The family invite has been sent on the WhatsApp group. The bag of charcoal is edging closer to the door. Your dad’s Springbok jersey is ready to go, and if you listen closely, you may just hear Shosholoza playing faintly in the background.
Yes, South Africa, Heritage Day is upon us. While we are getting cheated out of a public holiday this year– a win by the bokke is sure to take the edge off. Bearing this in mind, it’s probably a good idea to keep a bottle of Laphroaig’s 10 Year Old on hand, you know, to celebrate (or settle the nerves).
Heritage Day is the perfect occasion to combine celebrating the rich Scottish heritage of Laphroaig with the tantalising tastes of South Africa. While the rugged hills of Islay may be a world away from sunny South Africa, our two mighty nations share many passions – rugby, smoke, fire, alcoholic beverages, to name just a few…
Get the best of both worlds, celebrating South Africa and Laphroaig’s flavourful heritages, with these perfect pairings
Play up the peat
Not Piet, as in Oom Piet, although he may enjoy this one. Peat, as in partially decayed organic matter. Peat can only be found in a few places around the globe – one of them being the Scottish isle of Islay, which is home to Laphroaig.
Laphroaig’s iconic peaty-ness may be an acquired taste, and it’s certainly unforgettable. Try a glass of our 10 Year Old, neat, if you dare. Pair it with a carefully curated cheese platter, complete with an assortment of local cheeses and cured meats – think biltong pieces and droëwors sticks. To get the most out of the peaty flavour, opt for cheeses that are on the stronger side and have smoky undertones.
A pinch of salt
South Africans love salt and so does Laphroaig. When you drink Laphroaig neat, you’ll be able to pick up on the hints of sea salt courtesy of the isle. While drinking whisky neat may be Oom Piet’s thing, a lot of people may prefer something a little less intense, and that’s ok.
If you’re looking for a way to gently nudge these members of your circle into the wonderous world of peated whisky, a whisky cocktail may be just the trick. Why not serve a smoky penicillin? This delicious cocktail is the perfect match for our love of salt. Its medley of flavours will win over even the toughest of critics. To really blow them away, pair it with a simple, salty snack that takes a South African twist – buttered popcorn flavoured with biltong and peanut brittle.
For the cocktail:
You’ll need a small slice of ginger, peeled and roughly chopped; 1 heaped tbsp honey; 50ml Laphroaig 10 Year Old; 25ml lemon juice, plus a lemon wedge to garnish; and ice.
Drop the ginger into the base of a cocktail shaker and drizzle in the honey. Mash it together with a muddler or the back of a long-handled spoon. Pour in the whisky and lemon juice and add a handful of ice. Seal the shaker, then shake well until the outside is very cold. Fill a tumbler or rocks glass with ice cubes, then double-strain the cocktail into the glass. Garnish with a lemon wedge.
For the popcorn:
You’ll need one microwave popcorn bag; 100 g peanut brittle; 100 g biltong sprinkle; and 2 tablespoons of butter, softened.
Prepare the popcorn according to package instructions, then transfer to a large mixing bowl. Using a fine grater, grate the peanut brittle and add to the popcorn. Sprinkle over the biltong and toss with the butter until all the popcorn is coated with the peanut brittle, biltong and butter.
Let’s get smoky
Finally, and most importantly, there’s our shared love of smoke and fire. For South Africans, it’s the braai; for Laphroaig, it’s the drying of malted barley over a peat fire.
This is what makes Laphroaig the perfect match for the smoky taste of meat prepared over an open flame. An old fashioned captures all the right notes for Heritage Day. Serve this alongside your favourite braai meat for a winning combination.
For the cocktail:
You’ll need 1 sugar cube; 1 teaspoon water; 1 dash bitters; 70ml Laphroaig 10 Year Old; 1 lemon twist; ½ cup ice cubes (or as needed); 1 orange slice, for garnish; 1 maraschino cherry, for garnish.
Muddle sugar cube, water, and bitters in an old fashioned glass for 1 minute. Pour in whisky and stir for 1 minute. Squeeze the lemon twist over the glass and drop it in. Add in the ice cubes and garnish with the orange slice and maraschino cherry. Serve with a swizzle stick and enjoy!
For the meat:
We wouldn’t dare try to tell you how to braai your meat. That would be disrespectful.
Cheers to the rich heritage of two nations and happy Heritage Day!