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Cutty Sark Blended Scotch WHisky
About Cutty Sark Blended Scotch
With spirit prices aways on the rise, I’ve been keeping an eye out for more affordable bottles. And, Cutty Sark Blended Scotch has been top of my list after my grandfather mentioned it as a popular whisky from back in his college days, when he would bartend to make some extra money.
Cutty Sark, named after the fastest ship in the early 1900’s, was first created in 1923 by legendary spirit and wine merchants Francis Berry and Hugh Rudd (from Berry Bros. & Rudd) and Scottish Artist James McBey. Their ultimate goal was to create a lighter style of blended whiskey to ultimately sell internationally. It took a while to establish the brand in the United States, because of prohibition, but was eventually named the best selling scotch in the country in 1961. The brand was acquired by La Martiniquaise in 2019.
❖ Spirit: Blended Scotch Whisky
❖ Distillery: Produced by La Martiniquaise
❖ ABV: 40% (80 Proof)
❖ Low Price
❖ Color: Straw, lighter than I was expecting but that might just be because they don’t add coloring.
❖ Nose: Apple, orange
❖ Taste: Fruity, apple, citrus like orange and lemon, honey, vanilla, spice. A little bit of heat but thin overall.
❖ Finish: Medium, spice, honey
1/2 oz Lime Juice
2 oz Scotch
❖ Add lime juice and Scotch to a copper mug filled with ice.
❖ Top with ginger beer and garnish with sprig of mint
After seeing Cutty Sark Blended Scotch advertised as a mixing spirit, I was really excited make some cocktails. Simple fizzy drinks were my first priority, as they’re some of my favorite cocktails, so I decided to make a Scottish Mule. Like it’s cousin, the Kentucky Mule or Moscow Mule, it’s a simple cocktail with a base spirit, lime juice, ginger beer, and mint garnish.
I hoped the fruit, citrus and spice notes of Cutty Sark would work well in this cocktail and I wasn’t disappointed. I was impressed with the balance of the tart from the lime, spice and sweetness from the ginger beer, and fruit from Cutty Sark. The distinct grain favor from scotch also differentiates this cocktail from the other mules.
Because of the stereotype that light colored spirits have less flavor and the low price, I was initially wary of Cutty Sark Blended Scotch. And while it might be a bit thin and less flavorful than other Scotches, these shortcomings actually make Cutty Sark a stronger mixing Scotch.
In fact, I think it might be my new go-to blended Scotch in my home bar. I wasn’t a huge fan of Cutty Sark neat, but the fruit, citrus and spice notes stood up to other ingredients. I was especially pleased at how well it blends with ginger beer and lime juice, which are already two of my favorite whisky mixers. Also, despite working well in fizzy drinks, the thin mouthfeel lacks depth for spirit forward cocktails.
So, although it might not be as well rounded as other blended Scotches, like Monkey Shoulder, I would still recommend Cutty Sark. It’s pretty cheap relative to other scotches, works great as a mixer, and the less complex flavor could work well as an introduction to Scotches.
As always, drink responsibly.