This is an absolute must during the frigid days that haunt us. It’s also a brilliant winter warmer. This simple cocktail has lured many back from the depths of sickness and winter’s harshest storms. It’s the friendly face you see when you need it most; the one that says everything is going to be ok.
The origins seem to have this drink first being concocted in Scotland, where a sweet drink with whisky was made to fight the common cold. The weather was brutal but with drinks like this it helped. If nothing else, it made things tolerable. It pains me to say this, but thank goodness for the Scots.
Like many of the classics that have undergone renewed and revamped recipes, the toddy today is as varied as a cocktail can be. The only common elements seem to be the glass, either a short mug or glass with stem and handle, and the toddy stick used to stir the drink.
I can’t say for certain that this drink will cure your winter sniffles and pains but I can say that, if nothing else, you’ll enjoy the surge of warmth in your bones when you take your first sip. Don’t wait for the flu to make the rounds, have a drink or two tonight. I like to call it my prevent defence.
For my interpretation of the classic toddy, I decided to use rye instead of scotch whisky or bourbon or rum. I also prefer the taste of brown sugar and honey instead of granulated sugar, the addition of cloves, cardamom and lemon peels, plus a cinnamon stick. After all, something has to be the stick that stirs the drink, so to speak.
After a long tough haul outside shovelling snow, I like to make myself one of these. I sit by the fireplace and enjoy a moment of zen. It soothes my spirit, my muscles and my taste buds. It’s the perfect answer to all that ails me.
Whisky Hot Toddy
- 2 oz. rye whisky
- 1/2 tsp. brown sugar
- 1 tsp. honey
- 1 clove
- 1 strip lemon peel
- 1 cardamom pod
- hot water