All you need for Christmas…

Ah, bourbon. Just the tipple you need when the temperature drops and you have time to sip and contemplate. Make a little space in your Christmas cocktail cabinet for a bottle of Woodford Reserve. That rich, toasty, oaky goodness captures the spirit of the season down to a tee…

Not for nothing does this superior spirit call itself a Craft Bourbon. Everything from the water source to the barrel-ageing and unique triple-distillation in Scottish copper pot stills is brought together with the pride and skill of an artisan producer. You’ll witness that in the taste: get ready for an explosion of warming winter spices like cinnamon, flecks of ginger and walnut blended with decidedly moreish notes of premium dark chocolate (we’re talking way over 70% cocoa solids; none of your rubbish confections here), honey, bursts of orange, over ripe banana, creamy vanilla and that malty, cereal sweetness that comes from an unusually high content of rye. All in all this exceptionally smooth combo makes for our idea of liquid gold. And at under £30 a bottle, it’s an absolute bargain.

Definitely try it neat, passing the glass under your nose to breath in that wonderful aroma before taking it to your lips and swirling it around your mouth to ruminate over the taste. Then mix things up by using it as a base in your favourite American classic cocktails, keeping it straight and simple or adding a modern twist. Either way you’re in for a treat.

New Old Fashioned

2 1/2 oz Woodford Reserve
1 tbsp sugar syrup
5 dashes of bitters
2 peach slices
2 blackberries
Splash of sparkling water

Method:
Muddle the sugar syrup, bitters and one peach slice in the bottom of an Old-Fashioned glass. Add the Woodford Reserve, ice cubes and sparkling water and stir to combine. Garnish with the remaining peach slice and a blackberries.

Classic Manhattan

2oz Woodford Reserve
1oz sweet vermouth
2 dashes Angostura aromatic bitters

Method:
Fill mixing glass or cocktail shaker with ice, add ingredients and shake or stir, according to your preference. Strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange twist.

Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, £27.57, masterofmalt.com

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