By Richard Thomas
As I’ve described in previous reviews of DYC whiskey, it is something of a standard in Spain to see cheaply priced bottles of basic DYC taped together with a 1 L bottle of Coke as a supermarket special. An ice cold DYC and Coke is both a simple cocktail and a popular refreshment during the brutally hot summers on the Iberian plateau, and DYC’s light-but-flavorful characteristics make it an ideal mixer for that sort of thing.
DYC Red One puts a new spin on that institution of Spanish drinks. In my book, brand name cherry-infused whiskeys take what is essentially a mixer-grade whiskey, and tailors it for the purpose of mixing. DYC Red One is no exception to this idea, and frankly, if it were my intention to mix something with a soft drink, I would reach straight for the cherry-infusion over the standard whiskey every time.
This cherry infusion comes in an unremarkable package with a metal screw cap, similar to that of basic DYC, and looks like just what it is: a bargain whiskey product. My bottle came with an aerator, and usually I don’t like that, but it’s easily forgiven in this instance since Red One is first and last about mixing. The whiskey is bottled at 30% alcohol.
On it’s own, the cherries are what come across most strongly on the nose, palate and finish. DYC is a light whiskey, so it’s not surprising that if you infuse it with cherries and dilute it by a quarter, the result is something that is cherry booze first and whiskey second. You might want to drink this stuff on the rocks on its own, but I would avoid doing so and recommend using it for what it’s meant for: mixing with soft drinks.
The classic mixer for DYC is Coke, and that is what DYC had in mind if their Red One website is anything to go by. The classic bourbon and Coke recipe is ice, one part whiskey, two parts Coke, but I’d change that balance for this cherry-infusion. The lower alcohol content and the desire to get more cherry flavor in the drink means a high proportion of whiskey in the mix, say a 1-to-1, 50-50 split or three parts whiskey to four parts Coke balance.
As for other mixers, I know some Spaniards use Sprite instead of Coke. One soft drink-derived cocktail I can recommend is the Brass Buck: mix three parts DYC Red One with four parts ginger ale, and add a lime wedge.
The recommended retail price for DYC Red One is €7.95. I have yet to see it listed anywhere outside of Spain.