Dear Canada, you are so cool.

Week three in The Year of Drinking Adventurously. Canadian Whiskey. (Find all 52 entries here.)

This week I had an easy and enjoyable choice of potent potable: Canadian Whiskey.  Living in the Northeastern United States, I am in Canada’s back yard (front yard?).  My state, Pennsylvania, shares a border with Ontario, Canada across Lake Erie.

Image via lighthouse

It’s a 6 hour trip to Niagra Falls; Montreal and Quebec City are within a day’s drive.

Canada is a big place with a lot of stuff to love.  For one thing, Canadians are friendly and polite.  Just ask Whitney, she’s married to a Canadian.  It is also home to one of my favorite bands of all time: RUSH.

Courtesy Rolling Stone, obviously

Showing my true nerd-self.  –>

There’s also hockey, poutine (French fries covered with cheese curds and gravy, trust me it’s amazing), Tim Horton’s coffee, thousands of acres of unspoiled native forest where (I’m sure) the Sasquatches live, the second tallest peak in North America (Mount Logan) and their new Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, is a babe. Voila:

How the hell do they get anything done?           Image via Huffington Post






What was I saying?  Oh yeah, whiskey.  I’ll be honest with you all.  I tend not to be a big cocktail person.  Whiskey goes over ice in my house.  However, I’m trying to be adventurous, right?  So I experimented with a couple recipes and found this one from Ina Garten (The Barefoot Contessa) for fresh whiskey sours:

This theoretically (ha!) makes 4:

1/2 cup fresh squeezed lemon

1/2 cup fresh squeezed lime

1/2 cup sugar syrup

3/4 cup Canadian whiskey (actually you can use any whiskey)

Toss it around in a shaker with ice, then serve with a maraschino cherry in a tumbler.  That’s what Ina Garten did, anyway.  I’ve seen whiskey sours in tall glasses, too.  I drank mine straight out of the shaker.  Why dirty another glass?  Just kidding…

Not my photo, I drank mine from the shaker, remember?

Anyway, this turned out amazingly great.  I will definitely make these again.  The lemon-lime flavor was not overpowering and the amount of sugar syrup was just enough to prevent the citric acid from taking the enamel off your teeth.

Do you ever feel bad using “good” spirits to make mixed drinks?  Like it’s a waste since you’re not really going to taste the full flavor of the alcohol?  I kind of do but it would also be ridiculous to keep a separate stash for just cocktails. Wouldn’t it?  Hmmm….

The Crown Royal is a really nice mild whiskey.  If you are trying a whiskey for the first time, this would be my recommendation.  Canadian whiskeys are as pleasant and polite as their makers.  There’s no funky peat-smoke taste like the Scotches or corn and sour mash flavors of the bourbons, just a nice smooth warmth.  I can see why, in the Great White North, whiskey would hit the spot.  Why not try cuddling up to a Canadian this weekend?  Sample Canadians, below.

Oh hell, why wait for the weekend?  And don’t forget to go see what Lula concocted this week!