Highland – Old Waldorf Bar Days

Dash of Orange Bitters

One-half Scotch

One-half Italian Vermouth


Dalmore whisky must have one of the sexiest bottles in spiritdom, the metallic 12-pointed stag which adorns the front just screams Scotland and whisky. The first time I tried this was years ago at a 4-course whisky and food pairing meal arranged by Dalmore upstairs at Quo Vadis in the private room. I used to work in the room when it was in an earlier incarnation as Marx Bar, so named as its where Karl Marx lived in London while he wrote Das Kapital. A delightfully ironic place for a high-end restaurant and bar. I don’t remember the whisky much from this lunch as I kept reminiscing about goings on years earlier. There used to be a hatch in the ceiling, and you could climb up onto the roofs of SoHo with a drink after work and wonder where the stars had gone, while being very careful not to set off alarms. Some nights were more successful than others.

The distillery sits in the highlands to the north of Inverness, and has been in operation since the mid 1800’s. in 1867 it was purchased by some McKenzies, a clan which was given the right to use the 12-point stag as their family crest after saving the king at the time from being impaled by one way back in 1263, I now couldn’t imagine a bottle of Dalmore without it.

Dalmore whisky today is a firm part of my life, I am part of a family where it sits pride of place in the spirit cabinet, and I buy it by the case for home, it seemed the appropriate whisky for this drink and did not disappoint.

The Scotch works perfectly with the Carpano Antica Formula which has recently become my favourite ingredient. Its very easy to drink, ads the proportions mean it has less kick than a Manhattan. Dalmore itself works well in this as it doesn’t have much peat, but is very full bodied so marries well without being overpowering.