lot more of this!

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Rusty Nail

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