Sippin on the Rocks has gotten great write ups in some well-known publications. Here is a sampling of some of the articles...
Wine International Magazine - Dave Broom Column
This was going to be about whisky and cigars, but that will have to wait thanks to a small package that arrived this morning from Golden, Colorado, which, I’m sure you will agree, is one great-sounding town. The customs declaration on the package said it contained ‘polished rocks’.
My new Coloradoan friend is called Terry Burr and he had kindly sent a small walnut box with the inscription ‘Scotch on the Rocks’ engraved on a little plaque on the side.
Inside it, snuggled under a bright scarlet velvet blanket, were four cubes of granite. Scottish granite.
The idea, Terry assured me in an attached letter, was that you freeze the rocks and then add to your dram to ‘cool down the drink and conserve the taste and aromatics of the whisky’. I know. Just as you think the world can’t get any weirder, it does. I mean, not only has someone in Colorado sculpted these things, someone has come up with what, on the face of it, seems a crazed idea.
The principle comes from the Americans’ love of ice. Now, I’ve banged on about how the quality of the ice is an integral part of a chilled beverage, and I agree with Terry’s point that chlorinated ice ruins the taste and aroma of a drink.
That said, I’m also with Kyndal’s master blender Richard Paterson, who argues that ice and top-notch whisky should never be mixed.
Well apart from getting a strange look from my wife as I sat with a rock in my whisky, the rock-free glass had classic aromas of honey, Orange and sweet malt, while the one with the lump of granite was appreciably different. It seemed finer, less sweet and, while the honey was there, it was less dominant. It didn’t ruin the dram as ice would...
The real difference came when I tasted them. The rock-free malt was rich, full and had a real hot impact (remember these were both uncut). The rocked whisky was cleaner and actually very drinkable. I suspect it’s because the whisky, being cooler, began to open up as it warmed up in the mouth, allowing the flavours to develop.
I think Terry might be on to something here...
The Dave Broom Column
Wine International Magazine
Quest Magazines & Events
6-14 Underwood Street
London N1 7JQ
(01 June 2003)
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Consumed - Let's Rock
By Marty Jones
Howard Lahti is a rock-it scientist. Fifteen years ago, the Canadian geologist / geochemist was pondering a stone sample over a snifter of Scotch (single malt) when he was struck by an idea: Why not use a piece of chilled Scottish granite to cool his favorite spirit?
Today, Lahti's bright idea is a hard reality. His Scotch "On the Rocks" imports granite from Scotland to Golden, where it's cut into one-inch cubes, polished and packaged in sets of four -- and then sold to Scotch fans to drop in their drinks.
Lahti's permanent rocks chill a shot without melting and diluting the aged handiwork of Scotland's malt artisans. While a Scotch purist wouldn't dream of adding an ice cube to his drink (or even more than a drop or two of water to release a Scotch's flavor), this new application of very old materials has turned over a new stone in sipping satisfaction.
"There are good aromatics and bad ones, eh?" Lahti says from his home in Nova Scotia. "What these rocks do is lower the vapor pressure of those nasties that come out of the Scotch. When they cool it down, they also suppress the harsh alcohol taste."
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From Razor Magazine
Now you can enjoy Scotch on the rocks-literally. Imported from Scotland, these highly polished granite cubes will chill your finest Scotch without diluting it.
By ANA SAMWAYS
If you are an old soak who loathes his tipple being watered down by ice, this innovation is for you. Scotch Rocks, developed by a geologist and described as an "ice alternative", are actually pieces of chilled Scottish granite that will cool but not dilute your expensive whisky. You'll pay $139 for the boxed set of four, but that includes a one-million-year guarantee.
March 16, 2004
New YorkIsh Magazine
Tuesday, January 06, 2004
For all you hopeless alcoholics out there (yes, that means you), no longer will you have to worry about your favorite beverage being watered down by ice. A Canadian geologist has developed an "ice alternative," pieces of chilled Scottish granite that have been cut into one-inch cubes which you can drop in your drink. They'll cool down your bevvy without diluting it – which might be important to you if you're sipping on something really expensive, such as, say, a bottle of '37 Glenfiddich available for the bargain-basement price of ?10,000.
As for the granite cubes, scotch purists have a million and one reasons why it's better than the stuff that lurks in the back of your freezer. According to Scotch Rocks, the company behind the product, "The water that made the Scotch percolated through these primordial granites. When you put these rocks, which are from Scotland, in the Scotch, you're basically reuniting the Scotch with the granite.
Okay, whatever. But you better have a some sort of good reason if you plunk down $90 for the four granite cubes, which come in a fancy gift box with a personalized brass tag. The good news, however, is that you'll be able to pass them on to your hopelessly alcoholic children. Since the cubes are made of a material that's been around as long as planet earth itself, your $90 should last you many, many bottles of the good stuff. "They do come with a million-year guarantee," says Howard Lahti, the company's founder.
Wed Mar 17, 2004
Issue 34: World of Whisky
Who says we’re not inventive?
... Dave Broom reckons it’s up there in the innovation stakes with Scotch Rocks – which are lumps of granite you put in the freezer
and then add to your whisky. In this way you can cool your drink without diluting it. How clever is that?
Dave Broom said in his column in Whisky Magazine...
“The rocked whisky was cleaner and actually very drinkable. I suspect it’s because the whisky, being cooler, began to open up as it warmed up in the mouth, allowing the flavours to develop....That said, I’m also with Kyndal’s master blender Richard Paterson, who argues that ice and top-notch whisky should never be mixed.”
DAVE BROOM is a freelance wine and spirits writer. A former features editor of Off-Licence News, he is now a regular contributor to that magazine as well as Decanter, Wine Magazine, Wine and Spirits International and Caterer and Hotel Keeper. He was a co-presenter for the drinks features on UK Living Channel’s Summer Show on Sky TV.
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