Last night, a few of us devoteas held a whisky and tea tasting in my tearoom. We sampled 4 whiskies (3 single malt and one bourbon) and paired them each with a different tea.
My knowledge of tea is fairly extensive, my knowledge of whisky is slim-to-none. Because of this, we chose to drink the whisky first and then based on what we tasted, we would chose a tea we thought it would pair well with.
The first drink was Basil Hayden 8yr Bourbon. It was smooth and light with a caramel sweetness. Pete, who brought the Bourbon, also brought a roasted Dong Dong to pair. The smoothness of the bourbon played nicely with the roast of the tea. Bourbon 4/5, Tea 3/5, pairing 3/5.
The 2nd on the list was a Macallan 10yr. This Scotch was a little sharper than the Bourbon and had a nice crisp finish. Sue Brought this along with a 2010 Raw Puer from our friend at Stoneleaf in Middlebury. The tea was young and fruity with a hint of woodiness that paired fantastically with the oaky notes from the Scotch. Scotch 3/5. Tea 3/5, pairing 4/5. I think this was the best pairing even though the Scotch was my least favorite.
The 3rd on the menu was my choice, an Ardmore traditional cask. The first sip is a smoky fruit combination followed by a strong peated dryness. I chose to pair the Scotch with a 2011 Song Zhong Phoenix bird oolong. The fruityness of each melded perfectly in the mouth. where on flavor would leave off, the next sip would finish it, making a smooth transition between Scotch and Tea. Scotch 4/5, Tea 5/5, pairing 4/5.
The last item on our agenda was a 12yr Glenmorangie in port casks. Payton brought this beverage to taste with a 1970 Bao Zhong he brought back from Taiwan (he also bought the Dong Ding we tasted first) The Scotch was a sweet treat that really tasted like a Port. Smooth and not too overwhelming in smokiness or fruityness, this Scotch was a great way to round out our evening. The 40yr old Bao Zhong was special all by itself. The charcoal roast made a soft and sweet cup that blended with the smoothness of the Glenmorangie. I