I remember my first drink. I don’t mean the sips of beer I was allowed as a kid. Or the “drink the first cup of wine” (and second and third) we had every Passover. I mean the first real time I tipped my head back and took a good long swig. And it wasn’t my drink of choice these days – whisky, Auchentoshan® 12-Year-Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky, that is to come later on in the story.

My first real drink? It was right before my grade 10 high school dance and I was hanging with my clique. We were all dressed to impress. Hair teased into a wave. Pink collars turned up. Jordache jeans and Tretorns. There was no stopping us. We looked hawt.

yeah, that’s me.

One of us (not me mom, honestly) had asked an older sibling to buy us a bottle. Blue Nun we insisted, it was what all the popular kids were drinking (and you know, we all wanted to be popular). As we sat in a semi-circle on the school football field, we chatted about waltzing into the gym, showing off our moondance and hopefully being asked to dance when Stairway to Heaven came on.

We never did make it there. After my first few sips, the cops patrolling the area saw our group, hauled us into the police station and made us call our parents to come and get us.

I learned two important lessons that night – don’t drink on school property and cheap booze tastes terrible.

The first lesson I caught onto pretty quickly. The second took a little longer to figure out. But as I grew older, cork screws replaced screw tops and beer replaced tequila.

Now that I am a real grownup (and what I mean is a parent to two tweens), I have found a new true love – single malt scotch whisky.

While I enjoy a good peaty flavour to my scotch, I prefer it to be smooth with delicate flavours; like those found in the Auchentoshan® 12-Year-Old. It is my go-to scotch and it can be found in our liquor cabinet at home and (more importantly) on our boat (where we enjoy it often in our cockpit after a fabulous day of sailing).

They say Auchentoshan is a good starting place for those who are newish to trying whisky. It is triple distilled (not a common practice) which is how it gets its smooth flavour and it’s highly adaptable; meaning it can be enjoyed neat, over ice or as a base with your favourite mix.

I personally like the notes of toasted almonds, caramelized toffee, crème brulee and citrus found in Auchentoshan 12-Year-Old (okay you got me, I can’t really decipher any of that but I do like the lingering nutty flavour that lasts well after your first sip). But those flavours are there, highlighted by the 12 years it spent in bourbon casks.

I prefer sipping Auchentoshan 12 Year Old, but it you are looking for a great cocktail to serve up at home, look no further. Below is a recipe that will have your friends thinking you are next great mixologist. And really, all you have to do is add your favourite ale.

Here’s a super easy and enjoyable recipe to have handy especially for those impromptu get togethers, it’s a keeper:

AUCHENTOSHAN & ALE 

  • 1.5oz Auchentoshan 12 Year Old Whisky
  • 1oz Grapefruit Juice
  • 0.5oz Lemon Juice
  • 0.75oz Simple Syrup (1:1 ratio)
  • Ale of choice
  1. Shake all but ale with ice and strain into a highball glass filled with fresh ice
  2. Top with ale and quick stir to combine all ingredients
  3. Lemon zest garnish