Is it a trick? Is it a treat? Why, it’s a Tricky Treat, of course. Bewitched by a fairy godmother from a plain pumpkin into a cocktail creation, no doubt. Everyone knows fairy godmothers love to put a little splash of whisky in their tea.
This changing weather has been sending a spooky chill up our bones, inspiring more cups of fresh brewed tea than usual. A tasty scotch is one of our favorites for boozing up a cuppa. A squeeze of lemon, a touch of sugar. A classic.
Hmmm... But what about some Lillet Blanc, a little peach liquor? Wait a second... I think we’re making a whisky punch now. What else does it need? The Secret Ingredient. A taste of fresh forest: Wild Hunt Bitters.
Now transform a pumpkin into a bowl, and TA-DA!
The Tricky Treat is the perfect peach whisky punch for Halloween and fall festivities. Change the proportions, and the size of the pumpkin bowl, to serve any amount of guests.
What Does a Whisky Punch Taste Like?
The first accounts of punches date back to the 1600's. Back then, there were far fewer available spirits so invariably, most punches were made with rum or, sometimes, brandy.
Our choice of scotch for this whisky punch is full of flavors that are often missing from rum or brandy and work surprisingly well for a whisky punch. Where rum might have tropical notes of banana, molasses, and vanilla, scotch tends to lean more towards notes of fall, like apple and raisin with strong and unavoidable cereal flavors from the malted barley.
Whisky is a great spirit to use in the fall and winter, as temperatures start to drop, because it will infuse your whisky punch with fall flavors as well as a fair amount of smoke flavor depending on which scotch you pick.
Can I Really Serve a Punch Out of a Pumpkin?
Not only can you, but it is highly recommended that you do! We've all seen drinks made in coconuts or pineapples, but why not have a drink served out of a pumpkin?
Aside from its high novelty factor, the coolest thing we discovered when we conjured this peach whisky punch, was that a pumpkin has impressive insulating abilities. It keeps the ice cubes solid (and your drink undiluted) for an eerily long time.
What's the Best Scotch for a Whisky Punch
There are so many types of scotch on the market. How do you choose the the perfect fit for your whisky punch?
This whisky punch tastes incredible with many types of scotch, but the main thing to look for when choosing the right scotch for your whisky punch is whether it is peated or unpeated, and whether it is a single malt or blended.
Peated vs. Non-peated
Peated scotch is easy to pick out of a lineup because of its strong smoky aroma. The flavor and aroma of the peat can give a whisky punch a nice, cozy, wood fireplace feeling. If smoky flavor isn't your thing, a non-peated scotch will be more enjoyable.
Because of the lack of strong smoke flavor, non-peated scotches tend to present more mellow and nuanced flavors like apple, pear, and biscuit. These types of flavors blend beautifully with the peach black tea and Lillet, making a delightfully well balanced and more refreshing whisky punch.
Blended vs. Single Malt
Single malt scotches have a massive range of flavor profiles. Unlike blended scotch, they are produced by a single distillery and showcase the unique style and characteristics of that particular distillery.
Single malts tend to be sipped neat and can be a little more challenging to mix into a cocktail unless you are familiar it.
If you have a favorite single malt it's probably best to use that bottle, or a bottle from the same distillery, for your whisky punch, as it will have similar characteristics as the scotch that you already enjoy.
Blended scotch, are made with whisky sourced from many different distilleries and blended with the goal of creating a very drinkable and mixable spirit. You can be more confident that a bottle of blended scotch will incorporate into your cocktail more seamlessly than a single malt, and may be a better starting point if you're new to mixing cocktails with scotch.
We recommend the following bottles as starting points to choosing which scotch for your whisky punch;
Peated Single Malt - Ledaig 10yr
Unpeated Single Malt - Glenfiddich 12yr
Peated Blended - Gordon Graham's Black Bottle
Unpeated Blended - Monkey Shoulder
Peach Whisky Punch Ingredients
We suggest you use organic ingredients whenever possible. Here's what you'll need to make this peach whisky punch recipe:
For this whisky punch, we recommend Glenfiddich 12 yr due to it's delicious fall fruit flavor profile. The malty apple notes pair beautifully with peach tea, creme de peche and Lillet Blanc. Learn more about what makes the Glenfiddich unique: The Craft of Glenfiddich
Lillet Blanc -
Best known for its role in a Vesper Martini, Lillet Blanc is a slightly bittersweet fortified wine with a zesty finish. The zesty floral and citrus notes pair seamlessly with the peach and lemon flavors in this peach whisky punch.
Crème de Pêche -
A peach liqueur is the perfect way to easily add peach flavor to a whisky punch. The stone fruit flavors add a layer of autumnal deliciousness to the whisky punch that makes it even more appropriate for a Halloween time delicacy.
Fresh Lemon Juice -
For whisky punches, the lemon juice should always be fresh. The oils from the lemon peel adds a more decadent texture and zesty flavor to your peach whisky punch that is missing from store bought lemon juice.
Pre-squeezed lemon juice will keep in the refrigerator for about a week. Squeeze your own with a citrus press, an essential bar tool, here's the one we and many NYC mixologists prefer: Citrus Press
Simple Syrup -
Sugar and water is all you need to make your own. In a pot, combine organic white sugar with water in equal parts, and warm up the mixture on low heat, so that the sugar is just dissolved. Once cooled, you can use it for your peach whisky punch or countless other cocktails that call for simple syrup. It will stay good in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks.
Peach Black Iced Tea -
In the days of yore, punches were often made with a chilled black tea. It gives the finished drink a lot more body and depth. Think of the flavor of an Arnold Palmer vs just regular lemonade.
Tea also adds more volume to the punch without adding more alcohol, allowing your imbibers the opportunity to sip later into the night without becomig intoxicated too quickly. For this recipe, we recommend a peach black tea, which will add an extra boost of peach to the whisky punch.
Wild Hunt Bitters -
Any whisky punch served around Halloween needs at least a little bit of dark, wooded, spooky flavor. Wild Hunt Bitters are infused with the flavors and aromas of botanicals from deep in the forest. These forest notes blend beautifully with the malty apple flavors from the scotch, and the peachy flavors of the Crème de Pêche.
Don't know how to measure bitters? Check out our blog on all things bitters here: What Are Bitters?
Cut off the top and hollow out one large pumpkin. Do the same with small pumpkins, one for each guest.
Combine all ingredients in large pumpkin (without ice) and place in refrigerator until guest arrive. Place small pumpkins in refrigerator as well.
When ready to serve, add ice (the larger sized cubes, the better), and place on table with smaller pumpkins and a ladle.
Standard Drinks: 1