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Batch & Bottle Scotch Manhattan
About Batch & Bottle Scotch Manhattan
As I became more interested in spirits in the past few years, I noticed a steady increase in pre-made cocktails for pretty much any classic cocktail. I didn’t pay too much attention to these products while I focused on making cocktails, until I came across Batch & Bottle Scotch Manhattan.
There are currently four cocktails from Batch & Bottle, all featuring spirits from the William Grant & Sons portfolio: Glenfiddich Scotch Manhattan, Reyka Rhubarb Cosmopolitan, Hendrick’s Gin Martini and Monkey Shoulder Lazy Old Fashioned. I’ve previously reviewed and enjoyed three out of the four base spirits for these cocktails, so the Scotch Manhattan was the most intriguing to me.
Glenfiddich, a single malt scotch from the Speyside region of Scotland, is used as the base for the Batch & Bottle Scotch Manhattan. To complement this scotch, Batch and Bottle use both a sweet vermouth and bitters made in William Grant & Sons facilities.
❖ Spirit: Pre-Made Whisky Cocktail
❖ Distillery: Not listed but imported by William Grant & Sons
❖ ABV: 30% (60 Proof)
❖ Moderate Price
Tasting Notes and Cocktail
❖ Color: Golden Brown
❖ Nose: Grape, cherry,
❖ Taste: Initially a nice balance of vermouth and scotch but then a wave of sweetness takes over. Strong fruit and honey notes. slight maltiness
❖ Finish: Long, grape from the vermouth, honey
The Batch and Bottle Scotch Manhattan caught my eye because Manhattan is one of my favorite cocktails. Typically, I use higher proof rye whisky because I enjoy the dryness so I was curious about how the flavor would differ with scotch whisky as the base spirit. I expected it to be much sweeter, which makes sense since a majority of consumers would probably prefer a sweeter cocktail.
While this cocktail was on the sweet side, I was surprised how well the flavors were balanced. Sweet vermouth was by far the most dominant of the three ingredients, but there was still some nice malt and fruit notes from the scotch. I was disappointed in the lack of noticeable flavors from the bitters. The taste reminds me of sherry cask finished scotches or maybe like a barleywine.
Since I like to tinker with cocktail recipes to suit my personal taste, I’ve generally been skeptical of pre-made cocktails. And while there are a few things I didn’t like, which I think might just be inherent to pre-made cocktails, I was still pretty impressed with the Batch & Bottle Scotch Manhattan.
A Manhattan is a simple and delicate cocktail and I think Batch & Bottle mostly gets this right. The scotch whiskey and vermouth complement each other with strong fruity notes, but I was a bit disappointed in the lack of obvious notes from the bitters. I would have preferred if the vermouth wasn’t so sweet and dominant, but this is probably the best way to appeal to the widest possible audience.
I’m also conflicted with the price of Batch & Bottle Scotch Manhattan. You can get about 4-6 drinks out of this one bottle so this is a fair price compared to getting drinks at a bar. But I also paid about half the price for a Glenfiddich bottle, which can make about 12-16 drinks, and I think I would generally be willing to pay that extra money to have more drinks and flexibility.
But in the end, Batch & Bottle Scotch Manhattan functions as advertised, and is a solid Manhattan cocktail that’s worth trying. I definitely want to eventually check out the other cocktails. I’m not sure about the availability of this product around the world, but the Batch & Bottle website has a section to search for a retailer.
As always, drink responsibly.
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