Ok… Now I know many a whisky aficionado who sings (or sang before converted) in perfect harmony with the choir 🎶 Nooo Way! 🎶 I completely understand that, savouring the purity of “The Water of Life” without subjecting your taste-buds to an onslaught of spice and heat fighting for survival so they can savour the next caress of a gentle dram, blah blah blah.
Well that’s just it for a starter, not all drams are gentle and peaceful, in fact many are prepared for battle in full armour and ready to take on all challengers.
So after a recent and necessary whisky tasting I invited my tasting partner, a visitor from the States, for a curry where I advised him we could continue our tasting experience elevated of course by the pleasures of as the Indians themselves say “First Class” experience. He of course was massively sceptical both about food and the pairing.
Now we arrived at the sparsely seated establishment early evening and were promptly seated when I asked for some poppadoms and sparkling water to refresh and prepare 🙂
A selection of Tandoori starters were ordered and I took the lead in ordering the booze. First up a Bowmore Old Fashioned, no explanation needed this just works at every level with the starters.
For his main, being a novice, he opted for a safe Chicken Korma. No problem, double Eagle Rare Bourbon on the rocks (25 ml just does not do it and to interject; Puffin’ Rooms is the only place to get 35ml) anyway it’s candied fruity, honey complexity and oakyness was perfect.
Now I ordered Lamb Rogan Josh and Garlic Naan… when your pairing anything, particularly cigars and whisky, the rule of thumb is contrast or compliment. But I like to take one step further and challenge.
The idea is to bring out the best in both, not that it’s advised to have a mouthful of complex food and swirl it around with a counterpart spirit, but to take a bite enjoy all that the dish has to offer allow settle then reach for the glass of challenge see it raise to the occasion.
So fortunately this restaurant had a whisky that fit the bill Laphroaig Lore. Spicy, peaty and seriously good with hints of sherried sweetness! Perfect Harmony to my Rogan Josh.
Oh and on the table, left over from the poppadoms, sat my favourite lime pickle which I emptied on to my curry and left out of the equation just because it’s the “Pickle King!”
On the way out my friend said as Americans do that was “Awesome”.
Chairman of C.Gars Ltd