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The Magical Medicine of the Hot Toddy

Achooo!!!! Ugh, colds. You’ve pushed yourself too far, burning the candle at both ends and finally it all come back at you. Time to rest, put your feet up and take some time off, but what to drink while you do so? Something hot of course, to get you nice and cosy, but it can’t be coffee, not now. Tea won’t cut it either, so you need something else to really hit the spot. Something with some nice spice, a hint of sweet honey and some Lambay Irish Whiskey added to really hit the spot. Ah, we’re starting to form something here. It’s a hot toddy!

It’s always best to know about a drink to get into it too, but reading about a drink is always best when you have the drink itself. Below is the recipe to reap the benefits of the magical medicine of the Hot Toddy.

How to make the perfect Lambay Hot Toddy

  • 1 ½ oz of Lambay Small Batch Blend
  • 1 Lemon
  • 1-2 tsp Agave nectar or honey
  • 6 oz Hot water
  • Cloves for lemon slice

Slice 1 or 2 slices of lemon and place three to 4 cloves into the lemon slice.

Then place these into a large mug/ glass (with a handle as they can get hot!)

Pour about 3 oz of the hot water on top.  Let it sit for a couple of minutes to release the lemon flavour.

Add 1-2 tsp of agave nectar or honey, depending on how sweet you’d like your drink to be.

Add the whiskey and top up with hot water, Stir and serve.

If you fancy spiciness you can add a sprig of Star Anise or a stick of Cinnamon to add spice!

It’s a simple recipe to be sure, but because of that, it’s a bit difficult to trace. While we can’t trace the exact origins, it’s generally believed that the drink has its roots not in Ireland, not in Scotland, but to the east in India. During the 17th century in British India, there was a drink known as a ‘taddy’, meaning a beverage made from fermented palm sap. Within a century this drink had come to be a hot beverage made with hot water, sugar, spices and alcohol.

India has a great deal warmer weather than Britain, and the drink gradually made its way back, then started heading north to the cold climates of Scotland. Here the drink would no doubt have been thoroughly enjoyed, it tastes nice, warms you up, and contained whisky at the same time!

As with all great things, there are many who claim the Hot Toddy as their own. Another origin story tells of Robert Bentley Todd, a 19th-century Irish doctor who is known to have told his patients to drink a mixture of cinnamon, sugar water and hot brandy. The last name such as Todd certainly gives credence to the idea of being ordered to drink a Hot Toddy!

Most likely there’s a bit of truth to both the stories, and a doctor would no doubt understand the magical medicinal properties of such a drink for someone feeling a bit poorly. Regardless of the origins, the cocktail has made itself a known cure for those little ailments that plague us when we’re feeling down. From British India to Scotland, from Ireland to the world, the drink is now a staple for the colder months. And if it does come from a doctors recommendation, even all those years ago, there’s no harm in having one more.

Discover some other great Lambay recipes here.