The Best Whiskey Sour Ever


So apparently Sunday is National Whiskey Sour Day. And why not? If there are national days devoted to cornchips and frozen food (and there are), why not a day devoted to a zingy bourbon-based cocktail? There is even a National Whiskey Sour Day website. The site notes that some people celebrate the occasion on Aug. 29, which does not exactly lend an air of authority to National Whiskey Sour Day. But since August has no official holiday, and the predicted high temperature for my area on Sunday is 90 degrees, I am going to celebrate on Aug. 25. (And, depending on how the week goes, maybe again on Aug. 29.)

Besides, as fate would have it, just last week I had the best whiskey sour I’ve ever tasted. It was served at “Mixing at the Mansion,” the Bourbon Women-Kentucky Distillers’ Association event on Aug. 15. I have ordered plenty of whiskey sours over the years, enjoying the interplay between the sour fruit and the sweet bourbon, but most of them are ultimately too acidic. These cocktails were more of a sweet-sour, very easy to drink. I contacted an insider at the Governor’s Mansion and discovered the secret ingredient: frozen lemonade concentrate. The recipe follows below.


Kentucky Bourbon Sour

1 can frozen lemonade concentrate (I used a 12-ounce can of Minute Maid)

1 can bourbon (I used Four Roses Yellow Label)

1 ½ cans water

Mix the above really well.

(I mixed them in a pitcher, then poured some in a shaker filled with crushed ice and added:)

A little bit of egg white. (OK, maybe this is the secret ingredient. As a novice bartender, I’d never put egg white in a drink, but by golly, it gave this drink oooomph.) Shake until frothy and pour over ice. This made four good-sized drinks.

Garnish with peach, raspberries or other fruit.

As they did at the Governor’s Mansion, I garnished with a thin slice of peach, which adds another layer of complexity: As you bring the drink up to your lips, you first get a whiff of peach, followed by the smooth, sweet-sour flavor. Mmmmm.


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