Speyside Tequila from Storywood for an Old Fashioned with a twist.
Born in Scotland and raised in Texas, the founder of Storywood Michael Ballantyne ended up in Mexico, where he came across Master Distiller Luis Trejo. Storywood tequila was born when the pair realised that by ageing tequila in a variety of used oak barrels they would be able to create unique flavours. By taking 100% agave and using the same ageing techniques more normally associated with single malt whisky, they have produced a range of ‘sipping’ tequilas. My sample, Storywood Speyside 14 Añejo was aged over 14 months in single malt Scotch whisky casks. But, ‘Old Fashioned’ with Tequila?
In honour of ‘Old Fashioned’ week, the first week in November, Storywood challenged me to make a Tequila Old Fashioned. AND, they offered me a bottle for London-Unattached readers. So, one of you will get the chance to try your own Tequila Old Fashioned with Storywood Speyside 14 Añejo.
The first thing to do with any new drink is to sip a little bit without mixing. This particular tequila, a bit like a single malt, is delicious sipped on its own or over ice and it has all the kick of tequila but with nutty, toasty notes, a bit like a very smooth, sweet malt whisky. Storywood uses the strapline ‘sip slow’ and this is a tequila you could enjoy drinking by the fire through the winter.
If it’s not your style, Storywood has a range of tequilas to choose from. Produced and aged in Mexico they use 10-year-old mature 100% blue weber agave which is grown slowly for between 10 and 12 years. With the natural spring waters from Volcan de Tequila, it’s twice distilled in copper pot stills, then matured in a range of cases – Speyside whisky cask and Oloroso Sherry casks. The range is intended to tempt whisky lovers to try something different.
As it happens, I really like an Old Fashioned. Whether with whisky or bourbon, it’s a guilty secret for me because I can usually make a version of this with ingredients I have in the house. An old fashioned needs sugar, an orange and some Angostura bitters. Ice and your whisky or bourbon makes up the cocktail. You don’t even need a cocktail shaker. Recipes for a tequila old fashioned often ask for agave syrup rather than a sugar cube or simple syrup which is more normal in a whisky old fashioned. Now, I don’t have agave syrup so instead I made up a little honey syrup simply because I thought it would be a little softer than sugar. I also used fresh orange peel and some wonderful Maraschino cherries from Hotel Starlino. I garnished my old fashioned with a fresh orange peel twist, but you could also use one of the dried orange wheels that I keep on hand for emergencies when I don’t have any oranges in the house.
Here’s the recipe I used.
An Old Fashioned made with barrel-aged Añejo Tequila that has spent 14 months in Speyside whisky barrels
- 50 ml Storywood 14 Añejo Tequila
- 10 ml Honey Simple Syrup Made by dissolving 1 tablespoon honey in 15ml of hot water and then chilling
- 2 dashes Angostura Bitters
- Orange Zest and peel from one orange
- 1-2 Maraschino cherries and a little of the syrup
Take an Old Fashioned glass or a short tumbler and use a vegetable peeler to take off one or two strips of peel from the orange over the glass so that the oil is expressed into the glass
Wrap the peel around a cocktail stirrer to make a curl
Fill the glass with half the ice
Add tequila, honey simple syrup and bitters and stir well
Top the glass up with more ice
Garnish with the orange peel twist and a couple of cherries. If you like drizzle in some of the cherry syrup for a dramatic effect
The Tequila Old Fashioned is a delicious autumnal drink which is a lovely change from a whisky or bourbon old fashioned. Now I am wondering if it would make a good Whiskey Sour alternative too…
If you’d like to try for yourself, all you need to do to be in with a chance of winning a bottle worth around £48 is to keep your fingers crossed then follow the Rafflecopter through, remembering to answer the mandatory question. And, if you prefer to simply buy your own bottle, please check out the Storywood site where you’ll find a lot more about this fascinating tequila range.
For more about Storywood and to buy your own, check out their website