If you look at flavored whiskey reviews on this site, you’ll find few compliments. So let it be with great fanfare that I announce that Eastside Distilling’s Marionberry Whiskey is the best flavored whiskey I’ve ever had.
This is not say I love it, but it’s better than all the cherry or cinnamon flavored chemical/medicinal monstrosities out there. My biggest problem is that it’s only 60 proof. Marionberry (not to be confused with the late former D.C. mayor of crack smoking fame) is a blackberry cultivar and as such is tart. Tartness means you need to add sugar for balance. Adding fruit and sugar turns the whiskey from spirit to liqueur.
If this was even 80 proof, I’d consider occasionally drinking it on the rocks. But it’s 60 proof, so let’s make a cocktail. Despite the lower alcohol, we’ll still treat the Marionberry whiskey like it’s a full on spirit. We’ll just need less sugar for balance.
Shake whiskey, lemon juice and simple syrup with ice, strain over fresh ice in a tall glass, top with club soda. Garnish with a lemon wheel.
*If your name happens to be Marion Collins and you are not tough, a guy, or in the room, then you have my apologies.
This is a light, refreshing drink for a warm day. The lower proof makes it “sessionable” so you can have more of them!