It’s no secret that I love new food pairing experiences. Even more so when it involves something unusual, like a whisky and food pairing.
Recently, I’ve tried a vegetable pie with whisky from the Black Forest region in Germany; and with that a real success, I’ve been looking for another winning combination.
Read my post Pairing whisky with food | Blackforest Wild Whisky if you want to learn more about my previous experience.
With national pizza day coming up on 9th February, the idea was born to try a pairing with a homemade salmon pizza and whisky.
This legendary Scottish distillery from Spayside hardly needs any introduction. Having opened its doors in 1887, Glenfiddich single-handedly revolutionized the world of whisky.
More than 130 years later, it is still one of the best-selling single malt brands in the world.
The distillery is not short on rewards for their different single malts, and the 15 year old version is no exception.
There are many more single malt varieties in the impressive Glenfiddich portfolio. From the only 12 year old to the 15, 18, 21 and even 50 year old as well various special editions including the Winter Strom (crafted from casks that survived the collapsing of some warehouse roofs), Fire & Cane, Reserve Cask, Grand Cru, Master’s Edition and many more the is lots to discover.
It’s safe to say, the beautiful Deer Valley along with Glenfiddich distillery is high up on my bucket list of places to visit.
Tasting the Glenfiddich 15 year old single malt
Admitting I am still a baby when it comes to whisky and since the 15 year old is the most widely distributed internationally, it was an obvious choice getting started with this one.
The 15 year old Glenfiddich single malt is aged in European oak sherry casks, new American oak casks and finally mellowed in the Solera Vat, a pioneering process invented by the distillery back in the late 1990s.
Essentially, the Solera Vat is a cask that is never emptied, always kept half full of whiskies since 1998.
This guarantees the 15 year old Glenfiddich single malt gathers full intensity and develops an excellent depth of flavour.
In the glass, the Glenfiddich 15 year old is a dark golden with a slight red hue.
On the nose, a complex aroma with mild sherry notes, a bit of lemon peel, dried apricots and rich dark fruits.
On the palate, silky smooth with layers of sherry, raisings, fruitcake, spices. Full bodied and intense flavour.
Finish is rich with lingering sweetness.
Food pairing: Smoked salmon pizza and whisky
Pairing whisky with salmon is a fairly straightforward choice. Just think at the well-introduced traditional recipes of whisky-cured smoked salmon or serving salmon with a whisky cream sauce.
The smoked salmon pizza includes both smoked salmon and salmon filet along with anchovies.
If you want to try this pairing yourself, I recommend you start with a sip of the pure single malt, next have a sip with some ice added. Finally, try it with the pizza. You will find something changes.
As usual, it will be down to individual taste if you like the combination.
However, I really recommend you go and have a try for yourself.
Recipe: Smoked salmon pizza
For the dough
250 g flour
60 g wheat semolina
a pinch of sea salt
½ teaspoon sugar
5 g dry yeast
For the sauce
½ tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon flour
40 ml white wine
50 ml liquid cooking cream
2 tablespoons mascarpone
40 g mozzarella cheese
For the topping
100 g smoke salmon
100 g salmon filet
Preheat the oven at 250°C.
In a food processor, add all ingredients for the dough together with 200 ml slightly warm water and knead together until obtaining a homogenous dough. Cover with a kitchen towel and set away for about 10 minutes. Knead the dough for another 1-2 minutes, then cover and set away for another 20 minutes.
In the meantime, prepare the sauce. Peel and finely dice the onion. In a small saucepan let the butter melt over medium heat. Lightly sweat the onion until it will start to glaze over. Add flour, wine and liquid cooking cream. Bring to a light boil then add mascarpone and cheese. Take from the heat and season with abundant salt and pepper. Set aside and let cool completely.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lightly flour. Work the dough into a rectangle; it should cover about 2/3 of a regular baking sheet.
Cover the dough with the sauce. Top with chopped salmon filet and smoked salmon. Add anchovies.
Put into the oven on the lower rail for 15-20 minutes.
Sprinkle the baked pizza with some rucola and a few dashes of lemon juice.