Drinking a rich glass of whiskey is a simple pleasure. It can be a meditation, a celebration, or simply a joyous ritual. Whiskey, on its own, is enough to satisfy the senses. The sound of splashing decadence against crisp ice, the oaky aroma, and the woody flavor is enjoyable enough; however, amplifying the experience from enjoyable to euphoric is something that can be achieved by pairing your drink with food and music. Food and music take a passing moment and turn it into a memory. Whether you are a person who enjoys a youthful whiskey cocktail, or someone who likes to take it dignified and on the rocks, there’s a song and a bite that you can pair with your drink to add a delectable boost. Life, after all, should be comprised of memorable experiences. At Harlem Standard, we firmly believe in making every whiskey moment as gratifying as possible, which is why we’ve taken the time to curate a list of 4 whiskey-food-music pairings to enjoy solo, with friends, or with a lover. Don’t let the moment fall short.
Whiskey on the rocks, Grilled steak, and Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)
by Louis Armstrong
This is a combination for someone who is a fan of the classics. Maybe this lady or gentleman favors chivalry, crisp pantsuits, and old school Italian restaurants that cater specifically to regulars. Nothing has ever stopped him/her from enjoying a grilled steak and nothing ever will. The pairing of whiskey neat and grilled red meat is a perfect combination because the smoky notes in the whisky mirror those in the steak. A fancy cocktail would be too overpowering. When met with Louis Armstrong’s Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing), you’ll be taken on a vintage journey to another time, a simpler time.
Whiskey Sour, Goat cheese, and Redbone
by Childish Gambino
Goat cheese is thick and dreamy. It’ll suck you in like quicksand, so it requires a tart freshness to bring you back up to the surface. That’s why it goes great with a whiskey sour! It’s a funky but fresh and delicious combination. Also funky and fresh? The song Redbone by Childish Gambino. It’s a paradoxical song that brings in some funk notes, but also manages to be new age. The smooth notes in the song jive perfectly with your goat cheese. If you like some familiar notes with a splash of novelty, this triple threat is the way to go.
Vieux Carre, Oysters + Béchamel sauce, J’ai Deux Amours
by Josephine Baker
There is something about sharing oysters with friends that carries a sort of bourgeoisie attitude.
And, what does it mean to be bourgeoisie? Historically, it meant the French middle class. Today, it has taken on a new upper-echelon meaning. What better match to that sentiment than the famous New Orleans French classic from the 30’s? Channel your inner Parisian by simultaneously playing J’ai Deux Amours by Josephine Bake while you allow the creamy béchamel sauce to cut through the bitter cocktail. It’s perfect to enjoy with your bougie friends or a fun date. Ooh La La!
Whiskey Neat, Jalapeno-infused chocolate, The Boss
by Diana Ross
Whiskey and chocolate make a fantastic duo. In fact, some even call the two soulmates. Nothing tops off love like a little extra spice, which is why we’ve elevated our chocolate recommendation to a spicy rendition. The soulful bodied whiskey along with seductive chocolate both help to balance out the spice with the chocolate. Spicy, soulful, and seductive. We may as well be talking about Diana Ross, which is why we’ve invited her into this whiskey moment. Her song The Boss is one that feels like a fun celebration, which is what your taste buds will be feeling while you enjoy this drink and dessert.