Charring: Where Meat and Whiskey Come Together

There are many reasons why grilled meats pair so well with strong, spicy whiskeys; the drink has a natural connection to the flavours of smoke and char. But establishing which pairing combination is the real gem, isn’t all that easy.

Charring is a hot topic at West Cork Whiskey. John and team originated a charring technology that uses a level five char, which you’ll find used on our Black Cask release, as well as the Glengarriff series. The process uses a non-pyrolytic fuel source to complete the char, which is a smokeless gas powered flame. Alright, we’re here for the science but we know you’re looking for the spread.

If you’re wondering what whiskey to choose with your grilled meats, it’s a real opportunity to choose a bottle that packs a lot of punch. Meat carries a huge amount of flavour, so it can sometimes overpower the notes in a lighter whiskey. Give these a go:

  • A ribeye, filet mignon or a T-bone with single malts.
  • A blended West Cork whiskey with beef tartare .
  • Try adding a splash of whiskey to your barbecue sauces and marinades to deepen the flavour prior to hitting the grill.
  • Succulent, grilled chicken or lower fat steaks with pot still whiskeys.
  • Southern flavours in your marinade will call for a spicer pot still.
  • For when barbecue season comes to a close, try lamb stew with a peated whiskey.

As a general guide, when the fat and flavour of the meat increases, it’s time to choose a bigger, bolder flavour in the whiskey. If you’re in the inbetween area of sirloins or striploins, take a look at the marbling on the meat and increase the robustness of the whiskey suitably.