There are some pairings that are timeless – tea and biscuits, nachos and dip or caviare and champagne. When it comes to whisky, there is only one true pairing, and that is cigars, and the pleasure of enjoying a fine glass of single malt while lighting up a quality cigar is hard to beat. This truly magical combination of aromas is an experience to be savoured, and that is why top whisky brand Dalmore have now been working in close collaboration with the only Cuban cigar importer in the UK, Hunters and Frankau, to perfectly match some of the products in their impressive range with chosen cigars.
The crowning glory of the Dalmore range is its appropriately named Cigar Malt. Although this premium spirit was available a few years ago, it changed its name to Gran Reserva a couple of years back. Now, due to strong public demand, it is back on the scene, however, it now takes a new and improved form. This upgraded version has actually been changed to enhance the enjoyment of drinking a dram while smoking a cigar, by ageing it in a mix of Cabernet Sauvignon, American white oak and Matusalem sherry casks for the perfect flavour.
The Dalmore Cigar Malt has an ABV of 44% and comes in at around $83.50 a bottle. Suggested as a perfect pairing with the Partagas Series No. 2 cigar, this flavoursome spirit combines the spicy notes of ginger and cinnamon with the atmospheric aroma of Autumn leaves and dry woody notes. There are other subtle flavours which also come into play – an undercurrent of bitter dark chocolate can be detected while a definite taste of light coffee beans is also just under the surface. Over it all, there is a distinct zing of orange zest and the sweetness of toffee which resonates on the palate with a full richness that brings depth without too much heaviness. The result is a fresh and light finish with just enough sweet spiciness to linger on the tastebuds.
While this impressive drink is delicious on its own, it truly comes into its own when paired with the cigar. Amazingly, the smokiness brings out the sweetness and lightness of the whisky while all of the flavour that has been drawn from the red wine cask ageing process rise to the fore with fruity red berry flavours. If you enjoy a good cigar while sampling a tipple, you are going to love this sophisticated pairing, and even if you are determined to never smoke a cigar, it is still worth your while to give it a try to get the most out this fine whisky.
If you’re keen to try out some of the other pairings in the Dalmore range, you can sample some of the combinations on this list:
- Dalmore King Alexander III, paired with Montecristo Especial No. 2 cigar
- The Dalmore 12-year-old whisky, paired with Davidoff Special T cigar
- The Dalmore 15-year-old whisky, paired with Cohiba Siglo III cigar
- The Dalmore 18 year old whisky, paired with Hoyo de Monterry Epicure cigar