Bourbon and Cookies

Do bourbon and cookies make a great combination? You bet they do!

Barbecue season means cookies!

Since picnic and barbecue season is in full swing, my friend Latrice and I were wondering what might be the best bourbon to pair with those homemade chocolate chip cookies that someone will invariably bring. So, at great sacrifice to ourselves, we tried 9 different whiskeys paired with chocolate chip cookies made by my wife. We took video of our tasting and “humorous” banter, but due to some technical difficulties, the video will be live at a later date.

We tried two different sets of whiskeys for this experiment. The bourbon in the first set were chosen because they are reasonably low priced, and readily available. They are also good whiskeys on their own. The second set included whiskeys which could be considered “premium” or “super premium” by today’s standards. Therefore, they also are generally a bit more expensive. We will be focusing on the first set today. Those whiskey are: Basil Hayden Toast (at the high end of this category and arguably should be with the more expensive whiskeys), Mellow Corn (a corn whiskey), Wild Turkey 101 Bourbon & Fighting Cock Bourbon.

How we selected the whiskeys

We tried to select a group of whiskeys both with sweeter, richer flavors and those with a little bit more of a “bite”. My original thoughts from prior food pairings were that if the flavors of the whiskey and the food were too similar, they would basically cancel each other out, leaving either little flavor, or bad flavors. The converse I suspected would also be true; if the cookie and whiskey have contrasting flavors, they could actually enhance each other’s flavors. And that is exactly how it turned out.

Results – the best bourbon to pair with chocolate chip cookies

The Basil Hayden Toast with its light, yet rich and sweet flavors basically cancelled out the cookie’s flavors, leaving us with more of a drier, spicier remnant. Not good. Mellow Corn, a corn whiskey, still has some sweetness and of course corn flavor to it, but also some spice from the rye in mash bill, too. Unfortunately, the results were similar to the Basil Hayden’s. This was Latrice’s least favorite combination. She likened the taste to jalapeños.

I thought the Wild Turkey 101 Bourbon would be a winner, due to the spice it already has from what Wild Turkey calls its “high rye” mash bill. However, compared to what is commonly considered “high rye” these days, theirs is not. Nonetheless, we both felt that this bourbon & cookie combo resulted in enhanced desirable flavors overall. More pronounced chocolate from the cookie and richer caramel from the bourbon. It was an overall delicious combination.

The Fighting Cock Bourbon, with its higher proof, but fairly savory flavor profile, had a similar effect as the Basil Hayden Toast and Mellow Corn when paired with the cookie. However, the off-putting flavors were less so with Fighting Cock. The combination OK, but definitely not great.

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Conclusion – Wild Turkey 101 wins hands down!

The Wild Turkey 101 was the clear winner. So, if you’re heading to a barbecue this summer and there will be chocolate chip cookies, you’ll know what to bring! Stay tuned for the results of our premium/super premium bourbon and cookie pairings, coming soon! Happy July 4th! Cheers!🥃

If you would like to read my reviews of the whiskeys included in this comparison, follow the following links: Basil Hayden Toast Review, Wild Turkey 101 Bourbon Review, Mellow Corn Review.

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