View Full Version : Term: "Kitchen whiskey"?
I was reading a book ("Pale Gray for Guilt" by John MacDonald) and at one point he used the term "kitchen whiskey". I did a cursory Google search without much luck. Anyone heard this term before?
Sure -- it's bourbon/whiskey for everyday use, particularly in cooking. Personally, I follow the line often used regarding wine: if you wouldn't drink it, don't cook with it! That said, what else are you going to do with some bottles you just can't like?!:skep:
Good 'kitchen whiskey', to me, is something like Evan Williams Black, which is a sound, rye-based, low-proof bourbon which will impart general and basic whiskey characteristics on dishes to which it is added. There are (many) others.
It's what Rebecca Ruth uses for their standard bourbon balls. They do custom ones for distilleries to give as samples using other bourbons, but, if you buy them without a bourbon specified, you are getting EW.
"Kitchen whiskey" is the same as "table whiskey," as in table wine. It just means it's the everyday whiskey, left "out" in the kitchen, to be used for all who needs it, whereas the "cabinet whiskey" wouldn't be brought out without an express directive from the householder.
I cook with Old Fitz prime. Makes a good marinade for steak.
Evan Williams Black is also my kitchen whiskey. I make BBQ sauce with it, marinate meats with it, etc. I'll usually have a small pour of it when I'm using it in the kitchen.
Old Charter 8yo is what I use...good price/age ratio and abv not too important when cooking
Just like Cooking Sherry! (only better to drink neat on its own)
Thanks guys; I was right on with my guess, but good to have confirmation. I've not heard the term before or since, but it makes sense.
I specifically remember that in the early 70's, Henry McKenna used the term "table whiskey". But I don't remember whether they used it on the actual label or just in their ad copy.
Closely related would be "cocktail whiskey," except that for cocktails, the quality/price ratio becomes a very important consideration, as I've always felt that better ingredients make better cocktails, while at the same time I wouldn't use an ultrapremium whiskey for cocktails except for once in a great while. Rittenhouse BIB and OGD BIB are two of my favorites for cocktails - great on their own, great in cocktails, and easy on the wallet.
A Sazerac cocktail made with Saz 18 is sublime, but too expensive to make often; a Manhattan made with Stagg will knock you back after you knock it back (but oh, it's good, and you can still tell it's Stagg after mixing it).
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