The Islay Alexander

But single malt can be just as versatile as those drams, and — when it’s a drop like this one — it can benefit the drink so that the mix is more than the sum of its parts.

We think that in this case, that’s partly to do with just how the Bunnahabhain Stiùireadair is produced: there is a distinct briny note to this whisky, and that’s thanks to the time it spends ageing by the coast at the distillery on the Scottish island of Islay. Unlike other Islay distilleries, Bunnahabhain is known for being a distinctly unpeated single malt and it’s this characteristic of the whisky which allows the sense of place — they mature their whisky at the distillery in shoreline warehouses that are continually exposed to the elements — to come through. And it’s this briny note helps the other flavours in the drink to pop.

And Andrew Ratcliff, whisky specialist for Proximo Australia, has used Bunnahabhain Stiùireadair in his take on a Brandy Alexander, the Islay Alexander — check out the recipe below.

Islay Alexander

  • 30 ml Bunnahabhain Stiùireadair
  • 30 ml creme de cacao
  • 30 ml cream
  • Nutmeg (to garnish)
  1. Shake all ingredients hard with ice.
  2. Strain into a Nick & Nora glass.
  3. Garnish with grated nutmeg on top of the drink.