DIY Rye Infusions: Elevating Your Cocktail Game
Rye whiskey is noted for its spicy flavour profile. Unlike vodka, which has a neutral taste and can be easily infused with a variety of ingredients, infusing rye whiskey can be a little tricky. Worry not, we have listed the perfect infusion ingredients that enhance the rye whiskey's flavour! Check them out below.
1. Rock And Rye
Rock And Rye is a liqueur made using rye whiskey and citrus and spice-flavoured rock candy. It is an old-timey recipe which was enjoyed in the 19th century and also consumed to cure many forms of ailment. Its popularity saw a downward trend over the years, but with the renaissance of rye whiskey, the liqueur is slowly gaining traction. Today, many commercially produced Rock And Ryes are available, but it's always preferable to make it yourself and tailor it to your own taste.
The liqueur's recipe traditionally used a herb called horehound, which is no longer easily accessible. Many versions skip this ingredient and so can you. Rock And Rye liqueur can be used to make many cocktails. The simplest way to create a drink is by adding the juice of a whole lemon to 45 ml of the liqueur.
1 (750 ml) bottle of Bulleit Rye
1 (6-inch) string Rock Candy
1 Whole clove
1 teaspoon Horehound (optional)
2 Oranges, sliced
2 Lemon, sliced
1 Dried apricot
1 Cinnamon Stick
Take a large container and add whiskey, rock candy, clove and horehound. Let the mixture sit in a cool, dark place for three days. Add the rest of the ingredients and let them steep for a day or two (or longer, as per your taste). Keep checking the taste of the drink regularly throughout the process. Once the desired flavour is achieved, strain to get the liqueur and store it in an airtight glass container. The liqueur stays good for two months when refrigerated.
2. Tangerine-Sage Rye Whiskey And Bonded Bee Cocktail
Tangerine-Sage Rye Whiskey Recipe
480 ml Bulleit Rye
2-3 Tangerines, wedged
13-15 fresh organic Sage Leaves
Evenly divide the rye into two mason jars and place the tangerine wedges in one jar and seal tightly. Add the sage in the other jar and seal tightly. Date, label and store the jars out of direct sunlight in a cool, dry area. Agitate the infused whiskey in the jars daily. Infuse for three to six days, tasting regularly. Once you get the desired flavour, strain the liquid from both jars and combine them. Tangerine rye bourbon and sage rye bourbon can be mixed in 2:1 proportions. But you can change the ratio based on your usage.
Bonded Bee Cocktail Recipe
60 ml Tangerine-Sage Infused Rye Whiskey
30 ml Lemon Juice, freshly juiced
20 ml Honey Syrup
1 pinch Salt
Sage Leaf, for garnish
Take a Boston shaker with ice and combine all the ingredients by shaking well. Shake until the contents chill. Double strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with a sage leaf.
3. Pecan And Orange Infused Rye Whiskey
1 bottle (750ml) of Bulleit Rye
2 tablespoon Pecan Wood Chips
2 tablespoon dried Orange Peel
Take a large container and add pecan wood chips and orange peel to it. Pour whiskey in the container. Agitate the mixture to release air bubbles. Agitate the contents twice a day so that the contents mix well. Let the infusion sit for two more days. Now, start tasting regularly and strain the infused whiskey into a bottle with an air-tight bottle or a glass container.
4. Sage/Chocolate Rye Whiskey Infusion
Sage gives the whiskey a savoury flavour while cacao gives a sweet taste when you use the infusion to make a cocktail.
500 ml Bulleit Rye
15 fresh organic Sage Leaves
3 tablespoon Pure Cacao powder
Take a large container and add it with sage leaves or cacao powder, depending on the flavour you want to infuse the whiskey with. Pour the whiskey and let the container sit in a cool, dark place for three days. Shake the infused whiskey twice a day. Keep tasting the mixture regularly and once it achieves the desired flavour strain the liquid and store it in a glass container with an air-tight lid. You can make a delicious Brooklyn or Manhattan using this infusion.
The longer you steep the ingredients, the bolder the flavours you will yield.
Use glass containers with air-tight lids, you can also use the original bottle that the whiskey came in with.
Use mid-range to high-range rye whiskeys for infusions.
Once strained and bottled, rock and rye keeps well for up to two months in the refrigerator.
- Use orange slices instead of lemon or a combination of the two citrus fruits.
- Pineapple chunks are a good substitute for apricots.
- Berries also make for good infusion ingredients
- For Rock And Rye liqueur, you can also use honey, simple syrup or a flavoured syrup (2 to 3 tablespoons per 750 ml bottle) in place of rock candy and stir it into the whiskey.
- Infused ingredients will lower the alcohol strength of the liquor, but not significantly.
While it's great to learn about alcoholic beverages and alcohol-infused foods, it is important to also consume alcohol moderately. Remember to serve and drink responsibly to ensure you and your guests are healthy and out of harm's way. If you know anyone who has trouble controlling their alcohol intake, please refer them to a professional immediately.