“When choosing a whisky to pair with food, you’ll need to assess its flavour characteristics. For example, is it spicy, sweet, smoky or citrusy? This is going to impact the type of food you pair it with,” says Arjun Chaudhary, bar expert and founder of Wolf of Bar Street. “Basically, the core flavours in the whisky will amplify those natural flavours in the food.”
These days, it is amply clear how wine is not the only thing capable of being the perfect accompaniment to appetizers or desserts. Whisky is the new kid on the block; a great match to seafood, roasted and smoked meats, cheese, nuts and the like. The only catch here is you need to pair it with food according to the varied flavours it possesses (full-bodied, light-bodied, fruity, et al). Say, lighter whiskies pair best with sushi, while medium-bodied ones go well with smoked fish. Likewise, smoky, peat style whiskies taste fantastic with steak, dark chocolate or blue cheese. So taking into account the various complexities of whisky, here’s taking a look at its potential appetizer pairings.
For blended whiskies
For those of you who prefer blended scotch with complex, rich, floral and fruity tones, then the best bet is nuts, dry fruits and chocolate. Walnuts and chestnuts is what we suggest for the perfect evening.
For single malts
There’s nothing better than coupling single malts with some fresh salmon, cheese, chocolates and even desserts. Fresh salmon is delicate and rich in flavour and pairs very well with single malts. Sushi is another option for single malt lovers who are looking for some light bites in the company of friends and lovers.
These are the kind of whiskies that are aged between 18 to 25 years and go very well with rich, meaty appetizers, say something heavier like pork, ham, and the like. Hard cheese with crunchy salt crystals is another option that goes well with older whiskies.
Please note: You should avoid anything spicy or laden with garlic because that tends to kill some of the flavours in the whisky. Which means you may not be able to appreciate some of the subtleties that your dram offers you. Opt for salty snacks such as peanuts, crisps, etc. These tend to enhance the flavour of the whisky instead of overpowering it.
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