Drambuie is a honey gold colored liqueur that hails from Scotland. It’s made from Scottish whisky, heather honey, and a special blend of herbs and spices. According to the maker, it was originally made for Bonnie Prince Charlie as a health tonic, which he imbibed daily to keep his strength and vitality up.
I find Drambuie to be a bit strong and overpowering for my palette, even when combined in cocktails. It has a top note hit of sweetness that, when combined with it’s distinct blend of herbs and spices, reminds me of licorice. I am not most decidedly NOT a licorice person. But even so, the sweetness lingers as the liqueur settles and mellows, allowing me to enjoy the warm, herbal/spicey combination. It’s nose gives me hints of herbs, warm honey, and even a bit of butterscotch. I find Drambuie to be quite the experience–the taste and smell transports me back into history. And even though it is not one of my favorites, I do keep it on my bar as there is one cocktail in particular I enjoy.
There are a variety of drinks you can make with Drambuie, but the Rusty Nail is perhaps the most well known one. This happens to be Mister’s favorite cocktail:
- 1 part Drambuie
- 2 parts Scotch
- lemon twist
Pour all ingredients into a rocks glass, stir, garnish with a lemon.
While the Rusty Nail is not my personal cup of tea, I do truly enjoy the The Bee Knees Royale:
- 1 part Drambuie
- 1 part Hendricks
- 1/2 part fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 part honey syrup (I always use local, unfiltered honey–it’s better for you)
- 2 parts champagne
Combine first 4 ingredients, shake well, strain into a fresh glass, top with champagne, garnish with an orange peel (optional–I personally do not like the addition of the orange)