Thursday, March 12, 2009




Most of you know that my heritage is Italian, but did you know that my husband is Irish, making my 3 son's half Irish? We have many friends living in Ireland as well, and this past fall, we finally made our first trip to the Emerald Isle and I fell in love with it.

The food, the people, the countryside, the accent, the Guiness and the Hot Whiskeys. Now, I have to say my drink of preference is red wine, but when in Ireland drink what the Irish drink! And I did. Guiness for strength, it was a demanding trip and Hot Whiskeys for warmth, it was pretty cool and damp in Oct., but our driver Phillip did keep our mini bus nice and warm for us.

Traveling with 4 other couples who are also good friends made this a perfect trip. We began in Northern Ireland and one of our first stops was Bushmill's home of the worlds oldest distillery near the famous Giant's Causeway. We stayed at the beautiful Bushmill's Inn known for it's multi award winning restaurant and Inn. We were not disappointed. A warm fire, a cozy dining room and great food always awaited us and of course we were introduced to "Hot Whiskeys." And for the week when we were not drinking Guiness for strength you would find us with the warm drink.

We did spend a half day visiting the distillery where an excellent tour is given and we did enjoy a hearty lunch as well and of course were given a sample of their "Hot Whiskeys." (recipe to follow) And after making several purchases we were on our way to the next town and adventure.

Now on this cold winter night, I am going to go and make myself a hot whiskey and go through my photos of a very special trip. I just can't think of a better way to prepare for St. Paddy's Day. Maybe you better have a Hot Whiskey for warmth as it is after all very cold out or if you prefer have yourself a Guiness for strength.

Erin Go Braugh!

Buon appetito,

Carmela Tursi Hobbins

2 parts water
1 part whiskey
1 liter of water flavored with cinnamon sticks and whole cloves.

Take several cinnamon sticks and several whole cloves and tie them in a piece of cheesecloth and add a liter of water and spices to a pan. Bring water to a boil. Allow to simmer for 20 minutes or longer if you prefer a stronger flavor. Then add Bushmill's original white label whiskey for best results. For individual drinks the combination should be twice the amount of water to whiskey. Add a little sugar to taste when making the drink. Garnish with lemon slices and cloves.

The flavored water may be stored when cooled in a glass bottle for up to 6 days. Just pour out the amount you want to use, reheat and add whiskey.

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