Here are all the Scotch cocktails worth trying! From classic cocktails to modern spins, these drinks highlight the best this whisky has to offer.
Got a bottle of Scotch and want something creative to do with it? Sure, fans of this Scottish whisky are sure to adore their favorite Scotch neat. But there are plenty of ways to mix it into a fabulous mixed drink that everyone will love…Scotch fan or not.
Here’s a list of all the best Scotch cocktails that are worth trying. There are classic cocktails with years of history (one even dates back to the 1890’s). There are modern classic cocktails that have global popularity (hello, Penicillin). And there are a couple classy 1960’s and 70’s drinks too. Each one accentuates the spicy, earthy and peppery notes of a good Scotch.
And now…the top Scotch cocktails to try!
Types of Scotch
Are you a Scotch fan? Chances are, you’ll know the Scotch you love. In most of these cocktails, you can use whatever you have on hand! Here’s a little more about Scotch types:
- Blended Scotch: Blended Scotch has a smooth flavor: almost like bourbon, but with more of a spicy finish. As its name suggests, it’s made by blending two types of whisky: barrel-aged malt whisky and grain whisky. Most of the cocktails above call for blended Scotch.
- Single Malt Scotch: Single malt Scotch is a malt whisky that’s from one distillery, and it’s usually more expensive. What does single malt Scotch taste like? The flavor is a bit stronger than a blended Scotch, with peaty and smoky notes.
The Penicillin cocktail is a modern classic Scotch cocktail! It pairs whisky with flavors of honey, lemon and ginger and has a unique, high-end vibe.
- 4 thin slices of ginger, peeled and about 3/4 inch round
- 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) blended scotch
- 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) fresh lemon juice
- 3/4 ounce (1 1/2 tablespoons) honey syrup
- 1/2 ounce (1 tablespoon) single malt scotch
- Ice, for serving (use clear ice!)
- Garnish: candied ginger or ginger root, lemon peel
- In the bottom of a cocktail shaker, muddle (gently mash) the ginger with a muddler or wooden spoon until it is mashed and juices are released, about 15 seconds.
- To the cocktail shaker, add the blended scotch, lemon juice and honey syrup with a handful of ice. Shake until cold.
- Strain the drink into a lowball glass with one large ice cube.
- Carefully pour the single malt scotch over the back of a spoon just above the surface of the drink, creating a layer on top. Garnish with candied ginger, ginger root or lemon peel and serve.
- Category: Drink
- Method: Shaken
- Cuisine: Cocktails
Keywords: Scotch cocktails, Penicillin
About the Authors
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.